Thursday, October 14, 2021

Open Letter to Robert's Rules Expert

Attorney Helen McFadden is a recognized expert on Robert's Rules of Order. In 2019 she conducted a workshop for Richland 2 trustees. Some of the trustees want her to return. 

Members of the public should send emails to the superintendent ( and request him to add an item to a future agenda for the board to discuss and vote on Robert's Rules of Order training. Board Policy BEDH invites the public to submit suggestions for agenda items. You can make it short, such as: "Pursuant to Board Policy BEDH and in view of the chaos at the October 12, 2021 board meeting, I request the addition of this item to the board meeting scheduled for October 26, 2021 Regular Board Meeting (at least three days later). Item: Training for the board on Robert's Rules of Order."

The following email has been sent to Attorney McFadden.

Dear Ms. McFadden,

I encourage you to watch the October 12, 2021 Richland 2 board meeting on

Chaos reigned supreme, because of the board chair's lack of leadership skills, lack of knowledge of parliamentary procedures and refusal to follow even the basics in Robert's Rules of Order.

The last ten minutes of the recording will give you a clear picture of the disrespect shown by the board chair. Her disrespectful comment to Trustee Scott (formerly, Elkins) about an "orange suit" referred to Trustee Scott's arrest after a board meeting when she was accosted by members of the public in the R2i2 lobby. They should have been arrested, not Trustee Scott. Holmes' remark was definitely hitting below the belt.

Holmes is obviously unaware of §62.10 in Robert's Rules which provides for Removal of the Chair. Your advice to the board would be very helpful. Should they use a Richland 2 security officer to remove her or should they use a deputy of the Richland County Sheriff's Department to remove her?

This meeting and other recent meetings would serve well as Case Studies in how not to conduct meetings, and I suggest their use in any trainings you might offer.

There were many times when the superintendent could have bailed Holmes out and defused the anger and high emotions of the chair, but he didn't.

Richland 2 is fast becoming the laughing stock of South Carolina.

I understand that you may not reply to me. 


Gus Philpott
Richland Two resident

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