MEETING OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
SOCIETY OF PROFESSIONAL JOURNALISTS
MAY 19, 2007
MEETING CALLED TO ORDER
With President Christine Tatum presiding, the meeting of the board of directors of the Society of Professional Journalists was called to order at 8:34 a.m. on Saturday, May 19, 2007, at the Eugene S. Pulliam National Journalism Center in Indianapolis.
In addition to President Tatum, the following were present for all or portions of the meeting: President-Elect Clint Brewer; Secretary-Treasurer Dave Aeikens; Immediate Past President David Carlson; Vice President for Campus Chapter Affairs Mead Loop; Directors at-Large Sally Lehrman and Molly McDonough; Advisers at-Large Sue Kopen Katcef and Neil Ralston; Campus Representatives Erin Smith and John Patrick; Regional Directors Carolyn James, Ann Augherton, Holly Fisher, Kevin Smith, Richard Roth, Gordon Govier, Travis Poling, Deb Hurley, Nathan Isaacs, Paul McAfee and Sonny Albarado; and Executive Director Terrence G. Harper.
Sigma Delta Chi Foundation board members in attendance were: Steve Geimann, Robert Leger, Fred Brown, Al Leeds, Mac McKerral, Irwin Gratz, Howard Dubin, Todd Gillman and Al Cross.
Staff members present for the meeting were Associate Executive Directors Chris Vachon and Julie Grimes, Editor Joe Skeel; Programs Coordinator Heather Porter; Communications Manager Beth King; Web Administrator Billy OKeefe; Membership Coordinator Linda Hall, Bookkeeper Shondra Price, Administrative Assistant Shaleen Hazelbaker, Membership Manager Wendy Hoke, Advertising Sales Manager Mary Morgan, Graphic Designer Andrew Farkas; and Controller Jake Koenig.
Upon proper motion and second by Loop and Isaacs, respectively, the board approved the following items:
Approved the minutes of its April 7, 2007 meeting;
Permitted campus chapters to count Project Watchdog programs for other primary mission topics;
Eliminated the photo illustration category from SDX Awards;
Limited submitted images in SDX Awards breaking news photo category to no more than three;
Changed the wording to permit podcasts and internet-only radio/TV for SDX and Mark of Excellence Awards.
Upon proper motion and second by Aeikens and Loop, respectively, the board approved a request to elevate from provisional to active status the Snake River Pro Chapter.
Upon proper motion and second by Brewer and Loop, respectively, the board approved a request to elevate from provisional to active status the Sacred Heart University Campus Chapter.
Upon proper motion and second by Carlson and Loop, respectively, the board accepted the application for reactivation of the Drake University Chapter.
Upon proper motion and second by Govier and Poling, respectively, the board accepted the application to reactivate the charter of the Milwaukee Pro Chapter.
Upon proper motion and second by McDonough and Carlson, respectively, the board accepted the application to reactivate the charter of the St. Louis Pro Chapter.
Upon proper motion and second by James and Loop, respectively, the board created the City University of New York Graduate School Satellite Chapter of the New York Deadline Club.
Upon proper motion and second by Hurley and Poling, respectively, the board accepted the application for provisional status for the Wyoming Pro Chapter.
Upon proper motion and second by Aeikens and Hurley, respectively, the board removed the Inland Northwest Pro Chapter from probation and returned it to chartered status.
Upon proper motion and second by Kevin Smith and Brewer, respectively, the board removed the Detroit Pro Chapter from probation and returned it to chartered status.
Upon proper motion and second by Albarado and Fisher, respectively, the board placed the following chapters on inactive status: Mobile Pro, Northwest Ohio Pro, Middle Georgia Pro, Shreveport Pro and West Virginia Pro.
SMALL GROUP WORK: IMMEDIATE CONCERNS & LONG RANGE/STRATEGIC PLANNING
The board spent several hours working in small groups to brainstorm and discuss issues in effort to identify short term and long term goals for the Society.
The Immediate Concerns discussed were: National Leadership, Organization Relevance, Membership: Mid-Career, Membership: Generation J, and Spring Conferences.
The Long Range/Strategic Planning topics were: Society Operations, Press Freedoms, Professional Development, Member Engagement, Media Credibility, and Inclusiveness.
The staff will review and organize the results of the small group work and present it back to the board for next steps.
