As described in Part 2 of this Manual, the body now known as the S-Anon Board of Trustees was formerly called the S-Anon International Committee (SIC). The SIC came into existence in 1989. It was composed of volunteer representatives from each region, who made recommendations that were brought to the fellowship for approval. At that time Business Meetings were held in conjunction with the semi-annual SA/S-Anon conventions, or “conferences,” as they were then called. Recommendations were presented and voted upon at those Business Meetings. When the S-Anon fellowship was very young, this method of “conference approval” was the best that could be devised at the time, given the financial resources and level of organization. As
S-Anon grew and developed, a more formal process was needed to ensure all groups had the opportunity to participate in and be represented during decision making that would affect S-Anon as a whole.
At an historic meeting of the SIC in Nashville, TN, in July 2001, far-reaching structural changes were approved. The SIC adopted a set of bylaws that changed the name of the S-Anon International Committee to S-Anon International Family Groups, Inc. Board of Trustees (BOT). The Regional Representatives to the SIC at that time were given the new title of “Regional Trustee.” A number of standing committees were created, some terminology related to the service structure was changed, and most importantly, the Twelve Concepts of Al-Anon were adapted and adopted for use by S-Anon.
The new Board of Trustees recognized the need for a forum where the issues and policies affecting S-Anon as a whole could be discussed with representatives of the fellowship, and formally approved the motion to conduct a World Service Conference (WSC). At that time, the World Service Conference Committee (WSCC) was also created, and the Committee began to coordinate the First Annual S-Anon World Service Conference. The WSCC presented the following motion to the BOT: “Move to have a yearly Delegate Conference at the International Conventions in January and discontinue the Business Meetings completely.” The motion carried.
On July 13, 2002, at the Business Meeting at the Portland, OR, International Convention, the WSCC presented the plan to begin to hold an annual World Service Conference.
The San Diego, CA, International Convention was the venue for the first World Service Conference. Following communication by mail with the S-Anon Groups in 2003, Delegates were selected, and motions were submitted. The first WSC was attended by 28 members; 11 motions were addressed and resolved. The proceedings of the first and all subsequent WSCs are available from the WSO.