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Search Committee of Interim Meeting Annual Reports

The text of recently received Annual Reports are below, with the most recently received at the top and older reports below. To jump to a particular report, simply click the year listed below.

2013 Report 2014 Report 2015 Report 2016 Report 2017 Report
2018 Report 2019 Report 2020 Report 2021 Report  

2021 Search Committee Annual Report

No report received.

2020 Search Committee Annual Report

Search Committee is responsible for finding people to serve as the officers of Baltimore Yearly Meeting and of Interim Meeting. It also finds people to serve on the Supervisory and Nominating Committees. This year that has meant finding three people to serve on Supervisory Committee, four on Nominating, two Recording Clerks (one each for Interim Meeting and for the Yearly Meeting) and two Presiding Clerks (again, one each for Interim Meeting and for Yearly Meeting.) This is a significantly larger search than we have in most years, so we began to work on it well before Annual Session in 2019.

As part of our deliberations to fill these positions we considered many factors, including the anti-racism queries. Our discernment process considered the importance of finding Friends from various Quarters or regions of the Yearly Meeting and who represent a range of age groups and racial identities. We consulted the Growing Diverse Leadership Committee and received a list of names of Friends to consider.

Although every position is important, we feel a special responsibility when we search for a Clerk. We began by talking to the outgoing Clerks and key members of the BYM staff to understand the responsibilities of the two clerk positions, how they relate to each other, how they differ, and, particularly, what qualities we should look for in candidates for each position. Our next step was to worship together, and from that worship we lifted up the names of Friends we could see serving us well in each of the two clerking positions. This experience allowed us discover just how rich our Yearly Meeting is in human resources. We found more Friends in our Yearly Meeting than we had initially expected who have the spiritual grounding, love of the Yearly Meeting, and practical skills to serve us well as clerks. We confirmed our sense of the appropriateness of these potential candidates in conversations with the current Clerks and several members of staff. We then we began a series of conversations, inviting these Friends, one at a time for each Clerk position, to consider this service.

The conversations we had with these Friends were at times deeply spiritual and profoundly moving. Each of them sought carefully to be guided by the Spirit in their response to our invitation. At the time of preparation of this report, a Friend has accepted our invitation to be nominated as Interim Meeting Clerk. As yet, however, no one we have asked has felt clear to accept the Yearly Meeting Clerkship. One factor that is making this search more difficult is the global pandemic caused by the Covid-19 virus. Some Friends have told us that the uncertainty caused by the pandemic makes them unable to take on a major new responsibility at this time. We expect to continue to search for our next Yearly Meeting Clerk in the weeks to come.

We have also been working in a parallel process to find Friends to fill the other positions we have responsibility for. There, too, some positions have not yet been filled.

The members of Search Committee have shared a rich, deeply spiritual, and frequently inspiring journey together this past year as we have explored with many Friends what leadership of our Yearly Meeting involves. We have also been challenged to try to understand why the process of finding our next Yearly Meeting Clerk has been so prolonged. Typically, the committee meets about five times a year. This year we’ve met 10 times, so far, and we expect to continue meeting frequently until all the positions we are responsible for are filled. Prior to March, these were face-to-face meetings, but more recently, they have been virtual meetings. We find we are a small enough group and know each other well enough that virtual meetings work well for us. We have had an unfilled vacancy on our committee since the end of Annual Session in 2019 when our previous clerk left the committee.

2019 Search Committee Annual Report

In the past year, Search Committee’s work included nomination of the Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer and the Recording Clerk of Yearly Meeting. We also renominated Friends for Supervisory committee. For Nominating committee, we renominated some Friends and nominated new ones to begin service.

As a committee, Search continues to ask ourselves important questions as we do our work. We deepen our understanding of our work and our relationships with each other as we do so. Starting later this year, Search is embarking on work that will continue into next year as we discern, through thinking, discussion and worship, nominations for three officer positions. We believe that approaching our work as requiring time for deep engagement will bear fruit, both in our process as a committee and in its outcomes in nominations that will enrich those who serve as well as the Yearly Meeting.

The work of Search is cyclical on an annual basis; however, each year it has unique characteristics. Each year we continue to learn. This year, the slate of nominations came together gracefully, if not effortlessly, and we fulfilled our charge. This opened way for us to turn our attention to the coming year’s cycle, which we understand to be significant, and we are easy with the work ahead.

This year, Search met at Interim Meetings in October and March, and held additional meetings in February, May and June. In May, we used the new Zoom technology and believe it is a good tool.

Respectfully submitted,

Anne Bacon, Hopewell Centre; Richard Broadbent, Frederick; Karie Firoozmand, Stony Run (clerk); Bill Mims, Langley Hill; Rebecca Rawls, Langley Hill; Cathy Tunis, Herndon

2018 Search Committee Annual Report

The Search Committee met in person at Annual Session in 2017 and at each Interim Meeting since then. We met by conference call several times in addition. We continued to enjoy the deepening of our relationships with each other as individuals and as a committee. Our work in the past year included renomination of the Presiding Clerk, Clerk of Interim Meeting, and Recording Clerk of Interim Meeting. We also nominated and renominated Friends for Supervisory and Nominating committees.

As we turned our attention to the work of nominating and renominating Friends for positions in the Yearly Meeting, we continued to see the wealth of wisdom, experience and skill within the Yearly Meeting that we can draw upon in our work to support Baltimore Yearly Meeting’s continuation and development as a spiritual community of seekers. We are grateful for the service of so many Friends, and believe that serving our community enriches their spiritual experience of life.

