Homer Alaska - Letters

Story last updated at 8:42 PM on Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Was dismissal a fair one?

Since the board of directors of the Homer Senior Citizens Inc. dismissed executive director Sue Samet, members of the Homer Senior Center have heard nothing that may have prompted the action. We only learned of the apparent emotional decision from our local papers on March 31. Ms. Samet, according to the papers, had nearly total support of the staff and management of the facilities of the center.

For the good of the senior center, the membership should have the opportunity to vote on this dismissal at the annual meeting, May 19. I ask that the following motion be put on the agenda for consideration and a ballot vote: "I move that the members of the Homer Senior Center debate and decide by a ballot vote to override the board of directors' dismissal action and that Sue Samet be reinstated as the executive director."

My wife Helen and I are lifetime members and we believe this center is one of the best in the country. We utilize our facilities nearly five days a week at noon and take part in other activities, including bridge, twice a week. At 89, I might even have to check into our assisted living sometime.

This is one of the biggest businesses in town. I have had considerable experience in serving on boards in several corporations as a member, chairman of the board and chief executive officer and appreciate the board's service. Board members have the responsibility to be fair to the members and staff in all ways. They are only here to serve the people better who are paying for the services the center offers.

With patience and better communications between the executive director and the board of directors, we should be able to mediate any problems, with fairness, arising when a newly hired director needs help in direction.

The board of directors may have the right to fire the executive director without notice. My question is: Do they believe it was a fair decision? Each of the board members should give this serious thought. Fairness in life is one of the most essential characteristics in running our personal lives and running any business, including the Homer Senior Center.

I just hope this dismissal was not hatched up for individual personal reasons and that the open meetings laws were followed.

I would encourage any and all members to attend the annual meeting to receive more information.

George Meeker