Richmond Astronomical Society

August 2010 Board Meeting Minutes

Sep 14th, 2010 | By | Category: Board Meetings

RAS Board Meeting August 16, 2010

President Jim Browder called the meeting to order at 7:01pm.

Attendees (8):

  • Jim Browder, President
  • David Medici, Vice President
  • Jim Blowers, Treasurer
  • Chris McCann, Secretary
  • Ken Wilson
  • Prashant Reddy
  • Bill Jeffries
  • Tim Streagle


Secretary’s report given by Chris McCann

  • May’s board meeting minutes were distributed, discussed, and accepted.

Treasurer’s report given by Jim Blowers.

Balance Summary (as of 8/16/2010):

  • General Fund:                $5625.59
  • Observatory Fund:           $179.44
  • TOTAL:                         $5805.03
  • Checking Account:          $758.05
  • Savings Account:           $2858.65
  • Certificate of Deposit:    $2188.33
  • Pay Pal Acct:                          0.00
  • TOTAL:                          $5805.03

Treasurer’s report was approved by the board. 
Observatory Report given by John Barnett

  • John Barnett is considering selling the Astrograph and the 9-inch f9 mirror in the RAS observatory. 


Education Report (Jim Browder) :

  • Jim Browder reported that the Skyday Night on July 16 went fairly well.  There were about 400 people attending the festivities.  This may be an event to be scheduled quarterly throughout the year.  The RAS Skywatch may also become quarterly, instead of monthly.
  • We briefly considered a few possible locations to research for our skywatches, if we are restricted to 4 SMV skywatches per year.  An incomplete list of possible sites included Maymont Park, Louis Ginter Gardens, Bryan Park, and University of Richmond campus.  
  • John Raymond, RAS Outreach coordinator, continues to schedule and hold several public skywatches at various places.  There are several requests for skywatches in the near future. 
  • Area skywatches should be processed through John Raymond, who continues to do a great job.


Library Report

  • The library will be moved on August 17 from the U-Haul on Lombardy to the Richmond Alarm Company in Midlothian.  Wayne Boggs, who used to be a RAS President, has been gracious to allow us to use the alarm company building for storage of the RAS library.
  • Discussion about library issues will be discussed during New Business.


Old Business:

  • Brief discussion about the future of the RAS library (short term and long term).  Right now, they will be moved to the Richmond Alarm Company.  The option to have the library moved to an on-sight storage building (RAS observatory grounds) is still an option.
  • Library contents can be found online at the RAS site.
  • We were asked to think about who will be allowed as authorized users of the library, when it can be accessible, and if we will have a ‘delivery’ system to handle book requests.


New Business:

  • We continued to talk about what to do with a portion of the library contents.  Some of the considerations have been:
    • Can we access the list of library contents quickly? Where?  The location on the RAS website will be confirmed.
    • How much of the library do we need?
    • What can we do with the un-needed books, extra copies?
    • How much of the library contents can be found elsewhere on the internet?
    • How much of the contents are valuable?  How is that judged?
    • How much of the contents are out-of-date?
  • VAAS participation – October 9, 2010 at Roanoke College.  Jim Browder has suggested that we display our electronic frame of RAS images that have been taken by our members.  We were asked to consider attending.  Back Bay will be hosting in 2011, while RAS will be hosting VAAS in 2012.
  • Does RAS want to have a Fall Picnic?  When? Where?  Prashant Reddy has volunteered to be point of contact, poll the club and do research.  If so, Prashant will surpervise the coordination of the food, choose the date and location.  A few of the suggested locations have good observation sites: Three Lakes Park, Pony Farm Park, and Tim’s scout camp in Maidens.
  • David Medici made a motion for RAS to have a new member’s packet.  Recently, it seemed that nothing was given to the new members.  Possible ideas were to resume the handbook, give out name tags (Jim Blowers), membership cards, Café Press items, red flash lights (or something useful when observing), printed by-laws, information about the library and observation sites like Malvern Hill and Powhatan, resume mentorship process to have someone selected to keep in contact with new members.  A motion was made to have the executive committee investigate the options.
  • Tim Streagle will be having a Fall Star party on Saturday November 6, 2010.  There are cabins for rent, public bathrooms, and running water.  RAS has volunteered to help.
  • Prashant Reddy has volunteered to head the 2011 RAS Board selection committee. He will need to get others (board and non-board members) to work with him to find 12 RAS members to be on the 2011 RAS Board.


Next Board meeting will be Monday, November 15th, 2010 at Extra Billy’s at 7pm.  If you want to come early for dinner, come by at 6pm.

  • Meeting was adjourned at 8:35pm.


  • RAS needs to fill and submit a Form-990-N with the IRS within every 3 years.  We agreed upon a goal for a selected RAS Board member to evaluate the status of this form soon after the new slate of officers has been elected.

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