CHICAGO HEADLINE CLUB
Board of Directors meeting
Fri. Sept. 7, 2018
President Alejandra Cancino called the meeting to order. Also present: Maya Dukmasova, Ben Meyerson, Flynn McRoberts, Mike Ewing, Patrick Boylan, Maria Zaudio, Matt Kiefer, Susan S. Stevens, and by phone Adriana Cardona, Suzanne McBride, Howard Dubin, Kristen Schorsch, Alex Hernandez, Richelle Rogers, Rachel Hinton and Brandis Friedman.
Minutes of the two July meetings were approved as presented by Susan.
President’s report: Alejandra thanked the board for its work on and approval of the letter objecting to the Koch sponsorship at the national conference. SPJ President-Elect Patty Gallagher Newberry is putting together a national SPJ task force to deal with the issue. A couple of other chapter presidents feel as we do: just because RTDNA is willing to accept Koch money and the Washington Post and Poynter took money from Koch does not mean SPJ should violate its own Code of Ethics. It is upon us to tell SPJ what to do. Alejandra, Mike and Suzanne will join the task force meetings in Baltimore. Alejandra will start drafting the CHC’s own sponsorship policy.
Treasurer’s report: move to table it, made by Maria and seconded by Ben, was not voted on. However, a majority of the board asked Patrick to separate the financials from his resolutions regarding the future of the organization and its foundation. He declined, left the meeting (and later emailed his resignation effective in one week).
Programs: Maya said the intern networking event well, with 40 interns and a number of professionals to advise them. Next, she plans a one-day (Saturday) pivot tables training at Columbia College. Jennifer Richards, Chicago Tribune data reporter, has offered to be the trainer.
FOI: Kristen reported by email the FOIAFest will have its inaugural meeting — a brainstorming session — on Monday. They are looking at a late February conference date at Loyola (thanks Richelle!).
Lisagor: Ben said it will be May 10 at the Union League Club. A category decision-making meeting is upcoming – ideas welcome.
Watchdog: Jason Martin reported by email:
Alejandra and Jason met with Geoffrey Banks of the Driehaus Foundation Aug. 2 to review the renewal application for the $10,000 grant for the Watchdog Award and Fund. Geoffrey said the application looks in good shape and we should hear news about it later this month (September).
Geoffrey encouraged us to think about setting an application date for the Fund and giving all $2,500 as a single prize to one project. More awareness around a one-time larger award might help build visibility of the fund so that it may grow in regularity and importance along with the Award. He also said there’s potential in future years to ask for larger amounts for the Fund award. Geoffrey was encouraged by the tangible documentation of last year’s winners who put the funds to use in post-production on a documentary investigative reporting fIlm.
Alejandra and Jason thought this was a pretty good idea. Jason will set a Friday Jan. 11, 2019 application date for the Watchdog Fund this year, same as the Watchdog Award. Jason will alter the language on the call to seek applicants for the complete $2,500 as a single amount. He will update the award and fund calls in the coming week and get those to Mike to update on the website. We can promote the Award and Fund simultaneously at our events throughout the fall and via social media/website/email.
Website: Mike said he has a lot of ideas and would like to put together a group to look at branding and marketing. Committee chairs will be on it.
Matt will edit FOIAillinois.org until it is merged into headlineclub.org
Susan S. Stevens, secretary