OSAT exists "To provide a clean and sober environment for members and friends of 12-step recovery groups to participate in outdoor and social events in the spirit of conservation, preservation, and ecology." 

AA Meetings and The OSAT Club:                                                                            

Over the years OSAT has held as many as four weekly AA meetings concurrently. All of them are held in wilderness settings. Some of the meetings are suspended or move indoors during the winter, but there has been at least one outdoors OSAT AA meeting every week since the first meeting on Tiger Mountain in April, 1991.

The first AA meeting chose the the name One Step At A Time, and at an organizational meeting the following month it was decided that a club would be established with the same name, in respect of AA Tradition Six which states that "secondary aids to AA, such as clubs which require property or administration, ought to be incorporated and so set apart that, if necessary, they can be freely discarded by the groups." The OSAT club was organized because the activities of the group were not limited to 12-step meetings, and involve some inherently dangerous activity, such as mountain climbing, which therefore required a way to insure that only qualified people were allowed to participate in technical activities. This potentially goes far beyond the "desire to stop drinking" membership requirement for AA. The club also owns a small amount of equipment.

The Club Organization

In 1993, Jim Hinkhouse, who carried virtually all of the organizational responsibility for OSAT up until then, as well as most of the administrative duties, asked the club to establish a more-or-less formal board. This group, originally the "Board of Servants" or BOS,  worked toward establishing OSAT as an independent, self-perpetuating entity.

The five-member board, now known as the Board of Trusted Servants (BOTS)  in reference to AA tradition that "...our leaders are but trusted servants...", is elected for overlapping two-year terms to oversee the operation of the club in accordance with its by-laws. Board members serve without compensation to oversee the well-being of the club. Standing committees were formalized to administer the climbing course, publications, telephone hotline, finances, and social and outdoor activities.

Jim Hinkhouse presented a proposal to the February 1994 club meeting that included additional organizational responsibilities for the Board of Servants (BOTS). The BOTS' organizational proposal discussed included, as the first mentioned BOTS responsibility, the development and submittal to the full membership for approval a statement on the mission (purpose and objectives) of OSAT. 

The original BOTS drafted by-laws which were subsequently adopted in 1994. OSAT was organized as a Washington nonprofit corporation in 1995, and was subsequently recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as exempt from federal income tax as an organization described in section 501(c)(3). 

Several people have expressed interest in starting OSATs in other areas, including New England, British Columbia, and Alaska. If you are likewise inclined, e-mail  requesting additional information to help you get going.


Article I Name and Organization                                                                                     Top of page    Top of Bylaws Section

Section 1.The Organization shall be known as One Step At A Time, and by the acronym OSAT.

Article II Board of Trusted Servants (BOTS)                                                                 Top of page    Top of Bylaws Section

Section 1.

A. OSAT shall be overseen by a Board of Trusted Servants (BOTS) consisting of five (5) members.

B. The BOTS shall assure that the mission, traditions, by-laws and general well-being of OSAT be perpetuated.

Section 2.

A. The BOTS shall be elected from the general membership for terms of two (2) calendar years. Three members shall be elected for terms beginning in even numbered years and two members shall be elected for terms beginning in odd numbered years.

B. A chairperson shall be elected by the BOTS, from within the BOTS, and will serve for a term of 1 calendar year.

C. The Chairperson shall preside at all club and special meetings, or may appoint another BOTS member to preside in their stead.

D. Subsequent to their term expiration, the prior Chairperson shall serve one (1) year as a non-voting member of the BOTS, known as the chairperson emeritus. In the event of a vacancy on the BOTS, the chairperson emeritus shall fill the vacancy until such a time that the vacancy can be filled by election.

E. The chair shall call special meetings as needed.

Section 3.

The BOTS shall meet once a month, unless through the majority agreement to less or more.

Article III - Meetings                                                                                                             Top of page    Top of Bylaws Section

Section 1.

Club meetings shall be held on a regularly scheduled basis every month.

Section 2.

Special meetings shall be called as provided for in Article II, Sec. 2, E.

Section 3.

All meetings shall be governed by the OSAT meeting protocol as provided for in Article VIII, Sec. 1.

Article IV - Standing Committees                                                                                     Top of page    Top of Bylaws Section

Section 1.

With the exception of the climbing course and treasury committee chairs, all committee chairs are strictly voluntary. If no one volunteers, the committee shall be suspended, or chaired by the BOTS at the discretion of the BOTS.

