Minutes of the District 17 Board Meeting, March 4, 2017, at the

Radisson Hotel Tucson Airport, Tucson, Arizona

(Subject to Board approval at the next District 17 board meeting

In Las Vegas, Nevada, June 24, 2017)


Present: Board members: Bonnie Bagley, Rod Bias, Robb Gordon, Jeanne Gray,

Jim Horton, JoAnne Lowe, Art McHaffie, Felicity Moore, Steve Nordberg, Jerry Ranney,

Becky Rogers, Rod Southworth and ACBL Area Manager Nancy Boyd.

              Board Members Elect: John Grossmann  and Jennifer O’Neill


Also attending a portion of the meeting: Chris Hasney, Tucson Unit member and Eric Bell, Director In Charge (DIC)


Absent: Darwin Afdahl


President’s Opening Remarks

Jerry Ranney called the meeting to order at 8:00 a.m. and welcomed guests Nancy Boyd, ACBL Area Manager and Chris Hasney, Tucson Unit member. Jerry recognized the contributions of outgoing D17

board members John Van Ness, a longtime D17 board member, former D17 and Western Conference president and Ed Yosses, former D17 treasurer.

Jerry also welcomed the newly elected board members: John Grossmann, Colorado at Large and Jennifer O’Neill, Denver. Jim Horton, Mesa, JoAnne Lowe, Phoenix, Felicity Moore, Albuquerque, Steve Nordberg, El Paso and Rod Southworth, Wyoming at Large were reelected. A motion was made, seconded and passed to ratify the elections and seat the new board members.


Election of Officers

Jerry Ranney conducted the election of officers.

     John Grossmann and Jerry Ranney were nominated and seconded for president.

     John Grossmann withdrew his nomination, saying that he vociferously supports contested elections, but he would like to see the continuance of Jerry Ranney’s presidency for one more year.

     Jerry Ranney was elected president.

     Art McHaffie was nominated and seconded for vice president. He was elected.

     Bonnie Bagley was nominated and seconded for recording secretary. She was elected.

     Jennifer O’Neill was nominated and seconded for treasurer. She was elected.

     Darwin Afdahl was nominated and seconded for election secretary. He was elected.


Approval October 2016 Minutes

Bonnie Bagley noted she has received some punctuation and spelling corrections which will be made.

A motion was made to approve the October 2016 Phoenix minutes with corrections. The motion was seconded and passed.


Secretary’s Report                                                                                                                           

Bonnie Bagley pointed out that it has been a practice to recognize long serving former D17 presidents with a gift of appreciation. A motion was made to recognize the many contributions made by John Van Ness. The motion was seconded and passed. Details will be forth coming. Bonnie announced this will be her last year as secretary. Felicity Moore volunteered to help Bonnie this year but is not guaranteeing she will secretary next year.                                                                                                 


Treasurer’s Report

Jerry Ranney gave the Treasurer’s report for Ed Yosses. As of December 31, 2016, the total assets are $118,600.00, which is $4,173.00 more than 2015-year end. Jerry presented the 2017 budget prepared by he and Ed. The budget indicated a projected surplus of $12,639.00, but an additional expense of $500.00 was added due to an incorrect figure for the President’s room, making the projected surplus $12,139.00. A motion was made, seconded and passed to accept the treasurer’s report and 2017 budget.


National Board

Bonnie Bagley stated that a written 2016 ACBL Year-End Summary Report is included in the folders and is attached. ACBL CEO Robert Hartman submitted his resignation to ACBL President Bob Heller. A Search Committee has been formed with the goal of selecting a new CEO to be in place by July 31. Bonnie reported the District Directors were advised to inform their District Board that in order to comply with minimum wage law requirements caddies for tournaments (Sectionals and Regionals) should not be paid on a per session basis but hourly and at least the minimum wage mandated by the state. The next BOD meeting will be at the March Spring NABC in Kansas City.


