Saturday, February 14, 2015

Kicking up Dust, Stacking the Deck

I hardly recognize myself in the person who is kicking up the dust on the Thrift Store Grant-Giving Committee.
But the more I think about it, the more rigged it seems, 
so I just now sent an e-mail to the committee asking why a member of a grant-seeking organization is on the grant-awarding committee.

For some perspective, I looked up "Setting up a grant committee" and in the Community Toolbox--a partnership of the U of Kansas & community organizations-- and I found this advice:
Avoid even the appearance of "stacking the deck" on your grant committees.

I'd say that including on the grant-giving committee an active member of the organization that has always received the largest grants gives that appearance (at the very least).


The Crow said...

Our historical society requires new Board members to sign conflict of interest statements which require them to recuse themselves in discussions and decisions involving anything they might hold an interest in. Stacking the board happened frequently before the conflict-of-interest policy was instituted.

Seems you came along at a good time for this committee, Fresca.

Michael Leddy said...

Fresca, I take it you haven’t worked in academia?

bink said...

Good for you! Kick that dust! My guess is this is exactly what some old committee members wished would happen when they got someone new on the board. I bet this conflict of interest makes old members uncomfortable too, but perhaps their relationship with the conflicting board member is such that they aren't brave enough to ask for change...but hopefully, will be brave enough to back you. (Secret ballot voting?)

Zhoen said...

Oh, I do love seeing courageous people kicking butt!


ArtSparker said...

Wow, they got more than they bargained for...

Fresca said...

CROW: I am going to suggest that to the committee--to sign conflict of interest statements.

MICHAEL: Heh. I have seen it close up through family & friends, so I shouldn't be so surprised, eh?

And I worked in the Catholic Church, which was, if possible, even worse---they didn't even pretend to subscribe to the ideals of democracy, group process, or any such thing.

BINK & ZHOEN: Thanks for the encouragement!

SPARKER: Yeah, I guess so--some of them, anyway. I was told when I was invited to be part of the committee that they *wanted* a new person to bring fresh perspective.
In theory, anyway...