Committee Reports for FY 2009
May 2009

Table of Contents
Sunday Services Committee Report
Building Committee Report
Social Action Committee Report
REECY Committee Report
Membership Committee Report
Finance Committee Report
Long Range Plan Report


Chris Magee has served as the Board Liaison for this committee. Linda Krenicky leads the committee and serves as the worship coordinator for speakers and guests filling in on Sundays not on the minister’s schedule. Worship associates include Jill Martin, JJ Martin, Karen Boulanger, Kate Taylor, Chris Magee, Linda Krenicky, and Paul Yeadon.

Veronica Davis became our most recently recruited worship associate in March. Jennifer Scharpen, Bert Olson, and Ellen Greene have also expressed a willingness to assist in offering parts of the Sunday Service, and will participate in training to prepare for this opportunity.

Scheduling worship associate meetings and training has proved challenging this year, given busy schedules and other commitments. To be more responsive, we’ve moved to meeting once per quarter. Meetings include opportunities for feedback and updates on worship services, planning for coming Sundays, scheduling worship associates, and training on various aspects of the worship experience.

Worship associates have coordinated and/or provided lay-led services that have been interesting, eclectic in topic, and included a variety of speakers, including community leaders, ministers, and lay leaders. They attempt to identify options that compliment the minister’s worship plan and provide different perspectives for the congregation. One of our focus areas has been continuing to expand the “spiritual” aspects of worship, including more time for meditation.

At various times, we’ve invited children, families, members, and friends to assist with the Chalice Lighting portion of the service. This has been met with mixed results. However, the committee is committed to continuing to explore ways to be more inclusive. We have heard feedback from the congregation about expanding our intergenerational services and including children more in the Sunday worship experience, and we continue to explore ways to make this a reality.

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Building Committee Report

The goal of Building & Grounds is to keep the grounds and building in the best possible condition.

We have initiated a once-monthly, on-going volunteer work morning the second Saturday of each month with spotty success. Some Saturday’s have been well attended, others have not.

Inside the building this past year we have had a leak repaired in the area around the roof cupola, completed the sanctuary fluorescent lighting replacement, and various smaller jobs completed such as adjustments made to a restroom door closing mechanism. And a new pre-school refrigerator was installed. There also has been a consultation on the air conditioning and heating for the building to evaluate performance along with repair of one of the units.

Upgrades were made to the Minister's office / Lounge area with painting and furniture rearrangement. Sanctuary seating was made steadier.

Outside, the sprinkler system has required the most attention on the grounds. It requires frequent repair and adjustment. A number of new plants have been placed throughout the garden area. Work has been done to repair fencing in several areas and weathered areas of the outside of the building have been scraped and repainted.

Pest control has been an ongoing issue to prevent ants from invading the building and ground squirrels from undermining the outside concrete slab areas.

We have also begun development of a long-term capital expenditure estimate for high cost repairs and maintenance. High on the list is parking lot resurfacing and roof replacement. There are several shorter term and lower cost items that should be planned and, if funds are available, completed this next year. The most important two of these are upgrading the ceiling lighting in the hall and painting the Sanctuary walls.

A study also needs to be done to determine possible noise reduction for the Sanctuary, potentially including replacing the windows in the cupola.

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Social Action Committee Report

Social Action Annual Report

July 2008 – June 2009


 The Story of Stuff potluck, film and discussion was held July 18, 2008 to raise awareness about the true costs of over-consumption. For younger viewers we showed
Dr. Suess’ classic The Lorax which gives children perspective on “need” and the overuse of resources to make “things.” Edna Windes produced a great brochure of facts, resources and solutions.

 No on Proposition 8 activities were undertaken from August ‘08 to the November election in support of marriage equality including: informational tabling on the deck, “Vow to Vote No” sign-ups collected, ministerial and congregational endorsements, and LGBT film series led by Carl Ingram. Thanks to Harry Campbell for the group photo.

 Created UUFLG t-shirts on CafePress and managed first round of orders. Design by Connie Springer. Project managed by Ryan Spaulding.


 Lead 22 volunteers in Creek Clean-Up Day efforts in Vasona Park in September ‘08 organized by Ryan Spaulding.



 Organized 8 volunteers for Nation River Clean-Up Day in May ‘09. Project managed by Ryan Spaulding.



