Bob Israel’s Farewell
Hello, residents! On April 7, 2020, the HOA elected a new Board, and Bob Israel stepped down. I think Bob’s own words capture quite nicely his service. I will say Bob is one of those people who clearly was motivated by the best interest of the HOA and, although on many occasions we have gone head to head with our own opinions, Bob never acted in a political or self-serving way, something that deserves everyone’s respect. Thank you, Bob, but we will still need and use your advice as we finish a few very important issues on which you are clearly experienced. Below is Bob’s message to a very grateful HOA.
Farewell, But Not Goodbye
In normal times, in what now seems like a galaxy long, long, ago, and far, far, away, a Board member completing a two-year term of office and not seeking re-election would speak to the homeowners in attendance. Those not in attendance would view the meeting on video on the official website.
These are not normal times, however, and the March open meeting was cancelled due to COVID-19. I have therefore asked that my intended remarks on completion of my two-year term as a Director be posted on the official site for all, who may have an interest, to read.
So, for a few minutes, let’s pretend that these are again normal times. I believe that to be a useful exercise because we will get through this.
Many of you have asked me why I chose not to run for re-election. The answer is simple: on April 7 of this year, I will have completed a little in excess of 22 years and 4 months of continuous HOA Board service, in one capacity or another, between my HOA in Washington State and here in California. And though, in my still youthful 75th year for another two months, I need and feel I deserve a break.
When as a snowbird I decided to run, or more properly, when I was encouraged by many homeowners to run and serve, I did. It was not out of any particular personal desire or need, but out of concern for, and some dissatisfaction with, the way some things had been done, as well as concern for my investment. I knew then, and I confirm now, that it is always easier to criticize from the outside; and the view from the inside is always clearer, not easier, but clearer and harder. So, I ran with the thought that my background and experience might be of some assistance.
I am happy to report that, by and large, my concerns are no longer manifest. I am convinced that our community is on a solid financial footing and well run, more transparent, and a kinder, gentle place which we seniors deserve and are most certainly entitled to. The state of our community is strong. All is not perfect, but nothing ever is. To the extent my efforts have contributed to where we are today, I honestly take some satisfaction. I am also convinced that our community is blessed with many outstanding, capable, and experienced homeowners who will continue to step forward for a few years of service, and bring their diverse views, experience, and talents to benefit us all.
Regarding Board service, most people would expect me to say that it has been a pleasure serving you. But honestly, I must say that despite there being some pleasure, mostly it has been work – but it has been work worth doing, and work which must be done to allow our community to function. It is also work that our governing documents require be done by unpaid volunteer homeowners, elected by you, who in turn select other unpaid volunteer homeowners who staff the many necessary – no, not just necessary, but essential advisory committees. Without the efforts of your elected Board members and the efforts of the many advisory committee members, successfully running your “city” would be a far more expensive proposition than it is. And our HOA monthly assessment would be much, much higher.
To my fellow Board members, who have additional time to serve out their terms, and two of whom have decided to run again, I commend them for this. I will just say it has been a trip, and a working pleasure—most of the time. We have disagreed from time to time, but, most often, listened fairly to each other in coming to necessary decisions.
I leave you with the following thoughts which guided me, and to which I know you subscribe: in your continuing time of community service, continue to listen not only to each other. Strive to remember that each homeowner pays the same HOA assessment and has a similar, though not precisely equal, investment in this community and is entitled to be listened to and respected, even though their views and ideas may be different. And, perhaps most important, try to never lose sight of the fact that being a Board member is not so much about power as it is about service. No matter how “off the wall” some homeowners’ views and opinions might first appear, they might very well turn out to be right. So, keep up the good work, or I just might be back! Seriously, though, I must say that all members of the Board I have been privileged to work with have been extremely hardworking and dedicated to the HOA. I have no doubt that will continue.
To Mr. Johnny Goodrum, I commend you for stepping forward to serve and wish you well. You certainly are arriving during interesting times.
To the rest of my fellow homeowners in this exceptional community, I will leave you with this thought: Life is a “limited time offer”. With that in mind, be kind to yourselves; be close to your loved ones; and be fair, decent, and hospitable to your neighbors and fellow homeowners, including those who devote their time and energies in service to this community. Striving for understanding and willingness to compromise are a far better and more productive investment of the precious resource of our time than are criticism and rancor. As we, each of us, expend that resource, it is not my original idea but nevertheless a good one: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
With those comments, which I thank you for taking the time to read and consider, I end by saying that I am leaving the board but not the community. And in the words of the old Science Fiction TV show: “I now return you to your regular programming.”
Of course, right now, nothing is regular, and it seems we are indeed living an episode of The Outer Limits.
Be safe and stay well.
April 7, 2020