Open Board Meeting

February 26, 2017

Meeting called to order at 7:06 PM

 Present:  President - Denise Valkema, 1st Vice President - Paul Martinez, 2nd Vice President - Miranda Kilby, Secretary - Sylvia Young, Treasurer - Gloria Mills-Hicks, board members: 2 Jorge Hernandez, 3 Tekesha Saffold and 4 Rafael Fernandez

President report: On February 1st, I returned home after hill appointments. On February 2, I attended senior meeting. February 3rd-5th, I attended NFBF board meeting with Central Florida chapter. February 6th, I attended the Washington seminar call. On February 8th, I attended the events committee meeting. February 9th, I was at FRCB meeting in Tampa. I chaired the president’s committee call on February 12th. February 20th, I participated on a call with Florida parents. We had our budget meeting on February 21st. We held a special NFBF board meeting on February 22nd to decide how to assist our members to attend state. I did three national student interviews for president letters this week.

 Secretary Report:  A motion was made by Tekesha to accept the January 22nd minutes as sent via email; second by Jorge.  Motion approved by all and passed.  A motion was made by Paul to accept the February 4th minutes as sent via email; second by Tekesha.  Motion approved by all and passed. A motion was made by Miranda to accept the February 22nd minutes as sent via email; second by Jorge.  Motion approved by all and passed.

 Treasurer Report:  Gloria reported our current bank balances are; Operations - $9,416.38, NFB Newsline - $43,256.44.  A motion was made by Miranda to accept treasurer’s report; second by Sylvia.  Motion approved by all and passed.

 Division/committee/chapter reports:

Tekesha reported the Palm Beach Chapter conducted elections this month and have sent updated information to Dan to updated the web site.  The new board will be discussing upcoming events and future guest speakers.  The Empowerment committee rescheduled their meeting for February 28th in regards to Black History and in March they will focus on the Hispanic culture.

 Jorge reported the Fundraising committee met last Thursday to finalize fundraisers.  He will send out an email about the lapel pins tonight.  The Federation Cash Frenzy will start Friday the 1st day of convention and go through the final day of convention with daily drawings.  We are asking each chapter and division to pledge an amount at the state convention toward the operations of the affiliate.  We are asking that the chapters and divisions bring the checks to the convention.  We will set up link on our wed page to donate monthly through PayPal for both members and chapters to donate to the affiliate.  Plans are being finalized plans and emails will go out soon.

 Rafael reported the Division of Blind Students met last Sunday and discussed scholarships that are due March 31st.  They are encouraging chapters to let students know to sign up for the scholarships.  The Gainesville Chapter has 10 paid members and are getting a new member coming from another state who has a lot of enthusiasm.  They are having elections March 11th.

 Gloria the asked that chapters send their checks for the registration and banquet in one check for all their members to make accounting easier.  She reminded us to send in your chapter dues by end of March.  The Senior Concerns will meet March 2nd at 8pm; please spread the word to all seniors in your areas.  The events committee will meet March 8th with reports from the subcommittees and suggested speakers for the convention. She spoke to FLADU president Sheryl O’Brien who says they are working on some kind of rally soon in reference to Uber.

 Sylvia reported the Tallahassee Chapter had a successful Valentines Basket raffle and recently donated to the food drive of a local church as part of our community service.  The Jacksonville chapter is planning a yard sale March 18th and will be doing a pancake breakfast at Applebee’s May 6th.  I have, at the request of national and President Valkema, sent our state affiliate’s documents to national archives to assist in maintaining the history of the NFB.  I will be sending out a notice on the leader’s list soon about how to send nominations for chapter and division recognitions during the State Convention.  I will be asking members to sit on the committee for that activity.   I will also send out a reminder March 1st for all chapters and divisions to send in submissions for our bi-monthly Newsletter.  Asking for input from everyone, as this is a newsletter for us all.

 Miranda reported the website will be creating a calendar which will have events and activities for the affiliate, chapters and divisions.  Hoping this will help all member be more connected.   There was a meeting with the parents who are working on activities and events for the state convention.  They would like to have childcare at the convention. The agenda committee will be meeting tomorrow.  Please send in your ideas to Miranda or President Valkema. The Tampa Chapter are working very hard to meet the goals they set for the year.  The Deaf/blind is working on growing the division and planning a workshop at the convention.  Please share with all that would benefit.  The next NFB 411 call on philosophy will be March 12th.  Willing be mailing out email soon.  The recording of the last meeting will be available this week.  State convention: $99 room rate, code is NFBF may call hotel at 407-452455.  May 8th deadline Pre-registration is $40 and $20 and fees go up $5 each at the door.  The first 150 registered will receive a free box lunch.   She attended the communication seminar in Baltimore office last week with one focus was to utilize the Braille Monitor.  Started a campaign in March “Why I am a member of the Federation”.  Also, challenge each member to bring one new member to the federation.  They also stress that we use our brand and reciting our 1 minute message which is a way to share with any one quickly.  If you need the new logo, please email Miranda at  They talked about using social media, spread the federation philosophy and for fundraising and to get to know people across the world.  The cutoff date for hotel registration to get the $99 room rate is May th.  The affiliate will provide one free room to each chapter and divisions and it will be up to that group to decide who gets the room.  If the future this may change and we are encouraging chapters and divisions to participate in what the state affiliate is doing.

 Paul reported statewide chapter had elections recently.  They have a Mother’s Day fundraiser 1800flowers gift card for $100 and you can contact any chapter member to purchase your $5 tickets.  The Daytona Chapter continues to grow their membership.  The Pinellas Chapter elected Erin Jones as their new president.  Newsline has a new user assistance program 844-827-7371 then dial #1 Russ, #2 Sherri, #3 Wendy and #4 Paul.  Newsline is looking for a marketer in the south Florida area.  Please contact Russ or Paul if you are interested.  The NFBF will be awarding 3 Scholarships for $1500.  The deadline is April 17th for students.  If chapters or divisions are interested in donating a scholarship, please contact Paul.  IF you are a 1st timer, you can apply at for the Kenneth Jernigan scholarship to attend the National Convention and April 15th is the deadline.  NBAS has 30 scholarships from $1200 to $3000 to attend the National convention, deadline is March 31st.  Please encourage student s to apply.  These require a president’s letter to go with their application.

 Next board meeting 3/26/17 at 8pm.

 Paul made a motion that the meeting be adjourned; second by Jorge.  All approved.  Meeting adjourned at 7:53pm.

 The floor was opened up for questions from the members.

 Respectfully submitted by Sylvia Young, NFBF Secretary



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