Feb. 28, 2016  

Minutes from Feb. 9, 2016


SPJ Florida Board of Directors Meeting
7 p.m. | Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016
Panera Bread | Fort Lauderdale


Dori Zinn, president PRESENT

Christiana Lilly, executive vice president PRESENT

Jason Parsley, membership vice president PRESENT

Michele Boyet, programs vice president PRESENT

Christopher Persaud, treasurer PRESENT

Abbi Perry, secretary PRESENT

Brandon Ballenger, immediate past president PRESENT

Megan Fitzgerald, director PRESENT

Andrea Richard, director PRESENT

Michael Schottey, director EXCUSED

John Sotomayor, director PRESENT

Dina Weinstein, director EXCUSED

Betty Wells, director PRESENT

Rachel Wang, student member PRESENT


Michael Koretzky, SPJ region 3 director PRESENT


QUICK UPDATES // REVIEWS 2 minutes each

  1. Approve last meeting’s minutes — Chris makes a motion to approve last meeting’s minutes. All in favor. Passes.
  2. Committee updates

Membership (Jason)

  • Three new members. Jason will continue to reach out to unaffiliated list.
  • We need to get up to 101 members by May. We currently have 94 members now. Send out a press release advertising membership? Betty volunteers to write up a press release for distributions.

Programs (Michele)

  • Even this Thursday in West Palm.
    • Promote WordCamp – they can attend for less than $20. Takes place next weekend in Miami.
  • Jason Taylor Poetry and Leadership Conference is this Saturday at Broward College. Abbi and Dori will be attending/presenting.  
  • The Stonewall Museum – Jason is curating, Feb 18 VIP opening, Feb. 19 opening day.
  • Black Lives Matter online panel is on Feb. 23

Scholarships (Christiana)

  • Rules, GPA, etc. will stay the same. The total to give for scholarships is $2,500 (for one semester). Would love to have a student’s perspective (Rachel) on her experience in a video. Why did she apply? How did it help you? Just something to encourage others to apply.  
  • Discussion towards raising the amount of scholarship money we give. This discussion will be moved to Slack.
  • Sponsor a journalism classroom. More info in Slack.

Student Affairs (Megan)

  • Update have been given throughout the minutes.

Sunshine State Awards (Jason)

  • Launched! Anyone want to help send out emails and post to website to help Dori?
    • Final deadline is in April.
  • Showcase an interview (past winners?) that promote the awards.
  • This is a big moneymaker for us, so it is very important for everyone to promote it.

Drone (Brandon)

  • Brandon + Dr. One Fly Across America (working title) — The SPJ Executive Committee voted to endorse Brandon’s Drone Tour. This is NOT approval, which comes from the SDX committee. If approved, SDX will match up to $3,000 ($6,000 total)
    • Money will go to providing education to those who want to learn more about drones. Brandon would provide hands-on experience to drones while on tour.
    • Projected start date is in the summer.
    • Michele makes a motion to match SDX grant up to $3,000, Christiana seconds it. Passes. Betty says no. Brandon abstains.
      • Discussion – what have we gotten in return on investment? We presented two conferences. Brandon has been offered to present another one. Money wise, nothing because we legally can’t. As soon as it is legal, Brandon is going to start charging for it.
      • Promote why it is so controversial. How about a post by Brandon about what exactly is going on – legally, journalism angle, etc. A summary on where we are right now with drones.
      • More discussion on Slack.

Finance/Current financials (Chris)

  • Chapter checking: $37,353.87
  • Chapter savings: $32,469.22
  • Region checking: $11,928.93
    • There are two outstanding payments. One to Chris and the other to Joey for website work.




News since last meeting — Dori (2 minutes)

  • Chapter approved to support the mission of No Notoriety with a vote of 11-2.
  • Website enhancements. Will include a drone video on homepage if you are on a desktop. Updates to the jobs page, which Chris is working on.
  • WordCamp Miami partnership (and other WordCamps)

High School Newsroom Grant — Christiana (2 minutes)

Want to create a committee of people to brainstorm this and bring it to fruition!

Black Lives Matter — Christiana (2 minutes)

  • Web panel Feb. 23 to go over how the media is covering this movement. (In partnership with SFBJA).
    • Professor of law, BLM founder, two local journalists will be on the panel. Will be using GoToMeeting as platform.
    • Over the next two weeks, we will feature the bio of each panel member.

Dave Barry — Christiana (2 minutes)

  • We are hosting a talk with Dave Barry on April 14 — any ideas of where we can do it? He prefers Miami-Dade or Broward and I would like to respect that since he is speaking for FREE.

Conferences! — Various (2 minutes)

Dori/Christiana/Koretzky presented at the Nova Multimedia conference on Jan. 30; Dori/Abbi will present at the Poetry and Leadership Conference this Saturday 2/13; Dori will be at WordCamp Miami Feb. 19-21 at FIU.



Haiti News Project — Jason (2 minutes)

  • How can SPJ Florida contribute? SPJ Georgia is interested in going to Haiti to help journalists down there perform better journalism. They plan on traveling to Haiti this summer. They asked us for any help we could provide – our expertise or financial.
    • Discussion and more details on Slack.  

Koretzky Time — Koretzky (5 minutes)

  • FAU mandatory training
    • FAU is trying to force mandatory journalism training on the newsroom – ONLY for the news reporters that will be taught by the communications professors, some of which are not even journalists.
      • Skeptical on the type of training they will provide. What if SPJ Florida provides the training or journalists for them?
      • Asking for $200 for the purposes of bringing in professional journalists.
        • Dori makes a motion approve $200 for FAU Journalism training for newsroom. Abbi seconds it. Betty abstains. Passes.

Dori makes a motion to end the meeting. All in favor.

Minutes were approved at the April 11 SPJ Florida board meeting.

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