The board met on the balcony at the National Press Club. Vice President Julie Asher called the meeting to order at 7:45 p.m. Also in attendance were board members Bill McCloskey, Bob Becker, Ann Augherton, Amy Fickling, Bob Webb, and Steve Taylor. Also attending were chapter members Tim Ebner and Ben Shlesinger and Dateline Awards coordinator Brooke Kenny. President Andrew Schotz arrived a few minutes after the opening gavel and assumed the chair at that time.
MINUTES: On a motion by McCloskey, seconded by several, the minutes of the February 2009 meeting were approved.
WEB HOSTING EXPENSE: On a motion by Taylor, seconded by McCloskey there was unanimous approval to reimburse Becker’s expense to buy web hosting service and the Web domain names spjdc.org; spjdc.com and spjdc.net.
TREASURER’S REPORT: A printed treasurer’s report was circulated and on a motion by Taylor, seconded by Becker was accepted.
NETWORKING HAPPY HOUR: Ebner presented a proposal for a Networking Happy Hour for chapter members at the Front Page restaurant at Dupont Circle. After discussion and calendar checking the dates April 28 or 29 were tentatively agreed to. Ebner will make and report final arrangements. On a motion by Taylor generally seconded the expenditure of $150 for hors d’oeuvres was authorized.
VICE PRESIDENT’S REPORT:
Asher reported that Willie Schatz has been in touch with the new Washington Post Ombuddy about an April meeting with chapter members.
AP writer Jesse Holland has agreed to discuss with chapter members his book on slaves who built the Capitol building. Because of Holland’s work schedule as Supreme Court Correspondent for the AP, nailing down a date has been difficult. Asher will check to see if the new Capitol Visitor’s Center is available for a program such as this.
The idea of having Becker speak to a lunch program on "how to write an FOI request that gets responded to" was broached. Generally, it was thought to be a good idea.
PRESIDENT’S REPORT: Schotz reported there were eight entries in the high school essay contest. Schotz will coordinate the judging.
DATELINE AWARDS: Kenny reported the following:
There were 174 entries, on a par with last year. New entrants included Bethesda magazine and The Washington Examiner. WAMU is back.
As usual, The Washington Post did not enter.
Our entries have been shipped to Connecticut Pro for judging. More specific instructions were included this year, including explanation of the Lewis Award for "Watchdog" journalism. There is no word from Connecticut on when we can expect to receive their entries for judging.
Frank Quine has notified the chapter that he will be unable for prepare the certificates for winners. It was suggested that the chore might be turned over to board member Paul Byers who has a design student who is willing to help with chapter design work. We have on hand 100 sheets of certificate paper. It was noted that Lee Thornton is willing to handle ordering the folders that the certificates go into.
Consideration for the 2010 contest — how do we classify podcasts (we had entries in ’09 which were put in with radio). Is a weekly with daily online updates a weekly or a daily, especially when they enter "clips" from online?
DATELINE NEWSLETTER: March issue is in preparation Schotz reported.
REGIONAL MEETING: McCloskey agreed to check with former national president Christine Tatum to see if she had contacts at the Rocky Mountain News, of happy memory, who could provide tschotchkes for the goodie bag.
HALL OF FAME DINNER: Taylor reported Gwen Ifill has accepted the final HoF nomination. Steve is seeking introducers and contacts at the winners’ company to coordinate table sales. Board members urged that the menu avoid shellfish. It was agreed to NOT hire a photographer and each board member was designated a Citizen Journalist for the event to take and provide photos.
BLOOMBERG: Webb raised an issue about a Bloomberg FOI request that was being fought by government officials. It was agreed that Webb would contact national president Dave Aeikens about the matter and report back to the board.
WEBSITE: Becker reported that he had set up and had started to populate a new chapter website. There are blog opportunities and all of the existing blog entries back to November ’07 has been moved into the new site. Only chapter leaders can create blogposts. Anyone who signs in and gives basic info can post responses on blogs. Discussion lists can be set up. Audio and video can be streamed. Dateline newsletters will be posted as electronic versions of them are retrieved. Agendas and minutes of board meetings going back several years are being moved in.
FOR THE GOOD OF THE ORDER: Shlesinger proposed asking AU teacher Nick Clooney to do a program for the chapter.
Becker noted that member John Hopkins and his bicycle will be visiting the Washington area soon and we might be able to get together for a social occasion.
NEXT MEETING: A variety of conflicts suggested that the scheduling of the April meeting needs to be left an open item until some other scheduling decisions outside the board’s control are made.
ADJOURNMENT: On a motion by Taylor seconded by Asher the meeting was unanimously adjourned at 9:18 p.m.