FY 2008 BUDGET
Aeikens reviewed the organizations budget proposal and explained that the Finance Committee met the previous day and reviewed the budget in detail. Koenig explained how the budget was prepared and answered questions from the board.
Upon proper motion and second by Aeikens and Poling, the board approved the 2007-08 SPJ budget as presented by the Finance Committee.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR EVALUATION
The board went into executive session to complete the evaluation of the Executive Director. When the board reconvened in open session, the following action was taken:
Upon proper motion and second by Aeikens and Poling, respectively, the board approved the evaluation and a four percent increase in the executive directors salary, effective August 1, 2007.
Upon proper motion and second by Brewer and Carlson, respectively, the board endorsed the following proposed amendment to the bylaws to allow for life memberships.
Section Three. Members holding life memberships
(available before but not after January 1, 1969)shall pay a one-time fee approved by the board of directors and an annual subscription fee as determined by the executive director to subscribe to Quill.
POST GRADUATE MEMBERSHIP
Upon proper motion and second by Isaacs and Ralston, respectively, the board endorsed the following proposed amendment to the bylaws to extend post graduate memberships from two to three years.
Section Two. Professional and Retired Professional members shall be:
b. Post Graduate members
twothree years after college graduation, whether or not working in journalism as specified in Article One, Section Two, who have elected to become professional members.
Section Five. Student members shall be:
b. Persons who were student members who have left school before receiving a degree, for up to
twothree years after leaving school.
Post Graduate members must become professional members within
two three years of graduation, or their memberships will be terminated.
NATIONAL ARAB AMERICAN JOURNALISTS ASSOCIATION
Ray Hanania, president of the National Arab American Journalists Association, submitted a proposal for consideration to form a partnership with the Society for the following purposes:
To attract Arab Americans who are in journalism or who are journalism students and encourage them to join SPJ.
To create programs, events, or activities in which SPJ members can meet and learn more about Arab Americans and the Middle East.
Upon proper motion and second by Aeikens and Brewer, the board voted to create an Arab American Journalism section within the Society. Membership is open to any SPJ member who pays a $10 annual surcharge. The money, administered by the Executive Director, would award grants based on recommendations of the Societys programming committee. This section would raise awareness of issues pertaining to Arab American journalists, the Middle East and the Arab culture.
CAMERAS IN THE COURTROOM IN INDIANA
Dan Byron, Indiana Pro Chapter, and Phil Brower, Bingham McHale, presented information about their efforts in trying to get cameras in Indiana courtrooms.
Upon proper motion and second by Kopen Katcef and Lehrman, the board voted to donate $5,000 from the Legal Defense Fund to the Indiana Broadcasters Association to support their efforts.
MEDIA BUSINESS ISSUES AND SPJ
Brewer discussed the development of criteria in matters related to corporate governance, media ownership and related media business issues. He plans to put together a group to discuss these issues with the objective of presenting a proposed policy to the board in October.
MODEL LEGISLATION FOR STUDENT PRESS FREEDOM
David Carlson proposed that SPJ begin work on anti-censorship legislation by drafting model legislation for college media for 2008. Carlson will contact attorneys to gather information about next steps and costs and he will bring these details back to the executive committee.
Upon proper motion and second by Roth and Smith, respectively, the board voted to spend up to $10,000 from the Legal Defense Fund to develop the model legislation.
REGION 10 DIRECTOR
Region 10 Director Nathan Isaacs announced that he will resign his position later in the summer to attend graduate school. He announced that he is resigning from the executive committee, effective immediately.
Upon proper motion and second by Isaacs and Albarado, respectively, the board appointed Holly Fisher to the executive committee to fill the remainder of Isaacs term.
President Tatum reported that visits to the Web site are up.
President Tatum announced that the ethics committee is working on a textbook. In addition, she is looking for people for a sub-committee for the ethics campaign.
Legal Advocacy Network coordinator Joe Wessels reported that he has been making calls to law firms and he has a few definite commitments. The income from the network will be used for FOIA work.
President Tatum updated the board that her development of a movie based on spring conferences is almost complete.
Centennial chair, Irwin Gratz, communicated to the group that Charles Fair is doing the history book for the centennial and Gratz will work with Fair on a contractual agreement regarding the expenses.
A motion was made by Isaacs and Carlson to adjourn the meeting at 4:45 p.m.