Section 2 - Membership

A. The membership committee shall maintain a current list of all OSAT Members.

B. The membership committee shall maintain a current supply of OSAT flyers and business cards.

Section 3 - Treasury

A. The chair of the treasury committee shall be known as the treasurer.

B. The treasurer will be appointed with the approval of the BOTS and the general membership

C. The treasurer shall maintain club bank account(s) and financial records. The BOTS shall independently validate account balances at least once per calendar year.

D. The treasurer shall collect and distribute club funds as necessary.

E. The treasurer will have authority for disbursement of up to $200.00 (two hundred dollars). For disbursements of $201.00 to $400.00, the BOTS approval is required. Any expenditure exceeding $400.00 shall require general membership approval.

F. The treasurer shall provide a monthly accounting of balances in all accounts as well as an itemization of all disbursements. Disbursements of $50.00 or more shall be made by check only.

Section 4 - Climbing Course

A. The climbing course committee chair shall be approved by the BOTS.

B. The climbing course committee shall be responsible for development of climbing course curriculum, to include the OSAT traditions.

C. The climbing course committee shall schedule field trips and seminars necessary for climbing course completion.

D. The climbing course committee shall provide instruction and instructors to complete the climbing course.

E. The climbing course committee shall set the determined prerequisites for participation in the OSAT climbing course.

An amendment, approved by the BOTS and the Club in 1999, deleted a section describing an equipment committee, and added in lieu thereof the following three paragraphs.

F. The climbing course committee shall maintain custodial care and accountability of any equipment deemed essential for the aid of instructing the climbing course.

G. The climbing course committee shall oversee the disbursement of any of the equipment described in paragraph "F" in an equitable and fair manor solely for the aid of the students and instructors in the climbing course.

H. The climbing committee shall purchase equipment as necessary, as approved by the BOTS and/or the general membership.

Section 5 - Activities

A. The activities committee shall coordinate all club activities.

B. The activities committee shall maintain the calendar of events in the Yodel and the OSAT hotline.

C. The activities committee shall solicit activities ideas and activity leaders from amongst the membership.

D. The activities committee shall be responsible for communicating any activities to the communications committee for either posting on the hotline and/or publication in the club newsletter.

Section 6 - Communications

A. The communications committee shall be responsible for the OSAT Hotline and Directory listing.

B. The communications committee shall be responsible for fulfilling the Hotline commitment to follow up with more information.

C. The communications committee shall be responsible for publication and distribution of the club newsletter (The Yodel).

D. The communications committee shall be responsible for maintaining communications with all committee chairs for the purpose of updates to the hotline and/or club newsletter.

Section 7 - Safety

A. The safety committee shall track safety related issues within the club, and make that information available to all members.

B. The safety committee shall provide information about wilderness first-aid training to all members and provide recommendations as to what constitutes appropriate training for leading OSAT outings.

Section 9 - Service

A. The service committee shall be responsible for carrying the OSAT message to interested individuals or groups.

B. The service committee shall oversee service-related awards within the club.


Article V - Membership                                                                                             Top of page    Top of Bylaws Section

Section 1.

Membership in OSAT shall be open to members and friends of twelve step recovery groups without regard to race, creed, sex, sexual orientation, color, age, or dysfunction.

Section 2.

Dues shall be determined by the BOTS, The standard membership fee will cover one year, beginning on the day the fee is recorded on membership records.   Membership privileges will be revoked for members who do not renew their membership within 90 days after their membership lapses.

Section 3.

Persons who are eligible for membership, but have not paid dues will be considered guests for OSAT activities. In order to participate in any OSAT activity, an OSAT club indemnity and liability release form must be completed.

Article VI - Elections                                                                                                   Top of page    Top of Bylaws Section

Section 1.

The positions on the BOTS shall be filled by election from the general membership.

Section 2.

Nominations for the BOTS shall be made from the general membership.

Section 3.

To be eligible for the BOTS, or to vote in an election, a person must be a member in good standing of OSAT.

Section 4.

All elections shall be by secret ballot.

Section 5.

All general elections shall take place in November. Special elections shall be called as necessary.

Article VII - Amendments                                                                                        Top of page    Top of Bylaws Section 

Section 1.

An amendment to the by-laws may be proposed by any member in good standing.

Section 2.

Written notice of a proposed amendment shall be submitted to the BOTS and published on the club web site and announced through the club email broadcast system.

Section 3.

A proposed amendment to these by-laws shall pass by a single majority vote at a general meeting, at least 2 weeks subsequent to publication of said proposed amendment on the club web site and announcement through the club email broadcast system.

Article VIII - General Provisions                                                                               Top of page    Top of Bylaws Section

Section 1 - Meeting Protocol

A. Club meetings shall be facilitated by an individual from the BOTS, who shall provide the agenda for the evening. Henceforth, the facilitator shall be referred to as the chair.

