California College Media Association
Minutes of Board Meeting
July 20, 2015
Location: Conference Phone Call
Meeting called to order by Barb Kingsley at 10:05 a.m.
Members in Attendance:
Greg Diaz (new student member, 2015-2016)
Javier Rojas (new student member, 2015-2016)
Barb said that despite the costs of the Spring convention in Los Angeles, the organization has about $7,000 cash on hand. This will allow CCMA to renew the contract with Better BNC, should the organization seek to do that.
Meeting actions and discussion:
Barb asked if there were any questions or concerns about the vendor or the contest. While most on the call said use of the vendor was an improvement over paper entries, members noted complaints on some issues.
One complaint had to do with the software not allowing credit card use by member schools. Another problem was the software is not generating a receipt in a timely manner — a problem because schools need immediate verification (or such with quick turnaround) of the transactions having been made, the amount spent, along with identification and date.
Several on the call said they were disappointed in only being able to enter one in each category in the contest. That change was Michael Chute’s idea; as he wasn’t on the call at that point, he couldn’t answer the concerns.
Barb said the one entry-only rule could be modified, but it would require more judges so CCMA wasn’t inundating judges with entries.
Barb said that CCMA had more judges drop out this Spring than in recent memory, which created headaches for the leadership in scrambling to find judges at the last minute.
It was suggested that CCMA come up with a list of judges as early as October. Barb said this would require everyone on the board helping produce names of judges.
Those on the call agreed with Barb that CCMA should not raise the entry fee above $150, the amount it is now.
Michael Longinow noted that the wording of the constitution needs more tweaking beyond the change made recently. (Noted here that the CCMA board voted, by email, to approved wording that makes student members part of the regular board membership without adding language separating students from regular board members.)
Barb noted that in the February 27 board meeting in Los Angeles, the board voted to include Joe Wirt on the board as an associate member. This was not entered in the minutes of the board at that time, so these minutes reflect it.
Michael L. will send the revised wording for constitution change to the membership via Barb Kingsley once she’s approved the suggested wording change. (The change will define “quorum” for the CCMA organization, and will stipulate that board action takes place only with a quorum, with action taken by majority vote, recorded in board minutes.)
Barb noted also that, on advice from legal counsel, CCMA will need to be more intentional about taking and filing minutes for easy access. And CCMA will need to seek out minutes from previous years so they can found as needed going forward.
Barb began a discussion of recent action by Journalism Association of Community Colleges (JACC) to partner with the California Newspaper Publishers Association (CNPA). She said the partnership was designed to help JACC to organize its operations (contest and conferences) by means of the CNPA infrastructure for finance and management. The arrangement looked favorable for both JACC and for CNPA in its initial introduction.
Barb said the arrangement looked interesting and thought the situation was something CCMA should keep an eye on.
Members on the call said the JACC partnership did look interesting, but that CCMA should watch to see how that partnership progresses before opting to follow the JACC direction.
Barb asked what CCMA should be doing besides just the contest and event each Spring. Should there be some educational component for students and advisers?
Richard Craig and Mark Plenke pointed out that what CCMA could do is provide a virtual outreach through its Web site. This could provide resources to members, along with a listserv collaboration portal. Michael L. pointed out that those resources should be restricted to members (rather than just making it free on the Web), and Richard said this was do-able by restricting the site’s materials to paid members.
Richard and Mark pointed out that one advantage of a partnership with JACC or with CNPA is the scholastic journalism connection — linking up with some of the top high school journalists.
Barb asked if this virtual resource site was interesting to students — valuable to them. The two student members expressed some interest. Richard asked what the advantage was to student collaboration on a site like this over Facebook or other social media where students already interact. That question drew lots of discussion; no conclusion came of it, though most agreed that a site could be a hub if students were invited to it.
Mark asked the two student board members to contact the editors-in-chief of the member newspapers and invite them to participate in the new resource site.
In an added report on the finances of CCMA, Dave Frederickson said the organization is looking into the paperwork needed to register 501C3 status. Legal counsel (Jim Ewert?) had said the paperwork looks adequate now, but they are waiting on confirmation of having met Internal Revenue Service requirements.
Dave said a big problem has been finding a permanent postal address for CCMA. It tends to be stuck with whoever was the most previous president. Those the call agreed that the only solution, for now, is for the president to use her/his home address or office address, along with a business email as the official home for CCMA correspondence. This would have to be changed after each election of a new president.
Barb asked if the membership wanted to vote on renewing the contract of Better BNC as vendor for the contest, and those on the call suggested we wait until CCMA receives a bill from Better BNC. That should be before the next conference call, tentatively set for August (no date was offered.)
Barb asked if board members wanted an update to the CCMA logo and members on the call suggested we leave it as is until a change comes that will take the organization forward (i.e. a more holistic change.)
Michael Chute suggested that CCMA change its contest rules to stipulate that if a school wins awards but does not attend the conference award event, that this school be allowed one more contest participation, but if they fail to attend a second time that they be barred from the contest for one year.
Marcy suggested this could unfairly penalize schools that are in remote locations and lack the resources to get to the CCMA awards event. Michael and Dave countered that if schools are paying the entry fee and expending the effort to participate in the contest, they should be expected to attend the event as well.
Barb asked if the logistics of tracking which schools did not attend was difficult and Michael Chute said the tracking was easy based on who got awards mailed to them each year. (A side note was the time commitment and cost of mailing the awards.)
Barb said the CCMA board would consider this proposal and vote on it at a later time, perhaps at the next meeting. The board would also have to vote on changing the contest rules to allow more than one entry per category for each school.
No official voting was done by the board in this meeting.
Barb adjourned the meeting at 11:18 a.m.
Michael A. Longinow, CCMA treasurer