Took part in UUFLG Committee Revitalization project with a newsletter article on committee facts in July and a list of Social Action job openings in the August newsletter.

Continued Monthly Newsletter Articles containing information about committee activities and/or educational material on Social Action issues including: a challenge to reduce use of disposable plastics, the environmental consequences of our food choices, green holiday suggestions, and water conservation. Newsletter articles written by Jessica Spaulding.

Assisted Julie Doyle in hosting “Waging Peace in the Midst of the Occupation,” a talk by Palestinian Christian farmer Daoud Nassar.

 Solicited donations of used forks, knives, and spoons so that we have enough flatware in the UUFLG kitchen that we should never need to use plastic eating utensil again. Flatware was donated by Kathryn Wood and Barbara Kalmoutis. Added Be Kind to the Earth stickers to the bins of disposal products in West Room closet to reminding users to choose reusables over disposables whenever possible.

Presented the April 4 Sunday Service defining what Social Action is and why we do it. Service developed and delivered by Veronica Davis, Walt Main, and Ryan Spaulding.

Promoted Guest at Your Table and eScrip programs. Lead by Jessica Spaulding.

Connie Springer and Kate Taylor represented us at West Valley Green Leaf (WVGL) meetings. Jim Beebe marched with WVGL in Los Gatos Holiday Parade. Connie Springer worked with WVGL to write council members of each west valley city inviting them to participate in National River Clean-up.

Worked with RECCY to establish and promote year-round food basket to collect food donations for Second Harvest on an ongoing basis.

Agreed to coordinate Community Service Activities under Long Range Plan item C-1. Started process of soliciting input from other committees and groups. Have discussed with and compiled input from Women's Spirituality Group, Finance Committee, Caring Committee, Board of Trustees, RECCY 1/22/09, and Thurs night chalice circle so far. Also incorporated opportunity for input from the congregation into the Social Action Sunday Service.

Started a Social Action library in the quiet room to share resources with the congregation. Kate Taylor is the project leader.

Assisted with planning and presentation of Earth Day Sunday Service.

Continued Share-the-Plate program with the following recipients and results:

July 2008 St. Luke’s Pantry Project $291.00

Aug 2008 Knoxville Relief Fund $376.00

Sept 2008 Ministerial Discretionary Fund $219.00

Oct 2008 UUA - Association Sunday $131.75

Nov 2008 replaced with Friends Outside Family for Holidays program

Dec 2008 UUSC(GaYT) $480.11

Jan 2009 Global Midwives $444.71

Feb 2009 skipped for start of canvass campaign

Mar 2009 Low Income Self-Help Center $284.00

Apr 2009 Death Penalty Focus $224.00

May 2009 San José Peace Center $235

Jun 2009 Los Gatos Cares tbd

Co-Chairs: Jessica Spaulding & Connie Springer

Trustee: Jim Beebe

Report Submitted May 19, 2009

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UUFLG Lifespan Education Trustee Annual Report FY 2009

July 1, 2008 – June 30, 2009

Trustee and RECCY Chair - Leslie Jones
Director of Religious Education – Tamara McClellan

Teaching Staff:
Pre-school – Michelle Sierra and Melinda Graff
Elementary – Tamara McClellan, Kari Sparks and Nina Kalmoutis
Numerous volunteers – Joe Rafferty, Leslie Jones, Jim Bebee, Ann Campbell

General Information:

As Chair of the Religious Education for Children and Youth (RECCY) Committee, the Trustee worked closely with the Director of Religious Education (DRE) to offer a solid children’s program. We felt that focusing on having a good children’s program was an important factor in accomplishing our congregation’s goal of attracting and retaining new members with young families. The adult education was handled by our new minister, Victoria Ingram.

We offer three classes based on age: pre-school, elementary and youth. We follow our safe congregation rules and do background checks on paid staff and always have two teachers per class. This stretches our small congregation, so we rely heavily on volunteers to be the teacher’s assistant. We are seeing a large number of families with young children come to our church and several are regularly attending now.

The average attendance in elementary is seven children and pre-school is about five. However, at times these classes can just be bursting with about 10 kids.


