June 2016

Minutes for the Ordinary and Annual Meeting of June 16, 2016

Board Members

Sylvia Ortega (Co-Pres), Martha Corneck (Co-Pres), John Meehan (Co-Treasurer), Lorraine Kennedy (Co Officials Coordinator), Tracy Keblish (Co Officials Coordinator), Andy McNab (Ex Officio), Adrienne Williams (Escrow Manager), and Ellen Johnston (Head Coach).

Other Attendees: Kristin Finegan, John Wang, Kerrie Steele Rubin, Ngassam Ngnoumen, Hannah Arman, Sean Paul Stolarski, Scott Van Kuilenburg, Martha Torres, Kathleen Davis, and Robert Kennedy.

Approval of Minutes

A motion was made to approve the minutes dated May 5th 2016 by Lorraine Kennedy and seconded by Martha Corneck.

RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting dated May 5th, 2016 as presented to the Committee were approved.

Bylaw Changes

A motion was made by Sylvia Ortega to update the Bylaws to include a the positions of Student Athletics. This motion was seconded by Lorraine Kennedy and carried it was.

RESOLVED that the update to the Bylaws to include Student Athletes to the Board as presented to the Committee was approved.

Nominating Committee

Kristin Finegan, as a member of the Nominating Committee, presented the slate of new members for the Parents Club for the period of 2016-2017. It is as follows:

Co-President                                      Sylvia Ortega

Co-Treasurer                                     John Belpedio

Co-Treasurer                                     Kerrie Steele Rubin

Ex Officio                                            Lorraine Kennedy

Meet Coordinator                              Huong Belpedio

USA Swimming Coord.                     Adrienne Williams

Senior Parent Rep                             Eileen Brown

Senior Parent Rep                             Tricia Begg

AG Team Parent Rep                         Chrissy Gussen

Ag Team Parent Rep                         Berkeley Murray

8/U Team Parent Rep                      Lori Blessey

8/U Team Parent Rep                      Ngassam Ngnoumen

Athlete Rep                                         Sean Paul Stolarski

Athlete Rep                                         Hannah Arman

Officials Co-Chair                              John Wang


Committee Chairs were also reviewed. A potential chair was found for the Citrus Sale. Sylvia Ortega made a motion to approve the Slate for the new members of the Board for 2016/2017, second by Andy McNab, carried it was.

Nominating Committee (continued)

RESOLVED that the Slate for new members of the Board for 2016/2017 as presented to the Committee were approved.

Coaches Report

Head Coach Ellen Johnston presented her monthly and annual report, which included the following topics: the review of the 9/under meet was success and the swimmers did well. Ellen and Matthew Torres will be attending the Para-Olympic Trials and the team is preparing a send off event for Matthew. The team is excited to learn that Bryce Keblish, a former Water Rat, will be attending the Olympic Trials in Omaha and we wish him success.   The Long Course Championships are coming up and the Water Rats are ready. The Team Picnic has been rescheduled to a date right before school begins in August as many kids are out of town and the RSVP activity is low. This will be the inaugural Town Meet for the team for all residents and swimmers in Westport and Weston. Ellen put the word out at the various local summer clubs and the coaches are all working to make it a success. Goody bags are planned for the kids. The Registration process will begin in late July/early August for returning swimmers so the coaches will know the numbers for the upcoming tryouts.   The Tryouts will be 2 afternoons in late August before the Y shut down week. There have been a lot of calls of interest.

Meet Manager’s Report

The Meet Manager, Adrienne Johnston, was unavailable but Sylvia Ortega read her report. The June 9/under meet was very successful. This was the last home meet of the year.

Officials Report

The WRAT 2015-2016 has been very successful. Our officials ran the following meets:

  • 2015 8 & Under Meet (October)
  • 2015 Maura Marden Freestyle Frenzy (November)
  • 2016 Pentathlon (January)
  • 2016 Senior Long Course Invitational (May)
  • 2016 9/Under Short Course Meet (June)

We have a roster of talented officials ~ many who are new to our team and new to officiating. WRAT officials can always be counted on to volunteer at home and away meets. Our officials provide a professional and necessary service to assure that all swimmers have the best possible experience at a swim meet.

Thank you to all of the WRAT officials that assisted over the year to make our team the best in the State! Ok, I’m a little biased … 😉 Welcome to those that have recently joined our team and congratulations to those that are new to officiating.