Board of Governors

Robb Gordon was unable to attend the BOG meeting in Orlando. Bonnie reported for Robb that Richard Popper from District 4 was elected to a two-year term as Chairman of the BOG and Barbara Heller from District 7 was elected Vice-Chairman. District 17's First Alternate and Second Alternate are up for reelection this year. Robb Gordon is D17's First Alternate and John Grossmann is Second Alternate. There is a self-nominating process and the deadline is June 1. Bonnie explained that the elections are a three-year rotation: the District Director one year, the First and Second Alternates the next year and the three BOG representatives the third year. The BOG meets the first Sunday of the NABC and a continental breakfast is provided.              


Western Conference

Bonnie Bagley reported for Darwin Afdahl that the next Western Conference Board Meeting will be at the San Diego Regional on Friday April 14. The rest of the report will be covered under New Business by John Grossmann with his report of the Blue Ribbon Committee formed by WC President Marion Robertson. Jerry Ranney stated Darwin will not be able to attend the WC meeting and per Marion Robertson, the District President may appoint a proxy to the WC meeting as a voting member. Jerry appointed John Grossmann.


Area Manager

Nancy Boyd explained that two years ago ACBL reorganized the Tournament Operations Department. Tournament Operations were divided into two areas, North and South. Sol Weinstein is the Area Manager for the North and Nancy is the Area Manager for the South. The Area Manager manages all the tournament operations and director staff in the Northern United States and Canada. Sol has six field supervisors who work for him. Nancy manages the Southern part of the United States and Mexico. Nancy has three field supervisors, and soon to be six, who work for her. The field supervisors manage, hands on, the directors in their areas. Arleen Harvey is the field supervisor for D17, D21, D22 & D23, Charlie McCracken is the field supervisor for D10, D11, D15 & D16 and Henry Falk is the field supervisor for D9. Nancy’s biggest job is to be available for any issue that arises. She follows up on director complaints. Nancy biggest goal is to be the first point of contact. Nancy tries to attend board meetings and be helpful to districts if there are any problems. A question and answer period followed. Jerry Ranney thanked Nancy for the helpful information she provided.


Executive Committee

Jerry Ranney reported the Las Vegas and Phoenix Regional budgets and schedules were approved and the D17 RTP was offered. The Executive Committee approved moving the D17 GNT Finals from the June

Las Vegas Regional to the May Denver Regional.Jerry mentioned that a D21 Reno Regional has been scheduledfor thesame dates as the Taos Regional, October 9-15. Jerry noted that D21 has offered to compensate D17 up to $4,000.00, one hundred dollars for each person who attends the Reno Regional who had attended the 2015 Taos Regional. A discussion followed about the amount of compensation and a minimum amount. A motion was made to accept a minimum of $2,000.00 and then $100.00 a person up to $4,000.00. The motion was seconded. An amendment was made that the maximum be $5,000.00. The amendment was seconded. The amendment failed. The motion passed.


Committee Reports


Report given above.


Grand National Teams (GNT) Rod Southworth reported he has no changes to the Conditions of Contest except the move of the D17 Finals from the Las Vegas Regional to the Denver Regional. Rod stated that the 2018 and 2019 D17 Finals will be in Denver as well, due to the Las Vegas Regional being Feb. 26-March 4 in 2018 and no Las Vegas Regional scheduled for 2019. He will have an article in the March promoting the D17 GNT Finals in the March ScoreCard. There was discussion of investigating holding the D17 GNT Open Flight online. Rod will check into this.


North American Pairs (NAP) Jim Horton stated the NAP club qualifying games begin June 1. He will be getting the Conditions of Contest updated, a flyer made and articles in the ScoreCard. A motion was made to hold the D17 NAP Finals at the October Taos Regional. The motion was seconded and passed.


Eric Bell, the Director in Charge, joined the meeting. He announced the table count as of Friday night is 1105, which is down 116 tables from the 2015 regional, which had a total of 1634 tables. Eric predicts the final table count will be 1450, which would be a loss of 200 tables from 2015. Feedback Eric has received is dislike of the 9:00 a.m. start time, and those who like the 9:00 a.m. time do not think there is enough time between sessions. A discussion of the schedule and start times followed. A motion was made to add Eric Bell and Bill Michael to D17 list of approved DICs. The motion passed.


