Board members in attendance: Meredith Artley, P. Kim Bui, Eric Carvin, Josh Hatch, Steven Hermann, Imaeyen Ibanga, Mandy Jenkins, Greg Linch, David Smydra, Elite Truong, Jose Zamora.
Board members not present: Michelle Baruchman (Student Representative), David Cohn, Celeste LeCompte, David Skok, Benét Wilson.
Also Present: n/a
Staff in attendance: Irving Washington, Executive Director; Trevor Knoblich, Head of Programs and Events; Jessica Strelitz, Head of Strategic Partnerships; Jen Mizgata, Director of Programs; Adam Nekola, Digital Manager; Meghan Murphy, Community Manager.
Staff not present: n/a
The meeting was called to order at 1:07 p.m.
Old Business: The board unanimously approved the minutes for the March 2017 board call.
Staff restructure (Irving)
- Congratulations to Trevor, Jess and Jen. There was lots of positive love and feedback from the community.
- We will be hiring a communications manager, the job description for which will be posted in late May.
- The role will focus on communications full-time, whereas Jen did both programs and communications.
Office space (Irving)
- We’re up for another two-year agreement; overall pricing of our office space went up, but we will renew another two years.
- We’ll assess later whether we need to search for a new location after that.
ONA local leadership summit (Meghan)
- It’s the first time ONA has done an event like this where all local leaders from around the world were invited to discuss running local groups.
- Attendees numbered 60 people from 30 communities across U.S., plus one from Canada. Forty came on travel scholarships.
- It included programming created to be useful in day jobs and as community leaders.
- There was valuable feedback from participants who are very passionate about local journalism communities.
- It seemed to light a fire under some groups to become more active and led directly to some new planned events.
- There’s also been increased activity in the local leaders Facebook group and folks reaching out to Meghan. The Denver/Rockies group is also re-activating as a result.
- Board members Mandy, Benet, Steve will attend
- ~170 current registrations with goal of 200; usually there are a lot of sign-ups near the end
- First pass by the programming committee is now complete
- The goal is to have the program published by the second week of July
- Imaeyen asked about scholarship opportunities for potential attendees and Irving explained some examples
- There was a good-sized set of pitches from Australia
- On that note, Josh said getting new voices is key to our long-term growth and sustainability
OJA 2017 launch
- Adam said ONA purchased a theme and did some customization for the new OJA site
- The goal is that each finalist and winner will have its own detail page, which is more info than we’ve ever provided
- David Smydra said the big splash were the two new categories: audio digital storytelling (likely to be podcast-heavy, but not exclusively) and immersive storytelling (VR, AR, MR, 360, etc.)
- International remains part of the main categories and the sizes are the same as before.
- Unlike past years, the deadline will not be extended this time.
Open discussion: Research
- The board discussed existing or new opportunities to conduct research of interest to digital journalists.
- The discussion included possibilities that were journalist-focused, newsroom-focused, user-focused or some combination of those.
- One of the potential partners would cover the survey costs.
- How could this research possibly dovetail with programming?
- Tow Center reports cited as a good model to emulate instead of the typical static PDF
The meeting ended at 2:00 p.m. ET.
The next board meeting will be at the Marriott Wardman Park in Washington, D.C. on Friday, June 16, 2017
These minutes are submitted by Greg Linch