2011 Meeting Minutes and Motions Master File

January 2011 - NO MEETING (weather)


February 2011 - NO MEETING (weather)

March 16, 2011


Members in attendance – Jackie Caldwell, Sue Van Norman, Toni Over, Susan Brooks, Sarah Brooks, Susan Peterson, Jill Blackburn, Brianne Reynolds, Lauren Sumwalt

Previous meeting Minutes : read by Brianne Reynolds, approved by Lauren Sumwalt, second by Toni Over, voted unanimous

Membership report : N/A

Young rider report : Sarah Brooks reported starting plans made for YR team championships

Treasure's report : read by Sue Van Norman, approved by Susan Peterson, seconded by Jill Blackburn, voted unanimous

Liberty view show in need of an organizer, rest of shows filled and stocked. Liberty view will be cancelled by 5/5 if no organizer found.

Show supplies – in need of a new card table and ribbon boxes, will be purchased

Insurance for shows – completed

New show rules – Lauren proposed new helmet rule “MDA, Inc follows the USEF Helmet rule (DR 120.5) unless otherwise noted. Click to view this rule. Farm owners and show venues may impose more stringent rules that the USEF. Specific farm or venue requirements which exceed the USEF rule shall be posted on the MDA website.  Competitors who show in top hats or derbies are encouraged to bring an ASTM/SEI approved helmet if they are unsure as to a farm or venue’s specific rules.”  Sue Peterson motions, Jill Blackburn seconds. Votes unanimous.

Lauren proposed new time period (15 days) to dispute any incorrect test scores posted on the website. Once posted on the website the scores will be finalized. Motioned by Toni Over, seconded by Sue Van Norman. Votes unanimous.

Lauren proposed work credit log will be posted on the website and finalized by November 15. errors must be reported before Nov 15 for any changes to be submitted. Motioned by Toni Over, seconded by Susan Peterson. Votes unanimous.

Increasing the Volunteers – Jackie proposed t-shirts for licensed show volunteers and tiered award systems for rewarding volunteers.  Lauren Sumwalt motioned, seconded by Toni Over. Votes unanimous. The specific wording of this motion is:

T-shirt with MDA logo on it for all volunteers at Heavenly Waters licensed show- All volunteers on Saturday and Sunday will get one shirt when they check in to be worn all day. Announcement can be made at beginning of show and after lunch that people needing help can look for our volunteers who are wearing this color shirt and  riders would be able to thank them for their services. Without our volunteers we would not have a show.

A tiered system where people who volunteer so many hours can choose a prize.

·      Bronze level- 6 work credits earned Get a grooming bag or some item around $10.00

·      Silver level- 10 work credits- Get an item around $15.00

·      Gold level-15 work credits- item worth $20.00

·      This system would not be cumulative, but for each season. Only person not eligible would                 be President.

·      These awards could be given out at banquet        

(Posted on Website 4/2/11

Classified ads / Sponsors – Lauren proposed standards for classified ads and sponsorships. Specific wording as follows:

Information for Advertising in the MDA newsletter and on the website All ads and payment must be received prior the 20th of the month for the following month’s issue. The newsletter is sent by email blitz. It is also posted on the MDA web site.

The newsletter is done entirely in black and white.

Classified ads (print, Newsline, and on the website):

There is a maximum of 40 words. Cost: Free for members, $15 for non-members.  The ad will be on the web site for 2 months and run in 2 issues of the newsletter.

Display ads (for print and the Newsline only):

The newsletter is 8.5” across and 11” down.

Full page: $40 per issue. Allow a ½” margin on all sides.

Half page: $20 per issue. The ad should be designed to run horizontally ( 7.5” across and 5” down)

Quarter page: $10 per issue. The ad should be designed vertically (3.75” across and 5”down)

There is a 20% discount for full, half or quarter page ads which will run for 12 consecutive issues

Business card: $60 for 12 issues. There is no discount on business cards

Guidelines for Ads:


Checks should be made out to MDA and mailed to Sue Van Norman (MDA Treasurer) at 25 Connelly Road Rising Sun, MD 21911.   We do not accept charge cards or PayPal.

