Marilú Baca extended a warm and cordial welcome to each member attending this membership meeting.  She said it had been an honor and privilege to serve as President for the last two years and that it was great to see so many of our long-time members in the audience this afternoon; she also extended a warm welcome to those new members who had just recently joined our Association.
vineta Annual Membership Meeting Minutes 2011  























Annual Membership Meeting - February 24, 2010


A thirty-minute welcome cocktail reception was offered prior to this 2010 Annual Membership Meeting. At 6:30 PM, the President called to order the Fiftieth General Membership Meeting of The Friends of Acapulco.




Mrs Marilú Baca greeting and on behalf of the Board of Directors extended a warm and cordial welcome to this Fiftieth Annual Meeting.

She again expressed sincere gratitude to all those wonderful members and distinguished guests who were present on that evening.

          She went on to say that the generosity of the members enable these children to have a decent home, a good education and above all the love and affection they desperately need. Very motivated said  that fifty years ago, the Founders of Friends of Acapulco had a dream and their dream has now become reality that joining hands together we can now give something back to the children of Acapulco.

Marilu said that it has been truly an honor to serve as President, that the Friends has been for her a labor of love, so she expressed  gratitude to each and every one of the members, as well as to those generous


 Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010

supporters who could not be present on this evening. She asked to work together in the coming year to do even more to improve the quality of life of our beloved children.  She finished saying “my thanks to all of you and God bless you.

Mrs. Baca proceeded with the agenda:




Quorum was met with a total of 35 members present, out of a total of 180 members in good standing. Our bylaws establish that 10% of members are required to be considered official. 


Mrs. Baca said that it is very nice to see some new faces that accepted our invitation this evening with the unique idea that they know who we are and that our mission is to help the most needed children of our beloved Port of Acapulco.


The President proceeded to ask the audience for adoption of the Agenda.  




The proposed Agenda was displayed on the electronic board; Mrs. Baca asked the audience to study it, giving people time to read through it. She then


Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010


asked if there were any comments, additions, corrections or to propose changes. None were offered, so she proceeded to entertain a motion for adoption of the Agenda as presented. The Agenda was unanimously adopted. The President moved on the next item.


She invited people present to register for general comments which were to receive in item 18 in reference to General Comments.






Mr. Ron Lavender reported that the minutes of the meeting held Thursday, February 26th., 2009, were mailed to all the members during the month of August 2009, stating that if anyone had failed to receive them there were copies in the room or the minutes could be mailed again to whomsoever request them. The minutes are also available on the web page:


Ron requested members to be so kind as to indicate the adoption of the minutes of last year’s Annual Meeting by raising their hands, if there were no questions related to them. Members present approved the motion and the Meeting moved on according to the agenda.  


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            Mr. Ron Lavender spoke next regarding the elections. He stated that, in accordance with the letter sent on February 1st., 2010, it was announced that the elections would take place today Wednesday, February 24th., 2010. Even though our by-laws read that the meeting should take place during the month of March, it was decided to make it earlier due to the fact that many of our members are foreigners and leave Acapulco at the end of February.


This decision was approved by the Board of Directors during the course of the meeting held on January 25th., 2010.







Marilú Baca                           President

Ron Lavender                        FirstVice President

Bertha Luz Crofton                Second VicePresident

Raul Alcaraz                          Treasurer






Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010




Tatiana Dotson

Robert Dotson

Don Hoglund

Robert Kleinman

Tommy Lowe

Kathy Olvera

Sergio Olvera

Marie Slaton


         This new Board of Directors  were adopted with a great joy by the members present, primarily because Robert Kleinman, Kathy and Sergio Olvera  now  become part of the Board.


Mrs. Baca asked the committees to read their reports for the period March 2009 to January 31, 2010





The President proceeded to start with the following report since Bertha Luz Crofton was excused due to family affairs that did not permit her to attend this meeting.






