New England Region
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October 17 -18, 2011


 The Radisson Hotel and Suites, Chelmsford, MA.


The 77th Annual NER Meeting was called to order at 9:15 AM by Director Joyce A. Kimball who welcomed everyone and introduced the head table:


Helga Frazzette, Treasurer; Susan Robinson, Recording Secretary and Catherine Schwenk, Parliamentarian; Also introduced were the Alternate New England Region Director, Jane Goodwin and the Historian, Virginia Grand Pre’.


The Former New England Region Directors were introduced: Jeanne Marie Parkes (1997-1999), Virginia Grand Pre’ (1999-2001), Pamela Hebert (2005-2007), Sonia Cianchette (2007-2009) and Kathleen Thomas(2009-2011). 


Next, the Director introduced the New England Region State Presidents: Ronnie Schoelzel, Federated Garden Clubs of Connecticut; Kathleen Marty, Garden Club Federation of Maine; Heidi Kost-Gross, Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts;Virginia Urdi, New Hampshire Federation of Garden Clubs; Judy Hager, Rhode Island Federation of Garden Clubs and Gay Gaston, Federated Garden Clubs of Vermont.


The Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America was led byJudy Hager, President of the Rhode Island Federation of Garden Clubs.


The Invocation was given by Ronnie Schoelzel, President of the Federated Garden Clubs of Connecticut.


The Welcome was given by our host, Heidi Kost-Gross, President of the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts.


The Response was given by Judy Hager, President of the Rhode Island Federation of Garden Clubs, inviting all members to the 2012 NER Annual Meeting being held on October 14th and 15th, 2012 at the Providence Marriott Hotel in Providence, Rhode Island. Vera Bowen is chairing that meeting and Sue Redding is chairing the Symposium that will follow the Annual Meeting.


On motion of Candace Morgenstern, Credentials Chair, it was VOTED to adopt the First Report of the Credentials and Registration Committees. The following numbers were reported: 1 Regional Director, 6  State Presidents, 5  Former Regional Directors, 71  Delegates, 12 Duplicates, 71  Voting Strength.


The number of voters present was 71.  The Chair declared a quorum present and the Registration Report was placed on file.


On motion of  Catherine Schwenk, Parliamentarian it was VOTED to adopt the following  Standing Rules:


            Please turn off all cell phones, pagers and other electronic devices.


Those who wish to speak should use the microphone and address their questions to the Director.


When recognized at the microphone, please give your name and state. You must give your name and state every time you come to the microphone.


All amendments and substantive motions are to be in writing and signed by the maker and seconder. Paper/motion forms are available on the head table/stage.


Every member is entitled to speak on a debatable motion unless the meeting by a two thirds vote has ordered discussion stopped.


A member is entitled to speak a second time on the same question provided all members who wish to speak have spoken. No speaker may speak more than twice on the same issue, nor longer than two (2) minutes at one time, unless permission is granted by majority vote of the members present.


Report of the officers, other than the Director and Treasurer are limited to three (3) minutes. The Director may have five (5) minutes and the Treasurer(Budget) twenty (20) minutes.


Debate is limited to 20 minutes on any issue.


Motions to “receive or adopt” informational reports are not needed. The report of officers or committees not present will be placed on file with the Secretary.


These rules may be suspended by a two-thirds vote of the members present and voting.


On motion of Nancy Donaldson, 2011 NER Meeting Chairman, it was VOTED to adopt the Annual Meeting Program as presented.


There was no objection to appointing Kathleen Marty, President of the Garden Club Federation of Maine and Virginia Urdi, President of the New Hampshire Federation of Garden Clubs to approve the minutes of this meeting.


The Director announced the appointment of pages:  Meredith Chase for Joyce Kimball, Director and Maria Nahom for Jane Goodwin, Alternate Director.


There was no objection to the appointment of Jacqueline Connell and Allison Beards as time keepers. 


Recording Secretary Susan Robinson reported that the Minutes of the October 19, 2010 New England Region Annual Meeting had been approved by the 2010 Committee to Approve the Minutes and had been posted on the NER website.






Joyce Kimball, New England Region Director gave her report. She spoke about her theme, “Observe, Conserve and Preserve the Beauty All Around You…” and how it could be incorporated into club programs.


Helga Frazzette, New England Region Treasurer, gave the Treasurer’s Report. She reported Total Assets of $40,118.47. There was no auditor’s report. The Treasurer’s Report filed for audit. 


The next business in order was the Proposed Budget for June 1, 2011 – June 1, 2013. On motion of Helga Frazzette, seconded by Kathleen Thomas, Financial Advisor, the Proposed Budget of $4,170.00 was adopted.



Each State President gave a 3-minute report on her state’s activities and programs.


Connecticut:  Ronnie Schoelzel invited everyone to the Connecticut Flower Show, ‘The Fabulous Fifties”.


Maine:  Kathleen Marty reported on Maine’s “Promote and Preserve our Two Peas of Gardening” campaign which promotes Preserving and maintaining gardens with a Purpose.


Massachusetts:  Heidi Kost-Gross said membership is her state’s major focus having lost 1,000 members over the past year. She invited members to look with anticipation toward the March 2012 Spring Flower Show in Boston.


New Hampshire:  Virginia Urdi spoke about her state’s recent Fall Meeting which was held at the Urban Forestry Center in Portsmouth, a significantly more informal and less expensive, yet highly successful approach to a state meeting.