For Classified Ads Contact: Jean Bosley at Jean.Bosley@phh.com

For Display Ads Contact: Lauren Sumwalt at marylanddressage@gmail.com

Jill Blackburn motioned, seconded by Lauren Sumwalt. Votes unanimous.

Lauren motioned amendments to pricing on classified and sponsorships / advertising for website and show programs. Seconded by Sue Van Norman

pass sponsorships policy as amended. Motioned by Lauren Sumwalt and seconded by Toni Over. Vote was unanimous.

Email Etiquette – to be decided by email vote.

Meeting Adjourned – Susans Peterson motioned, Sarah Brooks seconded the motion. Votes unanimous.


1. Email Etiquette  POSTED ON MDA WEBSITE 3/24/11

The following was put before the board via email for an e-vote:

Code of Conduct and Email Etiquette

Every organization needs good communication. Email can be a vital tool to an association whose membership is widespread and whose schedules vary.

Email can bring members together or tear them apart. It can bring news, information, query, and humor as well as devastation and destruction. Email etiquette is designed to make communication between the membership effective and efficient without malice or hurt. The guidelines for etiquette are to encourage and enlighten, not tear down or criticize. By following these guidelines, the membership will be ensured the respect entitled to each and everyone. Failure to follow these guidelines may mean sanctions from the board.

  1. Always be professional, courteous, and kind while making a point. Be mindful of the tone that your email is bringing.
  2. Never write a flaming email (flaming is a virtual term for venting emotion online or sending inflammatory emails. It is to avoid flaming emails because it tends to create more conflict and tension.)
  3. Be brief and to the point.
  4. Be correct; watch spelling, punctuation, and capitalization in the same way that you would in any other document. (Your writing says more about you than you realize.)
  5. Do not send an email you would not want forwarded, especially when referencing the organization. (What you say/send cannot be taken back. Emails are public documents despite the fact that you may send an email to someone privately.)
  6. Emails should not be used for disciplinary action, conflicts, or complaints. (This should be done formally or in person.)
  7. Consider these things before sending an email:
  1. Would I say this to the person’s face?
  2. Am I putting the receiver in an awkward position?
  3. How would I feel if I got this email?                                                        

      8.  Using emoticons and other virtual gestures may be appropriate in some cases, but not all. It is always essential to consider the type of relationship that you have with the receiver. If your relationship is more casual, using symbols is fine. If your relationship is more formal, then it is best to refrain from using emoticons.         Remember: Be professional.

Maryland Dressage Association Email Policy

Maryland Dressage Association recognizes ( due to the recent history of email conversations becoming contentious and judgmental with resulting hurt feelings, alienation and communication shut-down) the need for an email policy to establish order and discipline in its email communications.