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During 2009, our Board announced that donations to the Homes would be based on site inspections to evaluate their priorities for capital improvements. The following is a report on the grants provided to each orphanage as approved in various meeting of the Board of Directors.


As it is done every year, the Board invited each home to submit written proposals specifying how money could be spent in conjunction with each round of donations made by the Board.


1.      SALVATION ARMY (60 Children)


 $ 6,160.00   US DLLS      OR   $77,000.00  PESOS


This amount represents expenses such as:


One water filter for the entire house.

One more filter with ultraviolet rays specially for the kitchen use

New aluminum windows

Installation of aluminum windows



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Floor, washbasin & plumbing of two bathrooms

Renovation of gardens

Food supplies

The electric wiring for the whole house

Medical Care


Christmas gift box



We are working closely with Captain Gabriela and Captain David to convince local government authorities to take action to correct drainage problems that are affecting the entire surrounding neighborhood, not just the Salvation Army Home which can only be resolved by joint government action. 




The Acapulco Children’s Home is making great strides forward, with support not only from the Friends of Acapulco, but from many benefactors and charitable organizations.  It is very heartening to see that the children now have a decent home. The Home has defied the expectations of those who feared its development plans were overly ambitious. We are delighted to report that we are now working hand in hand with the



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Directors to make further improvements in the installations and to improve the health of the children.    

Our grants in 2009 totaled $23,268.00 US DLLS. or $290,857.00 pesos.


Medical care



Food supplies

Industrial stove

Industrial liquidizer

Horizontal freezer

Refrigerated storage chamber

Aluminum storm door




$5,120.00.00 USDLLS.  OR $64,000.00 PESOS


As you know this Home has two different properties, one for boys and one for girls.  The construction of new houses, shopping centers, condominiums and schools has caused severe drainage problems in the area around the installation.  After heavy rains, the pools of water made it impossible for the children to come and go from the orphanage. To rectify the problem and to safeguard the health of the children, a new ramp was constructed at the main



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entrance.   The ramp has resolved the flooding problem and the children are now safe from any type of accident.



$12,000.00 US DLLS. or $150,000.00 pesos


The electrical wiring that serves this Home was in terrible condition.  We allocated funds to pay the entire cost of installation of new electrical wiring throughout the complex.  The Marsh Home has now a modern, upgraded electrical system that should protect the safety of the children who reside there; 80 brand new bedroom doors    were changed. Marilú informed that Marsh Home was benefited by the Company Apoyo Economico with the construction of a garage and the extension of the kitchen, Ron will speak in more detail about this in item 14.


Mrs. Baca reiterated that this is one of the Basic Programs of our Association, committed to improving the lives of children who lack the love and support of their biological families.









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THE FRIENDS OF ACAPULCO received a round of applauses from the members present for all these achievements.


President Marilú Baca gave the floor to the next chairperson to continue with the agenda.





Ron initiated by reporting that we still work closely with Dra. Ana Bertha Rivera from the State Cancer Hospital to ensure that our financial support for children with cancer is directed to where it will do the most good.


Thanks to the generous support of our members, The State Cancer Hospital has been able to purchase critically needed supplies that are utilized in the operation of the Apheresis blood device.


This special equipment makes the process of donating blood more efficient and reliable for cancer patients.  Mr. Lavender informed that our Association President, Marilu Baca, has made periodic visits to the children’s ward of the State Cancer Hospital to check on the condition of each of the youngsters we support.



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The local television news here in Acapulco recently presented the poignant story of Nicolas de Jesus Garcia, a young cancer patient being treated at the State Cancer Hospital.  Nicolas is from Pinotepa Nacional in the rural part of the State of Guerrero. Nicolas comes from a family of very modest means.


The mother of Nicolas appeared on local television to plead for financial aid that could enable her son to have access to one of these special blood devices.


Our President Marilu Baca saw the news report and responded immediately to this mother’s plea.


