The International Board of Directors (IBD) met on October 11-13 in Kuala Lumpur, Indonesia. This is an annual meeting which is held in various locations around the world so each full national Mensa has an opportunity to host. The last time they met in the US was in 2006 at the World Gathering in Orlando, and American Mensa will next host the meeting at the World Gathering in Houston in 2021.
Although American Mensa is the largest of the national Mensas, we still only comprise about a third of the total worldwide membership, which is spread across 100 countries, including 35 full national Mensas. However, our size does give us greater representation at the IBD meetings, giving us four National Representatives on the Board. Those members are our Chair (LaRae Bakerink), First Vice Chair (Lori Norris), Treasurer (Taz Criss), and Second Vice Chair (Billie Lee). A fifth National Rep (Secretary (Jason Seiler)) serves if our membership exceeds 50,000. This year due to surgery Lori was unable to attend, and Jason attended in her place.
Generally the members of American Mensa do not pay much attention to Mensa International, as evidenced by the low voter turnout during the International Election. However, since we are part of the International community, and must follow the Mensa International Constitution, some members may be more interested in the activities of the IBD than they think.
The agendas and minutes of the annual meetings, as well as other documents and reports, are available at the Mensa International website at https://www.mensa.org/members/international-governance. You will need to register to log in if you don’t already have a profile, since the American Mensa login does not work on the international site, but getting a logon is simple to do by providing your membership number and identifying information.
I would like to thank Albia Dugger for once again volunteering to serve as Region 10 Scholarship Chair for the 2020 Mensa Foundation Scholarship program. The Local Group Scholarship Chairs will be looking for volunteers to serve as judges, with the submission process already underway. Essays will be available after December 1, and judging will begin shortly after that.
On October 10th, Wynn Rostek of Space Coast Area Mensa (SCAM) passed away after a long illness. Wynn had been a member continuously since 1978, and served as a leader in SCAM for many of those years, including terms as their newsletter editor and Local Secretary (LocSec), as well as the Region 10 Scholarship Chair. Most recently he was serving as the Assistant LocSec for the group. As a dedicated leader, he agreed to step in even within the past couple of months when volunteers were needed to run for the SCAM Executive Committee. He was one of the first Mensa leaders that I met outside of my own local group during the SCAM Regional Gathering, and always had support, encouragement and advice to offer me as I took on my own leadership roles in Tampa Bay Mensa. I will miss him greatly.
Until next month (or until I see you online),
Thomas George Thomas