Center for Inquiry Canada: New Associate Members

The Board of Directors voted on accepting new Associate Members at its December 11th meeting. I have just received a letter from the Board signed by the new (?) Chair, Richard Thain.
Dear Professor Moran,

On December 11, 2011 one of the many important items on the agenda for the Board od Directors meeting was discussion of the applications for Associate Membership.

The goal is to have a diverse group of Associate Members which reflects our membership geographically. In order to achieve this, the Board recognizes that we must update our website and post the By-Laws which explain the governance of CFI Canada. We hope to attract more applications which will then be reviewed before the next CFI Canada AGM in March 2012.

We felt it was important to approve some of the applications at the December 11th board meeting, so we reviewed and accepted the following five people:

Iain Martel, Seanna Watson, Brian Eelhart, Craig Irving and Marlowe Filippov.

The other applications were put under review and will be considered with the next wave of applicants at a future board meeting.

The Board of Directors realizes you have made and are continuing to make significant contributions to our success. We would like to sincerely thank you for your continued support and committment to helping CFI build a better Canada through reason.

Richard Thain DDS
Chair, Board of Directors
CFI Canada
My application was rejected!

I wish I knew why the Board didn't accept my application but did accept some others. Iain Martel is the Chair of CASS and Seanna Watson is the Director of the Ottawa branch of CFI so I assume that the people filling these positions are a sort of ex officio Associate Members. That makes a lot of sense especially for Iain and Seanne who have devoted so much time and effort to CFI.

Bryan Eelhart was the Financial Agent for the Green Party in the riding of Trinity-Spadina (Toronto) during the recent Ontario election. He's a member of the Board of Directors at Conscience Canada and he works for Science for Peace. Bryan has extensive expertise in website design and implementation.

Craig Irving is a freelance videographer from Toronto. He serves on the Multimedia Committee at Centre for Inquiry Canada.

Marlowe Filippov lives in Ottawa where she volunteers at the Centre for Inquiry. She's also an expert in websites. She's been helping out with membership problems and advising the National Director on other issues.

It appears that three two of the new Associate Members were chosen for their ability to help out with updating the CFI website.

There are currently three Associate Members who are CFI Advisory Fellows; Jeff Rosenthal from Toronto, Chris diCarlo from Guelph, and Ethan Clow from Vancouver. It's possible that the Board of Directors felt that only three CFI Canada Advisory Fellows should also be Associate Members, or maybe they felt that having two from the Toronto area was too much and that's why my application was rejected.

I'll try and find out more about the qualifications required for Associate Membership. It's clear that length of membership in CFI is not important since there are Associate Members who only joined CFI two years ago. I think that active volunteering on administrative tasks is an important criterion so if you are currently helping out in this area you will probably have a good chance of being appointed.

I'm a little unclear about the criterion of reflecting membership geographically. About half of all CFI Canada members are from the Toronto area but I don't think this means that half of the Associate Members will be from Toronto. I think it means that you're more likely to be chosen as an Associate Member if you are from one of the other centres that isn't already represented.

I'm not sure what the role of a CFI Canada Advisory Fellows is supposed to be. If we can't be Associate Members then who are we supposed to advise? :-)

Post a comment if your application was also rejected. That way we might be able to figure out what the Board of Directors is thinking when it comes to appointing new Associate Members. I'll let the Board know about this posting so they can comment, or at least see your comments.

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