NESTTD Board Meeting Highlights

Date:  October 17, 2020

Zoom Meeting: 11:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Present:   Garry Ratliff, Jessica Reed, Debbie Hughes, Gail Hardenbergh, Carolinda Sterczala, Rina Dubin, Carol Lambert, Alex Wells,

Non Voting:  Alex Wells, Kimberly Cherry, Roberta Fortgang, Ken Sipe, Barbara Phillips, Meredith Branagan, Amy Wells.

  • Prior to the Board meeting, several volunteers and the Board began our year-long consultation with DEI consultants from Visions, Inc., Sejal Patel, PsyD. and Rick Pinderhughes, PsyD. We will provide updates on our work with them from time to time; this first meeting was in preparation.
  • President Debbie Hughes announced a resource offered by Tonita Watson-Braxton, LICSW and Boston Area Trauma Network to Board/Committee Members. A forty-five minute session is offered virtually to Board members. This has also been offered to all NESTTD members on our listserv.
  • After approval of the minutes from the September Board meeting, the October meeting began with the Board unanimously approving Alex Well’s motion to purchase the Otter Closed Captioning service, which creates live closed captioning for Zoom meetings/webinars in real time.
  • There was extensive discussion about a need for support for the Program committee.  There are many, many tasks required to develop and present our programs, and the chairs and committee members are overwhelmed.
    • Just a few needs are:
      • Determine speakers, dates, and venues (virtual vs in-person) for the next two years.  Four foci are:  Dissociation, general trauma, couples or children/youth, sociocultural content.
      • Work with Racial Equity Committee to identify speakers with a social justice lens.
      • Determine program pricing, and any necessary changes to the annual calendar.
      • Coordinate materials relating to CEs.
    • Many ideas were considered, including: 
      • Additional support from other Committees, in particular Membership which has a lesser role in the virtual events versus our in-person meetings, but also OP, Nominations, and Racial Equity.
      • OP already active in marketing Fundamentals, will turn additional attention to other programs
      • Ask members to complete one-time tasks, such as researching trauma topics/speakers or attending a conference at NESTTD’s expense to evaluate potential speakers.
      • Solicit program speaker ideas from general Membership, explaining relevance of social justice focus.
      • Nominations committee will help recruit new volunteers and Board members, focusing on the advantages of volunteering, such as fulfilling personal goals of interest, professional development, networking, socialization with peers and resume building.
      • Marketing our programs was also discussed extensively, specifically developing an intentional strategy which would include social media, website promotion, and the advisability/affordability of hiring a Marketing consultant. 
  • The Racial Equity Committee has drafted a new Mission/Vision(s) Solidarity Statement.  Committee Chair Kimberly Cherry stated that the statement represents joining in statements from other mental health organizations, as we are joining a larger movement. All Board members will review the NESTTD draft and statements of other organizations, and provide feedback to the entire Board.  Members of Visions, Inc. will give input regarding the statement of solidarity.
  • Nominations Committee Chair Carolinda Sterczala will be filling several Board positions, including two Members-At-Large and a president-elect, as well as helping find new volunteers for the  Program committee and is looking for ideas to do this during COVID.  Also, we need to promote equity within our organizations.  Ideas Included:
    • List Committee descriptions and vacant Board positions on Listserv and website.
    • Highlight the benefits of volunteering – experience, community, etc.
    • What are we doing or not doing if people don’t stick with volunteering for NESTTD.  Carolinda welcomes ideas on how we can meet the needs of our volunteers.
  • Registration continues for programs with Robert Muller PhD on November 7, and Friday Afternoon Series with Hugo Kamya PhD on November 20.
  • As discussed at last month’s meeting, a summary of our Board meetings will now be posted on our website.  September’s update was posted in this space last month.
  • Committee chairs are now providing their reports in advance of board meetings.   Member Services will collapse reports into one document for all to review.   September Committee Reports have been compiled into one document and can be accessed at:


    Submitted by,
    Carol A Lambert, LICSW, Secretary

    PO Box 772,
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    (508) 964-2234
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