Meeting for Business Reports

If you would like a copy of our most recent newsletter, please contact Dianne Marshall at dmarshall(at)   Thanks!



Of the Religious Society of Friends

College Park Quarterly Meeting, Pacific Yearly Meeting



Meeting for Worship on the Occasion of Business

13th Day, First Month, 2019

Present: Don McCormick, co-clerk; Amy Cooke, recording clerk; Reed Hamilton, Peggy Baldwin, Paul Hartsough, Chamba Cooke, Dorothy Henderson, Doug Hamm, Dianne Marshall, fosten wilson, Kathy McCreery, Alan Stahler.

The Meeting opened with silent worship.

Meeting for Business Expectations: The clerk shared his expectations for the Meeting for Business.

Spiritual Query: How would you evaluate a business meeting? What criteria would you use?

Friends spoke to the distinction between a secular business meeting and a Meeting for Worship on the Occasion of Business. The latter implies aligning with the Spirit. The feeling of dropping in, connecting with others, and that we can come through difficulties – those qualities are indications of knowing that our gatherings are meaningful and “working.” If that does not happen, it does not necessarily mean it is “bad,” or didn’t’ work – we may have struggled, and struggling is also good. If people are checked out, that might be the criterion for a “bad” meeting for business.   Participating in the order and structure that supports our Meeting is meaningful, and taking part with others in Quaker process.          


  • Buildings & Grounds: Gordon, on behalf of the committee, will be seeking a bid on roof repairs. Carried over. It is difficult to get a bid on an unknown repair.
  • SFC/M&O/Buildings and Grounds: Will look at how we share building maintenance with SFC.

Carried over.

  • Peace and Social Justice: Peggy will approach the committee with the concern on immigration issues reflected by the conflicts at the US/Mexico border. Another concern was raised regarding the intensification of immigration issues as the result of worsening climate change. How should we approach these issues as a meeting? Karen and Dean are the primary people on Peace and Social Justice. An after-Meeting program would be useful. Carried over.
  • Outreach:   Gordon will convene the committee. They will look at participation in the FGC welcoming efforts to welcome people into our meeting. Carried over.
  • Ministry & Oversight: See report, below. Carried Over.
    • Examine our committee structure through possibly scheduling a threshing session.
    • Convening Naming Committee: Ministry and Oversight will notify the committee clerks when that meeting is scheduled.

Committees Clerks (or conveners):

  • Buildings and Grounds: Gordon Starr
  • Finance: Don Kewman
  • Hospitality: Judy Hamilton
  • Library: Dianne Marshall
  • M&O: Kathy McCreery
  • Outreach: Gordon Starr
  • Spiritual Life: Gordon Starr
  • Peace & Social Justice: Dean Olson
  • Intergenerational Ed: No Clerk


Treasurer’s Report: fosten wilson gave the report, attached. fosten fielded a question about naming Grass Valley Friends Meeting in our estate plans. It was noted that this could be useful information to be included in the newsletter. It was further noted that if Friends want to designate their contribution to the Special Projects Funds or the Meetinghouse Fund or Scholarship Funds or the Sharing Fund, they should note that on the check. fosten noted that some families have sent two checks – one for the General Fund, and then one for a designated fund.

The financial report will be posted on the bulletin board in the meetinghouse for further perusal.

Woolman at Sierra Friends Center: Amy Cooke gave the report, appended. Amy answered several questions regarding the activities taking place at Woolman.

SEASONED MINUTES (These are items that have been presented to Meeting for Business previously and have been held over for discernment before approval.)

There were no seasoned minutes.


MINISTRY & OVERSIGHT – Kathy McCreery gave the report, appended. There was appreciation for the Meeting for Healing, which M&O has initiated. Through sharing the idea to open the Meeting for Healing to the greater community, we reached unity that we are not quite ready to publicize this event.   It was agreed that Kathy would share this discussion with Gordon Starr, clerk of Outreach Committee.

SPIRITUAL LIFE: Don McCormick gave the report. There are several upcoming programs scheduled.


