Meeting Minutes, 4/10

SRB minutes – April 10, 2013

David Dorfman

Ben Apple

Afton Cassel

Jennifer Chen

Amanda Mindlin

Lisa Lana

Andrew London

Emily Cusick

David Husband



Tara Norris


Open: Lisa

Lisa opens the meeting with a review.

Facilities have agreed to opening the upstairs seminar room.

We are giving naming rights to the DOS Candy Bowl and a honorary spot at the next

pub night.

We have money to one more pub night and a BBQ. The BBQ would take up the rest

of the budget. DOS agreed to do more massage chairs without our funding.



Spring BBQ – Friday, April 26

  • Vote on spending the remainder on one pub night and a BBQ. BBQ to be scheduled on the last day of class. Passed Unanimously.
  • Use rest of budget to have field day activities
  • Where to hold the BBQ. Either on the second floor or Jarvis field.
    • Jen: Discussing that RA was expensive for the LLM BBQ.
    • Lisa: Depending on how much we buy we will have money for food and alcohol. We are skeptical if RA will give us a good deal. Other option is a food truck. Each food truck is $2,500. Or RedBones or someone else could cater.
    • Have on field so that we can do field day activities
      • LLMs: Rain Day back-up: reserve Fireside Lounge
      • Vote to have spring bbq on field: unanimous
      • Number of people: assume 500
      • Decorations?
        • Beach Balls
        • Balloons from Halfway Through Harvard party?
        • Earth Day: April 22 – have something in conjunction?
          • Make event compostable?
          • Email Amanda with specific ideas


Patriot’s Day: Andrew

  • Monday, April 15
  • HLS is the only Boston law school that does not have this day off (celebrating battles of Lexington and Concord)
    • Many students come to HLS and leave HLS without a connection to MA
    • Going downtown on Patriot’s Day is a great experience and allows students to engage in a local tradition
    • Boston Marathon in the morning, Red Sox play at 11am
    • 11:30-1:30, free beer and MA food, photo booth
      • Hot dog cart, Fenway frank, beer, cookies
      • Raffle giveaway
      • Volunteers for SRB to pass out food? Meet in lounge before 11:30am (10:30 for set-up)
        • Lisa, Andrew, Valerie, Jennifer, Tara, Afton


Divest Harvard: Ben

  • Referendum to Student Body
    • Undergrads have voted 73% to divest Harvard from top 200 fossil fuel companies.
    • Take investments in fossil fuel companies out over a set period of time (i.e., 5 years). Financial cost to university: approximately 0.5% of annual earnings.
      • Estimated total: $ 30-100 million
  • Running out of time to cut back on emissions
  • Use the university as a platform to raise our voices and pressure the government to act on climate change
  • Propose another survey to act on this question. Requires majority vote to send survey, could see what results are.
  • Unbiased literature that SRB could distribute with this question?
    • Andrew: could publish a short statement by a proponent and one by an opponent.
    • Jennifer: was any material put out to undergraduates? Ben: no material put out to college, straight up-or-down vote.
    • Andrew: might be pushed by a vocal, organized minority, but will opposition be able to organize? Give the other side the opportunity to organize and formulate a response. Advocating a greener HLS is in our purview, but asking for a referendum requires a greater commitment to neutrality.
    • Emily: graduate school council may be better situated to run this referendum.
      • Ben: individual graduate schools’ student governments are more organized and better able to administer the referendum.
      • Next steps:
        • Ben will track down the language of the undergrad referendum
        • Ben and Emily will put together Pro-Con paragraphs explaining the initiative
        • Andrew: SRB constitution requires petition supporting referendum
          • Ben: can administer by calling a “survey” instead of “referendum” to avoid §3(c) requirements of 150 signatures on a petition
          • David Husband: if student body petitions with signatures, referendum as administered will be exactly as petitioned (no explanatory language or Pro-Con paragraphs)
          • Ben: easier to get 150 signatures and do a simple up-or-down vote
          • Tara: Pro-Con explanatory language will be a more accurate reflection of the student body’s opinions
            • Lisa: SRB Constitution does not prevent providing additional information with the referendum
            • Email to student body: Pro-Con paragraphs, link to survey as it appears on the petition.
            • Andrew: stronger to provide pro-con language before getting student vote, and still likely to get overwhelming approval.
            • Ben: if we can get signatures this week, hold the vote April 22?
              • Lisa: will hold emergency SRB vote next week re: referendum
              • Disapproval of Ben soliciting signatures given his position? No disapproval from members.



