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

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