  • College Park Quarterly Meeting: January 19, 2019, Santa Rosa. “Prophetic Witness and Hope in Difficult Times.” Flyer appended.
  • Love Walk: Monday, January 21, 2019. 11 am – 4 pm. Grass Valley Elks Lodge.
  • Sierra Friends Center Board of Directors: The College Park Friends Educational Association (CPFEA) is seeking board members to support the new work going forward through board service. Please contact Sarah Tyrrell at sarahtyrrell(at) if you are interested in exploring board service.
  • American Friends Service Committee: A representative will be at Summer Thyme’s Tuesday 1/15/2019 at noon.
  • Meeting for Healing: Sunday, January 20, after Meeting for Worship in the Meetinghouse. We will meet to hold ourselves, our loved ones, the nation, and our planet in the light, and to pray for healing our divided people.
  • Meeting for Worship at Harry Bailey’s: Sunnyvale Lane, First Friday of the month, at 10:30 am.


  • Chamba will be going through a procedure and possible surgery – please hold him in the Light.
  • Chamba and Amy have placed their building at 231 Colfax Avenue on the market. They are not selling Summer Thyme’s.
  • A concern was voiced about our committees.
  • Please hold Don McCormick in the Light as he goes through a medical test on January 25.
  • Gary Aufdenspring will have surgery on Monday. Please hold him in the Light.

SEASONING MINUTES (These are items that have been presented to this Meeting for Business and are being held over for future discernment before approval. They will appear on the next month’s agenda under Seasoned Minutes.)

There were no minutes proposed for seasoning in this Meeting for Business.

CURRENT ACTION ITEMS (Things we have named in this Meeting for Business that need action)

  • Buildings & Grounds: Gordon, on behalf of the committee, will be seeking a bid on roof repairs. Carried over. It is difficult to get a bid on an unknown repair. Report at February Meeting for Business.   Reed will contact Gordon.
  • SFC/M&O/Buildings and Grounds: Will look at how we share building maintenance with SFC.

Carried over.   Report at February Meeting for Business.

  • Peace and Social Justice: Peggy will approach the committee with the concern on immigration issues reflected by the conflicts at the US/Mexico border. Another concern was raised regarding the intensification of immigration issues as the result of worsening climate change. How should we approach these issues as a meeting? Karen and Dean are the primary people on Peace and Social Justice. An after-Meeting program would be useful. Carried over. Report at February Meeting for Business.
  • Outreach:   Gordon will convene the committee. They will look at participation in the FGC welcoming efforts to welcome people into our meeting. Carried over. Report at February Meeting for Business.
  • Naming Committee: Ministry and Oversight will notify the committee clerks when that meeting is scheduled.   Report at February Meeting for Business.

Committees Clerks (or conveners):

  • Buildings and Grounds: Gordon Starr
  • Outreach: Gordon Starr
  • Spiritual Life: Gordon Starr
  • Peace & Social Justice: Dean Olson
  • Intergenerational Ed: No Clerk
  • Hospitality: Judy Hamilton
  • Library: Dianne Marshall
  • M&O: Kathy McCreery
  • Finance: Don Kewman
  • Outreach: Kathy will share the discussion we’ve had in this meeting regarding inviting the public to our Meeting for Healing with Gordon Starr, clerk of Outreach Committee.   Expected Date of Completion: January 13, 2019
  • Threshing Session on our Committees: To be scheduled through Ministry and Oversight. Expected Date of Completion: February 3, 2019
  • Committee Contact: Don will contact Gordon regarding Spiritual Life and Outreach.
  • Spiritual Life: Don will send the list of Spiritual Life programs to Dianne for inclusion in the newsletter: By Tuesday, January 16.

Feedback: What went well? What could be improved?

  • The structure for Meeting for Business was appreciated. Each time it gets better. It was suggested that the opening remarks are altered a bit each time.
  • Appreciated that we paused when we got excited.
  • A tone is being set that we talk to the clerk or the group, not to each other. That feels natural and easy.
  • The focus on action items was appreciated.
  • James Russell Lowell said, “Blessed are they who have nothing to say and cannot be persuaded to say it.” There is more thoughtfulness around speaking. Business meeting demonstrates that there are other ways to get a lot done.
  • The clerk was asked to acknowledge that this meeting was “perfect.”