  1. This email policy applies to the use of email for any MDA business, by any person.
  2. Email is to be used only to communicate factual information and reports of MDA activities.
  3. Email shall maintain a civil tone and focus on presentation of facts. A Request for Email Action may be initiated when an email becomes argumentative, expresses anger, sarcasm and frustration that may silence the receiver, delivers an unhelpful or contentious tone, includes any kind of name calling or derogatory references, expands the subject to include past grievances and history, expands the scope of debate to additional receivers when the matter should remain restricted to persons who are part of the original dialogue.
  4. After a reasonable presentation of facts and opinions, anyone can call for a tabling of a particular email conversation.. Continuation after a reasonable call for tabling may stimulate a Request for Email Action.
  5. This motion creates an Email Committee consisting of the President, Vice President and one other board member.
  6. .At all times at least one member must be from the executive committee.
  7. An Email action requires the agreement of at least 2 Email Moderators.
  8. The email committee shall maintain and Email log for every Request for Email Action, including its date, names of Requestor and Originator, email Receiver(s), email date and text, and any pertinent details. This mail log is to be kept current with date and details of each Email action, including names and votes of the three acting Email Moderators. The MDA Board reserves the right to require full or partial disclosure of this Email log at any time, with the understanding of confidentiality.
  9. Anyone may Request an Email Action by contacting any Email Moderator or the MDA President:
  1.     a. This request may be in writing, by hard copy or by email, and shall include the name of the Requestor, date of the request, and email details, including its date, Originator, Receiver(s), and text.
  1. The Email Committee shall process each Request as follows:
  1. This Request (and all subsequent relevant communication shall be communicated immediately to all three Email Moderators.
  2. The Email Committee shall communicate about the request as it sees fit;
  3. The Email Committee shall act depending on the Originator’s history in its email log;
  4. Any Email Action shall automatically become inactive twelve months after it is issued:
  5. The Email Committee shall take one of the following five Email Actions and so notify the MDA Board, the Requestor and the Originator.
  1. Email Actions
  1. No email action
  2. Private email Warning: If the Originator has no Private Email Warning, the originator is so notified by phone and email. Future requests that the Email Committee chooses to act upon, shall proceed with MDA Board action in the following sequence.
  3.  Board Email Warning: If the Originator has an active Private Email Warning, the Email Committee shall immediately notify MDA Board Members. Before its next Board meeting, the MDA Board shall issue a Board         Email Warning to the Originator. The MDA Board meeting minutes will indicate this, including the names of the Originator, acting Email Moderators, and date and description of email.
  4. Board Email Sanction: If the Originator has an active Board Email Warning, the Email Committee shall immediately inform the MDA Board. Before its next Board meeting, the MDA Board shall issue a Board Email Sanction to the Originator. The Board meeting minutes will include the statement that the Originator has         committed actions, in the event of MDA Board Vote for sanctions as set forth in the MDA bylaws, Section 5, Articles of Disciplinary Action, leading up to  dismissal.
  5.  Board Email Votes of Dismissal: If the Originator has an Active Board Email Sanction, the Email Committee         shall immediately notify the MDA Board. At its next meeting, the MDA Board will vote in accordance with its         bylaws, Section 6, Part B Suspension and Expulsion.
  1. Any Email Action shall stand as active for at least 30 days after which the Originator may request, and shall be granted a hearing at the next MDA Board meeting at which time a vote may be taken to deactivate disputed Email Action(s). The minutes of this meeting shall include a clear reference to the minutes at which the original Email Action was taken and that its status is now inactive. The Email Committee shall so update its Email Log.

2. Sponsorship POSTED ON WEBSITE 3/24/11

The following was put before the board via email for an e-vote:


Monetary donations
Gold Sponsor (Cost $250)

Silver Sponsor (Cost $100)

Bronze Sponsor (Cost $50)

**Sponsorships must be paid in full by 4/1 to make it into the current year Licensed Show Program.

**For the year 2011, members who become sponsors will get a 10% discount on their sponsor level to compensate for MDA not being able to get their advertisement into the licensed show program.

To Become a Sponsor, or for more information, please contact Lauren Sumwalt at MarylandDressage@gmail.com or call 443-504-5894.

3. Awards  POSTED ON WEBSITE 3/24/11

The following was put before the board via email for an e-vote:

Maryland Dressage Association Year End High Score Awards


  1. All riders must be members in good standing at time scores are earned.
  2. Members must have earned at least 2 work credits. One of which must be at a show.
  3. Horse/rider combinations may qualify and receive awards at two consecutive levels.
  4. Horse/rider combinations may not qualify and receive awards for two divisions within the same level. (IE Horse A & Rider A may not apply for Open Division A at training level and Division B at training level, but may apply at Training level Division B and First Level Division A)
  5. Scores must come from at least 3 different schooling shows or MDA approved shows under 3 different judges (min. L judges) as listed on the schooling show list on the website.
  6. The five highest scores earned by horse/rider combination in each division will be averaged for a final percentage upon which will be based the year ends. Exception is Musical Freestyle, Pas de Deux and Quadrille which would require 3 scores from 3 different judges at 3 MDA schooling shows or MDA approved shows. MDA has a tracking system in place that will track rider’s scores within divisions.
  7. Horse/Rider combination riding in Test C or Test 3 in 3 or more shows is automatically asked to apply for Division B.
  8. Riders will have fifteen days after the posting of scores and work credits to verify their accuracy. Any disputes should be sent to the Schooling Show Chairman, Lauren Comish-Sumwalt for resolution.
  9. Division B and Young Horse will use at least one score from highest test in that level.
  10. A minimum of 55% is required to earn year end awards.
  11. A horse/rider combination may not win the Championship at the same division twice.
  12. Horse/rider combination that has won Championship at a certain level may not apply for the same award in the following year, but will be eligible after one show season.
  13. Musical Freestyle, Pas de deux and Quadrille- Horse/Rider Combinations that advance to the next level be allowed to apply for the Championship even if they have won it in previous years.
  14. Riders may apply for these awards by declaring their division by November 15 to the Awards Chairperson, Mary Butler. See application for details.

