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Archived Article – The Right to Individual Opinion


My opinion isn’t always yours, and that’s okay

When I became a member of the board of directors in July, 2013 I knew that any opinions, comments or statements I made could effect my new “political image”. Though we are obviously working on the most local level of politics here in Almond Glen, I still have a political image to maintain if I am interested in obtaining enough votes to be elected again in July 2014.

As the “president” of the association my opinions and statements are often considered “the views and opinions of the board”.  For that reason I am very careful to use the word “I” vs “We” when making statements so that individual board members can distance themselves from a statement “I” make when it isn’t necessarily “Our” statement.

Being a member of the board means that you have to be able to put your personal wants, needs, desires, and agendas to the side when you sit down at the table to cast a vote. I have voted for things I didn’t personally want, but felt the general membership desired. Conversely, I have found myself voting against things that I absolutely believed in because I was fulfilling the needs and wants of my neighbors.

When stirring up debate or seeking a public reaction to a topic I think it is necessary for a board member (or any member of this community) to express their personal opinions at times.  After all, we are people with a vast number of ideals based upon our own experiences. Those opinions may at times cause others to change their opinions, and we are then thought of as being “influential” as opposed to “controversial”.

If a leader within our community give a statement to the public, they should be careful to clarify whether that statement is in fact their personal opinion or the opinion of the organization as a whole. If they are not clear, challenge them to clarify the statement.

I think it’s also important to remember that those who have not served on the board have only political statements to use as tools when asking for votes. Those who have served are able to point to their decisions made while serving.

Of course, that’s just MY opinion.

Rob Smith
Almond Glen Owners Association, Inc
Board of Directors

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