A History of the Retired Men’s Association

How it all began

The idea for this Association surfaced in a conversation Wayne Clemens, the founder, had with one of his friends in Greenwich Connecticut- in 1998, where an RMA organization had been in place for over forty years and had become an influential force in the community. Wayne believed that such an organization could be formed in the Wayland/Sudbury area of MA. He discussed the RMA idea with some of his colleagues, who in turn contacted others.

These discussions led to the first meeting which took place in the First Parish Church, Wayland, MA on October 23, 1998.

Eighteen men attended the meeting.  The participants in that meeting defined the purpose of the organization, discussed volunteer activities and agreed to hold monthly meetings.  An organizing committee was formed consisting of Wayne Clemens; Karl Geiger; Ed Gottmann; Dick Griesel and John Kassabian.

 Charter Members of RMA –October 23, 1998

Joseph Angelosanto Paul Bledsoe Bernard Bloom Dan Claff Wayne Clemens
Tom Dunnigan Irving Erlichman Steve Espo Karl Geiger Ed Gottmann
Hollis Gray Richard Griesel Walter Griffin John Kassabian Frank Ricciardi
Edward Ross Matthew Slate Tom Sifferlen Richard Tatum Robert Vannerson

 The Organization  

At the first meeting Wayne passed around a cigar box with suggested donations of two dollars from each member.  This process was later replaced with an annual membership fee. The title “Cigar-Box Bulletin” stuck and became the name of the official publication of the organization.

The first issue of the Cigar-Box Bulletin was published, produced and distributed by Dick Griesel on October 23, 1998.  Dick went on to publish 51 editions of the Bulletin, and in addition maintained the members list, and managed the annual dues collection.  The Bulletin reports the activities and events of each meeting and is posted on the RMA website.  The members receive a published copy of the Bulletin  each month.

In December 2000 after two years of operation the R.M.A. was established as a non-profit Section 501(c)(4) Massachusetts corporation.

Directors were elected, who, under the provisions of the By-Laws, are responsible for selecting officers and additional directors, approving the budget and making all other corporate decisions.  The legal documents were prepared by attorney and R.M.A. member Ed Mendler.