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Let me start first with a reminder that the February meeting has been changed to Tuesday February 22, 2011. The club voted to change the meeting date in February so those wishing to watch the Westminster KC show on USA network would be able to do so.

The meeting will take place on February 22nd at our regular meeting place and our program for the evening will be the doggie version of the game show “JEOPARDY”. Please plan to join us and share your knowledge or learn a few things from the popular game.

This past weekend Dawn Darr and her committee held another successful Agility Trial at the Roane County site. Thanks to Dawn and everyone that pitched in to help. We have also learned that at least for the foreseeable future the Roane County facility will remain open for events.

I am sure that by now everyone is aware of the success of our November cluster with Oak Ridge Kennel Club at Chilhowee Park. However, what you may not know is that it was also a financial success. The TVKC had a net profit of $9,165.46 for the weekend and the cluster also donated $708.43 to the AKC Humane Fund, $2425.27 to the Children’s Hospital of East TN from the proceeds of the Country Fair and Raffle. $514.50 to Take the Lead with the proceeds from the Chuck a Duck competition. $680.50 to the Make a Wish foundation with the proceeds from the Bake A Wish bake sale and $75.00 to the Susan G. Komen Race for the cure with the proceeds from the Ice Cream social. All total the cluster contributed $4,403.70 to charity as a result of our efforts from the “Extra” events that were held. All of our members and especially those that worked at these events should be very proud of the results of our efforts.

As many of you already know in the past 2 years our board has held special extended board meetings at the beginning and in the middle of each year. These meeting which have lasted up to as long as 4 hours have been very beneficial in allowing the board the proper amount of time to review the current state of the club and to address needs and visions for our future. Because of the weather in January our meeting was held on February 7th and a great deal was accomplished.

With year 2010 now complete we focused on what we need to do for the TVKC to continue to not only grow but to become a better “Community Partner” for the City of Knoxville and the surrounding area. The following is a brief summary of what was decided by the board.

  • First as required by the Constitution and By-Laws a nominating committee was appointed with Keith Bailey serving as the lone board member of the group and its chairperson.

  • The Board reviewed the club dues schedule as required and voted to change the dues to $25.00 per year for the first member of a household and $15.00 for each additional member within the same household.

  • In reviewing our success last fall with the ‘Meet the Breeds” event at Market Square the board voted to hold a combined Sanctioned B-OB match and meet the breeds event at the same location to be held in September or October. Paula Smiddy and Bernadine Luketich have been appointed to chair the event.

  • A great deal of time was spent discussing our failure in the past to successfully provide educational opportunities for not only our members but also those potential members looking for “AKC” focused training classes in Conformation, Obedience, Rally, lure coursing and Agility. The board has committed the necessary financial resources for the club to locate a facility where this can be done on an ongoing weekly basis all year long.

  • As a result of this decision we have also asked Beth White head a group of members in what we are calling our “Performance Vision for the Future”. This group will be developing a plan for what we need to do to encourage growth in these areas of our club. The board would like very much to see our performance group continue to grow and become more active. If you are called to serve on this group please accept. At this point the focus of the group is to simply gather the input of our members and come up with a planned implementation of ideas to see it through. Make no mistake about it. The board does want to see this project succeed. We have asked for a full report to be completed no later than the April meeting.

  • Following up on our vision for the future the board is hoping to locate a facility and start having classes between the middle and end of March 2011. The class schedule at this time was set as a first choice of Every Monday between 6:30 PM and 9:00 PM with a second choice of Thursday’s during the same time slots. Our preferred choice of location is something near the UT campus with easy access from all directions.

  • It has now been over three years since the clubs Constitution, By-Laws, and standing rules have been reviewed. A committee Chaired by Walter Sommerfelt and including Jean Dinkins, Catherine Bell and Carol Sommerfelt has been appointed to work on this and gather recommendations by June of this year.

  • For those of you that have finished titles on your dogs during calendar year 2010 please do not forget to get your info into Jeanne Ring so she can have your awards ready for the June meeting. The Board has also appointed Keith Bailey, Robin Brown, and Paula Smiddy to review our club awards and make suggestions as to other ways to honor the hard work and success of our membership. They have been asked to review this and report back to the board in May.

  • Our annual awards meeting is held in June and the board has voted to make this a “Picnic and Pot luck meeting” to be held at a location where we can all get together and bring our dogs and make it a special outing.

  • Starting with the February meeting the club will be doing a 3 month trial by providing light refreshments and a brief 10-15 minute intermission during the meeting to allow for some social time that will allow us to meet our visitors and member fellowship.

  • It is our desire as a board to secure corporate as well as community partners to further enhance the TVKC within the community and to grow the already established Knox city and county goal of becoming the “Most Pet Friendly City in America.”

At the February meeting we will be voting on our ‘Sportsmanship Award” given by the AKC to member clubs. This year’s nominees are Beth White and Phyllis Fortune. Both have been very dedicated and deserving hard working contributors to the club. We will also vote on the nominees for the AKC board of directors so we can advise our delegate on the order to vote at the March delegates meeting.

As you can see your board truly has a vision for our future. In order for those visions to come to fruition we need everyone to pitch in to help in accomplishing these goals. We understand that everyone has a different level of commitment, time, and talent, but what we ask is that you look at your own situation and volunteer in whatever capacity you can to help the club. Individually the task is hard but by working together we can accomplish great things.

I look forward to seeing everyone on the 22nd and to those going to Westminster this year “good luck”.

Walter Sommerfelt

President, TVKC

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