Passing-the-Baton Statement from the Interim Facilitation Team (IFT)

For a project like the REIC to succeed, a project that supports equity, inclusion and access in its work product(s) as well as within its iterative, working process, clear leadership is essential… and hard to come by. Before we had 300+ (and growing!) members, we had a much smaller group of individuals from a variety of backgrounds who felt like they had some capacity to commit to ensuring that the REIC developed a clear work ethic, asked questions of itself (some of which were very difficult to answer; some of which we continue to struggle with), and, quite simply, survived.

As working groups were developed, membership formed, and meetings became more numerous, this group because the Interim Facilitation Team (IFT) – an informal leadership structure that tried to create pathways for communication between members, workgroups, non-members, elected officials, stakeholders and potential stakeholders, the media, and myriad other groups of humans who had an interest and/or point of intersection with the REIC.  In no way does the IFT deserve 100% of the credit for shepherding the REIC through its first 11 months, but we saw the potential for this project to break down without some sense of “air traffic control,” and we desperately did not want that to happen.

Now we want to make this transition (from current workgroups and IFT to a Steering Committee) as smooth and intentional as possible. With that in mind, several members of the out-going IFT gave personal statements at our all-member meeting to elect the Steering Committee on January 28 about why they committed to the IFT, their hope and belief in the REIC’s future, and commending everyone for their hard work these past many months. Statements were made at the top of the meeting, before voting, to put our collective enthusiasm behind the voting process and to create a clean slate for the inaugural Steering Committee. We also agreed to publish these statements on the website: you can read our individual transition statements here.

We want to make visible the transition that some members of the IFT have made to the SC, and we believe that making the whole of the IFT visible underscores our collective commitment to transparency and clarifies the individual labor that it took to get us to this point. In making ourselves and our motivations known – as both a group and individuals – we also commit to being held accountable for our work. Nothing just happened – it was all thoughtfully planned and implemented.

We also want to make sure to acknowledge the Governance Workgroup for their great work; they are a separate body from the IFT, and they have been (and will continue to be) tremendous partners in our progress.

– Todd Arena, Moses Gates, David Glick, Sam Gray, Susan Jahoda, Clarinda Mac Low, Oksana Mironova, Adina Saperstein, Paula Z. Segal, Risa Shoup, Allison van Hee & Caroline Woolard