Note:  The record and the minutes were read, corrected and approved.

If you are giving a report to GVFM, please send the actual report to the recording clerk at THE FRIDAY BEFORE MEETING FOR BUSINESS.     

GVFM Newsletter Reminder: Please have items in to Diane Marshall by Tuesday at 10 am.

The Meeting closed with silent worship.

Respectfully recorded by Amy Cooke, recording clerk.

APPENDICES: (posted on the website,

  1. Treasurer’s Report
  2. Ministry and Oversight Report
  3. Woolman at Sierra Friends Center Report
  4. CPQM January 19 Flyer

Grass Valley Friends Meeting     Treasurer’s Report


summary = Impressive, thank you.

THANK YOU for your contributions.  From October thru December we received $6,102 in contributions!   This is a big increase over last year at this time.

The Fund Balances Report shows a “snapshot” of our bank account on 12-31-2018.   It also shows the individual funds that made up that total.     Of the Restricted Funds, the Ben Lomond Quaker Center scholarship fund & the Sharing Fund have been busy.   As usual, most activity in the last three months has been within line one, our General Fund. For details of the General Fund, turn that page over for the General Fund Actual vs Budget report.

Thru December we received $6,102 in contributions (see line 400 at top). And, we spent $2,856 (see Total Expense line near bottom). This means that we will have enough money to pay half of our PYM Dues (line 621) in January. The PYM, CPQM, etc. scholarship fund & the new Quaker Center scholarship fund have been funded. Most of our spending for this quarter was rent & the large donation we sent to help victims of the Camp Fire.

Fosten Wilson


Grass Valley Friends Meeting

GVFM Ministry and Oversight Report to Meeting for Business January 2019

  • Examining Committee Structure at GVFM – Having been brought to our attention by a strong need

for more help with Intergenerational Ed committee, we have become aware of the number of needs we have as a meeting community and a lack of sufficient live and active bodies to serve. We need to re-evaluate the committees of the meeting, and see where we might prioritize and prune away, or maybe combine groups to cover the necessary work of the meeting. What is the necessary work of the meeting? M&O will host a threshing session in the near future to discuss the committee structure of GVFM.

  • We are in talks with SFC about the clearly leaky roof, and about what level of contribution we can make as a renter to the upkeep and maintenance of the building as pertains to our new lease agreement from last year.
  • There will be a Meeting for Healing on Sunday, January 20th after meeting, to hold ourselves, our loved ones, the nation, and our planet in the light, and to pray for healing our divided people.

Woolman at Sierra Friends Center, January 2019

Amy Cooke, Director

Our mission is to nourish learning communities committed to self-directed inquiry, spiritual and emotional growth, engaged work and stewardship of the earth.

We have officially launched Woolman Rising!  Along with taking the first steps toward coordinating our relationship with the Oakland Unified School District, we are actively fundraising, developing program elements, working on grants, expanding the volunteer program, doing community outreach, and enrolling for camp. Our overarching goal is to ground Woolman in fiscal sustainability, care for land and site, educational programs to meet the needs of a changing world, and Quaker faith and practice.


Advisory Board

We have established an Advisory Board.  These individuals have volunteered their expertise to assist with program development and overall management.

Advisory Board (click on links to see profiles)

JSNV=Jorgensen School of Nonviolence  WOS: Woolman Outdoor School

Diego Navarro (JSNV)

Mica Estrada (JSNV)

Bruce and Janice Pruitt-Hamm  (JSNV)

Steve Rasmussen (WOS)

Katie McCamant (Cohousing)

Isoke Femi  (JSNV)

Kevin Condon  (WOS)

Darrow Feldstein (WOS)

Rob Wade (WOS)

Pending:  Kazu Haga (JSNV),

Jane Megginson, Camp Woolman and TLC

Laura Carroll, who has served as our Operations Manager, has given notice and will be stepping down from her role next week.  She will be staying on part-time to assist us with marketing projects.

Grant-funded Position

Filtod Walker continues to build our capacity as an organization through his primary objectives.

