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Zion Cemetery May 2022 Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes of Zion Cemetery Preservation & Maintenance Society Board Meeting
May 19th, 2022

The meeting was called to order at 4:33 p.m. on May 19th, 2022 by Fred Hearns.

Board Members Present:
Fred Hearns
Leroy Moore
Pastor Byron Pressley
Jeraldine Williams
Reva Iman
Richard Gonzmart 


  1. Motion to approve March 2022 and April 2022 minutes was made by Leroy Moore, Jeraldine Williams second. Motion passes, minutes approved.


  1. Update on Private Owned Parcels Acquisition
    1. A meeting will be scheduled with Tampa Housing Authority, the city, and the two private owners. Leroy and Ocea Wynn have traded phone calls and are trying to schedule for sometime soon.
    2. Vacancies on the Board and Nominations
      1. Currently, there is one lineal descendent vacancy on the Board. We are looking for someone to fill the seat.
      2. Ms. Williams recommended inviting the community to come out to Robles Park and look at the banners to recognize any familiar names.
      3. The board is creating an event to raise awareness about Zion and invite lineal descendants to an opportunity to serve on the Board. Ms. Williams, Leroy, Fred, and Pastor Byron Pressley will work together to create an Activities Committee. The Activities Committee will come together to brainstorm activities and ways to get the word out about Zion Cemetery. Pastor Byron Pressley recommended the "Back to School" theme.
    3. Update on State & Local Historic Markers
      1. Rodney was not present in the meeting. Fred Hearns reviewed draft eight, allowing Board members to make any edits. The board will inform Rodney and Fred Hearns if they have any more comments
      2. Leroy Moore motioned to adopt this language in "substantial form" that allows the chair to gather additional comments from board members before it gets printed. Pastor Byron Pressley second, Motion passes.
        1. This was approved "in the substantial form" by the Board, which will allow for minor changes. This will not come back to the Board for future a vote
    4. Fundraising committee update
      1. No further update at this time.
    5. Update on Zion Congressional Funding Request
      1. Congresswomen Kathy Castor sent an invitation to submit for earmark funding. A request was made for four million dollars for Zion Cemetery. The proposal was reviewed by their committee and, unfortunately, not approved. It was not given funding consideration because of the small contribution from the local levels. Congresswomen Kathy Castor encourages us to continue, primarily locally, to build more support from a funding standpoint.
      2. Shared new video broadcasted by 10TampaBay "Tampa Internal Cemetery Task Force Transparency."
        1. Fred Hearns had no idea the City staff was speaking internally about Zion. Fred Hearns sent a letter to the City requesting a meeting with Mayor, a response was sent to Tampa Housing Authority, but not Fred Hearns
        2. Pastor Byron Pressley recommended sending a second letter to the City.
        3. .Ms.Williams found two family members St. Joseph Burial Ground and Zion Cemetery, in two separate burial grounds that were erased completely.
        4. Reva Iman requested the Board to be notified when any type of these meetings is begin held.
        5. The Tampa Housing Authority has took a major loss of 10% of units, cost of relocation, testing, etc. Tampa Housing Authority has stopped all business on the land, and the other two owners need to come together and do the same.
        6. Toyin Hargrett, City of Tampa confirmed that Ocea Wynn responded to the Board on October 6th, 2021. The letter was read on the record.


  1. Member Update
    1. Richard Gonzmart and Dennis Creech are resigning from the Board. A written resignation was provided from each. Leroy Moore motioned to accept Richard Gonzmart and Dennis Creech's resignations, Reva Iman second. Motion approved.
    2. Richard Gonzmart donated 5,000 dollars toward the marker for Zion.


  1. The next Board meeting is scheduled for June 16th, 2022
  2. Tampa Internal Cemetery Task Force Transparency"


Fred Hearns made a motion to Adjourn Hearing no objections, Meeting adjourned.