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




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