Rhode Island:  Judy Hager invited everyone to the Rhode Island Flower Show being held on February 23-26, 2012 themed “Through the Eyes of a Child”.


Vermont:  Gay Gaston encouraged us to measure our carbon footprint. She reported that Vermont also had a membership loss and they are working diligently to gain new members.



Thelma Shoneman, NER Symposium Chair, reported that 130 people had registered for the Symposium which follows this Annual Meeting. She reported that Tony Tedesco will give a design program on “Armature Design” that was recently approved by NGC.


Diane Bullock, Publicity Press Book Chair, announced that the deadline for the 2011 entries is 1/25/2012.


Virginia Grand Pre’, NER Historian, announced that she had recently completed formulating the history of the New England Region, by term, from the year 1929 through the last administration. She stated the current State Presidents have been given a copy of this document and it will soon be available for all members via the NER website.


Bonni Dinneen, NER Gardening Council Chair’s report was placed on file.



Candace Morgenstern, NGC Member Services Chair noted  a new 4 and 5 star pin is available from NGC Member Services.



On motion of Helga Frazzette, it was VOTED to have the New England Region Silver Awards appraised for insurance purposes and a Special Committee will be formed.

Virginia Grand Pre’ volunteered to chair this committee.


On motion of Cathy Felton, it was VOTED to help those areas affected by Tropical Storm Irene.



Susan Robinson, Container Gardening Chair for NGC President Shirley Nicolai’s Special Projects, Plantings for Public/Special Places, announced that Brent and Becky’s Bulbs has daffodil bulbs for sale to NGC members with special choices for planting bulbs in containers and to give as holiday gifts.  NGC will receive 25% when you order these bulbs.



The morning program was introduced by Joyce Kimball, NER Director, “6 Ways to Observe, Conserve and Preserve the Beauty All Around You…”


Each New England Region state gave a mini-educational presentation echoing one or more facets of the Director’s theme “Observe, Conserve and Preserve the Beauty All Around You…”


“Historic Landscapes,” Ronnie Schoelzel, President FGCCT presented a pictorial program on the Connecticut Federation’s long-term affiliation with the historic 37-mile Merritt Parkway.


“Preserving Natural Habitats,”  Kathleen Marty, President GCFME talked about the four basic needs of wildlife,  food, water, cover and space.


“The Asian Longhorned Beetle,” Heidi Kost-Gross, President  GCFMA showed photos of the beetle and of the massive devastation experienced in Worcester, Massachusetts where thousands of trees had to be cut down and destroyed as a result of the Asian Longhorned Beetle.


“New England Butterflies and Their Life Cycles,” Michelle Mensinger, Chairman, Birds, Butterflies and Wildlife, gave a talk on how  butterflies are very plant specific in relation to desirable habitats and ultimate reproduction.


“Going Green,” Judy Hager, President RIFGC, urged members to use the dedicated “green” font, Calibri, and to “Recycle and Conserve” by encouraging electronic communication, installing rain barrels, banning plastic grocery bags, etc..


“Recycle and Reuse,” Mary Webster, Chair of NGC President’s  Special Projects for FGCVT provided a program with examples of how to “Recycle and Reuse”.


The Business Meeting was recessed until after the Social Hour and Luncheon, where the Blessing was given by Jane Goodwin, Alternate Director.



Joyce Kimball, Director  introduced Betty Sanders of the Medfield, Massachusetts Garden Club,  acknowledging her as the New England Region’s most recent recipient of the NGC Member Award of Honor.  Only one recipient from each region of NGC is given this distinction annually. Betty was presented with her award at the 2011 NGC Annual Convention held in Washington, DC in May.  Recipients of this honor have made outstanding contributions to their club and community over a period of at least five years.


The Award Presentations was given by Vera Bowen and Diane McMillen, Awards



            Sears Civic Beautification Bowl to the Opechee Garden Club of New Hampshire;

            Evelyn Cole National Gardener Tray to the Garden Club Federation of Maine;

Mary Stone Garden Therapy Award to the Danvers Garden Club of Massachusetts;

Mary Louis Marks Smith Flower Show Schedule Award to the Atkinson Garden Club of New Hampshire;

Virginia Thurston Landscape Design Award to the Williamstown Garden Club of Massachusetts;

Kenney/Colton Horticulture Award to the Atkinson Garden Club of New Hampshire;

Nancy H. Atwell Trophy to the Camden Garden Club of Maine;

Jeanne-Marie Parkes Award to the Atkinson Garden Club of New Hampshire;

Deanna Mozzochi Creative Design Award to Maureen Christmas of the Acton Garden Club of Massachusetts;

Maureen Colton Award to the Barrington Garden Club of Rhode Island;

Pamela Hebert Garden of Youth Award to the Danbury Garden Club of Connecticut;

Excellence in Team Work Award to the Dracut Garden Club of Massachusetts;

And, The National Gardening Association Award to the Guilford Garden Club of Connecticut.


On motion of Candace Morgenstern, Credentials Chair, it was VOTED to adopt the Final Credentials Report of the Credentials Committee. There was no change from the First Report.


On motion of Kathleen Thomas, Registrar, Meeting Registrar, it was VOTED to adopt the Final Report of the Registration Committee. There were 89 Total Registrations: 41 Massachusetts, 16 New Hampshire, 8 Rhode Island, 11 Connecticut, 7 Maine and 6 Vermont.  There were 63 Full-time and 26 Part-time attendees.


The New England Region Annual Meeting was adjourned Sine Dai at 2:30 PM. 



Recording Secretary

Susan Robinson