  1. Engage schools and youth organizations, with a focus on disadvantaged populations, to create more partnerships for Woolman Outdoor School and Camp Woolman
  2. Engage local area organizations to build connections that lead to in-kind good and services
  3. Create a formalized, well-staffed volunteer and community hours program at Woolman
  4. Expand existing programs and create new educational opportunities onsite
  5. Research and write grants to help specifically fund programs

Filtod has already helped to build out the business plans, created a volunteer program, identified foundation and grant support opportunities, scheduled onsite open houses, identified organizational needs, provided improvements for existing programs, and created a community outreach agenda for the coming year.  New initiatives include working on the website with Karen Baird, examining the feasibility for a site store, adapting the kitchen to communal use for guests, establishing the format for the Jorgensen School for Nonviolence, connecting with local organizations, rebranding our site rentals, and working to translate the derelict vehicles on site to cash.


  • Marty Coleman-Hunt is serving us as Development Consultant.  She is working on seeking pre-launch funds for the capital campaign, preparing campaign communication materials, aligning and supporting the annual campaign and marketing plans, working with board committees, and planning the official launch.  She is also available to do board trainings for fundraising.
  • Laura Petersen:  Laura is a local marketing consultant who will be helping us to develop a 2019 Marketing Plan.  She also wrote the beautiful article on the kiln that was sent out earlier to board and community members.

Community Members

We have 7 households on campus (see Housing and Long Term Rentals, below).

Catalyst Compost, LLC, has joined our community through their lease of the Woolman Farm.  They are protégés of Dr. Elaine Ingham, a soil biologist (see  They are making compost, helping us to plan for improving soil health throughout the property, and planning workshops.   They are interested in helping us with teaching students and campers about soil health. Dr. Elaine Ingham will be coming January 21-25 to lead a workshop on site.

Seasonal Staff

Sonja Feinberg has been hired as the 2019 Camp Director.  Sonja brings 4 years of camp experience to the position. She attended the Woolman Semester in Spring of 2013 and has worked in outdoor education for the past 2 years. Sonja is also helping with the foundational pieces of the Woolman Outdoor School, which will launch in 2019.


There are many volunteers at Woolman, including all of our residents, dedicated board members, committee members, and others who spend hours every month contributing to Woolman. Our regular volunteers include Emily West (JWS ‘78), Kate Duroux, Karen Baird, Julian Garrett, and Melody.

Filtod has started volunteer recruiting from the local community using Facebook and He has created a volunteer orientation and onboarding procedure, the volunteer handbook, and written our volunteer job descriptions. We are recruiting office, trail and maintenance, special events, teachers and docents, and have started up the Salmon Run recruitment as well, As people are applying, they are being asked to fill out the paperwork and come to our first onsite 2019 volunteer orientation session on February 2nd.

United Planet:  We are exploring a possibility with this organization to host volunteers from other countries.

Alumni Work Camp:  Registration is open.  April 14-20, 2019

Family Work Camp:  Registration is open.  June 16-22, 2019


Current Programs

Camp Woolman and Teen Leadership Camp

Enrollment has begun for the 2019 session of Camp Woolma

Events, Retreats, and Rentals

HipCamp and AirBnB rentals continue as well as additional retreats and workshops.

We will also be hosting the California Naturalist class again this coming year.

Housing and Long-term Rentals

Rental Units:   We currently serve in a landlord capacity to 9 housing units and 2 commercial spaces as well as the Woolman Farm, orchard and pastures.  All households will have updated leases by January 1, 2019.

The Ranch House is currently vacant, awaiting repairs.

As part of his role, Filtod has organized a more formal community hours program to help ensure the people living onsite are aware of shared work that is needed when it becomes available and that is tracked in a more project-specific way. This also enabled people onsite to work together with community volunteers to build our connection to the local area.

CampFire Support

We hosted one evacuee from the Camp Fire and received support for him from the local Interfaith Council.

Nonresidential Rentals:

  1. Sierra Streams Institute:  Madrone Hall, with shared space in the Environmental Center.  Other areas by contract.
  2. Grass Valley Friends Meeting:  Meetinghouse, Sunday use and other spaces by prior arrangement.
  3. The Woolman Farm: Catalyst Compost, LLC.

Rates for 2019 have been approved by the Buildings and Grounds and Finance Committees and are available upon request.