Lisa: Open Letter to Dean Minow re: female faculty (Andrew, Lisa, and Ben have been working on this)

  • One question in student survey was about advocacy issues to the administration; issue of female faculty was marked a lot
  • Shatter the Ceiling initiative/ Wall Street Journal article over the weekend accusing HLS of letting in substandard female applicants
    • Don’t want SRB letter to seem responsive to negative press
    • Valerie: Crimson reporter has contacted her re: women leaders in student orgs and opportunities for leadership at HLS
      • Related to Shatter: don’t want to hamper or push for it.
      • Andrew: elected as an individual, can make comments on the issue under your own name
      • Lisa: do not use SRB name or data, but can comment about how we have surveyed this information and are looking at the results.
      • Lisa: read the letter [see below]
        • David Husband: timing concerns. It will be seen as an endorsement as Shatter’s agenda (an affinity group’s particular goal). Will be linked by WSJ writer.
        • Lisa: want this to be a collaborative effort between groups, may take a couple of weeks to be approved. (WLA, racial and ethnic groups).
        • David Husband: expand the message to include intellectual diversity?
        • Lisa: all in favor of a letter to the administration at all right now?
          • David Dorfman: not sure if he opposes, but timing is bad: either all the force is masked by Shatter, or you are against it. Actually, supports the letter, but thinks that timing is bad.
          • Lisa: timing might be good at the end of the year to get momentum for fall.
          • David Husband: including intellectual diversity will help distinguish us from WLA/Shatter.
          • Valerie: timing is probably fine because by the time we get signatures (two weeks?) and language changes the WSJ article will have blown over.
          • Lisa: prefer to wait until the fall?
            • David Dorfman, Emily Cusick, Ben Apple, David Husband think waiting is better
            • Andrew/Ben: effects will not be immediate
              • Lisa: signaling ready to have a conversation, starting a dialogue about this issue generally
              • Lisa: survey support
                • Hiring women/minority faculty got highest level of support
                • More faculty with practice experience second level
                • More intellectual diversity came in third.
                • Afton: more of a voice in hiring decisions?
                  • Amanda: want more women on faculty specifically.
                  • Most vocal have been women and minority, but intellectual diversity conference was last week; subject of national attention.
                  • Lisa: propose including intellectual diversity, or making “diversity” generally.
                    • Afton: gender and minority diversity add intellectual diversity
                    • David Husband: conservative white men and women are underrepresented, as are minorities
                    • Student voice on hiring?
                    • David Dorfman: diversity = awesome. Discussion going to be consumed by publicity.
                    • Lisa: table issue and include specific survey results in new language and include
                    • Lisa: table until fall and include specific language incorporating survey results in the letter
                      • Amanda, Lisa, Andrew, Emily, David Husband, Ben Apple, David Dorfman, Jennifer support waiting until the fall.
                      • Valerie, Afton, Charlotte, Tara support pushing letter now
                      • Charlotte: Trapenhagen Distinguished Fellows all men this year; perhaps we can address this issue.


Section Reunions: Jennifer Chen

  • 2L Section 5 has not sought budget, but all others have.


Student Funding Board: Valerie

  • Most organizations got funding cuts
    • Less funding because some organizations became SPOs and took their budgets with them, so there was less money available for student organizations overall.
    • SRB does not handle student funding; direct complaints to SFB or DOS
    • Difficult to compare organizations in the goal of achieving transparency in funding
      • Will submit a Constitutional amendment in the fall
      • Will have conversations with various student organizations regarding how to make the process better and more open.


Closing – Lisa

  • Last meeting
  • We are well on our way to becoming a fully legitimate organization.
  • Request for suggestions and ideas for the board for next year.


Elections – Lisa

  • There will be another election for unfilled positions in the fall
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