Jun. 5, 2017  

Minutes from June 1, 2017


SPJ Florida Board of Directors Meeting
7 p.m. | Thursday, June 1, 2017
Panera Bread | Boca Raton


Dori Zinn, president

Christiana Lilly, executive vice president

Jason Parsley, membership vice president absent

Emily Bloch, programs vice president

Christopher Persaud, treasurer

Abbi Perry, secretary

Brandon Ballenger, immediate past president


Michele Boyet

Chris Delboni

Aurora Dominguez absent

Brendon Lies absent


Michael Koretzky, Region 3 Director

QUICK UPDATES // REVIEWS 2 minutes each

Approve last meeting’s minutes — Brandon makes a motion to approve last meeting’s minutes. Abbi seconds. PASSES. No objections.

Committee updates

Membership (Jason)

Mid-Florida update (Dori/Koretzky)

  • The Mid-Florida chapter no longer exists. Their members became unaffiliated. We will need to reach out to these people to join our chapters as they may not even know they are considered “unaffiliated.” National did not add them to SPJ Florida because all members “opt-in” rather than opt-out, even though it doesn’t cost any extra to join chapter and they get more benefits.

Programs (Emily) 

Fake News Game Show (Emily/Chris) — chapter grants from national (first due June 30)

  • It was a huge success – We had about 7-8 teams (2 teams of non-journalists!) Due to the large turnout, we will look into securing a bigger space to accommodate more people.
  • Chapter grant from nationals is due June 30. Dori will post the link in Slack again.
  • The game show was actually already recreated at Broward College by a professor who attended the first one. The class loved it!

Muslimedia update (Koretzky)

  • Three (Oklahoma, California and Buffalo) out of five grant recipients have put on their own successful Muslimedia. The D.C. chapter will be using their own money to fund their own.

SPJ Day of Giving (Michele) — Gave $250 to the $600 our chapter raised.

  • Raised over $20,000 (surpassed their $15,000 goal)! The day went off pretty smoothly – had pre-packaged graphics and verbiage and even sent out thank you notes to those who donated. SPJ Florida was the only chapter who did a challenge.
  • For next time, we need to do a better job at tracking (i.e. how many members did we gain from this?)

Femme Freelance Fest (Christiana/Emily) — approved $125 to go toward co-sponsoring event with Region 3.

  • A series of 7 webinars, led by women for women, about freelancing throughout May. This was run by Shannon Kaestle, FL and Region 3 (with help from Christiana and Emily). Our own Christiana was one of these presenters! To view the sessions, visit our YouTube channel.
    • Best performing session LIVE was Copyediting with 20 subscribers
    • Best performing session on YouTube was Christiana’s (Editor Relationships).

Scholarships (Christiana)

  • Four days from the deadline and we have zero applicants for the Molly Turner scholarship and only 4 for the general scholarship. PLEASE send another email out to your contacts and PROMOTE via social media! We got 24 applicants last year – goal is to surpass that.
    • Action items for Christiana: Email Molly Turner family to inform them of the situation. Can we extend deadlines for both?

Student Affairs (Emily)

Student Chapters Network (Chris D.)

  • Chris will host a brainstorming session at her home in Miami (contact her or check Slack for address) on June 24 at 11:30 OR you can join by Skype. The session will include drafting a presentation on “Why Join SPJ” and present it to area schools. For more information, search “SPJ Student Chapters Network” on Facebook.

FAU SG EIC (Koretzky)

  • The University Press Editor in Chief will start work in July because Student Government and Student Affairs admit they can’t stop him from working.

High School Journalism Awards

  • Forum, TeenLink and SS put the awards on. Emily was one of the judges as an FPG employee. Looking to get SPJ more involved (sponsors, judging, etc.). Can we join next year?

New Voices (Christiana/Aurora)

  • No updates

Sunshine State Awards (Jason) 

  • The awards will take place on July 22, location to be finalized. Looking for sponsors and raffle donations.
  • After the awards we will vote on the 2017-2018 board.

Drone (Brandon) 

  • SPJ Florida Loan-a-Drone plans
    • Brandon drafted a page to promote the details: those interested can rent a drone for $50 an hour (offering a discount for SPJ members)
    • Signed up to two rental services to market our drone
    • We received an additional $1,000 towards another drone tour this year.

Finance/Current financials (Chris)

  • We were HACKED! Our account is currently frozen.
  • Vanguard investment will resume when our account is unfrozen.
  • New budget group (Christiana)
    • Handout was distributed. Contact Chris or Christiana for a copy or check out the Budget channel  in Slack. New layout that’s easier to read and understand so we can follow how much money we have for the year at every meeting.


Announcements (Dori) 2 minutes

Things that have happened since our last board meeting:

  • WAWA opened up in Palm Beach County
  • Dori had a BABY
  • Christiana got MARRIED

SPJ National Convention (Dori) 2 minutes

Want to go to EIJ17? Please email Dori and Christiana with your interest in attending, why you want to go, and what you’ve done for the chapter this year.


2017-2018 Nominating Slate (Dori) 2 minutes

If you’re interested in running for the chapter board, talk to Dori (nominating chair). Each position is open for a one-year term and anyone can run. Please spread the word that any SPJ Florida pro member in good standing can run.

Dori makes a motion to adjourn the meeting. Christiana seconds it. PASSES. No objections.

Minutes will be approved at an upcoming board meeting.

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