  • Pre-school: We explore the seven principles with stories, crafts, and activities. The structure of pre-school is free play until 10:45, light the chalice (battery flame) with the opening words and hand gestures: “We light this chalice for Unitarian Universalism, this is the church of the open mind…”, we share joys and concerns, then we focus on one of our seven UU principles and work on some kind of craft.
  • Elementary: In the summer, Mythbusters and science were the themes for lessons. These were very popular with the kids. They especially liked the reenactment of the “Soda and Menthos” Mythbusters experiment. During the regular academic year we began new lessons asking “Who is God?” “Who is Jesus?” “What is the Bible?” and what do Unitarian Universalists say about all of this? We looked at parables of Jesus from a UU perspective, with a focus on their cultural literacy. It amazed our DRE to hear how many children hadn’t even heard of Jesus. One of our goals is to develop their first exposure through a Unitarian Universalist lens. Later we drew lessons from three exciting book: Unitarian Universalism is a Really Long Name, Meet Jesus (both from UU’s Skinner House,) as well as the children’s classic How to be Good and Why.

    Since we often have a very large range of ages in our class and we had a large number of young elementary kids, we found a need to occasionally split out the older children (mostly boys). Ann Campbell and Jim Bebee volunteered to take these kids to the park or on walks. In February they discussed the anniversary of Darwin’s birth and the importance of scientific study.

Youth: The number of youth is very small with only about 4-6 youth attending classes and not all at the same time. Four of our youth had just completed the sexuality education classes called OWL (Our Whole Lives) in the winter of 2008. Leslie took the lead to keep the momentum going with these kids who bonded so closely during OWL. Despite getting ideas from the kids and trying creative things like movies or unusual discussion topics, attendance faltered and the youth class basically dissolved.

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Membership Committee Report

In July 2008, I, Edna Windes, took over the chair from Lou Yabroff, who had done an outstanding job. Many thanks go out to Lou.

At this meeting we enlisted volunteers to work on projects on the long Range Plan. Jim Beebe will explore adding some kind of new Men’s group We decided to study community needs for single parents. We decided we needed some new younger members on the committee who understood the needs of young families. We began updating the new member process with Edna Windes and Lou Yabroff designated to help Victoria Ingram.

In August 2008 we welcomed Linda Kernicky as a member to the committee.

Julee Bode and Jill Martin both agreed to serve on the committee but cannot attend meetings. They will contribute by email. We planned a September Picnic and Jim Beebe took charge of that. Edna Windes and Maggi Benson volunteered to oversee Sunday Snacks. We reevaluated Dinners for 8 because it had now been going on for 6 months.

We decided to skip August and resume in September. Kate Taylor proposed that we have a dinner per month for families with children and will begin work on that.

In September 2008, we had a very successful picnic plus we worked on the updating of the Membership Directory.

In October 2008 my life became more complicated because of the illness of my husband and Maggi Benson took over Dinners for 8. We continued working on the updating of the membership list and processing our many prospective members.

In November 2008 we welcomed Katie Stubstad as a member of the committee.

The first Family Potluck dinner was a great success. Harry Campbell asked for proof reading of the new directory, which would be printed soon, and we found John Omvik would soon mount the new panoramic photos. We decided we had to find ways to incorporate new members into Dinners for 8 and began to explore that. I requested that someone fill in for me as liaison to the Board because of my husband’s very poor health and expected death. Harry Campbell agreed to take over for me temporarily.

The December 2008 meeting was conducted by Harry Campbell as fill in for me.

It was decided to open Dinners for 8 up by having each host add 2 people, either friends or church members who had not attended. Many thanks to Harry Campbell and all the committee members for taking over for me during this time.

In January 2009 we instigated a new outdoor group, the Walk, Hike and Bike Group headed by Jim Beebe. It replaces the idea of a new men’s group because women want to join also. We watched a video of how to greet visitors and we decided to make sure that visitors got what they came for so we will ask for more Greeter Volunteers to better help visitors. We held a Greeter Orientation on Jan. 29, that was attended by 9 people.

I announced that I would be out of town from March 10 until Mid May on family business following the death of my husband in November. Harry Campbell volunteered to be temporary chairperson during that time.

In February 2009 we were informed Harry Campbell had produced new mail-back visitor information cards. We will encourage people to leave these at our desk rather than mail back but mailing option should make things easier. We decided to rotate responsibility for sign ups for greeters and snacks between the members of the committee, with each member being responsible for a month at a time.

