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AGM Information for Members: on TI Website

In keeping with other statement made to Members this year, the EC is not presenting an accurate statement of the facts. The general impression is that they wish to control how the Members use the Rules that govern our Centre so as to engineer the kinds of outcomes they are seeking. Here is what they say on the TI website along with the actual legal Rules and my comments.

You may find it too boring to trawl through all this legal argie bargie, but let me draw your attention to this stunner: “What will happen if the current Executive Committee wins / loses the vote at the AGM?” What a classic example of the attitude of the current EC; winning and losing. The TI Members are supposedly electing individuals onto the TI EC. We are not crowning a bloc of apparachiks as “winners” over other Members. Or is it?


Click the green button below to view or download a booklet that analyses Rules that are being ignored, misinterpreted or overlooked. It gives a guide to what Rules you should be watching at the AGM.

Annual General Meeting – Saturday 4 May 2019

The current Executive Committee of Tara Institute is made up of the following:

  • Judy Mayne – Director
    Dave Andrews – Assistant Director
    Gabe Wallace – Geshe Care
    Amelia McCulloch – Spiritual Program Coordinator
    Mark Fernandes – Treasurer
    Justin Sethu – Secretary
    Elvira Kurti – Members’ representative
    Tara Garward – Residents’ representative

Nominations are being accepted for the following 5 roles to be voted on at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) that will be held on Saturday 4 May 2019.
Treasurer (1 position)
Secretary (1 position)
Members’ representative (1 position)
Ordinary members (2 members)
Note: The positions of Director, Spiritual Program Coordinator and Resident’s Representative are not open to a direct vote by all members attending the AGM for reasons that will be explained below.

It may just be a turn of phrase, but “being accepted” is not the choice of the EC, it is laid down in the Rules who is to be elected and in what manner. The EC does not determine what can and cannot be done and should not be distorting the facts for any reason; a total impossibility with 5 weeks notice.

51 Positions to be declared vacant

  • (2) The Chairperson of the meeting must declare all positions on the Committee vacant and hold elections for those positions in accordance with rules 52 to 55.

45 Composition of Committee

  • (6) All office bearers and non office bearers of the Committee who are not appointed by FPMT Inc. are to be elected at the annual general meeting;

…in other words, other than those appointed by FPMT, ALL members are up for election at the AGM. I don’t understand why this is not clear to the lawyers on the EC.

  • (7) Elected Committee members are, subject to these rules, to hold office until the conclusion of the annual general meeting following the date of the member’s election, but are eligible for re-election.
    (8) In the event of a casual vacancy occurring in the membership of the Committee, other than the position
    s of Spiritual Program Coordinator or other member appointed by FPMT Inc; the Committee may appoint a member of the Association to fill the vacancy and the member so appointed is to hold office, subject to these rules, until the conclusion of the annual general meeting next following the date of the

The number of people on the EC is determined at the AGM

Are there now more people on the EC than were appointed at the previous AGM?

The number of people on the EC is not a rubber band that can be infinitely expanded at the whim of the EC. The minimum number is three. Above that number, it is up to the AGM to decide how many they want on the EC —for the coming year— it is not the EC’s choice. The EC can fill Casual Vacancies but does not have the power to appoint additional people to the EC at will.

Please ensure when completing your nomination form, the people who propose and second you are current financial members of TI, or the form will not be accepted. If anyone is interested in nominating for a role on the Executive Committee, information on each of these positions has been made available on the website.

The nomination form also requests candidates to put a brief outline on the skills they bring to the Executive Committee. This information you include will be made available to members.

The nomination forms must be returned to the TI office by 5pm on Friday 29 March 2019.


What is this? Where in the Rules is there a close of nominations 5 weeks before the AGM? The Rules say no such thing and it is unreasonable when the EC also says “The notice of AGM will be sent out to all members in the second week of April 2019.”

52 (1) “Prior to the election of each position”… “call for nominations” what is a “call” if not delivered by voice? 52 (3) simply exposes this requirement to be false because it allows nomination for another position AFTER losing the vote for an earlier election. And if written nomination was required by the Rules, why is there no Nomination Form attached to the Rules when all other required forms are attached?

52 Nominations

  • (1) Prior to the election of each position, the Chairperson of the meeting must call for nominations to fill that position.
    (2) An eligible member of the Association may—
    (a) nominate himself or herself; or
    (b) with the member’s consent, be nominated by another member.
    (3) A member who is nominated for a position and fails to be elected to that position may be nominated for any other position for which an election is yet to be held.

The notice of AGM will be sent out to all members in the second week of April 2019.

The agenda for the meeting will list all the people who have been nominated for available positions on the Executive Committee. For people who are unable to attend the AGM in person, proxy vote forms will be made available on the AGM webpage from mid-April.

Any proxy vote forms must be completed and returned to the TI office before 5pm on Wednesday 1 May 2019 for your vote to be counted.

Again we see misinformation, and I ask why mislead Members so often?

Rule 35 (4) clearly states you can use any format for your proxy as long as it contains the required information. 35 (6) says your proxy “must be given to the Chairperson of the meeting before or at the commencement of the meeting” so it is utterly untrue to say “Any proxy vote forms must be completed and returned to the TI office before 5pm on Wednesday 1 May 2019 for your vote to be counted.” Even post can be there 24 hours before the AGM (7).

35 Proxies

  • (1) A member may appoint another member as his or her proxy to vote and speak on his or her behalf at a general meeting other than at a disciplinary appeal meeting.
    (2) The appointment of a proxy must be in writing and signed by the member making the appointment.

    (3) The member appointing the proxy may give specific directions as to how the proxy is to vote on his or her behalf, otherwise the proxy may vote on behalf of the member in any matter as he or she sees fit.
    (4) If the Committee has approved a form for the appointment of a proxy, the member may use any other form that clearly identifies the person appointed as the member’s proxy and that has been signed by the member.
    (5) Notice of a general meeting given to a member under rule 34 must—
    • (a) state that the member may appoint another member as a proxy for the meeting; and
      (b) include a copy of any form as set out in Appendix 2 to these Rules for the appointment of a proxy.
      (6) A form appointing a proxy must be given to the Chairperson of the meeting before or at the commencement of the meeting.
      (7) A form appointing a proxy sent by post or electronically is of no effect unless it is received by the Association no later than 24 hours before the commencement of the meeting.


elections for Director and SPC” 

53 Election of the Executive Committee.

  • (1) At the annual general meeting, separate elections must be held for each of the following positions—
    • (a) Director;
      (b) Secretary;
      (c) Treasurer.

Members are not prohibited from voting for SPC but the appointment is only done by FPMT. I don’t see anywhere in the Rules that only the EC can suggest names to Lama Zopa.

To vote for a position as Residents’ representative, you must be a resident of TI

There is nothing in the Rules about this. In fact, the current person in that position has been witnessed telling people that TI is not an FPMT Centre and is therefore, probably ineligible to sit on the EC anyway.