Who exactly are the California Browncoats?
Whereas there are many social Yahoo! groups of Browncoats in California, such as the Sacramento Browncoats, San Diego Browncoats, San Francisco Browncoats and SoCal Browncoats, California Browncoats, Inc. (CABC) is a legal entity non-profit that is not a social group. We do not have memberships.
We are comprised of a Board of Directors only, and we work to promote Firefly and Serenity and their fandom, cast and crew through charitable works by raising money for selected 501(c)(3) nonprofits at our events. We formed specifically to organize events, such at the tables at WonderCon and Comic-Con, and to legitimately distribute the money we raise in positive ways.
Who is in charge?
CABC is comprised of a Board of Directors. Four Board members serve on the Executive Committee as President, Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary. However, all decisions are based on a majority vote from the Board as a whole.
How did they become Board Members?
In 2007, the 4 individuals in charge of running the Browncoat table at Comic-Con and WonderCon for the previous 2 years founded CABC in response for the need to become a legal entity.
In following years, the founding Board Members nominated and elected additional Board Members, based on the drive and desire shown by volunteers while working on Event Committees to organize CABC events.
Are board members appointed? Elected?
Potential Board Members are nominated by current Board Members, who then all vote on the nomination.
To become a potential Board Member, one must have worked on the Event Committee of at least one of our main events (WonderCon or Comic-Con), dedicating hours of personal time before, during and after the event. To learn more about how to become part of the Event Committee, see our Volunteer page.
What is the term limit? Is it a permanent position?
Each director is elected for a year at a time, and at each annual meeting of the Board, the directors can decide whether to continue on the Board or resign their position.
When and where are Board of Directors meetings held?
The annual Board Meeting is usually held in September at a place determined to be reasonable for everyone to meet (since our board members live throughout the country).
Are Board Members paid?
As stated in our Bylaws, the Board of Directors serve without compensation, except they are allowed and paid $50 for attending the annual board meeting to help cover travel expenses.
Does CABC cover the rooms, travel, and convention membership for the Board members?
Rooms and travel expenses for an event are not paid for by CABC. The only expense CABC tries to cover is the convention membership for those who serve on the Event Committee for that convention. The Event Committe may include, but is not limited to, Board members.
Event Committee members are expected to put in 6 hours a day working (before, during and after the con) and it is understood that the table is the top priority at the event.
Does the Board get to write off their expenses on their taxes?
Board Members are allowed to write off donations they have made, as individuals, to the charities supported by CABC during events and other fundraisers. CABC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, as such, non-reimbursed expenses incurred in supporting CABC may be tax deductible. You should consult a tax professional to determine what can be legally claimed on your taxes.
As a California Browncoat (in other words, a Browncoat who lives in California) am I entitled to any of these benefits?
Any Browncoat, regardless of where they live, who wants to be on an Event Committee for a CABC event can get more information about that process here.
Where does the money go?
CABC is a non-profit public benefit corporation, as such any money collected at our events that is not designated to the charity we are supporting at that event are retained by CABC to help cover the costs associated with organizing current and future events.
Why does it seem to take a long time to report the amount collected for the charity?
All of our Board Members and Committee Volunteers are volunteers and do have other jobs. It does take some time after an event to go thorough inventory and records to make sure that we have collected all that we can for the charity we are supporting. It is regrettable that this may take some time, but we do try to compile the information as quickly as possible.
Why don’t the Browncoats have any input in the decisions that are made?
Because CABC is a non-profit public benefit corporation, we need to follow state and federal laws on the running of a non-profit. While all decisions are made by the Board of Directors, we certainly welcome suggestions and input. Please see our Contact Page.
Do the California Browncoats represent all the Browncoats in California? If so, why are events in places other that Southern California not on the web site or promoted?
CABC is a not a social group and it does not represent all the Browncoats in California. Because we are a non-profit corporation, we only list the events we run/will have a presence at on the website. You will find all of our current and past events listed on our website here.
If we volunteer to help CABC raise money at events, will CABC cover our event memberships?
While we would love to show our appreciation to all our event volunteers by being able to pay for their convention memberships, we simply cannot afford it.
We are eternally grateful for all the volunteers that take time out of their schedules to help us in our mission to raise money for other non-profits during events like Comic-Con and WonderCon, and we try to show our appreciation at every event.