Many thanks to those who made our January 2019 general meeting quite fun and informative.
Stu Maddux and Joe Applebaum are documentarians working on their newest project: The Minister of Loneliness. They're making a film about the increasing phenomenon of loneliness in our ever more connected culture- an epidemic found in nearly every country and on most continents. Young adults and seniors are two of the most susceptible groups to experience a growing sense of disconnect. The symptoms are sometimes hard to identify, but often are related to feelings of despondency, physical lethargy, isolation and depression. Our audience came up with some easy steps to safeguard our well-being: take a walk around the block and say "hello" to those you meet. Call someone you trust and ask for help. Create boundaries for healthy use of social media. Join a local group like EVNA, a church, a bowling league- anything to get out of your house and engaged with others.
Click here to learn how you can support the project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wllvgf9Cu_U
We also learned about the proposed upgrades to the Castro-Mission Medical Facility on 18th Street. The interior floor plan is going to flip allowing for bigger exam rooms, a staff break room, and better offices, and on the outside, there will seismic fittings and a makeover to freshen the building look, including a reconfiguration of the landscaping removing the overgrown eucalyptus trees and planting more Mexican Fan Palm trees.
Supervisor Mandelman made a cameo appearance, giving us an update on his on-going work to address homelessness and improve street conditions in our neighborhood, District 8 and the city at large. Especially important to deal with the most severe cases of mental distress that we see daily, is our support of SB1045. Rafael anticipates there will be well organized resistance to SB1045 by the Coalition on the Homeless and other civil liberties groups when the proposal is presented at the Board of Supervisors meeting, and has asked that we show up to weigh in as residents. EVNA will let members and residents know when the meeting is scheduled.
We also presented the Castro Welcome Packet- this project is result of months of collaboration by the neighborhood groups: DTNA, EVNA, Castro Merchants and the CDB, working together as the Castro Retail Strategy group. The idea is welcome new residents moving into the area, promote the neighborhood association, and encouraging them to shop our Castro businesses. We've designed a cool looking wine tote with Castro branding on it, and it will contain information on the local neighborhood group and as many discount and special offer to Castro businesses as possible. EVNA is looking forward to welcoming our new neighbors, and we are looking for volunteers to get them delivered!
Don't Forget: Neighborhood Meet & Greet! Saturday, Feb 9th from 3-5pm Poesia Osteria Italiana 4072 18th Street between Castro and Hartford Streets Passed hors d'oeuvres and cash bar
Next General Meeting is: Wednesday, March 27th, 7pm-8:30pm Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy 19th at Collingwood Streets
My hope is that you enjoyed your holidays and have made some neighborhood affirming resolutions for 2019.
The next general meeting is:
Wednesday January 23rd, 2019
7:00 pm to 8:30 pm (doors open at 6:45)
Harvey Milk School (cafeteria, 19th at Collingwood).
We've made such great strides over the first year of my administration; stabilizing our ship's finances, locking in 170 paid memberships, defining our organizational structure, and broadening our outreach to the community. My hat is off to the board and all our members for the continued effort and support you've provided- hopefully you had some fun as we did with the "theme" meetings, the raffle prizes, the first annual movie night, and (remember?) the Mayoral Debate in the spring.
With such progress, I'm happy to set some new goals for 2019. For my administration's second year, we're going to kick everything up a notch. I have drafted and am now implementing "Roles and Responsibilities" for every board member and each committee chair, and will also complete a charter for each active committee in the first quarter. These documents clarify the duties and responsibilities we have in our respective roles on the board as well as set the expectations we owe one another and our members. For me, these documents stand for the promise we make to each other in the service of EVNA .
Alex Lemberg has been elevated to the role of Vice President. Alex has been instrumental in revising our Bylaws and has provided the board with sound council and insight from an attorney's perspective as we make our progress. I'm looking forward to working with Alex in his new capacity as VP to help run the board, keep EVNA viable and compliant as a non-profit entity, and of course, his help grooming our future leaders in service to the community.
