This is a guest post, consisting of a report written by three residents of Kendal at Longwood studio apartments, about their meeting with our administrative team The report was delivered by Barb Smith to the December 12, 2022, meeting of the Kendal Residents Association. In it, mention is made of a letter from October of last year, written to our CEO and her team. I have provided a link to that October 2021 letter.
Also, at the bottom of this post, I have provided a list of the signatories of the October 2021 letter, representing almost all of the studio residents at the time. Residents who look through this list will recognize the names of many who have made major contributions to the life of our community.
Report for KRA Meeting on December 12, 2022
re: December 9, 2022 Meeting of Lelia Calder, Libby Rupp and Barb Smith, representing the vast majority of Studio Dwellers with Lisa Marsilio, Seth Beaver and Ed Plasha.
The meeting was requested by the Studio group after consultation with KRA President and President Elect to follow up on an initiative of Studio residents in October 2021. At that point, concerned about the combining of Studio and Single Bedroom cottages over several years and the declining numbers of each, studio dwellers decided to send a letter to Lisa Marsilio and administrators who might be involved in relevant decisions, Ed Plasha, Seth Beaver and Helene Quinones. We also copied KRA President and President elect and residents who were serving on relevant KCC committees, Ernie Kimmel on KCC Long Range Planning, Larry Kirwin, KCC Board Property Committee and Tom Paxton, KCC Board. Our letter expressed appreciation of the opportunity to live in studios and the advantages experienced for us personally and what we believed to be positive assets which we brought to Kendal. (This latter is by no means exclusive to Studio residents.)
We noted that although there had been no direct response from the administration, positive steps were taken by marketing – including:
- posting on the Kendal website interviews with 3 Studio residents in which they expressed the values of community, simplicity, sustainability, closeness to nature, etc., which they experienced in Studios, and a video of a studio apartments
- Also KRA Appointments committee had selected a studio resident to participate on the KCC [4-Campus Collaborative] Marketing Committee.
Still, we wanted direct communication with Lisa Marsilio, and after consulting with KRA President and President Elect, and their agreement to support such a meeting with Lisa, we had our meeting on December 9, 2022. Lisa invited Seth Beaver and Ed Plasha to join us.
Lelia Calder initiated the meeting, expressing our gratitude for the opportunity for direct communication and reviewed how we got to this point, emphasizing the values expressed in our October, 2021 letter, especially that Studios are a way in which we individually and Kendal demonstrate our commitment to economic diversity and simplicity. Additionally, studios have a smaller carbon footprint, at a time when more people are concerned about the climate crisis and how they can change their lives to mitigate its consequences. Kendal provides the opportunity for single people who have lived a life of service to experience and contribute to a CCRC.
- That Kendal make every effort to maintain the current number of 24 studios.
- That Kendal consider expanding the number of studios, if that is economically viable for the community and we are able to identify a market for studios.
What we Offered:
- An eagerness to continue dialogue with the Administration
- A commitment to assist in identifying potential market targets for studios, as we understand that this has been a challenge.
- A willingness to try to understand the economics involved.
Summary and Conclusion of our dialogue:
We believe that our message was heard and we learned things in return.
- There are no plans to combine studios in the immediate future.
- There is a long waiting list for the larger units at Kendal and Crosslands
- That is not the case for the 70 one bedroom units at Crosslands, nor the 24 studios and 46 one BR Units at Kendal.
- Ed Plasha stated that he would like to have a studio resident replace the one who has just left the Marketing Committee. 1
- A presentation by Studio and One Bedroom residents at the meetings for persons interested in coming to Kendal would be welcome.
We, representatives of studio residents, agreed to try to identify new marketing sources for Studios and one bedroom units, a project which will begin in earnest after the new year. In the meantime, we encourage each of you to think of potential new residents, particularly those who are interested in community building, aggressive action on behalf of our environment, and commitment to a simple life style. We hope that our outreach will be multicultural, multiracial as well as represent economic diversity and encourage each of you to help make it successful. If you are interested in working on this project, please let Lelia or myself know. We will be calling for a brainstorming session after January 1. 2
We expect to continue our dialogue with the administration and will request a follow up meeting in the Spring of 2023.
Submitted by Barb Smith, Lelia Calder and Libby Rupp
- Although we appreciate Ed Plasha’s suggestion to have a studio resident on the marketing committee, the Appointments Committee of the KRA determines the best candidates for any position based on a number of considerations.
- The initial brainstorming session will be held in the Farmhouse on Friday, January 13, 2023, 9:30 – 11:00am. All residents interested in this project are invited to attend.
October 2021 signatories. Here is the full list of signatories of the October 2021 letter, all of whom were studio residents:
Lelia Calder (#120), Barb Smith (#146), Nicole Hackel (#160), Sally Palmer (#134), Dorothy Flanagan (#126), Judith Downing (#185), Edith Clark (#30), Gale Jordan (#177), Suzanne Noble (#173), Barbarajene Williams (#156), Jamie Fleetwood (#98), Marty Carroll (#114), Marion Heacock (#95), Barb Parsons (#15), Libby Rupp (#193), Lee DeWoody (#107), Janet Bisbing (#205), Cindy Duncan (#101), Ellie White (#130), Mary Porter (#53), Jerry McCammon (#83)
Thank you for all your organizing /planning work! and for this clear, thoughtful report back to the community !
I look forward to more brainstorming and exchange in 2023.