I received an interesting tip today of big things brewing at The Explorers Club, the venerable institution that has played a vital role in promoting the exploration of our planet. It seems that over the past day or so, 10 of the 12 members of the organization’s Flag and Honors Committee have resigned over disagreements within the Club.
I’m told that members of that committee sent a letter to The Explorers Club Board of Directors expressing concerns about the direction the Officers and Directors were taking the organization.
The letter reportedly requested the Board take action to address their concerns by their next meeting, scheduled for January 27, 2012, or the committee would resign. Rather than address those concerns however, President Lorie Karnath elected to accept their resignations effective immediately.
Since its founding in 1904, the Explorers Club has remained at the forefront of the research and exploration of our planet. The organization now boasts more than 30 chapters around the world and its grant programs remain instrumental in helping scientists, explorers, and adventurers achieve their goals.
Over the years, the Club has had a number of famous and distinguished members, including Sir Edmund Hillary, Roald Amundsen, Robert Peary, and Neil Armstrong.
Exactly what is at the heart of this internal dispute isn’t exactly clear, but I can tell you that the members of the Flag and Honors Committee are certainly not rank and file members. I’m told that their ranks include several Sweeney Medalists, winners of the Citation of Merit, a senior Past President, nine former Board Members, and the current Honorary President. Collectively, these committee members have more than 200 years of club membership amongst them.
For these members to take a stand of this nature, there must be some serious issues that need to be resolved. Earlier today, I called the Explorers Club in New York to give them an opportunity to make an official statement on the situation, but those calls, as of now, remain unreturned. I guess we’ll have to wait to see how this plays out, but it seems that things are definitely amiss at the Explorers Club.
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