Train Logo

October 2014 RNA Board Meeting


Ravinia Neighbors Association General Meeting
Thursday, October 16, 2014

The meeting was called to order by Carolyn Cerf at 7:08 p.m. in the offices of At Full Circle Architects at 737 St. Johns Avenue. In attendance, besides Cerf, were Ray DeLong, Amy Lohmolder, Jean Meier, Doug Purington, Jeff Stern and Lisa Temkin. Also present were State Farm representative Mike Babian and host Dan Baigelman.

After discussing corrections to the Minutes of the last meeting, Carolyn Cerf talked about the need for elections for RNA board members, as specified in the RNA by-laws. Doug Purington felt anyone wanting to run should attend meetings before considering to apply. Cerf said that as long as the by-laws were followed, anyone could run, while recognizing that to win any office a candidate would need the support of other members, which it's unlikely they would get if they weren't familiar with how we operate.

Purington said he would put into writing the qualifications for positions on the board. He said he had sent 256 emails out to past and present members inviting them to come to our meetings, but that he has yet to see even one attend. Cerf asked those present to recommend possible candidates for board membership, and that even if they did not wish to be on the board they might want to join a committee involved with their interests.

Cerf reminded everyone of the Open House for the community planned for Saturday, October 25 at Jeff Cohen's Photo Studio at 485 Roger Williams Avenue. A party scheduled for Friday, October 24 at the same location is to be by invitation only. Cerf said events of this kind are good ways to draw attention to the Ravinia Business District. While looking forward to the building of "gateway" structures planned by the city for the major roadways crossing Roger Williams Avenue, she suggested another possible way to advertise the area might be to build bus shelters on Green Bay at Roger Williams. Jeff Stern said modern shelters don't carry advertising on the side facing oncoming traffic because that is where waiting riders stand to watch their buses approach.

Cerf scheduled the next Board Meeting for Wednesday, December 3, and suggested Thursday, December 11, as the date for a Ravinia Neighbors Holiday Party. Regarding the venue for a party, it was noted that Shelton's had put up a sign that their building was for sale. Mike Babian said he was on good terms with the family and would ask their permission to hold our event there. Lisa Temkin determined that the building was designed by Robert Seyfarth, making it all the more appealing as a prospective venue. In his Treasurer's Report, Mike Babian said there was $5,577.85 in the bank account and a CD valued at $5,230.44, as of September 21, for a total of $10,808.29. He said he wanted to research interest rates in order to earn something greater than the current 0.55 percent we have been receiving.

In his Newsletter Report, Ray DeLong said the most recent newsletter had cost $707 to print, noting that it had contained 12 pages. There were 280 folded copies for mailing and 170 flat issues for handing out, for a total of 450. He expected to order the same number of copies for the next issue, which was scheduled for March or April, and said he was still looking for an advertising person to solicit ads. Purington said he would put out ad forms for merchants. Among the subjects suggested for the next newsletter were updates on the Rosewood Beach project, the Park Avenue Beach boat issue, and anything involving new developments in the Business District.

Purington said that despite the approval of all the appropriate city agencies, it was likely to take until April for all the permits needed to proceed with the Klairmont development at 515-555 Roger Williams to be issued, so demolition of existing buildings on the site should not be expected before then. He also said the Baker Boys were interested in a substantial portion of the commercial space planned for the new building, where they may put in a breakfast place as well as a bake shop.

In the absence of Eva Tarm, Purington presented a Business District Report, noting that the Jeffrey James Studio and Salon had opened at 487 Roger Williams and that Piero's was moving ahead with its new building on Roger Williams, just east of Broadview, which was expected to open before the end of the year.

Regarding membership, Purington said 1,007 individual mailings had been sent out to non-members at a cost of $705, and that $1,710 had been received as a result. Total receipts from this year's membership and renewal campaign amounted to $4,065. New memberships included 77 members representing 51 households. Another 73 households renewed.

Under Other Business, Cerf reported that a memorial ceremony is planned for Joan Miller at Don Miller's home, 281 Woodland, on Tuesday, November 25. Lisa Temkin reminded everyone of Seyfarth Month and the House Walk scheduled for Sunday, October 26 that will include seven of the four dozen homes he designed in Highland Park. She then went into some detail regarding the Seyfarth legacy in the city.

Cerf called for the meeting to be adjourned at 8:50 p.m.