Feb. 12, 2011  

Minutes of 2011 Board Planning Retreat

2011 Board Planning Retreat

SPJ South Florida Pro Chapter

Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011, 11 a.m.
Marriott Harbor Beach Resort, Fort Lauderdale


Roll Call

Members present: Michele Koretzky, Michele Boyet, Dori Zinn, Sergy Odiduro, Rachael Joyner, Jason Parsley, Jake Cline, Lucy Reed, Rebekah Monson, Lisa Lucas, Arlene Satchell, Bill Whiting, Darcie Lundsford, Karla Bowsher (interim student board seat)

Tour of the Marriott
Destination Sales Manager Natasha Lannone showed us the meeting space available for the National Writers Workshop.

Quick introductions from the new board members.

1. National Writers Workshop

  • Lucy, who is directing the event, shared her vision. She wants to bring this great event back to life. She remembers it being high quality and affordable. We are looking at September or October of this year for the event. We’ve talked with some of the former organizers at the Sun Sentinel, and they said that most of the people who came were writers and not as many journalists. We have a lot of decisions to make to shape how this event is going to look.

  • Koretzky suggested getting a group together and do planning meetings online. Rebekah, Tim, and Michele want to join.

  • Lucy said that last year’s board approved $10,000 as seed money for the event. We would have to get 200 people paying $50 per head to earn the money back.


2. Student Board Member

ACTION: Michele made a motion to approve Karla Bowsher as the interim student board member. Jason seconded. All voted and approved.

  • Koretzky said they will advertise the position to the colleges in the area, and if we get several applicants we will have a revote.


3. Paper Ball

  • Koretzky gave an overview of the program. It is an opportunity to bring older journalists and younger journalists together to experience what it was like making newspapers before modern technology.

  • Dori, Rachael, Lucy, Sergy want to help.


4. Will Write for Food

  • Rachael gave an overview of last year’s program and plans for this year. We want to open up the application process to SPJ members nationwide. We need to think of ways to get funding and then how we want to divide it (for air travel, etc.). We need to decide on a date.

  • Anyone interested in helping should email Rachael.

5. First Amendment Free Food Festival

  • Rachael, Michele, and Dori gave an overview and plans for this year. Dori will handle the high school event, Michele the college level, and Rachael at the community level.

  • Rachael plans to get on the community level by holding the event during a city’s downtown event, such as the 4th of July celebration that Delray Beach holds. Rachael will chat with someone at the city.

  • Dori wants to hold it on the high school level at the FSPA high school convention. Michele mentioned the session we held after the event that educated the students on what happened. It was a big success.

  • Koretzky needs to talk to SPJ national about stuffers for the bags.


6. The Unethical Press

  • Koretzky gave an overview. To celebrate ethics week, we will help college students put out an unethical issue with the SPJ Code of Ethics printed on the back. We will have professionals there to advise. The event will be in April.

  • We need to pitch the idea to some schools to see who wants to do it. Koretzky hopes this will become a regular SPJ ethics event. He thinks the max cost would be $500.

7. The Sunshine State Awards

  • Tim said we have revised the categories and approved them. He expects the system to be live by Feb. 15. Before we make the call for entries we want to make sure the system works. The judging will begin immediately. By April 30 we would know the winners. Then we can have the event in June.

  • Michele proposed creating a small marketing committee to market the awards. Michele agreed to head it up. Lucy agreed to help.

  • Koretzky said if you are on the board you are still allowed to enter. There will be no conflict of interest because the judging is done by outside chapters.

8. Other Business

ACTION: Darcie made a motion to approve $265 for the Florida First Amendment Foundation. Jake seconded. All voted and approved.

Other Program Ideas discussed by the board

Unemployed J-Event – Rebekah gave a little overview on where we stand. It would be a weekend workshop working on new media skills. People have told her that that’s what they want. Plan to have the event at Lynn University over a weekend. Darcie said this would be a great opportunity to get a SPJ student chapter rolling. Jake said that we should also include a portfolio/resume review. Jake also wants to be involved. Rebekah wants to have a planning meeting next month. Koretzky suggested working with ONA (Online News Association) again. They can fly down their own people and pay for it. Rebekah suggested partnering with Journalists in Transition and gearing the event to any journalist who wants to revamp his or her skills.

– Dori and Rebekah talked a little bit about the Refresh meetings for journo tech people that are popular. They want to bring it to the journalism community, something that they could do monthly. Koretzky suggested that we try to get a rotation going so that everyone takes one and no one gets stuck doing every one. Rebekah wants to start with one in March.

– Jake suggested making a professional events committee to be in charge of these events. Rebekah said that the events will be free for SPJ members and a nominal fee for nonmembers. Tim said he would help us find a space. Rebekah said the next step is to come up with a schedule and meeting spot. Arlene, Dori, Jake, Dina want to be involved.

– Lucy suggested making these mini membership meetings, giving the general membership an opportunity to get together.

Project Invictus – Jason gave an overview of last year’s event. It’s based on appreciative inquiry. It is outside the box, and journalists get together and really discuss journalism and news. Was very well attended the last two years. Dan Gretch does not want to be involved this year because he is overcommitted. The founder of Project Invictus will be down here for the unemployed journalist event, so we could get him to help with this event if we do it at the same time.

– Rachael said that who your partner is determines how much you get out of the event. You have to someone who is talking about something you are interested in or can relate to. Rebekah and Jason will brainstorm more.

High-School Mentoring – Rebekah talked a little bit about her vision. This would be a volunteer basis for journalists to reach out in the community to high school kids interested in writing. Start with the county’s journo high school programs. The goal would be to have the schools sign up and by the end of the summer send out a form letter to get journalists to sign up for what they want to do. It’s a year commitment that they would have to do once a month. Jake suggested partnering with an organization already doing this. Koretzky suggested partnering with high school advisers in this endeavor. This would be another way to get people to join SPJ.

Something Totally Gay – Koretzky and Jason talked about partnering with some gay and lesbian group to do a big event. Jason thinks this can be considered a diversity event. Dina and Arlene are also interested. More ideas are needed.

Lip Service – Jake gave an overview of the event. It’s storytelling for real journalists about themselves. It is a great opportunity for journalists to have their copy edited and read out loud. Through our event someone at the Palm Beach Post wrote about them and got the Lip Service People a big gig.

– We need to look for ways to save money on this event, perhaps getting a cheap videographer.

Public in the Press – Darcie got money from SPJ regional to do the event. We will be working with PBS in studio. Maybe during ethics week. She will reach out to Jack Elliot. More to be discussed at the next meeting.

9. More Meetings. Where and when?

Koretzky will send out a program where people put down what days will work for them. After a brief discussion the board decided to tentatively have meetings every other month on Thursday nights at Panera Bead.

ACTION: Motion to adjourn by Jason. Seconded by Lisa. All voted in favor.
The meeting was then adjourned at 1:50 p.m.


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