Meeting Minutes: November 14, 2016

SPJ/LA Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

Monday, November 14, 2016

7 p.m.

Louise’s Trattoria

10645 W. Pico Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA 90064

Present: Joel Bellman, Stephanie Bluestein, Christina Cocca, Michael Fleeman, Sarah Favot, Richard Hendrickson, Elizabeth Marcellino, Frank Mottek, Richard Saxton, Julia Seifert, Lori Streifler, Alice Walton, Roberta Wax, Natalie Windsor, David Zahniser

I.               Approval of minutes from Oct. 10 board meeting

a.     Wax moved, Walton seconded to approve the minutes. Cocca, Zahniser, Hendrickson and Fleeman abstained. The motion carried.

II.             President’s report – Marcellino for Nonahal

a.     SPJ/LA is reviewing the national board structure and has issued a call for feedback and volunteers for online focus-group discussions. Marcellino encouraged the group to participate if interested.

b.     Christina Cocca has been invited to attend SPJ’s Scripps Leadership Program in Las Vegas in December. The board voted to cover her expenses and registration fee totaling $527. Bellman moved and Wax seconded to cover the cost. The motion carried.

III.           Treasurer’s report – Hendrickson (via email)

a.     The LGBT group’s mega mixer fee finally sent their check and will deposit by the time of the December report. All the scholarships winners have cashed their checks.

b.     Windsor moved to receive the treasurer’s report and Walton seconded. The motion carried.

IV.            Standing Committees –

a.     Awards – Marcellino

i.     The board reviewed the nominees for the 2016 Distinguished Journalist Awards, which were sent out via email to the board prior to the meeting. The board went into closed session for the vote.

ii.     The results are: R. Scott Moxley, Investigative Reporter for OC Weekly, for print under 90,000 circulation; Hector Becerra, California Editor, Los Angeles  Times, for print 90,000 or more circulation; Adrienne Alpert, Reporter, Producer and Host, Newsmakers, ABC7, for television; and Greg Habell, Editor KNX, for radio. The digital category was postponed pending an online vote. No FOI award will be given this year.

1.     UPDATE: The board voted via email to award the digital category to Jeremy Singer-Vine, Ken Bensinger, and Jessica Garrison from BuzzFeed News.

b.     Banquet – Walton

i.     No report

c.      Courts – Marcellino

i.     No report

d.     Diversity – Nonahal

i.     No report

e.     Ethics – Bluestein/Hendrickson

f.      Wax said a photo curator at the LA Public Library shared historical photos highlighting changes in journalistic ethics over time. She gave the example of rape victims’ names and addresses being routinely disclosed in news stories. Wax will review to see if photos could be the basis for an SPJ/LA ethics panel.

g.     FOI –Zahniser

i.     No report

h.     Generation J – Bluestein

i.     Bluestein said the event on Oct. 22 had about 200 high school students in attendance, some from as far as San Diego.

i.       Membership – Saxton

i.     Saxton just renewed his membership and said that renewal was easy online – if you fill out all the information in the form, you can renew chapter dues at the same time. Previously the local chapter did not pop up for him as an option. However, Saxton said, it is still possible to pay a membership fee without being prompted to consider a local chapter, because the completion of the form is not required. Saxton agreed to follow up with national to see if this could be changed.

j.       Nominations – Bellman

i.     Bellman said we have six seats up for nomination this year. Four people are running for reelection. Bellman encouraged the board to suggest candidates within two weeks.

k.     Scholarships – Audi

i.     No report

V.              Old Business

a.     Nov. 2 storytelling mixer at the Redwood – Peschiutta

i.     Mixer was fun!

VI.            New Business

a.     SPJ/LA Holiday Party – Dec. 7 – Mottek

i.     The holiday party will be at the Shanghai Grill on Dec. 7.

VII.          Next board meeting: Dec. 12 at Louise’s, 7 p.m.

VIII.          Adjournment

a.     Windsor moved to adjourn, Zahniser seconded. The motion carried and the meeting was adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,

Christina Cocca

 

 

 

Meeting Minutes: October 10, 2016

SPJ/LA Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

Monday, Oct. 10, 2016

7 p.m.

Louise’s Trattoria

10645 W. Pico Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA 90064

In attendance: Joel Bellman, Stephanie Bluestein, Sarah Favot, Khalil Garriott, Elizabeth Marcellino, Frank Mottek, Navid Nonahal, Richard Saxton, Lori Streifler, Jeff Wald, Roberta Wax, Alice Walton, Natalie Windsor.

I. Approval of minutes from Sept. 12 board meeting: On a motion by Wald, seconded by Bellman (with Favot abstaining) the minutes from the previous board meeting were approved.

