President’s Message re: Upcoming BHCA Election

As many of our members know, there has been a very active campaign over the past couple of months to oppose the proposed by-laws amendments and to support a number of petition candidates to run against the candidates put forth by this year’s Nominating Committee. Sadly, this campaign has been marked by a level of divisiveness and anger that I have not seen in the club since I joined in 1998.

In light of the phone calls, social media posts and relentless emails to both individual Board members and the Board as a whole, this week the Board revisited two of its decisions related to the upcoming election.

The first, which the Board upheld again, is to move forward with the membership voting on the bylaws, which a committee has labored over for the past six months. You will find that you can vote on multiple elements of the bylaws revisions – from those that are literally housekeeping changes, to some that are more substantive. An explanation of these changes is on the BHCA website under the News tab.

The second, which the Board voted to reverse, was our decision to not list Jacquelyn Fogel as a petition candidate for Treasurer because her petition was in conflict with the bylaws. She will be listed as a petition candidate for Treasurer. We did not reverse this decision because we believe it was incorrect. We made this decision for two reasons.

  • First, Jacquelyn has stated her intent to bring a lawsuit against the BHCA Board and against the Recording Secretary specifically in order to seek "injunctive relief to stop this election until my legal rights can be determined, and damages if it is determined that my rights were violated."If Jacquelyn goes forward with a lawsuit, not only does it threaten significant cost to the club, but it will also create a chaotic situation in reference to the Board election, delaying the election for some unknown period of time while the legal system drags on. An injunction is not a court opinion, just a pause. The uncertainty during this pause would hang over the Board and its work, and we believe would allow for continued escalation of conflict within the club. The Board wants to get back to its actual work of managing the club – admitting members, approving shows and trials, and working with committees on their tasks.
  • Second, and probably in my view even more important, it is not in the best interests of the club to continue to have the level of divisiveness, animosity and conflict that we are currently experiencing. I am sure I am not alone in having heard from members who are confused, distressed, and feel that the current atmosphere is unhealthy for BHCA and its members. We need to move on from this strife and be able to reconnect as people who love our hounds and who want to enjoy friendships built over many years in the company of our hounds and in their activities.

I am looking forward to seeing fellow BHCA members at the National Specialty, and I hope that coming together to enjoy our dogs will help all of us move past this difficult period.

Sylvie McGee
President, BHCA