SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC ALLIANCE COUNCIL

MEETING MINUTES

August 1, 2017 – 7:00 PM – RAVE Green Conference Room

Present (12 of 16): Nicholaus Biela, Martin Buckley, Cameron Collins, Alex Eagleton, Bill Kaczaraba, Roberta King, Darla Langdon, Jeremy Monsivais, Daniel Roe, Stephanie Steiner, Kristina Vaughn, and Jeff Williams.

Via telephone (0): None.

Absent (4): Nick Biesold, Mike Dollard, Karl Picard, and Steve Wilson.

I. Call to order – Stephanie Steiner

II. Roll – Cameron Collins: 12 of 16 Present

III. Council Initiatives

A. Constitution Vote – Martin Buckley: The Alliance-wide vote on the new Constitution has concluded. The Constitution was approved by the Alliance in a weighted vote of 96% in favor of the new Constitution and 4% opposed to the new Constitution.

→ Cameron Collins asked what the process would be now that S2 season ticket holders are now members of the Alliance under the new Constitution. Martin stated that, as this was approved mid-season, next season they should enjoy full member rights.

B. Scarf Vote – Kristina Vaughn: Kristina thanked all involved in the Scarf Vote Group. There was very little turnaround time, but running the vote on our own website made it a seamless process. Vote is now live and will be sent out as part of renewals.

When an Alliance Member renews, they’ll get an email telling them to vote for the scarves. On August 14, a link to the vote will be sent to everyone that is a designee and/or has yet to renew. The Council were then shown the final five scarves that will be voted upon by the Alliance.

C. Council member Rewards – Stephanie Steiner: On the survey given to Alliance Council Members, which was discussed in the July meeting, current Council Members said they were not on Council to receive “stuff.” But that doesn’t help the Council figure out what to offer as rewards. Thus, Council Members present were presented with a new survey to fill out on what do we think the person to our right deserves as a reward. This will help the Council approach the Front Office with ideas, and there will be a meeting of the minds on things they can offer us of which we are currently unaware.

D. Survey Results from Current Members – Stephanie Steiner: Overall, there was a lot of discussion of Constitution, but we are done with that, so it should rarely come up. There are some issues that could be addressed moving forward, but they are small changes that don’t require the kind of overhaul we just did.

→ Questions include:

  • What do you like most about serving on the Alliance Council?
  • What motivates you to do work for Alliance Council?
  • What would help us get more projects completed?
  • What would you like to do next year?
  • What is your wish list?

One major takeaway was that it may be worth rethinking how we interact with one another. If a Council Member is in a group and are not hearing from others in the group via email when attempting to have discussion, there is a list of members and their phone numbers on our Google Drive that can be utilized. Council Members must be more proactive.

IV. Monthly Call with Front Office & Meeting with Gary Wright, Sounders Consultant and former Sounders Senior Vice President – Stephanie Steiner & Martin Buckley

A.    Monthly Call: The call focused on the relationship between the Front Office and the Council and how to make it as productive as possible. It was a robust conversation and Martin and Stephanie voiced the wants and needs of the Council.

B.    Meeting with Gary Wright: Gary has been very responsive to working on the relationship between the Club and the Council. This conversation focused on that relationship, challenges, and an Alliance Member concern regarding diversity.

V. Open Conversation

A. Food & Beverage – Alex Eagleton: Alex has made an effort to eat at many places around the stadium, and the food lacks quality. Cameron Collins spoke on the limited vegetarian and vegan options being worse than before, despite promises to the contrary and Martin. Alex also has found that while they claim to have many different drink options, that often the specialty options, especially in beer and wine, are not ready during the match or not available at all.

B. Ticket Renewals – Dan Roe: An update from Dan on news concerning ticket renewals.

→Pricing: 75% of tickets are going up in price. 25% are going down. Those tickets closer to the center line and closer to the field will now be more than those that are not in those locations.

→Section 100NA:  The upper portion of section 100 has typically been non-alcoholic. The Club has contacted the 13 season ticket members currently sitting in that section to see if they truly valued the section being non-alcoholic. The overwhelming majority said it did not make a difference to them, so, in order to sell out that section, the Club will be removing the NA tag and allowing alcohol in that section. They are looking to advertise it as a more family friendly section, however.

→ ECS & resale: ECS has requested that members not sell their tickets for more than face value. The club has crafted language to help message that to people with season tickets in the section, and will allow for people to move if necessary. The statement will read, “The ECS supporter sections are priced in a way to ensure affordable ticketing options are available to those wanting to join the supporter culture. Members within these sections are asked not to sell tickets for more than the single match price. If you disagree, relocation is always an option.”

→ S2: For the 2018 season, the south side will not be available for season ticket purchase at S2 matches. Due to attendance in past seasons, the focus will be to fill the North Side to increase matchday atmosphere. This will also increase efficiency from a staffing perspective so the Club can provide the best matchday customer service. There are 9 season ticket members affected by this change and they will receive priority relocation to make sure they find satisfactory seats for next season. Cameron Collins lamented that, with the move, he is sad that he will no longer be sitting by coach Schmetzer and won’t hear his running commentary on the game.

→ Visiting Supporters: Visiting supporters will no longer sit in section 203. Instead, qll visiting supporters will be placed in Section 300/301/302, where Portland and Vancouver supporters are already seated.

VI. Adjournment

Moved. Seconded. Council votes unanimously to adjourn.