II. President’s Report: Nonahal thanked Bluestein for attending Excellence in Journalism ’16 in New Orleans and serving as a chapter delegate along with Lauren Bartlett. Nonahal announced that at EIJ ’16, the chapter received an award for chapter communications and said it will be framed and placed in the chapter’s office. She thanked Walton and Christina Cocca for their social media efforts and said. With regret, Nonahal said she would accept Wald’s letter of resignation, which was necessary due to work commitments. She warmly thanked Wald for his contribution to SPJ-LA and wished him well during what would be his last board meeting.

III. Treasurer’s Report: Hendrickson was absent so Nonahal delivered the report. There are two outstanding checks—one to the Franchise Tax Board and another to the chapter’s accountant—that have not been cashed. It will be looked into. On a motion by Windsor, seconded by Wald the reporter was received.

IV. Standing Committees:

Awards—Marcellino said she sent out a notice about nominees, which included the deadline of Oct. 21. The board will choose honorees at its Nov. 14 meeting.

Banquet—Walton announced the banquet will be Thursday, Jan. 26 at the Omni Hotel. The reservation has already been made.

Courts—No report

Diversity—No report

Ethics—A panel discussion exploring sexist and racist media coverage of the Summer Olympics was held Sept. 22 at USC Annenberg. Panelists were Jackie Pepper, a sports journalist who produced short-form videos for Yahoo Sports during the Olympics; David Wharton, lead Olympic reporter for the L.A. Times and affiliated newspapers who was in Rio; and Marcella De Veaux, Ph.D., a tenured Associate Professor of Journalism at California State University, Northridge (CSUN); Bluestein was the moderator. Board members in attendance were Favot, Michael Fleeman, Dick Hendrickson, Marcellino, Nonahal and Wax. Public attendance was lacking and a greater push will be made in the future to notify those connected with the host venue to ensure that locals are aware of the event.

FOI—no report

Generation J—A journalism competition, expected to be attend by 200 high school students, is scheduled at CSUN on Oct. 22. On a motion by Mottek, seconded by Bellman the board approved a $500 contribution towards expenses.

Membership—Saxton suggested making a push to get newsrooms to join SPJ as a group. He will send emails to newsroom leaders asking them to share with their colleagues. It was suggested that we ask a student to capture testimonials at the banquet that could be used for a promotional video in exchange for complimentary attendance. Mottek said we need to push for more membership millennials. Marcellino suggested we should let the public know that if they join SPJ before the banquet, the discount they receive will cover their chapter dues for a year.

Nominations—no report

Scholarships—no report

V. Old Business—The last karaoke mixer for 2016 was on Oct. 4. Three people were in attendance, plus Navid. Claudia is the life of the mixer. Navid says we need to move on to another event. One month, board games, storytelling. Once or twice a year would be good–Navid. It would be more special if it wasn’t as often.

VI. New Business–On Nov. 2, a storytelling mixer titled, “Horror Stories from the Campaign Trail,” is planned with L.A. Press Club at the Redwood.

Wax said she has an idea for a program at the downtown Central Library working in conjunction Wendy Horowitz, the librarian of the photo collection.

Windsor distributed two articles about the issue of media embargos. Following some board discussion, in which Saxton said it was discussed at a previous regional conference, Windsor said she will send the information to SPJ Ethics Committee Chair Andrew Seaman. It was mentioned that perhaps there could be a panel discussion on the topic at a future national conference.

VII. The next meeting will be Monday, Nov. 14, 2016 at 7 p.m. at Louise’s Trattoria in West L.A.

VIII. Adjournment—Mottek adjourned the meeting at 8:40 p.m. in honor of Wald’s excellent service to SPJ. Garriott seconded the motion.

Submitted by Stephanie Bluestein

 

 

 

Meeting Minutes: September 12, 2016

SPJ/LA Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

Monday, Sept. 12, 2016

7 p.m.

Louise’s Trattoria

10645 W. Pico Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA 90064

 

Present: Tammy Audi, Stephanie Bluestein, Christina Cocca, Michael Fleeman, Richard Hendrickson, Elizabeth Marcellino, Frank Mottek, Navid Nonahal, Alice Walton, Roberta Wax, Natalie Windsor, David Zahniser.

Guest: Lauren Bartlett

I.               Approval of minutes from July 11 board meeting

a.     Wax motioned, Zahniser seconded. Bluestein abstained. Motion carried.

