CHC Board Meeting: September 4, 2020

Board of Directors meeting
Fri. Sept. 4, 2020

President Madhu Krishnamurthy called the meeting to order at 9 a.m. Also present on a Zoom conference call: Rob Elder, Howard Dubin, Greg Karp, Flynn McRoberts, Suzanne McBride, Maria Zamudio, Alejandra Cancino, Blair Chavis, Christine Wolf, Michael Limon, Amanda Vinicky, Grace Wong, Raza Siddiqui, Taylor Moore, Nader Issa, Maya Dukmasova, and Susan S. Stevens.

Minutes: Susan asks that we add to the previous ones that Tahman Bradley volunteered to head the Lisagor contest reciprocal judging again next year, a big job. Minutes were approved.

President’s report: sign up for committees. See the Google doc to do so.
Also, former committee chairs should make sure everything they know is in the committee FAQs to make transitions smooth.
SPJ HQs is emailing all the Lisagor finalists and hardship grant applicants for fuller information before adding them to our chapter roster. We offered all of these people free one-year memberships.
100th anniversary year: Madhu wants to do a monthly highlight of this event. Send her your ideas. Also, asked whether we should combine a big anniversary celebration with next year’s Lisagor banquet, the board opted to combine the events because of questions about how the pandemic will affect us in 2021.

Programs: meet Taylor, our new program VP.
Susan suggested an EIJ conference follow-up for a late-September Zoom event. Rob favors a one-topic event in September which he believes will be a better draw.
Greg suggested paying for 20 pro members to attend the online EIJ, a cost of $900. Board agreed.
Madhu reminds us to sign up if we want to go. We’ll pay for board members’ registrations. Fill out a Google doc for Greg.

CHC is one of three finalists for the SPJ Large Chapter of the Year award. And it has won three of the four Circle of Excellence awards. We probably didn’t get the fourth, FOI, because we’ve won it so often.
EIJ delegations: Madhu, Rob, Greg, Susan.
Rob is concerned there are not enough votes to carry Chicago’s 3-year-old proposal to stop EIJ from accepting sponsorships from people who attack journalism, such as Koch. He needs help contacting delegates – you all got a list of them. He has provided coaching points. The total number of votes is 100, so we need 51. Vote is in eight days.

Lisagor: Madhu said Kathy Catrambone, our Lisagor dinner coordinator, has the plaque proofs from the now-reopened Owens company. She still needs proofs for the special awards and lifetime awards.

SPJ HQs turned down Madhu for a $500 grant data security/hygiene seminar next spring. That’s because we already are getting $500 for FOIAFest, and SPJ wants to spread around the wealth.

Treasurer: Greg said CHC has $79,465 and CHC Foundation has $73,312, of which about half is restricted. Full treasurer’s report is at:
He has revamped the form somewhat. We got a $10,000 Driehaus grant recently. He’s working on a new sales tax exemption, which saves a lot on the Lisagor dinner bill.
Anyone want to become Greg’s assistant, with a goal of moving up?

Jason Martin is still looking for a deputy who will take over the Watchdog grants and awards committee.

Foundation: Susan said Molly McDonough, Laura Washington and Geneen Harston are in line to join Greg as officers. A foundation board vote will be held. Madhu would like a Zoom social meeting with both boards. Note that Molly was the foundation’s first president.

Programs: Taylor and Mike will work on an events calendar. Topics: diversity and inclusion, transitioning into different careers. Maria said objectivity should be a big topic. Madhu added trust in media. Suzanne suggested a town hall meeting. Madhu said Taylor, Maria and Nader will partner on a program about the dangers to journalists of color, particularly women.
Madhu also wants to do a welcome to new Chicago area journalism students.

Meeting adjourned at 10:22 a.m.
Next meeting: Fri. Oct. 2

Respectfully submitted,
Susan S. Stevens, secretary