April 2011 Charles Doepp Mill Creek Forum Chair
TC How long has the forum been meeting, when do you meet and where?
CD We started in the summer of 2009. We meet the first and third Friday of the month, in the morning, 7:15 – 8:30. The venue has changed a bit (we initially met at Mill Creek Country Club) as the group has jelled and preferences have been solidified. We presently meet at a restaurant just off the Mill Creek exit of I-405. We utilize a private room for discrete conversations and where everyone can order their own breakfast preference.
TC How was the group formed?
CD The initial interest and response in starting a north side Pinnacle Forum group was quite great as there were no other forums in the north end at the time. I personally had the advantage of attending a new forum in downtown Seattle for nine months prior to starting the Mill Creek Forum. I experienced firsthand the start-up phase, selecting new members, implementing how the forum would be conducted, etc. All of this experience and knowledge was then transferred to starting and running the Mill Creek forum. Participating in the downtown forum was instrumental in the success of the Mill Creek forum.
TC What is the make-up of the members?
CD There are 11 members of the Mill Creek forum. All members have senior leadership, CEO or ownership credentials in their respective industry. The industries represented include: law, real estate, retail, media production, marine, lending, consulting and engineering.
TC How are meetings conducted?
CD The meeting starts with a summary of old open items having found resolution and/or new upcoming items for the group or Pinnacle Forum at large. We then conduct a three minute check-in with each member. Essentially each member discusses three aspects of his life, spiritual, personal and business, in three minutes. The members share as they are led and are not required to discuss all three areas. The three minute time limit is flexible depending on the number of members who attend. If a topic or need presents itself during check-in we use it for further discussion. If no topic immerges (or after a topic discussion) we discuss a future area of focus for the forum. Presently, on average, nine members attend each meeting.
TC How are potential new members introduced to the forum?
CD We have an open forum with respect to introducing new members. Each present member is responsible for personally vetting a potential new member they are recommending. I also talk individually with the existing and potential new member as a final check. So the vetting process is accomplished upfront before an invitation is extended to attend a meeting. At the first meeting, the potential new member can participate or observe. After that I discuss, with the potential new member, their interest in joining. For our forum this process has served us well.
TC What activities, other than meetings, does the forum collectively participate in?
CD Last summer we had a great barbeque, hosted by one of the members, with all the families involved. In March, the group attended a banquet for Global Radio Outreach with their wives. For this summer, we have a day boat trip, on a classic wooden yacht, planned with members and their wives.
TC What is the future focus of the forum?
CD The forum will provide continuing support, encouragement and camaraderie to the individual members. As an entity, the forum is presently selecting an area of focus that will further God’s kingdom by utilizing the God given talents within the group. The group feels this focus will encompass coming along side and assisting a Christian related business venture, for which there is an affinity with a forum member.