II.             President’s report – Nonahal

a.     Discuss issues coming up at the 2016 Excellence in Journalism convention – Lauren Bartlett

i.     The board voted online to have Bartlett and Bluestein as the chapter’s delegates for the convention.

ii.     Bartlett said one of the big issues coming up is about representation at conventions for people not affiliated with chapters. The second issue is regarding tweaking the bylaws and possibly creating a new membership category called “SPJ Supporters,” which would help redefine the Associate membership category. These supporters would help attract people interested in journalism and protecting the First Amendment but who may not be practicing journalism. This category is for people who are not necessarily qualified to be full members.

iii.     Nonahal asked whether it would help or hurt the chapters’ memberships in the long run. Bartlett said it more directly affects national because these Associates would support the larger mission and cause of SPJ. Bartlett said she does not see any direct impact on local chapters.

iv.     The chapter delegates will vote on these matters at the convention.

v.     Another issue that will come up at the national convention: a resolution submitted by the SPJ Ethics Committee. Essentially SPJ would “speak out against any person or group using money to manipulate or silence the media.” Zahniser mentioned the Gawker/Thiel and Ailes/NY Mag suits. Marcellino inquired whether it is better to resolve general principles than call out a specific person.

III.           Treasurer’s report – Hendrickson (via email)

a.     The BOA balance on 8/1/16 is $40,861.83. Statement on 8/31/16 is $40,853.84.

b.     Balance on the books as of 8/31/16 is $40,518.84.

c.      Morgan Stanley balance as of 8/3/16 is $71,292,94. 7/1/16 was $71,219.82, with a gain of $73.12.

i.     The LGBT group from the mega mixer still owes SPJLA money. Separately, the scholarship reward checks will be getting sent to the recipients soon.

ii.     Hendrickson will send the next two reports via email due to his teaching schedule conflicting with upcoming board meetings.

d.     Windsor motioned to receive the report and Zahniser seconded. The report was received.

IV.            Standing Committees

a.     Awards – Marcellino

i.     Marcellino mentioned 2016 award recipients receiving their awards in the earlier part of 2017. Walton said we could check on venue availability for January, and Wax said that there was a lag due to waiting on the availability of the speaker. Nonahal agreed that we should move up the banquet date.

ii.     Marcellino will set a deadline for board members to suggest nominees. Suggestions after the deadline will not be considered.

b.     Banquet – Walton

i.     No report.

c.      Courts – Marcellino

i.     No report.

d.     Diversity – Hendrickson

i.     No report.

e.     Ethics – Bluestein/Hendrickson

i.     Panel discussion on sexist and racist media coverage of the 2016 Summer Olympics on Thursday, Sept. 22. Bluestein will moderate. Two of the four panelists were in Rio covering the Olympics.

f.      FOI –Zahniser

i.     No report.

g.     Generation J – Bowen

i.     No report.

h.     Membership – Saxton

i.     Ad hoc membership committee – Marcellino/Nonahal – No report

i.       Nominations – Bellman

i.     No report.

j.       Scholarships – Audi

i.     SPJ/LA’s 2016 scholarship winners:

1.     Emily Lee: Ken Inouye Memorial Scholarship for $1,500

2.     Angel Carreras: Bill Farr Scholarship for $1,500

ii.     The board voted via email to approve the winners.

iii.     Audi said the board will give $1,500 each to the winners instead of the usual $1,000 because there are only two recipients this year and they are very deserving. Additionally, the chapter did not have to use any money from the Morgan Stanley account to fund the scholarship money.

V.              Old Business

a.     Aug. 3 and Sept. 7 karaoke mixers at the Redwood recap – Peschiutta/Walton

i.     Walton said Peschiutta plans to do one more karaoke-themed mixer for the year.

VI.            New Business

a.     Storytelling mixer with the LA Press Club – Peschiutta

i.     Nonahal said she is hoping to do a mixer in November with the LA Press Club. Last year the theme was Halloween. Nonahal said Peschiutta needs help planning and getting people involved. Any board members who can help should reach out via email.

VII.          Next board meeting: Oct. 10 at Louise’s, 7 p.m. – Please note that our October board meeting is on the second Monday of the month.

VIII.        Adjournment

a.     Zahniser motioned to adjourn, Windsor seconded. The motion carried and the meeting was adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,

Christina Cocca

Meeting Minutes: July 11, 2016

SPJ/LA Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

Monday, July 11, 2016

7 p.m.

Louise’s Trattoria

10645 W. Pico Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA 90064

Present: Joel Bellman, Christina Cocca, Sarah Favot, Michael Fleeman, Khalil Garriott, Richard Hendrickson, Frank Mottek, Navid Nonahal, Lori Streifler, Jeff Wald, Alice Walton, Roberta Wax, Natalie Windsor, David Zahniser.