Piloting & Prospective Programs

The Woolman Outdoor School

(Pilot approved by the CPFEA, February 2017, launch approved as part of the Woolman Rising! Strategic Plan, December 2018)

  • Sonja Feinberg is working on curriculum development, outreach, and online documentation of the classes being offered
  • Filtod Walker is working on business plans, outreach, alternative sources of funding, and online documentation of the classes being offered
  • We are in dialogue with several schools in the Oakland Unified School District.
  • We will be visiting Vida Verde Outdoor School this coming week.
  • The business plan, the Teacher Handbook, the Parent Handbook, and the Cabin Leader handbook are all completed.

We have budgeted three schools in 2019, with contracted educators assisting with program implementation.  A major donor has committed to a $250K pledge over the initial three years.

The Jorgenson School for Nonviolence

(Pilot approved by the CPFEA, September 2017, launch approved as part of the Woolman Rising! Strategic Plan, December 2018)

We are in development on a nine-month online course for teens and adults that will be taught by former Woolman faculty, among others.  The course will begin and end with an on-site retreat. The course will include Nonviolent Communication (inner and interpersonal nonviolence) as well as the theoretical underpinnings of nonviolence.  We will provide coaching and support for designing and implementing nonviolent direct action strategies. We are working on putting together an Activist Database to pair participants with activists working in their area of impact.

Recent development:

  • Filtod has completed the business plan and begun committee recruitment.
  • Emily Zionts, a former faculty member at The Woolman Semester School and peace educator, is interested in joining the working committee to form the curriculum;
  • Bruce Hamm and Janis Pruitt-Hamm, who administer the Mike Yarrow Peace Fellowship under the Fellowship of Reconciliation, have generously offered their consultation based on over 14 years of working with young adult activists.

Other activities:

  • Neighbor Meeting re: secondary access to Hwy 49:  January 27, 2019. A mailing has gone out to all local neighbors.
  • Planned Giving – Woolman Forever.  We will be opening an account with Friends Fiduciary next week.


Current Grants:

  1. AmeriCorps:  We were granted a shared team of 10 volunteers, working in November – December 2018.  They completed several standard maintenance projects and began the beautification process at the Stone House before they were pulled off of our project to work on CampFire relief. Starting this month, we now have 8 replacement AmeriCorps volunteers doing trail maintenance and other site and grounds related projects.
  2. FEMA:  We received another extension, from September 2018 to to March, 2019.   This grant is helping us address storm damage and preparation.
  3. NRCS (Natural Resources Conservation Service):  Our application has been accepted. The grant year started in October. This matching fund grant will support a new agricultural irrigation system on campus.  The NRCS is participating with the California State Water Resources Board on this project, with a plan to replace the potable water lines. NRCS pays up to 50% of reimbursable expenses related to agriculture-related facilities. USDA provides assistance for rural development and may be able to help with some of the other expenses for irrigation.
  4. Department of Water Resources (DWR):  We received verbal confirmation of a $150K grant to improve potable water systems delivery on campus.
  5. RISE Vista:  We have hired Filtod Walker for this position.  His term goes from November 13, 2018-November 12, 2019. He has identified 12 grant possibilities where Woolman is well-aligned to the funder’s mission and would be a good potential fit. He has started contacting those funders.


Marty Coleman-Hunt has assisted with putting together a communications guide to coordinate messages about Woolman Rising.  This is available in the Board Google Drive Folder at this link: Woolman Rising Communication Guide.

An article appeared in our local newspaper about the Noborigama kiln.  You can see that here.

Historical Landmark

We have been approved to apply for landmark status based on John Woolman School being the first Quaker high school on the west coast.

Open Houses

Filtod is working on scheduling open houses in the area as well as in Oakland and San Francisco.

Annual Report

The Annual Report has been published, with an update to be delivered in February.

Quaker Meetings

  • College Park Quarterly Meeting: January 19, 2019.  I am attending and will have a table set up with brochures.

Social Media

We are posting regularly on the Woolman Facebook pages.  Currently we maintain the Sierra Friends Center page, the Camp Woolman page, and the Woolman Outdoor School page.

