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OPA Board elects Renaud new pres.

(Aug. 20, 2015) The Ocean Pines Association Board of Directors shook things up on Monday, electing sophomore director Pat Renaud as president by a 4-3 vote, while selecting freshman director Cheryl Jacobs as vice president.
Jacobs came to the meeting early with a cake in hand for Director Bill Cordwell, who turned 60 on Monday.
More than 40 minutes after the start of the meeting and following accusations that a clandestine meeting had been set up to preselect several officers, the nomination process officially began. Former President Dave Stevens nominated Jack Collins for the presidency, while Tom Terry, who served as president before Stevens, nominated Renaud.
“I feel the tension in this room, and I think that that is not in the best interest of this community and this board in general,” Collins said in a brief statement. “If I’m elected I would like to work toward removing the tension in this room and see if we can all come together in a much more collegial type of relationship.
“I think each and every one of us have to think about taking the high road on this one,” Collins added.
Renaud agreed with Collins’ call for, “a collegial atmosphere.”
“As you may recall, I was called the ‘swing vote’ last year, and I was called a turncoat. I was called a lot of different things. ‘Weak sister is another one,’” he said. “But what I feel that I have done or that I’ve tried to do is to try to represent what I believe is the best interest of the people.”
During his time with the Maryland Healthcare Coalition, Renaud said, he brought “doctors, hospitals, Blue Cross/Blue Shield and employers together to try to solve the problems of medical care cost.
“I don’t have all answers … but I do have the ability to bring people together,” he said.
Following Renaud’s selection, the new president nominated Terry for vice president, while Tom Herrick, the other newcomer on the board, nominated Jacobs.
Jack Collins seconded the motion and Terry said he was torn over the office because he was thinking about nominating Jacobs himself.
“This is my last year on the board,” he said. “I’ve got one year left. I want to make sure this board is in a position to move forward.
“In my view we’re electing a group of people now who can make sure we’re solidly in place and ready to go for the next few years, and not just one short, 365-day period,” he continued. “It’s clear this community voted overwhelming for people who want to be independent … I appreciate Pat wanting me to sit in the VP slot … [but] I’ll take whatever role that they think is best for me to have.”
Stevens said the choice was between someone who has experience on the board and “someone we might put in a position to gain more experience.”
“I look forward to continuing to work on behalf of the entire community,” Jacobs said. “That’s where my head is always.”
Jacobs won the vote 5-2, and Herrick was named secretary.
Terry then won a 4-3 vote for treasurer over Collins, and General Manager Bob Thompson was selected assistant treasurer.
Bill Cordwell then nominated former board member Pete Gomsak for second assistant treasurer.
“The assistant treasurer’s position in my opinion, especially the second one, has to bring to the table a level of expertise that you just don’t get every day for free,” Terry said. “Clearly Pete … has brought a lot of value to our organization over the years, saving us money many, many times.”
Stevens objected to the nomination.
“I believe we have been cost a significant amount of money [by Gomsak],” he said. “What we’re doing is turning the job over to Pete – I mean the whole job. I’ll vote against it.”
Gomsak was elected 4-3.
Michelle Bennett was selected to continue as assistant secretary, Joe Moore was again named legal council, and TGM Group, LLC was reaffirmed as auditor.
The new board calendar includes regular meetings on Sept. 24, Oct. 29, Nov. 19, Dec. 17, Jan. 28, Feb. 25, March 31, April 28, May 26, June 25 and July 29 at 9 a.m.
Budget board meetings will be held Jan. 4, 15, 19 and 20, while the Budget and Finance Committee will tackle the budget Jan. 11-14. The general manager will present the budget to the public on Jan. 23, with a final board vote scheduled for Feb. 25.
The executive council will meet Nov. 12 and April 21, and Volunteer Appreciation Night was set for April 28.