It is very pleasing to report that – thanks to our financial support – Nicolas de Jesus Garcia now has access to this special blood transfusion device and is receiving the treatment he requires. Marilu has been in contact with Nicolas’ mother and is following his case closely.


Finally, Ron reported that it should be noted that our Association screens all candidates for financial aid, to ensure that our assistance goes to the most needy children.







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Mrs. Baca thanked Ron for his excellent intervention and asked him to continue with the next report.






Mr. Lavender reported that our Association first met Jose Miguel in November 2004. At that time, Jose was just a five year old child. His mother brought him to the Amigos office. José Miguel was born totally deaf.  His mother informed us at that time that she had learned about a new and revolutionary surgical procedure, through which Jose’s hearing could be restored. The enthusiasm of Jose’s mother was so strong that she persuaded a Mexico city surgeon to perform the operation free of charge.. Due to the poor conditions in which they lived, we agreed to sponsor their round trips to Mexico City to visit their surgeon. The good news is that Jose Miguel can now hear. He has learned to speak some. We have continued our on-going financial support. We think this is a wonderful story and we wanted to share it again with our members who, after all, are responsible for providing the funds which helped to make this miracle possible.




Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010

Ron said that also, all the youngsters who reside in the children’s homes supported by the Friends of Acapulco are entitled to free medical care and free medicine paid by the Association.


Our Healthy Child Program provides a complete medical examination to each newly admitted child.  Our goal is to identify any serious medical problems upon their arrival.  We also diagnose and treat all contagious diseases, to prevent infections from being passed on to other children.


During the course of the last year, we have received periodic status reports from Doctor Horacio Orozco, our staff physician.  We are pleased to report that Dr. Orozco has encountered no major medical problems in the children he has seen.  He has primarily focused on routine tasks, like abrasions, vaccinations, and severe colds.


Ron said that thanks to the financial support of Amigos, a total of 1560 children have received medical check-ups and treatment.


Members were highly encouraged by these words and there was a warm round of applause for these actions of the Association.





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The President, reported the next item due to the absence of Bertha Luz Crofton (family affairs required her in Mexico City).  The Scholarship program of Amigos de Acapulco is central to our core mission: to open the doors of opportunity for needed children who deserve our help.


A total of 25 students are currently enrolled in our Scholarship Program.


The monthly stipends we provide underwrite part of the living expenses of our students. This support enables them to complete their studies, either at the high school or at the university level.


Due to the new guidelines approved by our Board of Directors, the new slots that begin available for scholarships will go to children who reside in the orphanages that Amigos de Acapulco support.


At present, 15 of the 25 scholarship students reside in one of the four local Orphanages.





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The total expenses incurred by the Scholarship Program in the year 2009 rose to $16,000.00 US DLLS. OR $200,000.00 pesos.





Mr. Hoglund started to say that it was an honor for him to tell a little bit about Children’s Festivities and that of course there were many many other festivities that went out of Friends of Acapulco to talk about, but just the fact that we are in the position to entertain these children in certain parts of the year and that is a bless thing that is much appreciated to be part of this group.


Don reported that as we do every year, Amigos de Acapulco hosted an entire day of sun, fun and recreation devoted to the kids from the four orphanages that we support.


That a total of 195 youngsters gathered at CICI aquatic water park for swimming, games and roller coaster rides.  The children were totally thrilled by the fabulous dolphins show and they had a great and tasty lunch – complete with hamburgers, French fries and sodas.



Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010


Don mentioned that due to the virus outbreak during the month of May, our celebration had to be postponed until August. 


Our children look forward to this annual celebration with great anticipation.  Their happy faces and gleeful behavior tell us how much they enjoyed their day.


He said that our 2009 event was organized and hosted by our President Marilu Baca.


This year’s expenses were greater than in previous years, because this time we did not receive a good discount on admission from the operator of CiCi Park, he said that incidentally it might be possible because of the economic situation down here and in the Park.


