This is one of a series of Q&A articles with East Kingdom Officers. The Gazette wishes to thank Maestra Ignacia la Ciega, East Kingdon Exchequer, for answering our questions.
Please describe your job responsibilities. The job responsibilities of the Kingdom Chancellor of the Exchequer encompass several areas. The most obvious is the managing of the kingdom funds and financial reporting of those funds. Working to ensure all the groups in the kingdom are in compliance with the Society and East Kingdom policy, procedures and laws is another large responsibility. Of course there is always the need to respond to an assortment of inquiries and requests from the various groups, individuals and from Society. There are many responsibilities that fall within the very broad areas listed above. I will not bore everyone with those details.
What do you enjoy about this activity? I enjoy working with numbers and with puzzles, so digging in a report to find the reason it is not adding up correctly is fun and rewarding. These is a logic to numbers that is always consistent and predictable, two things I tend to favor. I like having a reason to meet people from different groups and having a common footing area of focus to start conversations. I also find I do like to fill a need when there is a need, and the exchequer positions are an absolute need, for without them we would no longer exist.
Do you have a goal for your term? My biggest goal right now is simple. I would like to have all the groups in the East doing complete and consistent reporting each quarter. There are several things that can help make that happen, like having more training available and having several more deputies to work with the various groups to help me ensure we are staying in compliance. I would also encourage more people to show appreciation to the exchequers in the local groups, they do amazing amounts of work that no one ever sees, so we all can enjoy our hobby of living history.
Are you currently looking for any deputies?Yes, I would like several more deputies. Aside from the regional deputies that do reviews of the reports as they come in, training deputies would be very helpful. The Tir Mara region is one area that a deputy would be a big help, especially since I do not speak any French. Some of the regions are very large, so for those regions a second deputy would be very welcome. Training deputies – I would like a couple of those as well. There is always a new exchequer that wants training or an experienced exchequer looking to understand something more than they currently do. Training materials are always in need of updating, so that is also in the shadows waiting for someone to take it on. I recently took on an administrative deputy, his first project is to organize the exchequer warranting process and files, and then he is also working on the book review scheduling.
What was your first event? And what made you stay?My very first event, was Bjorn’s Ceilidh, in Concordia of the Snows. The local members made an effort to interact with people they did not know (or recognize as I later discovered). They were so willing to talk about the things they did and showed a lot of enthusiasm when talking about it. The effort people put into engaging in conversation went a long way in getting me to come back at the beginning. That quickly changed to seeing friends and learning or teaching new things.
Which people made an impact on you in the SCA and why? I have to say that Baron Emerson G. True was one of the first people that had an impact on me. I was on the group’s discussion list and had attended only one A&S meeting and one event. Fabric was needed for the next meeting so I said I was willing to go to the store or meet someone there in order that we have it for the meeting. Emerson was the person that I met up with for that outing. He encouraged the pomp and circumstance, and was the reason I became the Baronial herald shortly after joining the group. Baroness Lucia and Baron Baltasar (then he was Soichero) both encouraged me to try a variety of different things and they both took me under their wings as I did that. The first event I was a steward for, was their investiture. Which lead to my running many more events over the years.
Could you share with us a moment – or several moments – that describe what makes the SCA special for you?There was one particular year at Pennsic when My lord and 3 of our ‘sons’ were all actually fighting. We were on the fighting field with 2 of our ‘daughters’ sending the men off to war. It was one of those moments when it feels like you are really there in that place and time. I was giving each of them a piece of my clothing (not an entire sleeve) to remind them of my love and telling them to stay safe and come back to me. Knowing that they would be with a dearly beloved Knight, the Baron and the King meant they would be in the company of proven warriors but also that they would be in the deepest of the fray. I have had many very personally special moments over the years. Some that make my heart truly sing, have been those times I have created a scroll for someone dear to me, and the personal touches and research done show so completely when they see it. Knowing that the person is so touched by what you have created for them, not for the courts or for the kudos, but simply for what it means to them personally. Most recently, in my current position, I was very touched after doing an online training session with an exchequer. The session started with the person feeling like they could not manage the spreadsheet we use; they were very confused, and the stress was apparent in the voice. By the end of the 1.5 hour session I could hear the confidence in the voice and knew the exchequer was feeling very capable of dealing with the position. Of course there were profuse thank you’s but it really was they change in the voice and the confidence that made the entire thing very special for me.
In service to the keeping of the coffers. Ignacia