“Being a Title Track board member has been a rich, rewarding and informative experience. As a young organization, just getting our feet on the ground, so to speak, the Title Track leadership was able to pivot during the pandemic, adjusting programming yet not losing momentum. It was, and is, resilience in action. I learned how to navigate attending board meetings and trainings via Zoom, which was a steep learning curve for me, not being technologically adept. My communication skills, both listening and expressing myself were sharpened up. Getting to know my fellow board members virtually expanded my understanding and awareness of other life experiences, knowledge and perspectives. We learned how to work together from a distance.
The board trainings have been instrumental as we collectively determine the values, structure and working arrangements that will work virtually and in person. Through the year-long equity training that the board and staff have undertaken, I am learning to become a better anti-racist, which is a lifelong commit of mine.
The organizational trainings have taught me the importance of articulating and agreeing upon our values, roles and responsibilities and determining our process for decision-making.
Finally, weaving creative practices through-out our work brings a depth and lightness to the work. Starting and ending each meeting with a song, helping to support artists who are trying to survive during the pandemic, using our check-ins to name our favorite soundtrack, and many other practices have reminded me of the roots of my activism in the ’60’s when music sustained us. Creative practices will support us for the long haul ahead.” -Sally Van Vleck, Founding Title Track Board member
Sally has been a community activist in Traverse City for close to 50 years, working through and with various organizations on many causes all related to the environment, peace and justice. Sally and her late husband, Bob Russell, founded the Neahtawanta Research and Education Center in 1987. In 2018, when Sally and the NREC Board decided it was time to pass on NREC’s assets, legacy and resources and close out the organization, they chose Title Track and helped to launch it in 2019.
We invite you to explore the rich legacy of the Neahtawanta Research and Education Center!