 

I.               Approval of minutes from June 6 board meeting

a.     Wald moved to approve, Wax seconded. Walton abstained.

II.             President’s report – Nonahal

a.     The board will need to vote on the delegates to go to the national convention. Anyone interested will notify Nonahal by the end of the month. Votes can be via email.

III.           Treasurer’s report – Hendrickson

a.     Hendrickson said we have not yet been billed for the chapter’s taxes. Payments from the other organizations that joined the Mega Mixer are in process. The contributing groups including SPJ/LA will each pay about $181. Two of the groups said they did not have the budget to contribute. Peschiutta paid up front for the event but the board is reimbursing her as well as collecting payments.

b.     Bank of America balance as of 6/1/16 is $38,466.26. Balance as of 7/1 is $39,956.27. Balance on books as of 7/1 is $40,396.53. Morgan Stanley balance as of 6/1 is $70,608.52. As of 7/1, balance is $71,130.61, an increase of $522.09.

c.      Windsor moved to receive the report, Zahniser seconded. The motion carried.

IV.            Standing Committees –

a.     Awards – Marcellino – No report

b.     Banquet – Walton– No report

c.      Courts – Marcellino

i.     RTNA and SPJ/LA are working together to try and insure that broadcast stations are granted appropriate access to the downtown criminal arraignments court. The court PIO has reached out to the judge who says he grants access when there is no objection raised by the defense based on issues of identification. Marcellino is hopeful that the conversation will be sufficient to prompt a change — as the stations allege there was a broader denial of access — but are monitoring the situation.

d.     Diversity – Hendrickson – No report

e.     Ethics – Bluestein/Hendrickson – No report

f.      FOI –Zahniser – No report

g.     Generation J – Bowen – No report

h.     Membership – Saxton

i.     Ad hoc membership committee – Marcellino/Nonahal – No report

ii.     Hendrickson said a new member notified him that he joined and paid local chapter dues but was not put on our correct mailing list. This has since been resolved, but he did not receive any of our releases for about six months. The board may consider extending his membership for the same amount of time at no cost. Nonahal will reach out to Linda Hall regarding this.

i.       Nominations – Bellman – No report

j.       Scholarships – Audi – No report. Audi will email an update in August.

V.              Old Businesss

a.     June 11 video editing workshop recap – Fleeman/Bluestein

i.     Fleeman and Windsor said the video editing workshop went well, and all RSVPs plus an additional two people attended. Fleeman said he had to turn away about 20 people, so the board may host another one of these workshops. The majority of attendees were SPJ/LA members.

b.     July 6 mega mixer update – Peschiutta/Walton

i.     Walton said the mixer was crowded and response was great. Hendrickson said it looked like at least 100 people came. Two attendees did not end up making it to the area we reserved because of the stairs and no elevator option at the venue.

VI.            New Business

a.     Tentative dates for upcoming mixers at the Redwood:

i.     Aug. 3

ii.     Sept. 7

iii.     Oct. 5

iv.     Nov. 2

b.     Streifler said national is offering the film “Spotlight” at no cost to chapters to show for an event, but the dates were preset by national. Nonahal reached out to check on date flexibility, and she will work on clarifying whether we can put on this event.

c.      Mottek mentioned that SAG-AFTRA is interested in possibly working together with SPJ/LA organizing a reporter safety workshop or presentation.  Nonahal suggested September. Mottek said he would check on availability.

VII.          Next board meeting: Sept. 12 at Louise’s, 7 p.m. – No board meeting in August.

VIII.        Adjournment

a.     Windsor moved to adjourn, Wald seconded. The motion carried, and the meeting was adjourned.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Christina Cocca

 

Meeting Minutes: June 6, 2016

SPJ/LA Board of Directors June Meeting Minutes

Monday, June 6, 2016

7 p.m.

Louise’s Trattoria

10645 W. Pico Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA 90064

Present: Joel Bellman, Stephanie Bluestein, Christina Cocca, Sarah Favot, Michael Fleeman, Khalil Garriott, Elizabeth Marcellino, Navid Nonahal, Lori Streifler, Jeff Wald, Roberta Wax, Natalie Windsor, David Zahniser.

 

I.               Approval of minutes from May 2 board meeting: Wald moved, Windsor seconded. Zahniser abstained. The motion passed.

