Sunday, July 7, 2013

AU-GLA Begins Holding Monthly Meetings in SFV

Starting in July, the San Fernando Valley subchapter of Americans United / Greater Los Angeles will be meeting the 3rd Sunday of each month for a monthly “Toastmasters”-style discussion group in the San Fernando Valley.

The first meeting will be at Marie Callendar’s restaurant, 19310 Business Center Drive, on Tampa Ave just north of Parthenia in Northridge on Sunday, July 21 at 2pm.  (The Northridge Metrolink station is just ½ mile to the east, at Wilbur Ave.)  Because of the location, we will be able to order food & beverages during our meeting.

The meeting will be specifically structured to be led by attending AU chapter members, with 1 - 3 of the members each month speaking 5 to 15 minutes on any topic they choose related to church-state separation.  The purpose will be to provide an opportunity for chapter members to develop their speaking skills while simultaneously educating the rest of the members in attendance.  As long as the topic is related to church-state separation, speaker presentations may be contemporary, historical, philosophical, social or any other angle the speaker chooses.

Speakers will be expected to prepare a thoughtful and engaging presentation with a minimum of notes.  Visual aids (eg, Powerpoint slides or postersheets) will also be allowed. The format will also include the opportunity for other attendees to provide an evaluation of each speaker, based on an evaluation sheet with a series of questions and scales.  At the end of each presentation, attendees will be asked to fill out their sheets to rate how well the speaker performed on each of these questions. The sheets will then be collected and provided to the speaker at the conclusion of her talk.  Depending on the willingness of the speaker and the time available, attendees will then be able to participate in a discussion of the topic with the speaker for the time remaining.

This format should provide for interesting and engaging discussions!  To present, speakers must sign up prior to the meeting.  To do so, send an email to with the title or nature of the presentation you wish to give, which month you wish to give it, and how long your presentation will take.

See you at our inaugural meeting!