04 Jan 2024

OKIAAI Board Minutes 1/4/24

Date:              January 4, 2024
Time:             11:34 AM
Location:       Mariachi’s Restaurant – Stillwater, OK
Call to Order: Made by President, David VanBuskirk

Roll Call:

PresDavid VanBuskirk
1st VPSteve Rhodes
2nd VPGina Coleman
3rd yr.Marc Sutphin
3rd yr.VACANT
2nd yr.Johnnie Sawyer
2nd yr.Chad Oubre
1st yr.Heather Cropper
1st yr.Matthew Meredith
TreasurerJonathan Wilk
SecretaryJesse Benne
Past Pres.Ashley Stephens (by phone)

Reading and Approval of Minutes:  A Motion was made by Chad Oubre to forgo the reading of the previous meeting minutes. Seconded by Gina Coleman. Motion approved and carried.


  • We currently have 147 members for this year. Two new membership payments came in from John Black & Lance Fuqua, awaiting their applications to be submitted for approval.
  • The international update form was passed around to update the board member’s information for our letterhead and international correspondence.

Treasurer’s Report:   Johnathan Wilk stated the current balance is $23,740.89. This time last year was $11,300, so we are ahead from last year. Since his last email there was a $13 financial services fee, potentially from a bounced check.

Steve Rhodes made a motion to accept the Treasure’s Report seconded by Gina Coleman. Motion approved and carried.

CFI:  No new CFI’s. Chad Oubre is working with OKC fire investigation unit to help increase the knowledge of the process to get their personnel certified within 5 years. David VanBuskirk advised Stillwater FIU is requiring the FIT designation. They are having issues with the international getting applications processed. David has a contact with our representative if we need to reach out in the future.

WEBSITE:  David VanBuskirk stated that Dan VanBuskirk, our current website contractor, is taking a new job and will be unable to provide services. James Bullis, his partner, will be willing to make the updates for the same price. We have a current scope of work in the amount of $2,500.

Jesse Benne stated the changes proposed were necessary due to the age of the website. It is no longer being updated and will eventually crash. The estimate was around the same cost as the initial website building. The annual maintenance fee will be the same for around $1,000.

Steve Rhodes made a motion for the update of the website in the amount of $2,500. Chad Oubre seconded, motion approved and carried.

Annual Conference

  • David VanBuskirk stated that the certification credits have been posted for CLEET and the Bar association, any issues would be with the individual.
  • David VanBuskirk stated that Randy Overton’s check has come back with insufficient funds. Renee Southerland spoke with Bill Cathcart about how to proceed with termination of membership. Under Section 7 the board has the right to termination and has provided us the process for doing so. David VanBuskirk will proceed with the process.
  • David VanBuskirk stated he spoke with Curtis Ozment about the possibility that the Windstar Casino is interested in hosting us for this year.
  • Steve Rhodes stated that he went through the 39 evaluations from the last conference and most of the feedback was in the great column. Longer lunches were mentioned and standardized break times would be preferred. A few negative comments about audio quality and hospitality being too loud. Johnathan Wilk mentioned the amount paid for the hospitality worked out great, enough to entertain, but didn’t cost too much.
  • Steve Rhodes stated the preferred location was still at a casino per the evaluations. Casinos were mentioned all over the state. Gina Coleman has been looking into venues to assist, and Windstar would be able to accommodate 150 rooms, Durant was looked into, but the conference room wasn’t great, and they may not have enough rooms.
  • The dates of the conference are going to be submitted for the 3rd week of October 16,17,18. Steve Rhodes will look into possible venues and get back to the board with proposals.
  • Gina Coleman stated we should have all our presentations submitted for CEU’s by no later than August. The sooner the better.

501(c)3: Jesse Benne contacted Chris Woodall about an update. There is no further information we are waiting to hear back on our application from the IRS.

Old Business:  No old business

New Business:  

  • Vacant position for 3rd year board member
    • Mike Haley from Muskogee nominated by Ashley Stephens
    • Renee Southerland nominated by David VanBuskirk
    • Tim Reeves self-nominated by email to several board members
  • David VanBuskirk opened for a vote for the open position. The first vote was for Mike Hayley, 7 of 8 approved, no reason for further voting Mike is approved for the 3rd year board position.
  • Chad Oubre is currently on the training committee (regional seminar committee) and is asking for other committees to assist the board.
    • Johnnie Sawyer volunteered for the CFI committee.
    • Both committees will reach out with further communication to the members to request assistance.
  • Renee Southerland is in the current accounts for the PO box and bank account.
    • Johnathan Wilk made a motion to remove Renee from the bank account and replace with Jesse Benne. Seconded by Chad Oubre, motion approved and carried.
    • Jesse Benne will work to update all organizational accounts with current information and passwords.

Next Meeting:  The next meeting is scheduled for February 15, location TBD based on a potential site visit of venue. Steve Rhodes will advise by February 1 on location possibilities.