II.             President’s report – Nonahal

a.     SPJ national conference, Sept. 18-20, 2016 in New Orleans:

i.     Windsor moved to have Bluestein represent the chapter as a delegate at the conference, with the chapter covering travel, hotel and conference registration expenses. Wax seconded. The motion passed.

ii.     Garriott asked about attending as another delegate sponsored by the chapter. Nonahal said if the chapter covers his expenses, the same would have to be extended to all other board members who attend the conference as delegates. She added that the chapter bylaws restrict the chapter’s budget to cover one person. In response to Garriott’s suggestion that the chapter made a profit at it’s annual banquet and that it could afford paying for additional delegates, Nonahal suggested that additional money would be better spent going toward scholarships, events and workshops for members. Marcellino suggested considering a more open-ended system regarding the chapter paying for additional delegates’ expenses to conferences in the future. Nonahal agreed for the board to have a future discussion as to whether the chapter should cover more than one delegate’s registration fee, which is $230 for 2016.

iii.     Bellman asked how many board members have attended national conferences in the past. Wax said as many as five have attended, but the chapter only paid for one member. Nonahal said the two delegates, herself and Bluestein, split the costs for the SPJ regional conference. Garriott asked if the chapter would cover his registration fee out of the cap total of about $1,000, and Nonahal said if so, the same would need to be offered to other board members attending the 2016 national conference as delegates.

iv.     Zahniser said the board should be willing to consider changing circumstances, such as employers not covering conference costs like previous years. He suggested the chapter to pay half of the registration fee for up to three board members who attend the national conference as delegates in addition to the sponsored delegate. Bellman agreed with covering half of the registration costs as an investment, but not adding a precedent. Zahniser said the board should discuss a policy change at the January retreat.

v.     Zahniser moved for the chapter to cover half of the 2016 SPJ national conference registration fee, which is $115, for three board members, in addition to Bluestein. Bellman seconded. The board voted in favor. Motion passed. Wax moved that additional board members whose partial registration fee would be covered by the chapter would have to attend the conference as delegates. Windsor seconded. The board voted in favor. Motion passed.

b.     Chapter’s annual report – Nonahal thanked Cocca for completing the annual report and said that it has been submitted to national.

c.      Chapter’s 2015 taxes have been completed by Hendrickson and Nonahal and have been turned over to the chapter’s CPA for filing, Nonahal said.

III.           Treasurer’s report – Hendrickson (via email)

a.     Nonahal presented the report in Hendrickson’s absence, as well as bank statements. Nonahal said Walton has received all the money outstanding from the banquet sponsors.

b.     BofA balance of 5/1 is $24,425.80. 6/1 is $38,466.26. Balance on books as of 6/1 is $40,380.52.

c.      Bellman moved to receive the report, Windsor seconded. The motion passed.

IV.            Standing Committees

a.     Awards – Marcellino

i.     No report.

b.     Banquet – Walton

i.     No report.

c.      Courts – Marcellino

i.     Marcellino said courts are rolling out an electronic case management system so journalists will have easier access to court documents, at least for civil cases.

ii.     Marcellino said an arraignment court judge in downtown LA has been blocking media with cameras. The PIO is looking into this and Marcellino will follow up.

iii.     The location for interviews may be changing at the courthouse.

d.     Diversity – Hendrickson

i.     No report.

e.     Ethics – Bluestein/Hendrickson

i.     No report.

f.      FOI –Zahniser

i.     No report.

g.     Generation J – Bowen

i.     No report.

h.     Membership – Saxton

i.     Ad hoc membership committee – Marcellino/Nonahal

1.     Marcellino sent “thank you” emails to everyone who attended the banquet. Nonahal said a follow-up email will go out.

i.       Nominations – Bellman

i.     No report.

j.       Scholarships – Audi

i.     Nonahal reported on behalf of Audi: The deadline for this year is Aug. 5 so that the students would be rewarded before the new school year. Nonahal said the board should vote via email since the board does not meet in August.

V.              Old Business

a.     May 4 karaoke mixer update – Peschiutta/Walton

i.     Nonahal thanked Peschiutta for organizing another successful mixer and reported that the turnout was great. Windsor has a beautiful voice. Nonahal apologized for singing out of tune.

VI.            New Business

a.     June 8 karaoke mixer, Redwood – Peschiutta/Walton

b.     Video editing workshop, June 11 – Fleeman/Bluestein

i.     Fleeman said about 30 people have RSVP’d for the event, which is over capacity for the space. Nonahal suggested holding another one of these workshops since the response was so great.

c.      Peschuitta is sending out a letter to other journalism organizations for a mega mixer. Streifler suggested considering a different venue than the last mega mixer.

VII.          Next board meeting: July 11 at Louise’s, 7 p.m.

VIII.          Adjournment

a.     Bluestein moved to adjourn the meeting in memory of Keith Goldstein, who was the board’s distinguished journalist in 2014. Windsor seconded. Meeting was adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,

Christina Cocca