Newly elected to the board is Kevin Cureton as Treasurer. Kevin will take ownership of the new Finance Committee. Kevin is eager to take the next steps toward needed improvements in our financial reporting and procedures, and has shared with me his goals for tax compliance, and increased tracking and transparency our revenues and expenses.
Let's also welcome Desmond Morgan to the board who has agreed to breathe life into the Membership Committee- he's got his work cut out for him. Desmond will go to work defining the scope, outlining the structure, and the duties of that committee: from dues assessment, to member benefits and recruiting, I will be working with Desmond to lay on the love for our existing members and to throw open the doors to welcome new comers.
And a special congratulations to Mary Edna Harrell on accepting another 2 year term as Newspaper/Marketing co-chair. Mary Edna will be working the committee to update the format of the newsletter publication. We're going to see big changes as we bring the newsletter into the 21st century! I am pleased and grateful for her many years of service to the community.
Dan Schulman has also joined the board and will continue his work on a more formal basis with Chair Loic Olichon on the Planning and Land Use committee. These gentlemen will continue their work to re-invigorate the group while putting in place procedures for handling the huge volume of public notices and building permit review requests within the EVNA footprint.
I also want to share with you another promising program that's coming to life this spring- the Castro Welcome Packet. For months, the Castro Retail Strategy panel has been working on ways to promote our neighborhood and commercial districts with the aim of keeping retail shops full and shoppers shopping in this changing economy. EVNA has been working with other neighborhood stakeholders (the Castro CBD, Castro Merchants, Duboce Triangle) to create a Welcome Packet- which we will hand deliver quarterly to new residents as a way of saying "welcome" to the Castro/Eureka Valley neighborhood and as a way to get new nieghbors connected to our group while promoting the Castro shops and restaurants at the same time. Stay tuned for more details. If you're interested in joining the effort- let me know.
As we get geared up for 2019, I am excited about what we are doing together as neighbors- it's an amazing ride so far, and it's only going to get better. I couldn't imagine doing this without you- our members.
The public meeting was held this past Wednesday evening at Harvey Milk Academy. The meeting also serves as the annual business meeting when eligible board members and officers are elected.
First on the agenda after introductions was Assemblyman David Chiu. Assemblyman Chiu thanked the EVNA members for our work, and he shared highlights of what’s new in the state legislature, including some of the intense fights with Washington over sanctuary policies, immigrants rights, and even the new federal tax deduction limitations . Other priorities for Mr. Chiu include housing, transit oriented development, and clearing the back log of unprocessed rape kits . A Q&A session followed and included questions regarding conservatorship law changes, modifications to Costa-Hawkins, global warming, and state level programs to assist cities with the growing challenges dealing with the mentally ill and homeless.
David’s presentation was followed by District 8 Supervisor Rafael Mandelman. Supv. Mandelman talked about his work to date in City Hall. About 1/3 of the issues brought to him involve citizens dealing with people living on our streets.
Rafael let attendees know the palm trees were trimmed on Market Street, and additional news about street trees- his goal is to expand our city's green canopy. He has been working to help small businesses located in buildings that need seismic retrofitting, and possible zoning changes to make it easier for small businesses and restaurants to open in the Upper Market neighborhood commercial district. The Q&A that followed included questions about vacancy taxes, more about the perplexing challenges of empty retail space, and the proposed micro-hotel on 18th street.
Next up was Jody Schwartz, executive director of Lyric, Jodi shared Lyric’s mission, programs, and accomplishments.
EVNA secretary Leila Decker then announced the results of the annual election. A quorum for the election was met per the EVNA bylaws. All of those running for a board or officer position were elected. Congratulations to our new Vice President, Alex Lemberg, and treasurer Kevin Cureton and welcome aboard to new board members. The newly elected board members and officers take over their duties on January 1, 2019 for two year terms.
EVNA President Mark McHale concluded the meeting by encouraging the members to use the 311 App, and ended with an open forum for attendees to bring up issues important to them.
