Category Archives: Congress 2013

LifeRing Board of Directors Election Results

election results

The full breakdown of votes and results can now be seen below

The numbers have been counted and re-counted and the final results are in on the 2013 election for Board of Directors. Four of the nine board seats were up this year — three are up every year and one seat was vacant and need re-filling. There were five candidates for the four seats. The winners were incumbents Tim Reith and Joe Mott, who were re-elected, and Mahaka Kephart, who will replace Kathleen Gargan who chose not to run for reelection, and Jeff Koch, who will fill the remaining two years in the seat vacated by Troy Spears. Bob Omohundro ran a spirited campaign but finished last.

The election was the first under a bylaw change that requires voting for board members and bylaw changes by elected delegates from each LifeRing meeting by absentee ballot. In the past, those decisions were made at the Annual LifeRing Congress by just those delegates who attended. The election campaign was fairly smooth with much learned that will be applied next year.

An amendment to the LifeRing bylaws — very much a non-controversial “house-keeping” change to increase the quorum for board meetings from 4 to 5 — passed easily.

A break-down of results will be posted very soon after some final tweaking. In order to make the voting process simpler, we used ‘ranked choice voting’ which requires a somewhat complex spreadsheet of results. It will be posted on the website as soon as it’s available.


 The raw voting data in a spreadsheet format is posted here. (Thanks to Tim R.)

A summary report of this raw data is posted here  (Thanks to Tim R.)


LifeRing’s 2013 Annual Meeting: One for the History Books

With members attending from far and near, the 2013 LifeRing Annual Meeting took place in Denver last weekend, May 31 to June 2. The weather cooperated with mostly clear skies and warm sunshine. Denver was bustling with downtown outdoor events, while our members joined together to strengthen the organization and learn more about addiction, recovery and our role in dealing with them.

I wrote a personal and light overview of the weekend which can be read by clicking here.

A great stride towards real democracy within LifeRing was made at this year’s LifeRing Congress, which adopted a bylaw amendment creating a system for absentee voting by delegates who are chosen by their meetings but can’t make the trip to the Annual Meeting. That provision was passed unanimously as the last bylaw change to be made without absentee voting. Another bylaw amendment was then passed along to be voted on by the membership, along with voting on who will fill four board of director seats. The amendment to be voted on by absentee ballots is a housekeeping change to increase the required quorum. for a board meeting from 4 to 5.

four board seats will be filled by the voters choosing between five candidates. You can read about the election and view statements from each of the candidates at our Election Central area of the website. Ballots have already been sent out to the delegates; they need to be returned by early July. Each candidate will be ranked by the voters and an instant runoff vote counting system will be employed to select the winners. The three most popular candidates will win three year terms of office and the next highest candidate will serve for two years, filling a seat left vacant by a resignation.

I’ll have more about the weekend events later.

–Craig Whalley

LifeRing’s Annual Meeting Coming to Denver Soon

The 2013 LifeRing Annual Meeting will take place next Friday, Saturday and Sunday, May 31, June 1 and 2, in Denver, CO. Friday will primarily be devoted to talk of strengthening the organization, with presentations by LifeRing’s Executive Director Robert Stump on “organic growth,” a lunch session led my Secretary Tim Reith and Board candidate Mahala Kephart on strategic planning, and a convenor training workshop led by Board member Dru Boyd. Saturday features a talk by noted author Gabor Mate, co-sponsored by LifeRing and the Love and Trauma Center of Denver. There will also be presentations by Denver author Candice Shelby (‘Addiction: Beyond Choice or Disease’), and a panel discussion including representatives of LifeRing, SMART Recovery and Women For Sobriety.

Saturday evening will be the annual Banquet, and Sunday morning brings the LifeRing Congress, which is the ultimate governing body of LifeRing. At that meeting, bylaw amendments will be considered, plus suggested “directives” to the Board (rather like voter initiatives in State elections). New Board members will be nominated at the Congress but, assuming it passes, a bylaw change to allow absentee voting will push the elections for the Board to the Congress delegates voting by mail (mostly email), including those not in Denver.

As always at these annual gatherings, much of the benefit is the pleasure derived from meeting with people from all over who share the LifeRing recovery experience.

New Developments in the LifeRing Election Contest

There are now four seats open on the LifeRing Board of Directors. Troy Spears, a Modesto, CA, member. has announced his decision to step down from the BOD before the end of his term. This means that the current five candidates will be vying for four seats in the election that begins at the LifeRing Congress on June 2 in Denver. The fourth place finisher will serve out the rest of Troy’s term while the top three take the three full-term spots. Others may, of course, enter the race. We strongly urge anyone still considering running to let the Service Center know that they’re interested by May 15 — an email to will suffice nicely and the office will respond with a simple form to fill out giving very basic information so that we know how to contact you.

We have a page on this website for use by candidates to make clear why they’re running and for interested members to make comments or ask questions. Four candidates are using the pages, which can be accessed at Those four are Mahala Kephart, Jeff Koch, Joe Mott and Tim Reith. The other announced candidate, Bob Omohundro, has opted not to have his own page at this time but has been posting comments on the pages of the other candidates.

We’re having some technical problems with the comment system, so please bear with us — if your comment disappears into the ether, send a copy to and he’ll be sure it gets posted ASAP


LifeRing Candidates, Members Invited to Share Views

election centralA page on this website has been created for candidates and members to give their view on the upcoming election for three Board Of Director seats. It is hoped that each candidate will submit a comment on that page giving what they consider their qualifications and relevant experience, or anything else they consider appropriate. And all members are invited to give their views and preferences. It is hoped that a degree of civility will be maintained.

So far, there are five announced candidates for the three open positions. Unofficially (the list of candidates could change before it is firmly set), the candidates are, in alphabetical order: Mahala K., Jeff K., Joe M., Bob O., and Tim R. Board members usually use their full names in public, but candidates are not required to do so. If candidates would like a snapshot to accompany their initial introduction, that can be arranged (I think).

So all are urged to check LifeRing Election Central to read about the candidates