I/N / Education Rod Bias’s thorough I/N report is attached. Jerry Ranney thanked Rod for his report. JoAnne Lowe suggested there should be an I/N column in the ScoreCard. Rod said he would submit I/N articles to the ScoreCard editors.


By Laws Robb Gordon noted the By Laws were passed and are in effect. He stated the final two-year term election was last year and this year’s election starts the staggered terms. This year Arizona at Large (Robb Gordon), Colorado at Large (Jeanne Gray) and New Mexico at Large (Art McHaffie) will run for three-year terms. Denver 2 (Jerry Ranney), Las Vegas (Becky Rogers), Phoenix 2 (Rod Bias) and Tucson (Darwin Afdahl) will run for two-year terms. Darwin sent Robb some election procedure changes which will be discussed at the next meeting when Darwin can present them. Jerry Ranney noted the new By Laws allow for a reduction of board members, and there is a requirement to review the size of the board every five years. Jerry appointed a committee of John Grossmann, Robb Gordon and Rod Bias to review the size of the board and make a ecommendation.                                                                                               


Disciplinary Committee Robb Gordon reported there was an appeal of a unit disciplinary decision,which he chaired. Robb appointed a committee and the Code of Disciplinary Regulations (CDR) was carefully reviewed to make sure the process was handled correctly. The appeal was resolved to everyone’s satisfaction.


Goodwill /Charity Jeanne Gray distributed the Goodwill Pins to the board members as she will be out of the country for the Las Vegas meeting. She asked the board members to submit their nominations for the D17 Goodwill Award to her no later than May 1. Jeanne will have the nominations collated and ready for ratification at the Las Vegas meeting.


Regional Tournaments Becky Rogers reported the Regional Tournament Committee did all their work last year, all the schedules for 2017 have been approved. Robb Gordon pointed out that D17’s regionals have suffered significant losses and that in the future D17 must be more careful about approving schedules, locations and giving the Regional Tournament Plan. There needs to be more involvement and tighter control by D17 to ensure successful tournaments. The Regional sanctions belong to the district and the district should exercise their prerogative to produce successful schedules.


Finance Art McHaffie stated the Finance Committee reviewed the financial statements of the Las Vegas, Phoenix and Colorado Springs Regionals. He reported Las Vegas lost $7,345.00, Phoenix lost $3,425.00 and Colorado Springs lost $946.00. The 2017 Albuquerque Regional realized a surplus of $10,476.00. JoAnne Lowe requested that D17 reimburse the Phoenix Unit half of their loss, which would be $1712.50.

A motion was made to reimburse the Phoenix Unit $1712.50. The motion was seconded and passed. 


Tournament Coordination JoAnne Lowe noted the 2016, 2017 and 2018 D17 tournament listings are in the folders. JoAnne said there are the following changes to the schedules:  add Unit 373 Las Vegas I/N Sectional on April 24-25, 2017; add Unit 351 Mesa Progressive Qualifying Sectional on February 5-11, 2018; add Unit 351 Mesa Progressive Final on February 25, 2018; cancel Unit 159 El Paso Sectional on February 9-11, 2018; add Unit 159 El Paso Sectional on February 16-19, 2018. JoAnne noted there are no sanction applications as yet for Las Vegas in 2018 and the November Las Vegas 2019 Regional sanction was cancelled. Becky Rogers replied the Las Vegas Unit Board voted not to hold a 2019 regional because of the Las Vegas NABC that year. The five-year regional schedule was distributed and it was noted that Regional sanctions should be applied for through 2022.


Tournament Supplies Jerry Ranney has asked John Grossmann to co-chair this committee with Jeanne Gray. Becky Rogers noted there is one set of boards with red paint on the boards and the incorrect vulnerabilities and John Grossmann said there is a set with faulty hinges. Jerry Ranney will talk with Dan Williams to ensure those sets are not used. JoAnne Lowe gave kudos to the bidding boxes. A concerted effort has been made to upgrade the quality of the bidding boxes, and they will get better as there is $1,000 in the budget for necessary replacements.