The next general meeting is on Wednesday, January 23, 2019 at 7pm, also at the Harvey Milk Academy.
Our next general meeting is this Thursday, 11/28/18. Members, guests, and residents are invited to come together to hear the latest, get educated and provide input on what's going on in our neighborhood.
Our meetings are held in the cafeteria at the Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy located at 4235 19th Street at Collingwood.
Door open at 6:45pm and our meeting goes from 7:00pm to 8:30pm. Arrive early, get signed in, and say hello to a few neighbors.
Our topic is "Good Neighbors" and I have a personal request for those attending the meeting- bring a new toy or two (in original packing) to donate to the Mission Station Toy Drive- we're making an effort to help kids in need to have a brighter Holiday. If you can't make the meeting, there are barrels stationed at Cliff's Hardware at 479 Castro Street all holiday long- shop local and donate local, too!
For members attending our board meeting on Nov 28th, we will be electing candidates to the Board of Directors. Please be sure to identify yourself as a member upon signing in, and grab your ballot along with the agenda.
The Board of Directors is pleased to present the following candidates for your consideration. Board members serve for two year terms, and half are up for re-election each year. You must be a member to cast your vote.
Vice President- Alex Lemberg (current board member at large)
Alex Lemberg has lived in the Castro on Caselli Avenue with his now-husband Kevin since 2013. Serving on the EVNA Board of Directors for the past year has been a highlight of Alex's year and he wants to keep building up the Castro community through service, events, collecting meaningful community feedback, and strengthening community bonds. He is also proud to serve on the board of the GLBT Historical Society, another amazing nonprofit that serves the Castro, and works as a staff attorney at Open Door Legal in the Bayview/Hunters Point neighborhood of San Francisco, helping SF residents keep their homes. Alex would be honored to have your vote as Vice President of the EVNA.
Secretary- (currently filled by Leila Decker) No candidate
Treasurer- Kevin Cureton
Kevin Cureton has lived in Eureka Valley since 2003 and in San Francisco since 1997. He lives with his husband Alex, and their roommate Steve, in a cozy condo on Caselli Avenue that Kevin has owned since moving into the neighborhood. Kevin has worked as a software engineer since moving to San Francisco and is currently employed with Netflix. Kevin is concerned about the quality of life issues that impact our neighborhood and he feels the neighborhood association is uniquely positioned to help positively influence policy on these issues. Kevin will bring a high-degree of transparency to the role of Treasurer, simplifying financial processes and reporting, and using best practices for the EVNA.
Board Member at Large- Desmond Morgan
Desmond Morgan has lived in San Francisco for over 20 years with his husband of one year, Romwald Connolly. They are new to the Castro Neighborhood. Recently, Desmond and Romwald (Ray) purchased 3987-3989 17th St.; and Desmond is looking forward to getting involved in the community. If elected to EVNA Board of Directors at Large, he looks forward to helping out in any capacity. Desmond Morgan has been in the BioTech industry for over 15 years. Currently, he's a Territory Account Manager at Relypsa, Inc.
Thanks to ALL the candidates for offering to be a part of the board. We are only as strong as our volunteer base, and we are grateful for your time and efforts.
We're almost to the holidays, can you believe it? I love these days of fall temperatures and colors; the shorter daylight hours bring longer shadows and longer nights to be indoors and enjoy the comforts of a cozy home.
October's first ever EVNA Movie Night was a big success- the board hosted the event (thanks to everyone!), setting up and welcoming 75 guests from all over the neighborhood and surrounding areas. COCO on the big screen and outdoors brought back a lot of fond memories of my own small town, close knit community experience. The kids (and there were MANY!) really seemed to enjoy singing along and watching the story unfold.
Next upon us is elections- the EVNA elections, that is. As I watch the events unfolding on a national level, I am even more convinced of the importance of local service- where we actually meet each other face to face and engage with one another as neighbors. You can do good by being a part of EVNA, and serving on the board or on a committee is a great way to build relationships and create the bond of community.