Don reported that our Association also hosted a special stage production of Peter Pan at the Acapulco Convention Center.   This entertaining show was produced by a local theatre production company named Fragmentos.   The kids from the Homes were all invited and had a wonderful time. 






Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010


Finally, Mr Hoglund informed that we the Friends had the opportunity to collaborate this year with 100% Mexico. The company operates a shop inside the Acapulco Cruise Ship Terminal that sells authentic Mexican arts and crafts.  100% Mexico donated a huge amount of traditional Mexican candy to the children of the Salvation Army Home. The delivery of the confectionary goodies made for a delighted afternoon. The children, as well as the people in charge, enjoyed the event very much.  We are grateful to Fernando Obregon, the owner of 100% Mexico, and to Rosario and Alejandro Ortiz, the store managers, for their generous support.


The audience broke into applauses and the meeting moved to the next agenda item.


Mrs. Baca gave the floor to Mr. Tommy Lowe.




           Mr. Tommy Lowe reported that   Friends of Acapulco hosted the Homecoming meeting on Thursday, January 14, 2010, in the ballroom “El Timón” of the ElCano Hotel.

            He said that this annual celebration is designed to welcome our beloved members back to Acapulco –


Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010


and to invite prospective members to join our Organization.

            Mr. Lowe reported that it was wonderful to have hosted a total of 52 guests for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres.  Unfortunately, attendance did not exceed our expectations this year.

           Thanks to the generosity of those attending,  Friends of Acapulco, A.C., collected membership dues for 2010 amounting to $10,375.00 US DLLS.

     Marilu, the President requested Tommy Lowe  to please continue with the next report on the agenda. 




Tommy said that Mr. & Mrs. John Ballis were very kind to open the doors of their elegant and luxurious home,  the Villa Primavera,  to celebrate our 50th  Gala Dinner.   This truly spectacular property,  located in Club Residencial Las Brisas, was designed by the famous architectural team of Carrillo and Clausel.


This unique celebration was held on Saturday, January 30th 2010.   It was a night to remember for the 80 distinguished guests who attended.



Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010


Guests were awed upon their arrival  by the hand-carved wooden moldings on the ceiling and walls of the main foyer,  all imported from the Far East:  India, Indonesia and Thailand.    The exquisite art work and sculptures throughout the house,  and the fine home furnishings,  all reflected the good tastes of the Ballis family.  


From the foyer,  guests made their way along a narrow walkway,  past reflecting pools and exotic hanging garden,  to the bar lounge, where cocktails and canapés were served.


The renowned pianist Kardie Diemecke entertained us with her delightful music, while our guests sipped cocktails and watched a slide show that illustrated the fifty years of history of the people, events and good works of the Friends of Acapulco.


Mr. Lowe continued to say that the goal of the evening was to bring our members together with distinguished civic leaders from the Acapulco community and the news media, so all could witness first-hand the wonderful things that Friends of Acapulco has accomplished throughout its 50 years.


             The delicious dinner consisted of scallop ravioli with Roquefort cheese and olive oil and basil




Annual Membership Meeting-February 24th, 2010


vinaigrette, tomato cream with herbs, mozzarella cheese pearls with parmesan cheese cracker, shrimp in champagne sauce with wild rice and asparagus,  a combination of two coffees and chocolate with crunchy nuts and a passion fruit and sweet hibiscus purée,  hazelnut cake with cocoa nuts, chocolate sauce and of course, fine wine.  


While guests dined, the String Sextet from the Philharmonic Orchestra of Acapulco serenaded all with lovely classical music.  The evening ended with a champagne toast and a spectacular display of fireworks on the villa terrace, with the nighttime view of Acapulco Bay in the background. 


All the frenzied activity of this unforgettable evening was captured on film and on video by the ever-present paparazzi.


It was wonderful to see people smiling and enjoying this great evening of success for Amigos de Acapulco.


