Table of Contents:
Brainiac Monthly Newsletter
Calendar and Calendar on Chapter Website
SIGs: Special Interest Group
Regional, National Gatherings
EXCOMM highlights, link to ByLaws
List Serve / Email Discussion Group
A similar but slightly different list of NWIM people is on
the inside back cover of the Brainiac.
I’ve culled contacts for the officers and volunteers below.
ADDRESS PHONE NUMBER EMAIL
David Keller President
1101 Ironwood Ct #190, Bellevue, NE 68005 402-291-9534 Daveemail@example.com
Ron Kroenke Vice President
4672 William St, Omaha, NE 68106 402-618-5660 firstname.lastname@example.org
Diana Vogt Event/Meeting Information Contact/Group
3504 N. 58th Street, Omaha, NE 68104 402-553-6923 email@example.com
Tami Whitney Publications Officer/Newsletter
1609 Chaput Dr. Bellevue, NE 68005 402-964-2552 firstname.lastname@example.org
*********** Proctor Coordinator/Testing Info
Temporarily: 402-291-9534 email@example.com
Suzanne Sears Dineout SIG Coordinator
not available 402-933-1785 firstname.lastname@example.org
Astrid I. Ferony,
Ph.D. Lead Proctor
1703 Pinecrest Road Bellevue, NE 68123-3965 402-291-8577 email@example.com
Mark Wooge Brainiac Calendar Editor
1016 N. 47th Ave, #7, Omaha, NE 68132 402-403-3795 firstname.lastname@example.org
Jill Nelson Treasurer
11643 Willow Park Dr., Gretna, NE 68028 402-659-9063 email@example.com
Morgan Whale Recording Secretary
The terms mediator and
moderator are often used interchangeably in this group, but, as Ron points out,
they aren't really the same thing. Most Mensa local groups use the term
ombudsman vice mediator, but there is no practical difference between
From: Ron Kroenke
Sent: Sunday, September 26, 2010 10:29 PM
Subject: RE: [NWIM] From the moderator
Actually, Diana is the mediator for issues concerning NWIM, and has volunteered
her time to referee the Yahoo list-serve.
am the list moderator and have limited my role to accepting/rejecting
applicants, rather than suspending or expelling members for misbehavior.
National PDQ: Personal Data Questionnaire
Imagine a write-up here
The award-winning “Brainiac” (Tami Whitney) has your chapter contact information, a President’s column, an Editor’s column, member articles, the calendar, EXCOMM minutes, poetry, Cool Stuff Mensans Are Doing, election information, chapter bylaw changes…
and Calendar on Chapter Website
Only Suzanne sends in a write-up, as a rule.
I (Mark Wooge) create an empty folder for that month and by the 10th, when I start, there'll only be Suzanne's write-up in it. I copy a blank calendar write-up to it.
I then load an empty day’s calendar into Paint Shop Pro 5.1. I have seven of these, one for each day a month can start. I then edit the image to have the right number of days, and I also put in any holidays, as indicated by my store-bought wall calendar. The image is saved to the month-folder with a new title.
I then load the write-ups-calendar, which has the dates for regular events (trivia sig, EXCOMM) and put text in the appropriate date on the days-calendar, and put the actual date in the write-ups-calendar. The write-ups-calendar is edited with Word 2007. I also use MS Wordpad and MS Notepad.
I check Suzanne's write-up, expanding abbreviations and such, in Wordpad, then insert into the calendar.
I then put everything away. The next week or two I find excuses for not doing anything with the calendar.
With the deadline coming up, I finally relent and restart the calendar. By now, anyone with a special item will have sent me an email and I'll have saved it t the folder.
I put everything in order in the write-ups-calendar, maybe add an ISSC event, and put in icons, pictures, and a one-liner on the days-calendar.
Tami doesn't like write-ups split to the second page so I make sure none does, which is often what determines the date of the ISSC event.
I use Word's spell-check, and (usually) ensure the dates in the write-ups match the dates on the days-calendar.
The days-calendar is then inserted into the write-ups-calendar, resized and positioned.
I then email it to Tami. If she doesn't send a correction, I send a text-write-up and a picture of the days-calendar to Bruce (Dave Keller as of April 2011).
I probably left something out, but what the hey.
Total time 5+ hours, by actual measurement.
Special Interest Groups
o I have to add that I was surprised to find out many Mensans join without having an intention of participating in group activities; but it's true. That being said, publicity can help, and a getting a Membership officer for this group could maybe help, too. And 10-20% of this group’s membership is still 18-34 people - more than enough to have a good time with.
Starting a SIG can be tricky, Kerin's right - a lot of people who have kept their SIGs going know what to expect in terms of participation - because somebody else encouraged them when they attempted one. Kerin had Donna Potrykus encouraged her when she started her SIG(s). Karen Kozak encouraged me. It helps if people are there to tell you what to expect, etc.
Valerie Struble(no longer a member) gave me some stellar advice one time. She said: "Make sure YOU enjoy whatever your SIG does. You're volunteering your time, after all. So then no matter what happens, you'll probably have a good time there."
When they started their SIG, they got some good advice - and they therefore probably weren't drastically discouraged by an occasional meeting where maybe even Nobody shows up (rare but it's happened.) It's happened at the Dine-Out SIG, and we've had several SIGs come and go over the years, either because the member who sponsored it lost interest, or just plain didn't have to me to organize it anymore, or it wasn't publicized properly.
Over the years, I
remember this group having a: Fine Arts SIG, A Movie SIG, a new member Meet
& Greet, A Writer's SIG, and a few others. But hey -for awhile there, they
were fun SIGs.
Re: Starting a SIG -IF you decide to do that (and IMO it's a
good idea) I'll throw in my "two cents" here:
Be willing to be patient, and ignore it if the SIG has a few months where participation is low. I reiterate Valerie Struble's advice here: Make sure YOU enjoy the SIG activity, then you will enjoy yourself no matter what. I had a few Dine-Outs where Nobody came - and so what? I had chosen the restaurant and I wanted to eat that anyway - and I proceeded to enjoy a solo dinner. No big deal (although at the time, it was slightly discouraging, too. I was kinda hurt, but kept it up as a SIG anyway -mostly because I like eating out at different restaurants with people. - Suzanne
I consider "low" SIG participation to be 0-2 people showing up. I consider "high" participation to be 12-20 people. Anything in-between that I'd consider to be average. For this group anyway, (without extensive publicity for SIG meetings beyond the newsletter notice and occasional e-mails to past or potential participants) - that seems to be the "norm". Junebe that number will increase - but having one's expectations realistic is helpful, IMO. – Suzanne
Dine Out Sig
Tuesday, (2nd Tuesday of the month): at Buffalo Wild Wings Bar & Grill, 205 No. 76th St. (between Cass & Dodge St., by Toys R Us). We are having one fixed night per month for NTN Trivia. If you want to meet on an additional night, e-mail or call other Ms on an ad hoc basis. Come and enjoy some highs (and lows) as your particular knowledge areas are probed (or not). For more information, contact Karen Kozak at firstname.lastname@example.org or 402-397-3173.
List of (some of them) here:
I’m a bit fuzzy on the national SIGS…some national SIGS seem to be mailing lists; one I believe is a bi-monthly newsletter. Perhaps some meet? Complete information: To Be Done…
A Regional Gathering is
an event sponsored by a Mensa local group. The RG is open to all Mensans and
their guests. It usually spans a weekend, Friday to Sunday.
Some are large and elaborate, some are small and informal, but all give you the opportunity to meet people, see new places, hear amazing speakers, play games, and otherwise stimulate your uncommons mind.
For more information on what to expect at an RG, click here. (Takes you to the American Mensa website. Login required.)
The “newest” bylaws (2008) can be found on the Yahoo NWIM
site under this link:
Serve / Email Discussion Group
(Ron Kroenke will get you on pretty quickly). Then join in the discussion by posting to
There’s always something happening on the List Serve.
Don’t let it pass you by.
“I know not everyone lives close enough to attend local events, or sometimes there are scheduling difficulties. But we have a local list-serv so member can post where ever and when ever they are and still interact with other local members. The list-serv is pretty active (1000+ posts in March, 2011). The CultureQuestion of the day gets posted daily and people take guesses at the answer. People post interesting forwards and there’s usually a discussion or two going on. Often about politics, but anyone can post a topic and see what the response is. It’s a nice way to keep connected regardless of space and time.
I put “directory” in quotes, because you can only access a person’s full information one person at a time…it is not a complete listing, but a web interface…I’m picky about this kind of thing.
To access this from the National Website (Thanks Ginny Clift for the instructions):
Go to us.mensa.org
At the welcome screen: On that screen look at the Quick Links in the lower right hand corner.
Choose members, directory
That will take you to a page that warns you to NOT use the list for anything commercial.
After you’ve read that click on CONTINUE
At some point, you will have to sign in. your sign in is your email address if you have supplied it to Mensa. Or your membership number.
When you get to the page headlined MEMBER DIRECTORY SEARCH
go down to Local Group. From the pop up lists, choose 07/680 NWIM
Then click on SEARCH
The next page is your membership list. It’s alphabetical by last name and if you want any more info on any member, click on their name and a page will open with the info they’ve chosen to share.