In March 2009 we decided to help the greeter, snack and coffee clean up people by asking the Board lock-up monitors to help with clean up since they are staying anyway.

I volunteered to try to get a “marketing plan” going by beginning to send out press releases. So far I am trying to get it off the ground and when I return I will work at it in depth.

The April and May 2009 meetings were conducted by Harry Campbell and worked on the previously mentions projects continued.

To sum up, membership has increased this past year and we feel we will build up to even more in the next year. Current UUFLG membership is 111 (up from 101 the previous year) and we have 39 friends. We think the potluck dinners of both kinds have been very beneficial to the Fellowship. I want to personally thank each committee member for the dedication and progress shown this year.

Submitted by

Edna Windes, Membership Chair.

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Finance Committee Report

Our 2009 fiscal year, which began July 1, 2008 and ends June 30, 2009 has been a difficult year for all of us. Our carefully crafted budget approved for this year was attacked by the effect of the economic downturn on all of us. However, through our devotion and enthusiastic financial support, we have come through this year with a modest surplus and have been able to fashion a realistic budget for next year which, while making serious cuts in our expenses, preserves our strong support of the core programs of the Fellowship – Sunday Services and other activities of our minister, our RE program and our professional musician’s services. We can be justly proud and grateful for this achievement.

At last year’s spring meeting, we approved for this fiscal year a budget which called for an income of $156,600 and expenses of $159,200 giving a deficit of $2,600. In order to limit the deficit to this amount, we chose to make an exception in funding our “Fair Share” dues to the PCD and UUA and forgo replenishing our diminishing Building Maintenance Reserves.

By the end of 2008, the projected deficit had risen to $14,700 due mainly to receiving fewer new pledges than anticipated, a lower rate of non-pledge contributions, lower Boutique proceeds, a lowering of the anticipated auction proceeds in response to the lower Boutique proceeds and an increase in likely writeoffs of unpaid pledges at the end of the year. We realized we had to handle this year’s deficit before we began our drive for next year’s pledges. So we held a Budget Builder Drive to clear the deficit, which the congregation responded to with enthusiasm. The deficit was cleared and as a result we are anticipating a modest surplus by the end of this fiscal year. We were then ready to hold our annual budget drive.

It was decided to try a person-to-person contact procedure for the drive instead of collecting the pledges at a single event, as we had done previously. 18 of you volunteered to serve as Visiting Stewards, given a training session by Victoria, and assigned no more than four people to visit, discuss the Fellowship and collect the pledge card. Those not contacted in this way received the mailing with follow-up phone calls if necessary. This procedure was very successful. Over half increased their pledge amounts over last year and there was good feedback that the interview was welcomed.

As expected, due to the economic downturn, we received only $126,000 in pledges instead of the $155,800 needed to conduct a full program for next year. After careful prioritizing of our expenses, we, with the Board, were able to arrive at a budget which maintained the core programs, as described above, and projected a small $2,600 deficit, which can be covered by available Operating Reserves if necessary. This is the budget you approved at our May Congregation Business Meeting..

We want to thank our Treasurer Merritt Benson, for the good leadership of our committee he has provided. We also want to give special thanks to Ann Campbell for organizing the Visiting Stewards operation in the Annual Budget drive and for organizing and leading the Annual Auction.

From your Finance Committee: Merritt Benson, Treasurer, Ann Campbell, Walt Main, Bill Meeker, Jim Stahl, and Irving Yabroff

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Long Range Plan Report

During this year the Long Range Planning Committee completed a final draft of the UUFLG Long Range Plan and presented the plan to the UUFLG Board of Trustees for adoption.

Upon adoption, the Long Range Plan was posted on the UUFLG web page along with a summary of specific tasks assigned within the plan to appropriate committees of the Fellowship.

At the beginning of CY 2009 the Long Range Planning Committee conducted a member satisfaction survey and wrote a report of the results which is posted on the UUFLG web site. The survey addressed 10 specific satisfaction areas with an 11 th question asking for an overall satisfaction rating. Numeric responses scored satisfaction from Low (0) to High (10). There were also numerous written comments provided in the survey responses that have been summarized in the report. The survey results are being used by the Board and Fellowship committees to evaluate potential changes to increase member satisfaction. A yearly re-survey is planned using the same questions in order to update the survey results and develop trends of changing satisfaction.

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