B. All club meetings shall open with the serenity prayer, and the closed in the usual manner.

C. Club meetings should proceed in a "crisp and lively manner". It is requested that any and all side talk and cross talk be eliminated.

D. Minutes for each meeting shall be recorded by a volunteer from the general membership. The meeting minutes shall be forwarded to the communications committee for publication in the newsletter.

E. Standard meeting agenda is as follows:

Call to order
Serenity Prayer
Read & approve previous meeting minutes
Old business (if any)
Standing committee reports
Ad-Hoc committee reports (if any)
Special announcements
New business
Entertainment/special events

F. Any old business will be reported on by the committee responsible. Old business should be limited to specific proposals on items.

G. Committee reports should be kept as brief and concise as possible. If a committee requires an extended time for a presentation, it is requested that the committee request extra time in advance.

H. Unscheduled announcements may be made from the floor, if there is time. If someone requires extended time for a presentation, it is requested that the individual or group request the extra time in advance.

I. If any extended time is required for discussion o fa new business item, it is requested that the individual or group requests the extra time in advance.

J. For G, H, & I, in advance means at least 24 hours, extended time be request from the BOTS chair.

K. The chair has the authority and responsibility to keep order in the meeting. This means "cutting people off" who have exceeded the allotted time or quieting the room. This is a tough job, but someone has to do it. Therefore, just prior to closing, there will be a round of applause for the chair.

Section 2 - OSAT Traditions

A. Each OSAT activity has a designated leader. All participants in an activity will follow the suggestion of the leader regarding clothing, pace etc. and not separate from the group without the leader's permission.

B. OSAT hikes and climbs are designed for every skill level from "no skill at all" to "expert". Talk to the leader. The activity leader may refuse to allow a member to participate for lack of proper equipment, physical conditioning or skills.

C. OSAT accepts donations to purchase group equipment and/or pay expenses.

D. Each member, on any activity, should have the proper clothes and equipment, plus carry the "ten essentials", which are:

1. Map
2. Compass
3. Flashlight
4. Extra Food
5. Extra Clothing
6. Sunglasses
7. First Aid Kit
8. Pocket Knife
9. Waterproof Matches
10. Candle or Fire Starter

Section 3 - Club Equipment

A. Property or equipment purchased for OSAT with OSAT funds, or given to OSAT shall not be considered the property of any individual member or committee, but shall be known as club property.

B. As club property, it shall be entrusted to the custodial care of the climbing course committee, as provided for in Article IV, Section 4.

C. In the event that OSAT ceases to exist as an organized club, club property shall be dispersed in a manner agreed upon by the BOTS and climbing course committee.

All club property and equipment checked out to a member by the climbing course committee shall be the responsibility of that member regarding loss, negligent use, destruction, etc. compensation for the foregoing shall be limited to actual replacement cost of said property. Further, no member may sub-let any equipment without the prior knowledge of the climbing course committee.

Section 4 - Library

A. The Librarian shall be appointed by the BOTS.

B. The Librarian may chair a Library Committee as necessary to consider changes to policies and procedures, acquisitions, dispositions of assets, or other library-related issues. Proposed purchased acquisitions and any disposition of library assets must be approved by the BOTS.

C. The duties of the Librarian are:

1. to provide for access by club members to the OSAT Jimmy D Hinkhouse Memorial Library.
2. to provide for the library's continued safety and integrity.
3. to document all library policies and procedures, and secure approval of changes from the BOTS.
4. at least once per year, to report to the BOTS on the assets of the library (additions, dispositions, losses, gifts, etc.) and estimates of circulation statistics and characteristics.

Section 5 - OSAT Tradition Regarding Party Size

A. Party size for OSAT activities will adhere to the rules of the appropriate jurisdiction.

B. "Party size" for OSAT activities is defined as the number of persons (members or not) who leave the trail head under OSAT leadership and intend to attain the objective of the climb, regardless of how many leaders or sub-groups are designated. Parties traveling separate routes to and from the same objective under separate leadership are considered separate parties where their route and camp plans conform to the interpretation of the appropriate jurisdiction.

C. Party size does not include sherpas unless so considered by the appropriate jurisdiction. "Sherpas" are defined as people climbing with the primary climbing party who:

(a) do not plan to attain the objective of the climb, AND
(b) climb for one day (no overnight) of a multiple day climb, OR camp at a location different than the main party and rendezvous with the party during one day of the party's climb, AND
(c) carry group equipment which will be used by members of the party. One-day climbs cannot have sherpas.

D. Climb leaders are responsible for adhering to the party size limit.

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