To date, we've had a high level of interest in those considering joining the board, but you if you'd like to run, there's still time.
Board Member at Large (up to 5 new)
Candidates wishing to stand for election to the Board must have their names submitted by October 31st. You must have a paid EVNA membership, live within the boundaries laid out in the newly adopted Bylaws (under the "About" tab), and be confirmed by the Board before elections at our General Meeting on 11/28. Email me with your questions.
Our next General Meeting meeting is Nov 28th, 2018 in the Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy cafeteria from 7-8:30 (doors open at 6:40-ish). We'll have EVNA elections at this meeting, and then focused our attention on our theme for the holidays: "Good Neighbor." We'll take a well deserved look at those among us who volunteer for service and give of themselves and their resources to make our neighborhood closer and more caring. There's a LONG list to consider!
EVNA is hosting our first ever free neighborhood movie night Saturday 10/13 starting at 6:45pm to watch a family fun movie: COCO
Join your neighbors on the grass at the Rikki Streicher ball diamond, corner of 19th and Diamond Streets. Bring your lawn chairs, blankets, snacks and non-alcoholic beverages and the kids and join us- it'll be a lot of fun.
It is free, and we welcome any sized donation!
One way to donate is to go to evna.org/join and sign up as a member ($20 individual or $30 household), you'll also get a free popcorn at the movie AND entered into a drawing to win a copy of COCO!
Our September general meeting focused on Quality of Life issues. Though we had some last minute changes to the presenters list, we managed to put on a very informative meeting.
Thanks to Vietnam Nguyen from the George Gascon's DA's office (who I hear is NOT going to be running for re-election!). Vietnam discussed attempts by his office to reach out to communities across the city to improve communications, crime reporting, and statistics.
The Friends of Harvey Milk Plaza crew provided us with an update on the project with new renderings and a video fly-through of the space allowing us to "see and feel" what was in mind for the site. Members got very excited when Ray Connolly spoke about their efforts to create a world-class memorial to Harvey Milk and give tribute to his impact on so many people across generations and continents. Mr. Connolly has joined in the fundraising efforts about to launch.
A special thanks to our very own Supervisor Rafael Mandelman for making time to join us. Rafael is making good progress with his own comprehensive study and taking steps to unravel the puzzle behind the increase in the extreme conditions we're experiencing on our streets in the Castro. Since his election in June, he's brought together the people involved, spearheaded key legislation, and working closely with police and service providers to get solutions in place (both temporary and long term). Be sure to follow him here on his FB feed..
We had a great turnout with over 65 people in attendance. For the past several meetings, more Eureka Valley residents are showing up and taking part. It's been really fun to see so many members and so many new faces in the seats. I did have some good feedback from a long-standing member who felt that the Q&A time (which I kept to 4 minutes after each speaker), was too short and he didn't get to ask his questions- As a result, I think it best to slim down the agenda (it's been pretty packed), allowing more time for attendees to interact, take questions and make comments. Appreciate the advice!
Please mark your calendars for the next Board of Directors meetings: October 9 and then November 13th, 2018 at 7:00pm in the community room at the Chance Bank on Sanchez/15th and Market Streets. You're welcome to attend, observe, and make comments.
Candidates wishing to stand for election to the Board must have their names submitted by October 31st. You must have a paid EVNA membership, live within the boundaries laid out in the newly adopted Bylaws (under the "About" tab), and be confirmed by the Board before elections at our General Meeting on 11/28. Email me with your questions. Open positions include: Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, and up to 5 Board Members at Large.
Our next General Meeting meeting is Nov 28th, 2018 in the Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy cafeteria from 7-8:30 (doors open at 6:40ish). We'll have EVNA elections at this meeting, and then focused our attention on our theme: "Good Neighbor." We'll take a well deserved look at those among us who volunteer for service and give of themselves and their resources to make our neighborhood closer and more caring. There's a LONG list to consider!
See you around the neighborhood!
Working to Improve Life in Eureka Valley Since 1881