Saturday, July 9, 2016

Board Members Election of The Tibetan Community of New York and New Jersey Inc.

I have written a number of times in the past on how important the Tibetan community of New York and New Jersey (TCNYNJ) plays a role in the struggle for the preservation and promotion of Tibetan culture, tradition and identity in a country where the notion of melting pot is widely seen and accepted by many. The solution to this melting pot lies in accepting selective adaptation and avoiding total assimilation. To successfully work on this solution, TCNYNJ not only provides a structural body but also represents a single largest organization that every Tibetans in New York and New Jersey associates with.  Thus, good leadership team (board members) in the TCNYNJ is a must.

More importantly, according to a reliable source, the construction of TCNYNJ community hall (Phuntsok Deshi) will be completed by at the end of this year or beginning of next year. How this community hall is planned and utilized to bring in more revenues will be another key strategic area to consider when voting for board members on July 9, 2016. If not profit, the community hall should bring enough revenues to at least pay off the monthly mortgages, property taxes and administrative and operating expenses. The hall should be at least self-sustaining with in the next two years.  Also, it should generate employment and business opportunities for eligible Tibetan entrepreneurs.

Who should be eligible to vote?

  1. Must have paid green book dues till 2015
  2. Must be a resident of New York or New Jersey: Evidence include State ID, NYC ID or any other acceptable proof of address such as most recent bank statement or postal letter.

Who should you elect?

Balanced Composition:

When electing board members, everyone should pick from a diverse group of age, profession and educational backgrounds. Age group should range from young professionals to experienced elders to represent the growing population of Tibetans in these two states.  The existing problem of TCNYNJ lies in its failure to make a connection with the growing number of youth and young Tibetan population.  

Innovative and Visionary:

Board member must be a change agent who shows no hesitation in bringing new programs and initiatives for the community.  For instance, new educational programs to help build the life skills of Tibetan community members is in high need.  Moreover, s/he should have a vision to draw a plan at least for the next ten years.

Team Player: 

S/he should be someone who have the potential and knowledge to embrace and respect difference of opinions.  Yet, able to work as a team.  Personal opinion matters but it should not be at the cost of disrespecting team effort/decision.  For instance, many Tibetan meetings end up in personal biases and self-inflicting accusations.

Supporter of CTA:

Tibetan Community or Association in North America is a unit of Central Tibetan Administration of Dharamsala.  Any instructions or notices from Dharamsala has to be respected and followed up.  TCNYNJ is a bridge between local Tibetans and Dharamsala.  Thus, board members should be able to respect the position and instruction of Dharamsala irrespective of personal viewpoint.  Henceforth, in order to avoid the repeat of RTYC NYNJ's recent episode, it would be wise to elect someone who respects the wishes of Dharamsala.

In order for eligible Tibetan voters to know the standing nominees, it would be highly beneficial if each nominee for board members are given 5 minutes to introduce and share their vision for the Tibetan community in NYNJ.  Moreover, the president must be elected by the people and not among the elected board members.

Please note that these are just my general suggestions and does not reflect my support for one or more candidates for the board member position.

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