AFG, Inc. Strategic Plan & Bylaws
Working within the framework of Al‑Anon’s Legacies, the Board, Executive Committee, and Senior World Service Office Staff have developed the AFG, Inc. Mission Statement, Envisioned Future, and Strategic Goals to assist the World Service Office in the work it carries out on behalf of Al‑Anon Family Groups.
As a non-profit organization, AFG, Inc. operates in accordance with its Bylaws, which represent the Board’s legal agreement with our members.
Letters from the Chairperson of the Board
Letters containing information about the most recent Board, Policy, and Finance Committee Meetings.
Chairperson of the Board Letter – Section View
Dear fellow Al‑Anon members,
The purpose of this Chairperson of the Board letter is to share with you some of the highlights from our 2020 World Service Conference (WSC), along with updates from the Board of Trustees’ Quarterly Meeting and the Annual Meetings of the Board. You will also find updates from our outgoing and incoming Policy Chairpersons, a finance update from our outgoing and incoming Treasurers, and updates from our outgoing and incoming Conference Leadership Team (CLT).
The 60th World Service Conference was held April 20 – 24, 2020. When the 2020 WSC theme of “Dreaming Big With 20|20 Vision” was chosen, I do not think we had any idea how appropriate the theme would be. Due to government and health authorities’ directives to suspend gatherings of greater than 50 people, we held our very first virtual/hybrid World Service Conference!
The virtual portion of the Conference consisted of two four‑hour days of web conferencing. Some agenda items during the virtual portion of the Conference were the 2019 Auditors’ Report, 2019 Annual Report, 2020 Finance Committee Report, and traditional approval of Trustee and Executive Committee for Real Property Management candidates. Just as during a face‑to‑face Conference, there was time at the end of each session for unanswered questions.
The hybrid portion of the Conference consisted of three days of discussion on AFG Connects. The topics presented during the hybrid portion of the Conference were the Electronic Meeting Work Group Report, the two Chosen Agenda Items, and reports from two Thought Forces and one Task Force. The “two minutes at the microphone” rule was adhered to by asking Conference members to keep their sharing to 300 words or less. Conference members embraced the format, took their turn “at the mic,” and exchanged ideas just as if they were face‑to‑face!
Even though we were not able to be together physically, the Al‑Anon love could still be felt. Conference members were able to make new friendships and renew old ones. We were able to learn about all the Delegates through the virtually adapted Sharing Area Highlights.
I want to extend a huge thank you to the World Service Office (WSO) Staff, members of the newly formed Staff Tech Team, and members of the Conference Leadership Team (CLT) who made this virtual/hybrid WSC happen in just under four weeks!! Thank you to all the Conference members who willingly accepted this new format, attended the web conferencing training sessions, and developed new skills so this virtual/hybrid Conference could become a reality. All of you dreamt big with 20|20 vision to make the 2020 virtual/hybrid WSC a huge success!
For a more detailed report of the 2020 WSC, please look for the free online Conference Summary which is scheduled for posting in July. A printed version will be made available for the cost to cover shipping and handling in August.
As part of moving forward on the Strategic Plan Goal: Members of providing “universal access to tools for recovery from the family disease of alcoholism,” WSO is developing the AFG MOBILE APP (working title—App). The App is currently being tested—stay tuned on AFG Connects and In the Loop for updates on the release timeline. Through the App, the WSO will be able to offer many free features, including a confidential online and phone meeting platform for facilitating electronic meetings, along with some premium paid features.
In order to continue the work we started in January 2020 toward becoming more of a strategic‑thinking Board, the Board invited back Mark Engle of Association Management Center to attend during the April Quarterly Board Meeting held on April 20. Using feedback from Board members on the January Board Development session, Mark led us through some next steps to help the Board conduct more streamlined meetings to make best use of our Volunteers’ time. The Board of Trustees will continue to discuss how to function as a high‑performing rather than an operational Board.
Five Regions—US Southeast, US Northwest, Canada East, Canada Central, and Canada West—began the process of nominating Regional Trustees by forming their respective Regional Committees on Trustees (RCT). While the process for nominating a Regional Trustee and Trustee at Large is different, the deadline for résumés to be submitted to the WSO is August 15.
The Conference gave traditional approval, and during their Annual Meeting, the Board of Trustees, in their legal capacity, elected the following trusted servants:
Trustee at Large:
Therese (Teri) M. Second three‑year term
Jeryl (Jeri) W. First three‑year term
Diane B., US South Central First three‑year term
Cynthia (Cindy) M., US Southwest First three‑year term
Board Officers 2020‑2021:
Lynette K. Chairperson of the Board
Rosa (Rosie) M. Vice Chairperson of the Board
Catherine (Cathy) T. Treasurer
The Board of Trustees, in its legal capacity, made the following one‑year appointments:
Julius (JP) M., US Southeast Trustee
Mary W., US Northwest Trustee
Nancy S., Trustee at Large
Elizabeth D., Executive Committee for Real Property Management
The Board of Trustees, in its legal capacity, elected the following:
Deborah (Debbie) G. Second one‑year term
Karen W‑P. Second one‑year term
Terry F. First one‑year term
Chairperson of the Executive Committee:
Deborah (Debbie) G.
Executive Committee for Real Property Management Chairperson
Katherine (Kay) R. One‑year term
The TEAM (Together Empowering Al‑Anon Members) Event Replacement Task Force is continuing to work on how best to replace TEAM events. Delegates participated in a survey to provide the Board information on what direction to take. The Board will be continuing the discussion on the TEAM event replacement at the July Board meeting. More will be revealed!
I want to assure you that through its Finance Committee, the Board of Trustees is working with Staff frequently to understand the ever‑evolving impacts of the pandemic on AFG, Inc.’s financial situation and operating budget. In its legal authority, the Board is authorized and has responsibility to “see that our World Service Office operation remains financially sound, always aligning the use of our money with the spiritual principles of our program.” The Board can review and approve changes to the budget, as necessary. However, at this moment we do not yet have enough data to make those changes. At the July Board meeting, the Board will be looking at the budget and making changes, as necessary.
The Board knows that Areas contributed funds in 2019 to support their Delegate’s attendance at Conference and Areas are wondering about refunds. Once costs, including cancellations, are fully understood the Board will make decisions.
Two weeks following the posting of this letter, the Trustees will begin contacting their assigned Delegates to whom they serve as a resource for clarification or for questions about this letter. If you prefer not to have the Trustee phone you, please let him/her know when the initial contact is made.
The 60th World Service Conference lived up to its theme. The Board was dreaming big when they presented the Mega Issue: Hybrid Conference at the 2019 WSC. Who would have thought it would become our reality so soon. In Bill W.’s “Leadership” essay on page 198 of the 2018‑2021 Al‑Anon/Alateen Service Manual, he says that vision is an “all important attribute.” The quote at the end of the essay sums up the gratitude I came away with after attending the 2020 virtual/hybrid WSC.
“Thank God that so many of our service leaders at all levels of operation are blessed with the attributes of tolerance, responsibility, flexibility, and vision.”
Chairperson, Board of Trustees
Al‑Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc