Mensa NWIM Cheat Sheets


Table of Contents:


NWIM Contacts
Brainiac Monthly Newsletter
Calendar and Calendar on Chapter Website
SIGs: Special Interest Group
National SIGS
Regional, National Gatherings
EXCOMM highlights, link to ByLaws
List Serve / Email Discussion Group

Membership “Directory”

NWIM Contacts

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.


    NAME        POSITION

          ADDRESS               PHONE NUMBER        EMAIL

David Keller President
          1101 Ironwood Ct #190, Bellevue, NE 68005                         402-291-9534

Ron Kroenke Vice President
        4672 William St, Omaha, NE 68106                                        402-618-5660   

Diana Vogt     Event/Meeting Information Contact/Group Mediator
          3504 N. 58th Street, Omaha, NE 68104                              402-553-6923

Tami Whitney            Publications Officer/Newsletter Editor
          1609 Chaput Dr.    Bellevue, NE 68005                               402-964-2552

***********             Proctor Coordinator/Testing Info
          Temporarily:                                                                       402-291-9534

Suzanne Sears           Dineout SIG Coordinator
          not available                                                                          402-933-1785

Astrid I. Ferony, Ph.D.         Lead Proctor
          1703 Pinecrest Road   Bellevue, NE 68123-3965                402-291-8577

Mark Wooge Brainiac Calendar Editor
          1016 N. 47th Ave, #7, Omaha, NE 68132               402-403-3795

Jill Nelson       Treasurer
          11643 Willow Park Dr., Gretna, NE 68028             402-659-9063

Morgan Whale  Recording Secretary



Moderator, Mediator

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 the two.

----- Original Message -----

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.

I 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


Brainiac Monthly Newsletter

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…

 It will arrive in your mailbox when you become a paying Mensa member.

Calendar 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.


SIGs: Special Interest Groups

FYI if you don't know - a SIG is a "Special Interest Group". This group has several SIGs - and we are lucky that way - some groups only have 1-2. We have: EYHO (Eat Your Heart Out) SIG - a rural Nebraska Dine-Out SIG; A Trivia SIG, the ISSC SIG ( which attends various interesting Omaha events); and the Dine-Out SIG. Until last month, we had a long-term Bridge SIG, too.     All of these SIGs were started by members who had a special interest in the activity (activities)  the SIG participates in. This group has more SIGs than many Mensa groups have.     This isn't to say we can’t' always attempt to do much better. We can. But we need the help of our members too.        You m may not be aware of this but - last year our group got the GOTYA (Group of the Year) award - from Mensa's National office. That's a big deal, nationally speaking. One reason was because we DO have as many SIGs as we do - and also because we've held both a Summer Picnic and a Holiday party for over a decade now.  *Apparently, most Mensa groups don't offer this much activity to their members - if they did, I doubt this group would have received that national award.     If you want to start a SIG that you feel will offer activities to Gen Y or Gen X members, feel free to do so; it would indeed be a boon to this group.     . I think you could title it the "Gen Y (or "Gen X-Y" SUG. Send an e-mail notice to Mark Wooge, the Calendar Editor, at - by the 18th of the month preceding your SIG. State the purpose, activity, place, any directions, and time it happening.     Then just wait and see who shows up. Don't be discouraged if at your first meeting, only a few people show up. I've had over 4 Dine-Outs where Nobody showed up.     Attendance can wax and wane. P.S. - If you want to publicize your SIG more (besides ads in the newsletter calendar) you may be able to get a copy of the groups' member list - which lists the names and addresses (and sometimes e-mail address) for members, you can probably get a copy by contacting a group officer. Their "contact data" is inside the front and back covers of any group monthly newsletter. 

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
Trivia SIG

The Dine Out SIG is a monthly dinner out.  Suzanne Sears has been leading this for many years.  The Dine Out is usually held on the second or third Saturday of the month

 The Trivia SIG has also been a regular activity for many many years:

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 or 402-397-3173.

 The ISSC (an acronym that changes monthly), organized by Mark Wooge, who culls the media for events, happenings, and exhibits.  One or two are posted monthly for members to attend.

National SIGS

List of (some of them) here:

Section To Be Done:

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…


Regional, National Gatherings

Regional Gathering (RG)

What Is An RG You Say?

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.)


EXCOMM highlights, link to ByLaws

The “newest” bylaws (2008) can be found on the Yahoo NWIM site under this link:

Or on the NWIM website here:



List Serve / Email Discussion Group

Enjoy your local Mensa group 24/7 on the NWIM mailing list/discussion.

Subscribe at:

(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.

Membership “Directory”

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):

Okay,  here are the instructions.  
Go to    
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.