ScoreCardJohn Grossmann stated that he was appointed by Jerry Ranney to be on the Blue Ribbon Committee established by Marion Robertson, Western Conference Committee. The purpose of the committee was rather undefined but basically to investigate cost-cutting measures. John presented a synopsis of the committee’s endeavors including informal surveys. John stated he believed the option of going to an online publication for more than half of the members offers a huge opportunity on the upside for doing the job of the Forum/ScoreCard better; news is actually news, not three weeks old and every photo can be in color. There followed a question and answer and discussion session.  A motion was made that D17 endorses the concept of providing both an electronic and traditional paper version of the Western Conference Forum, with a required request for a printed issue.A hybrid system should be implemented over the next 18 months or sooner to reduce the costs of printing and postage. D17 endorses the recommendation of the Blue Ribbon Committee because of the significant costs savings, electronic delivery is widely accepted, a hybrid system offers players a choice, and there are many options to enhance the electronic option. When costs savings materialize, D17 wants the Western Conference to reduce tournament sanction fees. The motion was seconded and passed. Jim Horton gave kudos to John Grossmann who joined the committee four months ago and the majority of work was done by him.


Contract Review, Grants, Unit Affiliations, and Web Site   No report


Completed Tournament Reports

Becky Rogers stated, as noted above, the Las Vegas Financial statement shows a loss of $8,345.00, but the loss is actually $7,345.00 because the I/N subsidy of $1,00.00 that D17 provides was not taken into account. The table count was 2406, which was 656 tables less than 2015’s 3062. Becky stated there are two years left for the Bally’s contract, 2017 and 2018.


Bonnie Bagley reported, also noted above, the Pikes Peak Regional lost $946.00 and had a table count of 1193, which was a loss of 375 tables from the 2014 August Pikes Peak Regional. The August time frame is more favorable for the Pikes Peak Regional, but Colorado Springs agreed to move to October for 2016 and 2018 to support Phoenix in August, but still retains a sanction for August 2020.


Felicity Moore pointed out, again, noted above, the Navajo Regional had a surplus of $10,476.00 compared to $6,394.00 in 2016, with a table count of 1522, slightly less than 2016’s 1587. The higher surplus can be attributed to the increased entry fee. Felicity submitted a written report on the Fast Results

Auto Bulletin, which is attached.


New Business

2015 Audit

Jerry Ranney reported Carolyn Newcomb completed the audit of the 2015 D17 financial records. She found everything to be in order and has a recommendation to write off two very old outstanding receivable Sectional Tournaments ads. A motion was made, seconded and passed to do so. A motion was made, seconded and passed to approve the audit report.


ACBL President Visit

Jerry Ranney stated that Bob Heller, the 2017 ACBL President, would be willing to accept an invitation to visit the Taos Regional. It is expected that a room and free plays be provided for him and, in turn, he would host a reception for volunteers. A motion was made to invite ACBL President Bob Heller to the Taos Regional. The motion was seconded and passed.


The meeting was adjourned at 12:15 p.m.


The next meeting will be 9:00 a.m. Saturday, June 24, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the

Las Vegas Regional.


 Respectfully submitted,


Bonnie L. Bagley


Attachments: D17 Caddy Requirements

                      Blue Ribbon Committee – WC Financial Issues

                      Fast Results Auto Bulletin

                      D17 2017 Board Roster

                     D17 2017 Committees -                                                                                                                                                   


American Contract Bridge League

District 17 — I/N Chair: Rod Bias

March 4, 2017

Newcomers to bridge can now gently move into and up the ranks thanks to projects implemented by the ACBL and targeted at market segments — even kids in school!

School Bridge Programs

Most D17 board members know that in Fall 2008 I started a program called “Bridge-Squad” in the Phoenix area. I have taught bridge after school, before school (7 a.m.), during school, on school breaks at “pizza & bridge” parties and at clubs and community centers. I started working with students in middle schools — never able to get into high schools. Over the last nearly nine years, many great people have “helped” out in one school or another.

