Transplant Athlete
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
  UMCA Election Committee

After receiving the charter for the committee and participating in the first conference call, I was asked to sign a waiver not to sue attached to a Code of Conduct. I'm all for a Code of Conduct; however, it is only a tool to keep people from disagreeing with John Hughes. He is the one judging violations and implementing/enforcing penalties for violations. I hope you can see that he can essentially set a high standard for those he disagrees with while keeping the bar low for his own conduct and those of his cronies.

Then there's the Agreement Not To Sue...which essentially grants John Hughes and the Board free reign to do what they want without fear of litigation. Not that I would resort to litigation, but the threat of litigation is the only thing we have to keep them honest, when the elections and control of the Board are in the hands of John Hughes. John Hughes requires all new and renewing members to sign this form, now committee members and Board candidates must sign it. How many times must we sign this Damn thing? Ironically, John Marino is afraid John Hughes will sue him...How rich would that be, the guy who wants everyone to give him a free pass lawsuit wise, suing a member?

It's clear that John Hughes has usurped the power of the Board. I finally saw the letter that he created in Lee Mitchell's name. It was sent to me by someone who had requested that the UMCA not release their information, who according to the rules of the UMCA should not have gotten it. Proving once and for all that John Hughes gave out a different list (possibly electronic) to his candidates than the one that was sent to others who requested it. One last point about the mailing lists from the election scandal of '06. When he finally sent the paper copy to Mavis, the addresses were truncated. Is that insult to injury or what? Send the list out a week before the vote deadline, in paper form, with the addresses missing information.

    Here is what I'm laying at the feet of the Managing Director and his handpicked Board:
  • RAAM Purchase in violation of Constitution and bylaws. Interestingly, this issue has been pushed aside due to the 2006 election debacle.
  • Late election in violation of the rules
  • Manipulating the election through unethical tactics including editing candidate statements, the Lee Mitchell letter, and delaying and truncating the mailing list to hinder opposing mailings.
  • Silencing opposition by controlling, limiting, or censoring all avenues of communication related to the UMCA. While not against the rules, this is not the conduct I would expect of a healthy organization.
  • Allegedly, somewhere during all this controversy, the new handpicked board voted a $5000 bump in salary for the Managing Director. While not illegal, it is quite fishy.
  • Finally, I personally feel that the Managing director has failed to implement some important initiatives to grow the organization. For example, I have been nagging him for over a year to move membership renewals online instead of the paper based system currently in use. A competent manager would have had this implemented in a week, maybe a month depending on the capabilities of the webmaster. He keeps telling me it's coming. HAH, It's not even breathing hard!

So, since I wouldn't sign the waiver not to sue, I am off the committee and I'm in a holding pattern. John Marino and Michael Shermer (two of the founders of our sport and the UMCA) have weighed in on the subject and I'm going to see what they can achieve before I throw in the towel on the UMCA. I'm guessing if we don't see some reform, then I will most likely quit. I don't want my money supporting John Hughes.


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I've gone through kidney failure twice. The first time in 2000, my mother donated a kidney; and again in 2008, I'm on dialysis waiting for a breakthrough in immuno-suppression medicines before seeking a new kidney.

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