15.Horse/rider combinations may apply for the following divisions:

Maryland Dressage Association Rider Achievement Medals


  1. Eligibility for the Rider Achievement Medals will be the same as for the High Score Year ends Awards
  2. The score will be computed based upon the average received in the declared division
  3. Only one application will be necessary for both awards. Applications will need to be sent Awards Chairperson, Mary Butler postmarked by November 15th.
  4. Medals will be given as follows:


April 2011

MDA meeting minutes – April 13, 2011

Members in attendance - Jackie Caldwell, Sue Van Norman, Toni Over, Jill Blackburn, Brianne Reynolds, Lauren Sumwalt, Claudia Kleinsmith

Previous meeting minutes - read by Brianne Reynolds, approved by Lauren Sumwalt, votes unanimous

Membership report : N/A

Young rider report : Brianne made plans to start forming teams for the yr team championships this summer and discussed fundraising 50/50 sale raffle tickets sales, motioned by Lauren Sumwalt, seconded by Claudia Kleinsmith, votes unanimous

Sue Van Norman motions that raffle proceeds be turned into the MDA treasurer and a check will be written and mailed to the winner. Lauren Sumwalt seconded, votes unanimous

Treasurer's report : read by Sue Van Norman, approved by Toni Over, seconded by Jill Blackburn, votes unanimous

Lauren proposed a new online volunteer form for volunteers to sign up for shows online.

Jill read her update on planning for license show.

Jackie proposed buying a new set of ring cones. Approved by Lauren Sumwalt and seconded by Claudia Kleinsmith

Lauren Sumwalt motioned to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Claudia Kleinsmith

May 11, 2011 MDA minutes

Members in attendance – Jackie Caldwell, Sue Van Norman, Kristen Vance, Claudia Kleinsmith, Susan Brooks, Susan Peterson, Toni Over

Membership report : N/A

Young rider report : N/A

Treasurer's report : read by sue van norman, approved by Susan Peterson seconded by Claudia Kleinsmith

Jackie updated and reported about the licensed show.

Claudia Kleinsmith motioned to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Kristen Vance.

June 22, 2011

MDA email vote :

  On June 22, 2011, the following was put before the board via email for an e-vote:

Jill Blackburn made a motion to schedule the licensed show on memorial day weekend for 2012 and 2013. The vote was unanimous by e-votes


September 13, 2011 MDA Minutes

Members in attendance : Jackie Caldwell, Sue Van Norman, Claudia Kleinsmith, Susan Peterson, Brianne Reynolds, Lauren Sumwalt, Toni Over

May meeting minutes read by Brianne Reynolds, approved by Claudia Kleinsmith, seconded by Lauren Sumwalt

Membership report : 159 members

Young rider report : n/a

Treasure's report : read by Sue Van norman, approved by Toni over, seconded by Lauren Sumwalt

Licensed show update: Memorial day weekend for 2012. Talk of adding intro, opportunity, breed award, and dressage equitation classes. Possibilty of advertising in Equiery.

Lauren made a motion to increase office fee to $25 to compensate the secretary and organizer. Approve by Susan Peterson, voted unanimous

Discussed possible clinicians for this winter

Banquet – possible different locations and dates. Recommend Dover gift cards and stall plaques as awards

Lauren Sumwalt motioned to adjourn the meeting. Sue Van normnan seconded the motion

MDA Email Vote September 19,2011

On September 19, 2011 the following was put before the board via email for an e-vote:

Susan Peterson made the motion to give out the Reserve and Champion ribbons at the Finals show instead of the Banquet.