Filtod and Sonja are creating video versions of several of the Outdoor School classes in order to showcase them online and build interest in the program.

Filtod and I will soon begin the live video broadcasting of the onsite Wednesday worship sessions to build a greater national presence in the Quaker community that will contribute directly to our outreach and recruitment efforts.

Sophie Brinker has taken on our Instagram account and we are seeking to increase our social media presence on other platforms.    Thank you, Sophie!!!


We are sending out a monthly newsletter via email updating our constituency on our activities.


“Fire and art bring potters back to Woolman at Sierra Friends Center in Nevada City” by Laura Petersen

Special to The Union Newspaper, Grass Valley, CA  January 3, 2019

Local Community

Filtod is working on establishing deeper connections with local individuals and organizations.


The meetinghouse sustained water damage last winter.  We need to get bids on the roofing work needed. The carpet is very old and now may have some spores in it – mushrooms were growing in there last winter!  GVFM is working to get bids for the work needed.

Dining Hall

The entire exterior needs painting.

Administration Building

The Operations office has been painted.


Watershed Alliance: We are meeting with this local group to coordinate activities for Watershed Month in April.  The 10K Salmon Run will be a part of the activities in the county. With this run taking part at the end of Alumni Work Camp, we are hoping for a great turn out with lots of volunteers!

Sierra Streams Institute

We are continuing to refine our collaborative touch points, with numerous possibilities emerging.

  • Woolman is one of the training sites for the UC California Naturalist Program through Sierra Streams Institute. Students in the program will become part of a committed corps of volunteer naturalists and citizen scientists, equipped with the skills needed to take an active role in local natural resource conservation, restoration, and education. The ten-week course combines science instruction with guest speakers, field trips, and project-based learning to explore the unique ecology and natural history of the northern Sierra foothills.  The 2019 course starts in March.
  • We are hosting the 4th grade field trips that SSI is working with to provide environmental science curriculum.
  • SSI also be collaborating with us on the Woolman Outdoor School.
  • SSI has begun to assess the site with an inventory on the plants and animal species here.

Community Meetings

The residential community meets once a month to address issues related to living on the campus.

Meetings for Worship

The Wednesday Meeting for Worship has been changed to 12-12:30 pm.  We will be starting an online live version. Stay tuned!   All are welcome.

We begin all meetings with silent worship and with an acknowledgment of the ancestral roots of this land being held by the Nisenan. 

College Park Quarterly Meeting Winter Quarter

Hosted by Redwood Forest Friends Meeting at Family Bible Church, 697 Benicia Dr, Santa Rosa, CA   95409

Prophetic Witness and Hope in Difficult Times”

January 19, 2019

Palo Alto Meeting’s Public Meeting for Worship, to Affirm Religious Freedom, February, 2017. Friends Meeting of Palo Alto Facebook page.

Keynote Speaker: Brent Bill

Join Quaker author and traveling minister Brent Bill as we explore how to speak faithfully and truthfully in difficult times to the values our Friendly faith holds dear. We’ll explore how early Friends spoke to their times and what lessons we can take from them. How can we be for instead of against (for peace, for equality, etc), thereby sustaining a witness based in deep faith that supersedes administrations/governments and offers a winsome invitation for others to join us.

Schedule: 7:45am-5:30pm

7:45 am       On-site registration and morning snacks 8:30am        Worship, followed by

Morning and afternoon plenary sessions, lunch, keynote speaker, worship-sharing, interest groups. Concurrent Children’s & Teen programs.

Requested contributions: $35 for adults, $10 in range 5-24 years, free for children under 5. Checks payable to “College Park Quarterly Meeting” (spelled out). These amounts include snacks and lunch but not supper. A limited number of evening meals can be arranged for those who pre-pay at registration.

Saturday Overnight Teen Program. Parents of teens staying overnight, please fill out Medical consent & Permission forms available at: For teens staying overnight, there may be added expenses — these aren’t included in the requested contribution above.

Overnight Hospitality Needs? Contact Betz Miller

If You Can’t Attend in Person videostreaming of the keynote speaker will be available. Individuals or small groups who would like to attend remotely, please contact Eric Sabelman at or 650-322-2455 .

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