For next year, Tracy Keblish (Alec and Bryce’s Mom) and John Wang (Nathan’s Dad) will be our Official Co-Chairs.

Officials Roster

Mike Arman               Starter                                                                              Graham Corneck        Stroke & Turn

Martha Corneck          Starter Trainee & AO Trainee                                       Nick Gikas                 Stroke & Turn Trainee

Tracy Keblish              Stroke & Turn                                                                 Lorraine Kennedy       Meet Referee

Michelle Koubeck        Stroke and Turn                                                             Heather Lee               Stroke & Turn

John Lovro                 Starter                                                                                Mark McDermott         Stroke & Turn

Jeffrey Sargent           Starter, Admin Official                                                     David McKinnis           Starter

Margaret Sargent        Meet Referee                                                                 Paige Schwartz           Stroke and Turn

John Stretton             Stroke & Turn                                                                   Martha Torres             Stroke & Turn

John Wang                 Stroke and Turn                                                                 Stuart Whiteside         Admin Official

Barbara Wiederecht    Meet Referee                                                                 Adrienne Williams       Admin Official

Chris Woods               Starter


Pet WRAT Report

A basic recap of the 64 families that still have hours left to fulfill:

1 family –         2.5 hours

10 families –      5 hours

11 families –     10 hours

1 family –          12.5 hours

18 families         15 hours

3 families          20 hours

Candace Twiss also mentioned in her report that we need to find more ways to assist newer families need to have a better understanding of volunteering to time as well as navigating Team Unify to find their obligation hours, hours worked, balances etc.                   

USA Swimming Manager’s Report

Adrienne Williams discussed the accounts stating that a few have debit balances but that will correct itself once credit cards are billed during the beginning of the month process. Mrs. Williams stated there are no escrow account issues and all Meets have been billed.

Treasurer’s Report

I begin my remarks by indicating that the Parents’ Club is very close to its budget targets. We expect to end year with a slight shortfall, attributed to sending our coaches to the World ASCA conference, equipment purchases, robust social activities and change in venue for the Recognition Night. Our team is near capacity in head count which accounts for our better than expected Wrat Income and our home swim meets were very successful despite the fact that we had one less meet this year and did not continue with the citrus sale. We are now in process of wrapping up the fiscal year with a strong savings and bright future ahead.

Co-President’s Report

I would like to confirm that the Water Rat Parents’ Club remains a strong organization of dedicated volunteers and this past year was no exception. We are a non- profit organization with annual revenues and expenses of over $100,000. After hearing the financial report, you can see that we are well managed and fiscally sound.

The purpose of the Club is to support the Water Rat Swim Team. We do that in many ways. We raise funds to be used for the benefit of the program and its participants. We assist the coaches by managing meets and providing other administrative aid. We also organize and conduct social functions for the swimmers on the team. The Club is able to provide this support by maintaining and managing an annual budget.

The strength of our organization lies in our volunteer base. Our effectiveness over the past year resulted from a willingness of our many volunteers to pool their collective knowledge, skills, and abilities and work together to achieve a common vision, which is a world-class competitive swim team. Our future success will depend on us continuing to nurture that volunteer pool as some new parents join.

We have a tremendous impact on the team. Without the volunteers from the Parents’ club the team cannot run meets nor can the swimmers socialize at organized events off the pool deck like such as at Recognition Night, Turkey Burn, pasta parties, pizza parties etc. By continuing our fiscal oversight of the parents’ funds, the Parents’ club is able to provide support to the swimmers on and off the deck and to assist the coaching staff so that they may provide the premier coaching that has been the team’s trademark. It is because of parents working with the coaches that our children learn the value of giving back as this year’s fundraiser Crazy Big Swim illustrates and the Make A Difference Day at Linxweiller House

To close, we wish to note that this is has been a great year for the entire team with many new team records set at all swim levels. We look forward to continued success in our upcoming swim season and future seasons. We encourage all parents to become involved and help us provide our kids with a great swimming experience, and we thank all of you who have been actively engaged this year.

Syliva Ortega presented the results of the survey. The results were very positive and gave the Board good feedback on some areas to place more emphasis on in the planning for next year. The response was overwhelming, 109 families responded out of 155.

Martha Corneck moved to adjourn meeting, and John Meehan seconded, all voted in favor. The next meeting is slated July 7th, 2016.

Respectfully submitted

Martha Corneck/ Co-President /Water Rats Parents’ Club