After the dinner and the speeches, our guests descended a sweeping staircase – like those in Hollywood – to a spectacular private discotheque located in the lower lever of the Villa, where some danced until late.   Our sincere gratitude goes to our




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Master of Ceremonies, The Architect Jimmy  Crofton, and to our generous sponsors, namely Yoli de Acapulco, Hotel ElCano and Bacardi.







Mr. Robert Kleinman who was recently elected as committee chairman, started to thank Marilú, the President for the opportunity to be part of this meeting and said that he appreciates the work that has been done by Raul Alcaraz  and the staff.


This Treasurer’s report was presented on the screen before people present, by Friends of Acapulco’s treasurer, Raul Alcaraz along with Robert Kleinman who said he is looking forward to a very long and workable relationship.


He went through the Financial Statement and in order to make it a little bit quicker, he stated the amounts in US dollars He then came throughout all the report.







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After going through the entire Financial Report, Mr. Kleinman asked the President to please go for a motion of accepted.


Marilu  proudly thanked Mr. Kleinman for his intervention and asked everybody if they would agree with the statement that was shown and it was unanimously agreed with the raise of hands. Anyway, Marilu explained that sometimes she thinks she spent a lot of money, but that all she do with the Homes is to give them the money depending on how many children they have. Mr. Kleinman, as well as, the Board of Directors received a big applause from the members present.


 Mrs. Baca thanked again Raul & Robert for their excellent intervention and professionalism and called on Mr. Ron Lavender to present the report on:











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Mr. Lavender began by saying that in the matter of special donations he could offer many names, but it is always dangerous to do this because one does not want to miss someone important  He went over the history of the most special donators during the last 25 years and said that one of the first major donations came from Bill and Vivian Mead from Dallas who bought the Hotel El Pozo del Rey, near the Hotel Las Americas, and donated the property for the Acapulco Children’s Home which has benefitted hundreds of youngsters in the intervening years.  A few years later another major donation came from John and Lillian from Des Moines, Iowa.  John was a wealthy investor and philanthropist who had dedicated the cancer wing Hospital to the Iowa Methodist Hospital in Des Moines. When John died, he had willed his apartment in the Laureles condominium to the Friends of Acapulco, This apartment was sold for US$200,000.00 and those funds were used in developing a new medical dispensary, as well as remodeling and updating the office of the association.





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Mr. Lavender continued to say that our Association has been also very fortunate in receiving the generous financial support of Charles & Debbie Marlett from Indianapolis, from whom we receive a check of $4,275.00 US Dlls every three months, more than US$16,000.00 each year.


Ron said that the comments and thoughts of many people indicate that the Friends of Acapulco have all the money in the world and that we do not need their money; but the true fact is that we are caring for less than ten percent of the needy children in Acapulco and the other ninety percent desperately need attention.  He asked those present to keep this in mind when they hear others make similar comments about our group.




These organizations were:


Fundacion Best is sponsored by the owners of the pharmacies of Dr. Simi.  They make donations of food to Marsh Home, Salvation Army, Father Angel’s Homes and the Casa Hogar del Niño.  The food has served to bolster the limited budgets of these homes and serves




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an important supplement to the help which we are able to provide .


         Apoyo Economico is a Mexican financial services company engaged in lending to consumers. Last year, they donated  Friends of Acapulco with $25,000.00 pesos; also they made another  generous donation to the Marsh Home and constructed a garage to house their service vehicles and a separate project to enlarge the kitchen storage area. Two of the vehicles of the home had been exposed to the salt air, since the home is right on the ocean front, and the garage helps solve this problem.  Also, when Costco or Fairmont provide bulk food items it is important to have clean, ample and well protected space in order to store them.


          Gratitude was also expressed to the Hotel Elcano and general manager Pedro Haces.  They have always provided space for our meetings, as well as food and refreshments.  This generosity has continued for many years and we are deeply grateful to them for the kindness.


            Ron said that it was, indeed, a great gesture of all of these companies and members were highly encouraged by these words and there was a warm round of applause for these actions of the Association.





