Board Minutes – 07/2003


Chicago Headline Club
Board of Directors Meeting

July 26, 2003

President Ben Bradley called the meeting to order at 8 a.m.

Present: Ben, Molly McDonough, Meg Tebo, Michelle Stevens, Abdon Pallasch, Ilyce Glink, Howard Dubin, Casey Bukro, John Camden, Jason Jedlinski, Scott Keenan, Carlos Hernandez Gomez, Rob Hess, Susan S. Stevens.

President’s report: Ben said he has huge shoes to fill, and will strive to do as good a job as Molly, Chris, Howard, Casey and other past presidents. He notes he is not at a computer all day to respond to e-mails, and encourages us to direct our e-mails to only those affected.

He will emphasize quality over quantity, not just programming for the sake of having a program. The Brown Bag series is very important though he has not been able to attend many. He wants issues programming, such as one involving Abdon. Ben asked Abdon for a brief report on the “bad ruling” in the Chicago IRA book court case in which Abdon, Bob Herguth and Flynn McRoberts turned over their notes at their lawyers’ advice.

Ben intends to do a lot of newsroom outreach. “I’m continually amazed at the lack of knowledge of the Chicago Headline Club.” He will try to set up one-on-one meetings with newsroom managers. He suggests changing the Lisagor Awards to the Chicago Headline Club Awards, and will have that on the agenda for the next meeting. He also wants CHC put back on the entry forms, and brand Lisagor as “one of many events” of CHC.

Monthly board meetings: they will continue at the request of board members though an occasional month might be skipped. Will delegate: e-mail Ben with what you want to do. Otherwise, he will assign you something. He hopes you will rise to the challenge.

Brownlee Series: Molly reported Christine Tatum is still chair, despite her move to Denver.

A fundraiser was hired and has brought in a few thousand dollars. Arthur Nielsen Jr.’s foundation contributed $500 this year. The fundraiser gets 15 percent of what’s collected.

The board needs to decide how to specifically use the money raised for “journalism education.”

She outlined programs, including a public relations “speed pitch” event being underwritten by Hilton Hotel. Board members were uncomfortable with the program as planned, and almost unanimously recommended retooling it or canceling it. Other programs include the Lifetime Achievement Awards dinner, with Nat Hentoff speaking, Oct. 3; an Oct. 22 meet-and-greet at Bob Chinn’s, maybe with Amy Dickinson; a live Chicago Tonight program at the Museum of Broadcast Communications with vignets of big moments in Chicago journalism; an IRE workshop at Medill on a Saturday; a Brown Bag Oct. 30. Check the web site for more detail.

Membership: John Camden presented three types of directories. Board agreed to go ahead with the cheapest, adding a press contact list. If there are any ads, the officers will review them. Board passed a motion appropriating $2,000 for the directory. John said SPJ has a member directory on its website. However, Susan tried to look up some names Tuesday, and found only names – no addresses, phone number or e-mail addresses.

CHC Foundation: Molly said the foundation board is waiting for word from the Illinois Secretary of State on incorporation. Afterward, the foundation board will file with the Internal Revenue Service. Mission: educational and professional development.

Lifetime Achievement Awards: Ben said more than 15 people have been nominated, the committee needs to meet and the board needs to act next month.

Ethics: Casey said he asked the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation for $23,000 a year over three years to finance the Ethics AdviceLine. He’s waiting for a decision.Part-time director/coordinator proposal: Ben tabled the matter.

Meeting adjourned at 11 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Susan S. Stevens