Notes from Windward: #69

Updating the Bylaws

The Next Generation weighs in


     With more than thirty years of organizational history behind us [ten years in Nevada and twenty-two in Washington state], it's fair to say that we've coped successfully with most of the core problems inherent in creating a community. But in order for a community to be sustainable, it has to be able to attract and incorporate a cadre of new people capable of renewing the vision and taking the challenge on to the next level.

     Starting in the Fall of 2005, we've been working to attract and incorporate the crew that will take Windward on the next leg of its journey--a group we think of as "Windward--the Next Generation."

     Once we reached the point where the majority of our on-site folk are in their twenties and thirties, we decided that it was time to revisit our Bylaws in detail. The goal was to ensure that the Bylaws incorporate the lessons learned, and that the newer members understand and support the reasons behind the various provisions.

     To that end, we've been meeting every Monday evening for months and going through the Bylaws line by line revisiting each provision. When that process was completed in early May, a copy of the proposed amended Bylaws was printed out and posted for formal review for the required thirty day waiting period. On June 12, 2009, Windward's Board of Directors voted unanimously to approve the new wording.

     A key part of Windward's vision of its mission is to model answers to the questions which any intentional community has to address and solve. We don't believe that our Bylaws are a perfect fit for every group or every mission, but they are a good way that unrelated people can come together to invest their efforts and resources into creating a viable community without surrendering their personal soveriegnity.

     Of all the things on our website, this set of community guidelines may well turn out to be our most important accomplishment. If you've ever given serious thought to creating an intentional community and wondered how to address the issues of ownership and representation, of inclusion and exclusion, you're invited to copy and use these Bylaws as a worthy foundation on which to build.

     Windward Bylaws as amended June 12, 2009.

Notes From Windward - Index - Vol. 69