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August 2023 Board Meeting


MSC Board Meeting Notes

Tuesday, August 29, 2023 6:30PM





Tracey-Alexis Dixon


Nan Qiao


Jeannette Noltenius


Joy West


Sabrina Hsu


George Dang


Alicia Hannon


Matthew Lee


Roman Santillan




Bruce Adams




Nick Arrindell




Mirin Phool




Clemmie Solomon




Yasin Yimam





The quarterly meeting via Zoom was called to order at 6:33 p.m. by the Chair Tracy-Alexis Dixon.


Approval of the Agenda

On a motion to approve by Board member Solomon and seconded by Board member Noltenius the August 29, 2023 agenda as approved.

Approval of March 2023 Minutes

On a motion to approve by Board member Santillan and seconded by Board member Arrindell the minutes of the July 27, 2023, meeting was approved.

OCP mail:

·       Board member Barre to send an email to OCP inquiring about missing checks. We are still awaiting on Sponor checks for the Multi-Cultural Humanitarian event.


Treasures report:

·       Board member Santillan shared that the board and committee did a lot of activities this fiscal year. Board member Santillan confirmed we have submitted all expenses to the County for reimbursement of the grant.

  • Board member Santillan confirmed we have not received the check from Board member Yimam.

  • On a motion to approve, the treasurer’s report was accepted.


County Updates

Board Chair Dixon advised the board members the County Executive will be traveling to Hyderabad, India end of October – early November. His staff, and Board member Phool, are trying to coordinate a meeting with the Mayor while he is present. For those interested in traveling with this delegation, they must pay their own costs associated with the entire trip. Board member Solomon asked when is the trip to China/South Korea. Board Chair Dixon confirmed the delegation will take place in May 2024, however no dates have been finalized as yet.

-       No updates regarding Senior Fellow Position.


Sister City Committee Report

o   Morazán

§  Reminder: Morazan GALA – September 22, 2023.

§  The committee is very active in terms of using the funds to continue supporting the University.

o   Gondar

§  Board member Yimam reported on the Gondar Delegation Visit. Invitation letter was sent by Montgomery College. We are expecting the Mayor of Gondar, University of Gondar President, and the State Minister of Education on September 16, 2023, however tensions are high due to State of Emergency this past month. The State Department advised not to travel.

§  Ongoing internal wars within Gondar are taking place and unfortunately Gondar University was hit. Board member Yimam has been in close contact with the President.

§  Delegation is trying to still come: however, the Embassy in D.C indicated officials cannot travel. Their VISA appointment is on October 10, 2023 – after the Multi-Cultural Humanitarian event.

§  Board member Yimam suggested to inform the U.S Embassy of the delegation travels.

·      Board member Arrindell suggested that since the VISA appointment is far out, the Department typically won’t change the date.

·      Board member Barre suggested to wait to hear from the delegation. Sending a letter won’t make an impact. Board Vice Chair Mills agreed. HE added we may be putting MSC in a political position.

·      Diane Vu added that the CE is aware. It’s been a very sensitive situation, watching it play out in the community. She suggested to inform the delegation of the safety reasons in which the trip will need to be postponed.

·      Action: Board Chair Dixon to email the U.S Embassy.

o   Daejeon

§  Board member Lee is currently preparing for travels to South Korea with Council President Glass. The County Executive is visiting China/South Korea in May 2024 [Life Science conference].

o   Hyderabad

§  Board member Phool reported that the County Executive will travel to India Oct. 29 -November 11, 2023.

§  Board member Phool asked for the previous signed agreement? Board member Adams suggested to ask Diane Vu and confirmed the signing should be separate from the other activities taken place.

·      Action: Board member Phool to follow up with Diane Vu and Debbie.

o   Xi’an

§  Board member Hsu indicated that the committee has a representative traveling to China to initiate conversations for the Delegation Trip in 2024.

§  MSC received (2) invitations. We will continue to set the ground work for the travel but will need exact dates soon.


o   2023 Event Calendar

o   Multi-Cultural Humanitarian Event 9/17/2023 1-6PM (2-5pm) – Board Chair reviewed all logistics for the upcoming event. She will follow up with everyone regarding their position and tasking during the event. She advised the members to please come early to assist with set up.

o   Upcoming events –

§  World Culture Festival and Precursor 9/26 7-9PM (Patomac)

§  Pan African Festival 9/23/2023 11-9PM (Silver Spring)


Other Business: 

o   Open Discussion

o   Next Meeting: October 24, 2023 6:30PM (adjusted to October 30, 2023)

The MSC Board meeting was adjourned at 8:00PM.


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