We engaged, sometimes deeply, with those renewing for a new term in their positions and feel comfortable that they are well led. They and we took care in the discernment process. As is usual, in the past year we have talked to many Friends around the Yearly Meeting and gained in knowing them better.

Respectfully submitted,
Linda Coates (Little Britain); Karie Firoozmand, (Baltimore, Stony Run) (clerk); Lamar Matthew (York); Bill Mims, (Langley Hill); Rebecca Rawls, (Langley Hill); Cathy Tunis, (Herndon)

2017 Annual Report

Since last fall the Search Committee has given particular attention to the role our work can play in our Yearly Meeting's work known as Growing Diverse Leadership. With help from our Outreach and Inclusion Coordinator, Dyresha Harris, we are developing our understanding of what it means to encourage leadership that spans the Yearly Meeting's diversity of ages, race, and ethnic identities. As we search for Friends to serve the Yearly Meeting as its officers and on the Nominating and Supervisory Committees, we look for other kinds of diversity, as well, such as in economic and education level and experience in large or small, urban or rural Meetings. And we look for spiritual strengths. This work has been fruitful, and we are glad that it is so clearly part of Search Committee's work.

In terms of the specific items we have accomplished this year: we have identified candidates to serve the Yearly Meeting as Recording Clerk, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, and as members of the Nominating and Supervisory Committees. At the time of preparing this report, there are still some vacancies on the Nominating and Supervisory Committees, and we are working to find suitable Friends to nominate for these positions.

In the past year, the experience of our members has been mutual support and sound process. Our sense of fellowship is alive and strong. We have shared the work well, with a high degree of trust, and enjoy our meetings.

Our work requires time and care. We have sought and received help from various sources including the Clerks of Yearly and Interim Meetings, staff and other members and attenders. We feel generous support from everyone whom we approach and it makes our service a joy.

Linda Coates, Little Britain; Karie Firoozmand, Stony Run (clerk); Steve Hulburt, Blacksburg; Lamar Matthew, York; Rebecca Rawls, Langley Hill; Cathy Tunis, Herndon

2016 Annual Report

Search Committee is responsible for assuring that BYM has strong leadership in its Yearly and Interim Meeting clerks and recording clerks, its treasurer, and assistant treasurer, its Supervisory and Nominating Committees.

This year, our thanks to many Friends, who are accepting second terms in those positions. New faces that received a first reading at June Interim and will receive a second reading at annual sessions are: Marcy Seitel of Adelphi for Interim Meeting Clerk, Peirce Hammond of Bethesda for Supervisory, and Denna Joy of Richmond for Nominating.

As Search Committee has been under staffed this year, we asked our YM Clerk and Acting General Secretary to discern with us who to invite as Interim Meeting clerk. We used the Strawberry Creek Nominating Process, bringing forward names of Friends to fit the position from a space of deep worship. We appreciate their help and for introducing this method.

We are grateful to many for discerning with us who, from their Meetings, might be led to fill the needs of our blessed community. Your suggestions and encouragement guide our work. Barbara Thomas will be leaving Search as clerk after annual sessions and Karie Firoozmand will take up the mantle.

2015 Annual Report

Search Committee is responsible for assuring that BYM has strong leadership in its Yearly and Interim Meeting clerks and recording clerks, its treasurer, and assistant treasurer, its Supervisory and Nominating Committees.

We are fortunate that the YM and IM leadership is continuing with joyful energy and creative ideas.

We will name Mary Campbell (FMW) to Supervisory Committee to replace Jolee Robinson, who has served on Supervisory for four years and will cycle off. Mary is enthusiastic about taking on the search for a new General Secretary. She will be appointed to a one-year term so that Supervisory gets back on track with two new (or returning) Friends each year, per Manual of Procedure guidelines. Supervisory Committee terms are two years, renewable up to six years.

We hope to refresh Nominating Committee with four Friends from Meetings that are not represented among the eight continuing members. We have three Friends to bring forward as of this writing. Nominating Committee is a guiding force for BYM, populating all its other committees and representative positions.

We are grateful to many for discerning with us who, from their Meetings, might be led to fill the needs of our blessed community. Your suggestions and encouragement guide our work.

With love and appreciation from your Search Committee,

Barbara Thomas (Annapolis), clerk; Linda Coates (Little Britain), Karie Firoozmand (Baltimore, Stony Run), Steve Hulburt (Blacksburg) and Gobind Moore (Maury River)

2014 Annual Report

Search Committee is delighted to report that we can present some new servant leaders to BYM at Annual Session this year:

Ken Stockbridge (Patapsco), Yearly Meeting Clerk
Tasha Walsh (Maury River), Interim Meeting Clerk
Arthur David Olson (Takoma Park), Interim Meeting Recording Clerk

In addition, Sheila Bach (Langley Hill) has accepted a second term on Supervisory and three Friends have stepped up to put their names forward for Nominating Committee: Susie Fetter, York; Keith Fullerton, Monongalia; and John Farrell, Patapsco.

We are grateful to many for discerning with us who from their Meetings might be led to fill the needs of our blessed community. At the beginning of each year, we can only hope that Spirit will lead us; at the end of the year, why are we surprised that Spirit-led matches can be brought before Friends at Annual Session?

With love and appreciation from your Search Committee,

Kevin Caughlin (Sandy Spring), Clerk; Barbara Thomas (Annapolis), assistant clerk, Andrei Israel (State College), Linda Coates (Little Britain), Karie Firoozmand (Stony Run), Steve Hulburt, (Blacksburg)

2013 Annual Report

No report received.

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