For me personally the most exciting development this semester has been to have John Baragona step up and take charge of coordinating the Unit 354 bridge program in schools. John is not just a helper; he’s a doer and organizer. Enthusiastic. Self-motivated. Thanks to him Unit 354 now has four team programs in four schools with four sets of coaches (usually three coaches per school). By the way, one of our coaches is Jennifer O’Neill, a new D17 Board member. About 60 kids (mostly 10-year-old fifth graders) have been involved in bridge teams. Of course, a few dropped out along the way.

In the last eight years, I have had kids at four or five tournaments. Never have I had more than three teams at one tournament. This April 29th Unit 354 should have teams from four schools … perhaps two or three squads from most schools. John hopes to have 8-10 teams for a youth Swiss team event at 10 a.m. that morning. Coordinating transportation may be a problem. That’s his headache now!

Yes, I am still coaching at one school. Yes, John is now my “boss,” although he still consults with me on “how to” questions. I provide nuts ‘n’ bolts input. He recruits coaches and contacts schools. My hat is off to John Baragona. Good salesman.

In Tucson (Unit 356), I have met with and been talking to Diana Galis and George Kersels about starting a school bridge program in August when school begins for the Fall semester. They don’t even have any school(s) lined up yet; I have explained that may be one of the more difficult steps. They need to be going on that right now.


As you know, the proposal to begin the Tucson Regional with a Pro-Am did not go forward. Denver continues to have great success with their Pro-Am. Phoenix has decided to reduce the size of its Pro-Am. I was having nearly 70 table games when I was recruiting Am players. Another board member took over that spot and a decision was intentionally made to restrict the table count for that event. The Pro-Am seems to generate enthusiasm and interest among the I/N Crowd. I still get calls about when and where it will be in Phoenix. Denver is well-positioned to become and remain the biggest and best Pro-Am except for Gatlinburg … replacing Phoenix’ claim to the title.

NLM Regional Tournaments “under” Sectionals

Phoenix has begun stacking NLM Regional Tournaments “under” Sectionals. The Sectional gets to add the NLM table count and award more masterpoints! The I/N Crowd loves playing for gold masterpoints without competing against Life Masters. “Hooked” Newcomers even fly in from out-of-state for the chance to strike it rich in the Valley of the Sun. These NLM Regionals draw I/N players like crazy.

News Notes for the I/N Crowd (is on hold)

Last August I reported that Cindy Shoemaker in Tucson was working on an article about her experiences with various innovations she has used to beef up the I/N program in Tucson. She planned to submit that article to the Bulletin. I also mentioned that she and I would be meeting to discuss creating an email news notes publication for the I/N Crowd in D17. In addition, I said Cindy is a sparkplug. Cindy was elected Unit president! Good for her. She also had to refocus and, as a result, put these projects on hold.

Email Blasts

On another subject, Rod Southworth recently commented: "I certainly believe that electronic distribution … will be the way of the future, and the future is quite near.” I agree with Rod.

Over the last few years I have sent out tens of thousands of emails about upcoming tournaments and the opportunities for Newcomers. Very few respond … but more than you might think. Perhaps one of the most frequent questions I am asked is “Can I win gold points at this or that tournament?” because most Newcomers do not know what tournaments issue what awards. Newcomers want the chance to win gold masterpoints in a sheltered environment at NLM Regionals (as in Gold Rush events). We need to provide what they want to help them move in and up.


