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Minutes - April 19, 2012

Location and Time

Illinois Department of Human Servcies
823 E Monroe
Springfield, IL

11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Commissioners Present

Jill Heise, Chair; Jane Angelis; Don Baden; Lawrence Benito; Julian Brown; James Dixon; Kathy Engelken; Greg Gates (for Arlan McClain); Alvin Goldfarb; John Hosteny; Mike Mangan; Bob McCammon; Fred Nettles; Fred Rodriguez; Giraldo Rosales, Barb Tubekis

Commission Staff Present

Kim Fornero, Bureau Chief; Scott McFarland, Acting Executive Director; Lisa Fernandes, AmeriCorps Program Office; Karla Kunzeman, Volunteer Programs Manager; Emily Fox, Graduate Intern; Lois Barnhart, Inclusion Officer; Mike Stehlin, Training Officer

Guests Present

Jennifer Phillips, RSVP Project Director of Sangamon, Menard and Logan Counties

Call to Order and Introductions

Heise called the meeting to order at 11 a.m.

Approval of February 23, 2012 Meeting Minutes

McCammon motioned to approve, Dixon seconded the motion. Passed via voice vote.

Commission Chair Update

Heise would like Commissioners to look at the website and offer suggestions to McFarland. She also advocated a strong Commissioner presence at National Conference in June. She extended the opportunity for members to join a strategic planning category.

Most commissioners’ terms will be up this Spring; Heise asked commissioners to let her and McFarland know if they plan to continue staying with the commission or if they need to seek new members. McFarland said about 45 people have applied for commissioner spots. He said people can still apply by going to, and nominating themselves. Commissioners will be chosen based on area of need (in terms of category, statutory requirements, etc.) We currently need representatives in local government and youth. Seven non-voting positions are also open. Youth must be aged 16-25. McCammon suggested recruiting youth volunteers to be part of the commission. Fornero suggested the commission be mindful of diversity of skill set, geographic location, etc. when filling commission spots. Heise said Commissioners can speak to her and McFarland if they feel there is an unaddressed area that needs to be filled on the commission.

Executive Director Update

Heise gave the report. Ted Gibbs has taken a position with the Illinois Toll Way Authority. Heise has reached out to the Governor’s Office in a variety of ways but has not been able to acquire information regarding the appointment of a new Executive Director. McFarland is serving as Acting Executive Director in the interim.

McFarland said the new CEO of CNCS, Wendy Spencer, was at a meeting in Washington D.C. that McFarland attended, and she plans to be at National Conference and will be available to meet Commissioners at the ASC dinner at the Navy Pier on the Sunday, June 17 during the conference. Registration will be sent out this week, and commissioners are encouraged to pay their own way to conserve commission funds. Points of Light wanted to charge the commission $1600 to have a booth set up at National Conference; they recently reduced the price to $800 and McFarland would like to move forward with that idea.

Hosteny said he heard Quinn is looking outside National Service for an Executive Director replacement. McFarland said the original plan was to have someone in place before Gibbs left, but that did not happen. McFarland and two other individuals are being considered, but McFarland does not know any other information. Tubekis asked if Commissioners could submit recommendations; Hosteny said they could. Fornero said the governor will be interviewing candidates next week. Hosteny asked what role the Commissioners should have in the process. Heise has a contact to which commissioners can write to make recommendations. Fornero said the secretary and governor want to be mindful of the skill set needed for the position.

McFarland thanked each staff member for their contributions.

Corporation for National and Community Service

Hosteny gave the report. Wendy Spencer is the new CEO of CNCS. Fiscal year budget allotted no money for non-profit capacity building fund. The National Conference is only two months away. Hosteny’s office is getting more involved with the NATO summit.

Heise said next week is the deadline of applying for scholarships to attend the conference. Please let her know by today if you are interested in a scholarship.

Staff Reports

  1. Budget - McFarland gave the report and referenced documents in the folder. PDAT took the largest cut—it was completely zeroed out. Disability was also cut but the corporation found another source of funds to actually increase disability funds for the year. McFarland assumes we will have another continuing resolution at level funding. CNCS said not to expect carry-over this year. There will be a 56% decrease between 2012 and 2013 (starting Jan 2013) if PDAT is cut and we receive level funding. (Federal Funding). McCammon asked if lack of PDAT funding would eliminate staff positions that are paid through that funding. McFarland said staffing is a priority. McCammon asked if commission staff could utilize volunteers to help with duties. Fornero said there are ways to utilize volunteers, but volunteers cannot replace the duties of state workers. She is deferring until she can research the topic further.
  2. AmeriCorps - Fernandes gave the report. Beginning today and going through May 11, the Corporation will send competitive applications back to staff to contact applicants for revision. If organizations get contacted, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are chosen. It just means that CNCS needs more info. Fernandes expects decisions to be made by the end of May. There is $4 million for formula programs this year- small drop but it is still good. Not sure what funding is for competitive, currently funding is $4.7 million.
  3. Volunteerism – Kunzeman introduced Jennifer Phillips, the new coordinator of RSVP in Springfield. Kunzeman referenced info in the packet: a news release about National Volunteer Week and a proclamation from the Governor’s Office. She said the conference planning is going well and Commissioners can learn more on our website. The Northwest Conference (NWIVC) is combining with MV-DOVIA this year and the event will be held in Moline.
  4. Marketing
    • Annual Report: Fox spoke of the 2011 annual report. McFarland said it will be distributed electronically and we have budgeted $400 to print.
    • Newsletter: Fox gave the due dates for the upcoming newsletters and encouraged commissioners to submit articles and photos.
    • PSA’s: McFarland said Disability Inclusion Team is considering a PSA. More details to come about a statewide team.
  5. Training – Stehlin said representatives from 13 of our AmeriCorps programs and Senior Corps programs will be attending a financial training in St. Louis. The PDAT budget has transitioned into a PDAT plan.
  6. Disability Inclusion – Barnhardt said there are new members on the inclusion team. They are still looking for a Senior Corps and VISTA representative for the inclusion team. The inclusion team has been invited to a few conferences and was even invited to have an exhibit at an expo in Chicago (the expo will waive the $2000 fee).
  7. Serve Illinois Website - McFarland asked for recommendations from commissioners regarding the website. This past Monday was the third largest website visit day in history (due to this week being National Volunteer Week.) There have been about 200,000 volunteer opportunities available for people to search through since the site was created.

Old Business

Tubekis spoke of the Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards. There were 123 nominees statewide, and 24 awardees were chosen. She encouraged Commissioners to welcome all the awardees today and talk to them. McFarland said some award categories did not receive any nominations, so next year; we need to promote the awards in those areas. Heise requested people email Tubekis and McFarland if they have any suggestions for improving the Service Awards.

New Business

Heise said we have received a request from Points of Light for in-kind donations to support the National Conference. She passed around a document with more information. There are currently about 1600 individuals registered for the conference, this number is down 800 from this time last year. McFarland encouraged commissioners to promote attending the conference to everyone they know.

Other Business

Heise spoke of the 501c3. There is a pro-bono attorney working with us on that; McCammon has been in touch with him. Additionally, Barbeau’s wife had a baby boy earlier this month. The next meeting will be June 13 (tentatively).


Brown motioned to adjourn at 12:30pm; Tubekis seconded. Passed via voice vote.

Next Meeting

June 13, 2012