Votes in favor : Brianne Reynolds, Sue Van Norman, Toni Over, Jill Blackburn, Claudia Kleinsmith

MDA Email Vote September 23, 2011

On September 23, 2011 the following was put before the board via email for an e-vote :

Brianne Reynolds made the motion to have a clinic with Becky Langworst-Barlow, to be held at Thornridge Manor on December 2nd and 3rd. She also motioned that we offer reduced fees based on a sliding scale of volunteer work credits.

Votes in favor : Claudia Kleinsmith, Lauren Sumwalt, Sue Van Norman, Toni Over

MDA Email Vote October 12, 2011

On October 12, 2011, the following was put before the board via email for an e-vote:

Lauren Sumwalt made the motion to move the award banquet from the Bowman to the Bellissimo's in Bel Air.

Votes in favor : Kristen Vance, Sue Van Norman, Brianne Reynolds, Toni Over, Claudia Kleinsmith, Susan Peterson

MDA Email Vote November 3, 2011:

Background Motion 1: Thornridge had to be rescheduled to 11/6.  The original awards deadline for those awards needing MDA scores was 11/15.  We need to give people just a little more breathing room to get their applications in.  Some of these applications are on-line.

Motion 1) Move Awards deadlines for awards that need MDA show scores to 11/21. (Jill has seconded this.)

Votes in Favor: Jill, Claudia, Toni, Susan Peterson, Susan Van Norman, Brianne Reynolds, Lauren Sumwalt

Background Motion 2: Sue Brooks was the awards chair for the Lifetime Achievement Awards.  She can't do it.  Jackie has offered to do it.  This award uses both MDA scores and licensed show scores and asks applicants to mail in copies of tests with the awards application.  I would like to make the application portion on-line just like the the MDA High Score and MDA Rider Achievement medals.  Applicants would STILL HAVE TO MAIL TESTS to Jackie, but not the application.

Motion 2) Move the Lifetime Achievement Medal to an on-line application.  Applicants must still mail copies of tests to the Award Chair.  (Jill has seconded this.)

Votes in Favor: Jill, Claudia, Toni, Susan Peterson, Susan Van Norman, Brianne Reynolds, Lauren Sumwalt

Background Motion 3: The Catilin Grant relies upon MDA scores and work credits only.  There is no clear person listed to send it to and the award application is outdated.  I think we should move it to an on-line application.

Motion 3: Move the Caitlin Ben Dror Memorial Education Grants to on-line applications.  (Jill has seconded this). Votes in Favor: Jill, Claudia, Toni, Susan Peterson, Susan Van Norman, Brianne Reynolds, Lauren Sumwalt

Meeting November 14, 2011

In Attendance: Jill Blackburn, Jackie Caldwell, Claudia Kleinsmith, Toni Over, Sue Van Norman, Sue Peterson, Lauren Sumwalt

Membership - no report

Treasurer’s report - ending balance for Sept-October is $11,306.09

Young Rider - no report

Schooling Shows - Shows are slow coming together, waiting for farm owner confirmation for dates.

Licensed Show - Judges: Kem Barbosa, Barbara Ebner. TD Nancy Lowey.  Considering offering Intro, Opportunity, and Equitation classes.  

Clinic: Becky Langwost-Barlow December 2 & 3.  Entries now open. 10 rides confirmed so far.

Annual Banquet: January 15, 1-4pm Bellissimo in Bel Air, MD.  Food shall be a buffet.  Sue Van Norman to book venue.  

Expo - MDA to do 2012 Expo.

2012 Meeting Schedule

Motion made to adjourn by Toni Over. Seconded by Lauren Sumwalt.  

MDA Email : November 12, 2011

Any current member of 2011 that has earned two work credits will get $60 off the clinic with Becky Langworst-Barlow. Anyone earning more than 2 work credits will get $10 off for each additional work credit earned. This is only for the first ride, the second ride will be full price of $120. Anyone who did not earn 2 work credits or is a nonmember will pay full price of $120.

MDA Email Vote : December 1, 2011

Sue Van Norman made the motion to set the price for tickets to the award banquet at $35 per person. A full work credit can be used for a $10 discount.

Votes were unanimous be e-vote