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        The President Marilu Baca gave the floor now to Don Hoglund to give an updated report on the memberships.





The floor was given once more to Don and he reported that our Association has a current paid membership of about 200 persons (counting each couple as two members).


In addition, he said Friends of Acapulco have a large group of former members who have not responded to our recent solicitations and invited all to renew the memberships today if did not do it before and he asked it again to pay the dues for 2010 today.


Mr. Hoglund also encouraged all to consider upgrading the current memberships to the next higher category.


He reported that year-to-date during January and February 2010, Amigos collected dues totaling almost $12,000.00 US Dlls. and that it reflects a total of 40 checks.  Each check represents a couple or single individual.




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Don ended his report by saying that it is a big challenge and thank members for their support and their great efforts to help the underprivileged children of Acapulco.



Mrs. Marilu Baca thanking Don for his kind attitude to encourage us to be better members, she called Robert Kleinman to please report the next item of the agenda:



                    PROJECTED DONATIONS 2010



Mr. Kleinman reported that each year all of the Homes submit to the Friends of Acapulco a formal list of their funding priorities for capital improvements for the next year.  He emphasized that the Board reviews each of the submissions and in addition, the Amigos staff conduct site visits to each home to get a first-hand assessment of their needs and that the decisions on funding for the current fiscal year are based on these site inspections, as well as, the priorities set by our Board of Directors.


         Robert continued to say that besides the annual capital grants to the homes, our Association will




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definitely continue its commitment to the other core programs that are part of our Association’s mission.


The cancer program will be monitored on an on-going basis.


Our Scholarship program will be evaluated to ensure our scholarship students are performing as expected.



Funding will continue, on the basis of needs, to support free medical care and free medicine to the Orphanages.


He said that the global economic situation has, indeed, had an impact on our donations and on our investment income. We will need to monitor carefully our operating expenses and the charitable grants we make, to ensure that we maintain our finances on a sound basis for the long-term good of the Association.


The President thanked Robert Kleinman for his good intervention and asked the audience if there were any comments, doubts or suggestions, three ladies seconded the motion to continue with the next item of the agenda.





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Mrs. Marilu Baca said that she feels very proud to be elected once again as President for the term 2010-2012 and that she feels prouder to be part of this great Organization.


She said that it has been a very rewarding experience for her in so many ways and that she appreciates the opportunity to continue to be of service to the children of Acapulco.


She nicely invited each of the members to work with her, hand in hand so that everyone can see by themselves the joy and comfort that its bring to hundreds of children.


She proudly said that everyone knows that whenever someone help they receive much, much more in return.


Mrs. Baca again invited to see first-hand the good work that is done and to feel free to call the Friends of Acapulco office that she will be delighted to arrange a visit to the Homes and the chance to meet the children with cancer whom the Association supports and that






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anything that is done will help a lot.                                                     

She thanked very much for being here and that she appreciates the time, good efforts and above all the commitment with the children of Acapulco.




             BY THE MEMBERS  

In closing, Ron asked if any member present wished to raise any other matter;  None did.  He took the opportunity to thank Marilu Baca, our current and newly re-elected President for her dedication, time and good will on behalf of the Association during these last four years.  He asked all those present to recognize this wonderful woman, and the audience did so with warm applause.








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         Since no further business was presented, Mrs. Marilu Baca thanked all those present for their time and consideration and moved for adjournment of the meeting.  This motion was carried unanimously and the meeting was adjourned at 7:30 p.m.


            Both the President and the First Vice President invited the audience to enjoy them cocktails and canapés -- and the big surprise that awaited them.  The pianist Violet Carlson, accompanied by vocalist Jody Gardner, entertained our members with their splendid music.  Our members sang along with gusto.... I Left my Heart in Acapulco…..It was a great night for all those who attended this memorable 50th Annual Meeting.




Respectfully Submitted,



Acela Tellechea

Recording Secretary