2017 District 17 Board Members

          Officers:        Jerry Ranney, President

                               Art McHaffie, Vice President

                               Bonnie Bagley, Secretary

                               Jennifer O’Neill, Treasurer

                               Darwin Afdahl, Election Secretary


Board Members and the areas they represent:

   Darwin Afdahl(Tucson) 12390 N. Tall Grass Drive, Oro Valley, AZ  85755-0844

            520 742-1801 (H) 520 305-0360 (C) darwin@afdahls.com

   Bonnie Bagley (Ex-officio, National Board Member) 7285 Ross Drive, Colorado

         Springs, CO  80920-3550  719 593-0205 (H/C)  bonnie@bonniebagleyd17.com

   Rod Bias(Phoenix) 3017 W. White Feather Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85083-5859

623-444-7960  rod.bias@cutlip.org  

   Robb Gordon(Arizona at Large) 230 Seco Way, Sedona, AZ 86336-4383

          928 203-7707(H) 928 202-7772 (C)  robbgordon@gmail.com

      JeanneGray(Colorado at Large) 8060 Meadowdale Square, Niwot, CO  

               80503-8596   303-827-3120 mouse.gray@comcast.net

       John Grossmann (Colorado at Large) 2500 52nd Avenue, Greeley, CO 80634

               719 233-9464 (C) blackstone.co@comcast.net

      Jim Horton(Mesa) 9322 E. Cedar Waxwing Drive, Sun Lakes, AZ 85248-7441

                    480 883-6369 (H) 480 200-7566 (C)  jhorton2739@gmail.com

      JoAnne Lowe (Phoenix) 15445 E. Richwood Ave., Fountain Hills, AZ 85268-1432

         480 836-7296 (H) 480 577-9833 (C)  pnutlowe@cox.net

     Art McHaffie(New Mexico at Large) 2220 Wilderness Meadow Road, Santa Fe, NM

87505-5936    505 986-6074  ermchaffie@msn.com

   Felicity Moore (Albuquerque) 2520 Veranda Road NW,  Albuquerque, NM 87107 
               505 717-1483 (H) 505 301-8597 (C) f.moore@netscape.com

    Steve Nordberg(El Paso) 5513 Beth View Drive, El Paso, Texas 79932-1418

            915 833-5915 (H)  texminn@sbcglobal.net

    Jennifer O’Neill (Denver) 30 Sommerset Circle, Greenwood Village, CO 80111-1403

               303 596-8153   jjo4501@gmail.com

    Jerry Ranney  (Denver)  5743 Willowbrook Drive, Morrison, CO  80465-2236

            303 697-9468 (H)  720 333-4587 (C)  jtranney2@msn.com

   Becky Rogers(Las Vegas) 1372 Ruby Sky Court, Henderson, NV 89052-3137

            702 812-7976 (C)  rags04@gmail.com

   Rod Southworth(Wyoming), 4404 E. 7th Street, Cheyenne, WY  82001-5033

        307 221-2634 (C)  southworth15@yahoo.com                                        


                            2017 D17 Committees

                 (Note: The D17 President, Jerry Ranney is a member of all committees)


By-Laws:                               Robb Gordon-Chair, Jim Horton


Contract Review:                   Art McHaffie-Chair


Elections:                               Darwin Afdahl


Executive Committee:          Darwin Afdahl, Bonnie Bagley, Art McHaffie, Jennifer O’Neill


Finance Committee:             Art McHaffie-Chair, Robb Gordon, Jennifer O’Neill


Goodwill/Charity:                 Jeanne Gray 


Grand National Teams:         Rod Southworth-Chair, Steve Nordberg


Grants:                                    Steve Nordberg


Education & I/N:                    Rod Bias


Disciplinary -                         David Caprera

Original Jurisdiction             Committee members will be selected by the Chair when needed  


Disciplinary - Appellate       Robb Gordon

                                                Committee members will be selected by the Chair when needed


North American Pairs:          Jim Horton


Recorder:                               Becky Rogers


Regional Tournaments:         Becky Rogers-Chair, Bonnie Bagley, Jim Horton, JoAnne Lowe,

                                                Robb Gordon, Gary Zeiger (special advisor)


Scorecard:                             Bonnie Bagley


Tournament Coordinating:    JoAnne Lowe-Chair, Jim Horton


Tournament Supplies:           JeanneGray-Chair, John Grossmann


Unit Affiliations             JoAnne Lowe


Web Site:                               Rod Southworth       
                                                                                                                                                March 2017










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