May 10, 1999 Meeting Minutes

Members Present
Dave Aeikens, president; Mike Knaak, treasurer; Kathleen Hansen, secretary; Judy Borger, Lucy Dalglish, Jim Durkin, Rick Kupchella, Jay Maxwell, Juliana Thill, board members.

Thanks to Jim Durkin for hosting the meeting.

Page One Awards
Maxwell reported that he and Borger discussed the sweepstakes winner and decided to tabulate the winning percentage for each organization with at least 10 submissions.

Using that method, Corporate Report had the highest percentage of winning entries, at 72%. Borger argued that for a magazine that comes out 12 times a year and has a small staff, that percentage was very impressive.

Kupchella asked if the sweepstakes award was supposed to be for individual work or for an organization. No one knew the answer for sure. Aeikens said he would clarify and the board directed that the Page One entry form for next year should make the sweepstakes award criteria clear.

The board agreed that it was a good idea to encourage entries and to encourage overall organizational commitment to good work, and on that basis Maxwell moved and Borger seconded that Corporate Report receive the sweepstakes award this year. The motion passed unanimously.

Hansen asked for clarification on a few details for the banquet, which she passed along to the hotel staff.

The Governor’s office agreed to pay for the interpreter for a deaf student who wanted to attend. The board discussed whether we were obligated to pay for an interpreter for the rest of the program (2 hours).

Durkin moved and Dalglish seconded that we pay for the interpreter for the awards program.

Donation Request
The board reviewed a letter from Lynae Schrader, the Twin Cities Journalists fund scholarship recipient, requesting additional money for her trip to Ireland.

Members discussed the criteria that we should use in making these judgments. Some argued that if we wanted to support this we should have given money to the fund, not to the individual.

Others argued that if we work in conjunction with another scholarship program with well-stated standards, we should be able to select individuals who get funding rather than passing it off to other organizations.

Hansen moved that Schrader be asked to provide a budget to bolster her request and that the board could then confer via e-mail to decide. Dalglish seconded and the motion passed.

[ Note: SPJ board members later voted via e-mail 7-3 to give Schrader $500 for her trip]

Writing Coaches
Aeikens asked if the board wanted to start identifying writing coaches or other professionals when someone calls asking for a referral. The deal would be that the SPJ chapter would provide a referrals to anyone who asked, the referral would be to an SPJ member only, and we would take 15% off the top for that person’s fee.

Dalglish moved and Borger seconded that we provide this service.

Annual Report
Aeikens reported that we’ve met all the criteria and the annual report reflects the chapter’s activities for the past year. The binder with all the inserts will go forward by June 15. Members were asked to get changes to Aeikens by May 25th.

The balance sheet reflects the positive financial outcome of the regional conference. The Holiday Inn did not do a good job with the arrangements and we will not use them again.

Joint Ventures
The Asian American Journalists Association is helping to host a picnic on June 12 for all minority journalists associations. Aeikens followed up on a contact with Vineeta Sawkar and SPJ members will be invited to attend the picnic. Aeikens will send out the invitation information to SPJ members when it is finalized.

Maria Tomasch is the new chair of the membership committee. She will serve out LeBeau’s term. We now have 154 members. Borger put brochures in all mailboxes at the Pioneer Press.

The chapter’s balance is now $23,175.46 including the proceeds from the regional conference.

Thill reported that the newsletter would be printed the next day.

Media Guide
Kupchella said that Boros still had media guides and suggested that we sell them at the Page One banquet. Dalglish moved and Borger seconded that we sell them for $5.00.

Freedom of Information
Dalglish reported that she sent a letter to MN and ND senators on the flag burning amendment. The Minnesota Newspaper Association has been more involved in this issue than has SPJ.

The tobacco board set up by the attorney general (MPAT Board) is violating the open meetings/open records provisions in their bylaws. Dalglish will write a letter to Lawrence Cohen in Ramsey County about the issue.

Ballots will be counted at the next meeting, scheduled for June 7. Officers take their places on July 1.

Next Meeting
The next meeting was scheduled for June 7 at Borger’s house.

[ Note: the meeting place was later changed to the Star Tribune].