myrkrida: (MaiaDoll)
myrkrida ([personal profile] myrkrida) wrote2010-01-10 02:21 pm

BayCon Announcement

Erik Bigglestone delivered and read the following letter at the BayCon Staff Meeting on January 10th, 2010. In the interest of full disclosure, I am making the choice to join others in making it public. While I did not write this letter, I endorse Mr. Bigglestone's message.

I have disabled comments because right now, I do not feel the need to discuss this in this forum. People know how to contact me privately if they have any questions or comments.

Kimberly "Kimmi" Allbee
Former Programming Division Manager
BayCon 2010

***UPDATE*** March, 2010: The tax issues have been resolved, ASI is once again legally allowed to do business in the state of California with a revived business license, and I agreed to return to finish the job of Programming Division Manager for BayCon 2010 in February. Since then, I have had NO time to do things like oh.... post entries to my blog? Lots of things going on- just not a lot of time to jot them down.




What I am about to read is a statement of certain facts. I am not opening a conversation or debate, and I will not here and now offer an opportunity for questions to be asked of me.

As of today, I, Erik Bigglestone, am resigning my position as Administrative Division Manager. The following individuals have joined me in this decision:

Erik Bigglestone - Administration Division Head
Meredith Branstad - Publications Division Head
Stephen Nelson - Publications Division Second
Ole "Tycho" Petersen - Hotel Division Head
Kimberly "Kimmi" Allbee - Programming Division Head
Daniel Van Den Broeke - Programming Division Second
Matthew Branstad - Operations Division Second
Jim "Sylvan" Sullivan - Programming Event Manager
Megan "Megs" O'Neil - Programming Operations Department Head
Kelly Gallagher - Programming Operations Staff
Alicia Terra - Programming Operations Staff
Cindi Somebody Cabal - Registration Department Head
Kirsten Berry - Registration Department Second
Christine Doyle - Registration Staff
Donna Leaf - Registration Staff
Karl Thiessen - Registration IT Department Head
Terrance Seddon - Registration IT Department Staff
Steve Libbey - Newsletter Department Head
Tim Bowman - Decorations Department Head
Sandy Benson - Family Friendly Department Head

None of us has arrived at this moment without extensive soul-searching, stressful reflection and lengthy discussions about the ramifications of our decision. We all consider the BayCon community -- staff, attendees and guests -- to be our extended family, and are well aware that our decision to end our involvement in making the convention happen will make the process more difficult on those of you who remain. Our action will likely negate the possibility for a future relationship with BayCon, and may cause the loss of friendships that -- in my case, at least -- have existed literally my entire life.

I say all these things because it is important that you understand how difficult a decision it was, and how serious our reasons for resignation are. I will not go into extensive detail here, but there are two key points:

First, there are serious problems at the corporate level of this organization, with continued failures to correct or adequately address these problems by the board of directors of Artistic Solutions -- the corporation that owns the convention. These problems include a lack of financial oversight over several years, which has resulted in multiple years' worth of taxes not having been paid on time. This tax situation has caused a suspension of the corporation's legal right to do business in the state of California. This suspension began prior to BayCon 2008 and has not yet been resolved. Additionally, several bills are now in arrears, in one case for as long as 180 days.

Second, we have lost all confidence in both the leadership ability and business ethics of Michael Siladi. He has proven himself time and again to be untrustworthy and unreliable when handling or providing information regarding the convention's finances, and unconcerned for the consequences to others of his actions. In many situations regarding the quiet ejections or resignations of former staff members, he has publicly spun facts about such situations to his own benefit. Repeated promises and commitments that he has made to resolve issues -- or at the very least to update us on the status of his attempts to do so -- have been unceremoniously broken with no credible explanations offered. For the good of the convention, we believe Michael should make good on the multiple promises he has made in the past to resign from the corporation's board of directors.

I want to make it absolutely clear that our resignation is in no way a response to the choice of Robert Toland as chairman of BayCon 2010. He is the unfortunate victim of issues completely beyond his control, and we fully support him personally and the work he has done as chairman. Neither do we place any blame on the remaining executive staff or any of the rest of you. Because we have no desire to require any of you to start from scratch, we will make ourselves available until the evening of Sunday, January 24th for the purpose of providing information and resources to whomever takes over our responsibilities. As mentioned earlier, we are fully aware that our resignations may mark the end of any future involvement with BayCon and Artistic Solutions. We all support BayCon as an entity and an event, however, and -- if welcome -- many of us will be glad to return once the aforementioned issues are resolved to our satisfaction.

We're not happy about this, so we're leaving now and will not likely be available for the rest of the day. If anyone has any questions they'd like answered, requires additional details or just wants to hang out at some point, you almost certainly know how to contact us, but please understand that we may take a bit of time to respond. As there are always at least two sides to any disagreement we strongly encourage you to stay and listen to whatever Michael, Robert or the remaining executive staff has to say. Thank you for your attention, and good luck.

*******

As a personal note- we came to Michael Siladi and the Board of Directors of ASI on this back in November, as a group, and made our concerns clear, and asked for some appreciable progress to be made towards solving the extensive corporate issues. There were no indications that our concerns were taken seriously, and further incidents involving lying to the Exec staff were had, and thus, we felt we had no choice but to go forward with our leave-taking.