Minutes of the 2010 Annual General Meeting

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Johnson Society of Australia Inc.
Annual General Meeting
Saturday 2 October 2010

Chairman: Barrie Sheppard, President
In attendance:  19 members

  1. Apologies: Paul Tankard, Tanya Tankard, Kate Holden, Anne Hoey, John Byrne.
  2. Minutes of the 2009 AGM were distributed.
  3. Moved Nick Hudson, Seconded Bryan Reid, that the Minutes as circulated be confirmed as a true record of the 2009 Annual General Meeting, Carried

  4. President’s Report (Barrie Sheppard):
  5. The President welcomed nine guests who were present to hear the 2010 David Fleeman Memorial Lecture by John Wiltshire, immediately following the AGM.

    Publications: Four newsletters were published during the year, prepared by Bryan Reid and Don Dunlop, who were thanked for their efforts. Academic papers Volume 12, recently published, were available for collection by members at the meeting. The Dr Johnson’s House Trust, London, as part of the Johnson tercentenary celebrations had published a booklet of Johnsonian Quizzes prepared by Bryan Reid. This booklet was now in world-wide circulation.

    Committee: The JSA Committee had met four times during the year, to analyse the most recent JSA event and plan the next one.

    Events: The 2009 Fleeman Memorial Lecture was delivered by Dr Barry Jones, to a larger than usual audience, reflecting his drawing power.

    The annual Christmas Party was a great success, with poetry and other readings as well as the usual dialogue between “Baz” and “Bry” and carol singing around the piano. However, attendance was disappointing so in 2010 the party will be held at lunchtime instead of in the evening in the hope of attracting more members and guests.

    In May 2010 a new event was introduced – a visit to the National Gallery of Victoria where a Gallery Guide spoke in front of portraits by Reynolds and Gainsborough. The Gallery visit will be held annually, preferably earlier in the year. In 2011 the subject will be the Josiah Wedgewood Portland vase.

    The Annual Seminar on Saturday 24 July was well attended. The new format introduced in 2009 was repeated – there were only three academic papers, separated by short addresses including Kate Burridge’s entertaining take on some very odd Johnsonian words, readings by Bronwen Hickman and Barrie Sheppard, and Barbara Niven’s introduction to music to be played at lunchtime. These arrangements met with enthusiastic approval and the format will be repeated next year.

    A noteworthy event was an interview with Bryan Reid on the Lingua Franca program broadcast by ABC Radio National. Bryan reported a marked increase in the number of hits on the JSA web site following this program.

    The Jane Austen Society: informal connections between this Society and the JSA were pursued. Committee member Bronwen Hickman was thanked for acting as liaison person.

    Barbara Niven was exploring possibilities for co-operation between the JSA and other literary societies in order to sustain, and if possible, increase, membership of all of them and she addressed the meeting on progress so far. She and Barrie Sheppard will attend a British Consulate reception in Sydney (at their own expense) on Friday 8 October to exchange ideas with New South Wales literary societies representatives.

    The President thanked all Committee members for their efforts during the year.

    Moved Denis Le Neuf, Seconded Bronwen Hickman, that the President’s Report be received. Carried

  6. Treasurer’s Report (Barrie Sheppard):  The Financial Statement for the year 1 July 2009 – 30 June 2010 was tabled. It showed an opening balance of $4,529.50, receipts totalling $3,024.98, expenditure totalling $3,159.08 and a closing balance of $4,395.40. The Annual Statement was tabled, as required under Section 30 (3B) (b) of the Act.
  7. The Treasurer commented that, although the Society’s finances were healthy, there was a perennial difficulty in getting members to renew their subscriptions on time. To remind members when their fees are overdue, an orange dot will be placed in individual newsletters as a first warning, and a red dot as a second warning after which lapsed members may be removed from the membership list.

    Moved Barbara Niven, seconded Denis Le Neuf: that the Treasurer’s Report be received. Carried

  8. Setting of annual subscriptions: Moved Denis le Neuf, seconded John Wiltshire, that students as well as pensioners be eligible for concession rates. Carried.
  9. Election of Committee: the number of nominations received being equal to the number of vacancies to be filled, the following were deemed to be elected:
    1. President: Barrie Sheppard
    2. Vice-President: John Wiltshire
    3. Treasurer: Barrie Sheppard
    4. Secretary: Barbara Niven
    5. Committee: Bryan Reid, Bronwen Hickman
  10. Noted: that Denis Le Neuf, Paul Tankard and Geoff Brand have been co-opted to the Committee.

  11. There being no further business, the meeting closed at 3.05 pm