Meeting Minutes: Jan. 26, 2019

SPJ/LA Board of Directors retreat meeting minutes
Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019
At a board member’s home

Meeting called to order at 10:02 a.m.

Members present:
Tom Bray, Ashanti Hopkins , Kathryn Mora, Julia Wick, Frank Mottek, Richard Saxton, Alice Walton, Elizabeth Marcellino, Linda Bowen, Joel Bellman, Lori Streifler, David Zahniser, Roberta Wax, Stephanie Bluestein, Natalie Windsor, Jason Lewis

I. Approval of minutes from Dec. 3, 2018 Motion passed. 1 against.

Introduction of new board members. Carolina Garcia and Jason Lewis
Introduction of associate board members. Nathan Solis and Penny Arévalo

II. President’s report
Las Vegas will host the Region 11 conference on March 29-31.

III. Elected and associated board members assignments- Bluestein
March 20 networking/social event. At the Omni Hotel.

IV. 2019 SPJ/LA committee assignments- Bluestein
Assignment sheet was passed around.

V. Treasurer’s Report- Marcellino
Marcellino read the treasurer’s report and reported on the bank balance as of Jan.1.

Motion to receive the treasurer’s report by Joel Bellman, second by Natalie Windsor. Motion passes.

VI. Discussion about Distinguished Journalist Awards
Five awards given out. Radio, TV, digital, print large, print small.
Discussion on re-evaluating the terms. Print and digital have a lot of cross over.
Awards committee will hold a meeting to discuss this topic more in depth.

VII. Discussion about scholarships
● Report on 2018 Holiday Party on Dec. 5 – Mottek and Nonahal
● Bluestein said that the quartet was amazing and totally made the party. The party was on the same night as the AAJA mixer, which may have hurt some attendance. Bellman suggested reaching out to other journalism groups in the future to make sure we are not on the same night. Nonahal said that we had 32 people attend in total.
● The meeting adjourned for lunch at 11:55 a.m.
● The meeting restarted at 12:45 p.m.
● Calendar: Bluestein led a discussion of the calendar. She suggested that Sunshine Week would be a good time to plan an FOI event.
● Brainstorm programming ideas – All . Wick suggested panels on cannabis, homelessness and L.A. as a food scene. Bray added gentrification and NIMBYs vs. YIMBYs. Bray also suggested a workshop on fair use. Mottek suggested tours of the Los Angeles Times or potentially partnering with Spectrum. Blaize-Hopkins raised some options for Generation J, including something that would be a half panel, half speed dating-style meet and greet on the changing nature of the industry. Blaize-Hopkins also suggested VR and AR for storytelling as a Saturday workshop. Blaize-Hopkins also suggested creating more of a communication line between not just SPJ campus chapters but also campus newsrooms. Blaize-Hopkins also suggested using this as a way to sponsor newsroom tours, bringing students as potential interns. In doing this, we could position ourselves as bridge between students and newsrooms. Blaize-Hopkins also suggested better collaboration with other journalism affinity groups on attendance (half the work, double the attendance). Zahniser emailed in suggesting a reporting in Mexico panel. Bluestein suggested a moratorium on book signing events. Saxton suggested a panel on covering entertainment. Solis suggested a panel on covering racism and the age of Trump. Mottek suggested something on covering Silicon Beach. Windsor suggested a panel on responses to covering traumatic situations. Bray suggested a panel on covering the Catholic church in Southern California. Arevalo suggested something on the online bullying of journalists. Ashanti suggested holding events at the SMC theater. Other potential venues were discussed.
● We broke up into small groups for ten minutes to discuss committees and then reconvened at 2:12 p.m. as a large group.
● Bluestein reported on the PIO panel. Bluestein attended as well as Marcellino and Mora. Attendance was only five, but beyond that, it was a really strong panel.
● Banquet update – Walton said that the banquet will be on March 20. Walton seconded Bluestein’s earlier comment encouraging everyone to attend. Walton said that we have already sold three tables, including tables to the L.A. Times, SCNG and the family of the radio honoree.
● Run Gomez sponsorship – Bluestein updated the group on the potential sponsorship opportunity. Wick moved to approve, Windsor seconded. All voted in favor.
● Next board meeting: Monday, Feb. 11 at Louise’s, 7 p.m.
● Adjournment in memory of KTLA News Anchor Chris Burrous. Windsor moved to adjourn, Walton seconded. Meeting adjourned at 2:30 p.m.

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