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madisonsmiley

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  1. The board needs to go, too. The board and the ED have done everything they can to alienate donors and volunteers, shield themselves from accountability, and maintain the status quo in terms of leadership and governance. It's sad to see.
  2. The administration is responsible for recruiting, hiring, motivating, retaining, and managing the performance of the creative and instructional staff. "The design team was on the right track last year compared to years before?" What does being on the right track mean and how do we know this? Also, where did the Scouts place last year? Having an appealing show and a great experience are important. If being competitive isn't a high priority, let's respectfully agree to disagree. The retention rate is high? How do we know? What are the numbers? How do the current performance results on this metric compare to the results over time for the organization? How do the Scouts' results on this metric compare to their peer groups over time? All of these numbers aren't shared, even with the board. Without this data, we really don't know how they're doing. We do know the Scouts aren't a destination corps. They were a destination corps not too long ago. This is frustrating for alumni, fans, and donors. We need more than a glib claim, "the retention rate is high." None of the comments I've read here nor does anyone I know expect instantaneous results. This is a deflection. When I look at the long-term trend I see continued decline competitively. Show me three years in a row of improved placement year-over-year at DCI finals or three out of four years of continued competitive improvement based on scores and results, which is a positive trend. One or two years of competitive improvement year-over-year are a positive sign, but not a trend. They're challenged maintaining the status quo. "Most of the alumni have been out of touch with the activity, assuming that Aussies and malagueña are the only paths to success." This is a cheap shot like this don't elevate the conversation. Stop the ad hominem attacks. How is the funding better than it's been in a long time? It looks like they may have finally addressed the deficits, which is good. We'll need to see some more performance results post COVID to verify they can do this consistently. Looking ahead, I don't see evidence the organization has the capabilities to fund an organization in the top tier or two of DCI finalists. They recently reappointed Gregg Auby to the board, who oversaw many, many years of deficits without taking corrective action and sat on his hands when Jim Mason was fired. That says a lot about their board recruitment. "Poaching" staff isn't going to help the Scouts given their organizational issues. Komnick got into some type of pissing match with Jim Mason, who produced a DCI championship corps, was fielding a product for the Scouts that continued to improve, was a very generous donor, and fired him. How dumb was that? Dumber still, the board was caught by surprise by this move, and then sat on their hands and looked the other way. Even with $6 million, I think the Scouts would have a hard time attracting and retaining top shelf creative and instructional talent with the current management. They know. This is tough to hear about an organization we care about. It's tough for alumni, fans, and donors to see what's happening off the field and how that's driving what's happening on the field over a long period of time. More than a decade. If alumni, fans, and donors saw meaningful changes happening off the field, I don't think there would be as much public dialogue about this. Some day the board may get it.
  3. The issue I was speaking to is the claim the Scouts were sexist before going coed. It wasn't about whether or not going coed was good for the corps or if it was the right thing to do.
  4. Is this meant to be a back handed insult? If I were an alumnus, it would be to me. Do you know what sexist means? The Scouts are gone. I don't mean the all-male corps, but the corps known as the Scouts. I expect we respectfully disagree about all of this, and that's fine.
  5. I see the Scouts named Susan Smith brass caption supervisor . . . www.forwardperformingarts.org/news/madison-scouts-welcome-susan-smith-as-brass-caption-supervisor She appears to be an enigma as far as drum corps goes. What corps has she worked with? What years and what positions? Just wondering.
  6. How long do should we give them to get their groove? They generally don't retain senior creative staff for long and I don't think the design team is the issue. I think you know that, too. They've found their niche competitively and will bounce around there if nothing changes in the front office or board room and there aren't new competitive threats that cause them to move down the ladder. Just calling it like I see it. I wish the kids the best.
  7. Can you stay on point, which is how could a municipal government give funding to the Cavaliers if they discriminated? The size of the gift isn't relevant, even though $180,000 would be a major gift for any corps. Why be dismissive of it? And why bring alumni that are bad actors into this? This is all a deflection. Before the Scouts went coed the ED claimed that donors were asking for it as a reason to do it, but couldn't provide the names of any donors that declined to donate because the Scouts were all male. Since going coed has "opened up more financial doors than before," what new institutional donors has the corps added, the ones that require a recipient doesn't discriminate? What were their donations? Absent specifics on donor names and amounts, statements like, "it's opened more financial doors than before" are a glib deflection.
  8. I understand and agree that grant applications often need to meet NEA requirements and the applicant must comply with the relevant laws regarding discrimination, including Title 6, Title 9, Section 504, ADA 1990, and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975. The point with the Cavaliers is that they are an all-male drum corps, like the Scouts were at one time, which you claim is discriminatory and contrary to the law. Yet the Cavaliers are funded by the Village of Rosemont. How can this be if, as you claim, it is illegal? It appears you know this, but since the facts don't align with your opinion, "that's not a concern of mine?" Putting your comments together it helps us understand where you're coming from. Whether you or I think an all-male drum corps is discriminatory or f'd up, isn't the point. It's not discriminatory based on the law. It's best if I move on? This is the second time that you've asked me to leave because you don't like what I have to say. This is ironic given your interest in inclusion and diversity. As the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg said, "You can disagree without being disagreeable." Let's not make it personal. Let's have a civil and respectful conversation moving forward.
  9. I'm very familiar with the Scouts' fundraising activities. We'll have to agree to disagree about gender discrimination and the Scouts. I understand you think the Scouts being all-male is gender discrimination, which is OK. It does not meet the legal definition of gender discrimination and has not had a negative impact on their fundraising. If I understand what you're saying correctly--municipalities can't provide financial assistance to an all-male group like the Scouts--how do you explain the financial assistance the Village of Rosemont provides to the Cavaliers? In 2022 it is $180,000.
  10. While it appears logical that being coed would help the Scouts with fundraising, the reality is that being all-male didn't hurt the corps, it was never an issue with donors, and there is no evidence going coed has helped the corps with fundraising. Regarding the corps being all-male, you miss the point or are deflecting. The issue on the table is whether or not being all-male was constitutionally protected and not discriminatory. Not if it was in the Scouts' best interests to go coed or what my personally feelings are about it.
  11. What's your point? Reading grant applications doesn't change the facts. As an all-male corps the Scouts did not discriminate, they had strong support from the community, and have not had a request for funding denied because they were all male.
  12. This is a hasty generalization and fallacy of argument. The Scouts did not discriminate when they were all male. The organization was within their constitutional rights to be all male. Claims by the ED they discriminated were false statements made to bolster his argument for going cooed. The city and business community was very supportive of the Scouts when they were all male. i've seen no evidence to show that going coed has made any significant change in their funding. Show me the money. What donors declined to support the Scouts because they were all male?
  13. How long do we wait? This has been going on for eight years. The corps occasionally exhibits glimmers of hope on the field, but the long term trend is clear to me.
  14. I appreciate all of the time and energy you put into your response, but it is a deflection. I was responding to your claim that the Scouts moving up to 15th is a significant move over their 17th place finish in 2019, "If the Scouts hold onto 15th, that will be a two spot improvement since 2019. In this insanely competitive activity, I’d say that’s a significant move."
  15. As Gantang pointed out, absent Spirit, who beat the Scouts in 2019, the Scouts have moved up one place this year. That's a significant move? I can't don't see moving up one place for a single year as evidence of significant or sustained improvement. Moving up a few places in a year means they had a good year. Meaningful improvement to me is sustaining a significantly higher position, say three places or more, over time. Moving up three places for three out of four years would be a significant improvement to me. Just one person's opinion.
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