Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Opening agenda for the new Board

These are the opening points of business for the new Board of Directors. Any thoughts or input on these from any members is always welcome, either in the comments or by e-mail at collegian.alumni.association(at)gmail.com.

- Robbie Ketcham, treasurer and chair pro tem


Our charter requires that the first order of business for a new Board has to be electing a chair, who will "with the advice and consent of the Board, have the power to schedule meetings, appoint committee chairs, handle day-to-day affairs of the Association and undertake any other administrative measures ordained by the Board. The chair shall have power to sign Association checks, either with prior authorization of the Board or – in a case of urgent need – if the sum is less than $500. ... The chair shall promptly report all actions to the Board, and the Board shall have the power to overturn any of the chair’s actions by a simple majority vote."

Who among the five elected reps (Todd, Tracy, Adam, Steve, Renee) should do this?

The charter requires that our second order of business be appointing a Finance Committee, to basically both help and oversee me regarding group funds. It can be any size, and anyone in the Association can be a member. Its purpose is pretty undefined, but its biggest role is in certifying the accuracy of budget reports -- once the committee agrees with me that the budget report is accurate, the Board can't change it, but only approve or reject it outright. The committee could also perhaps be a kind of fundraising group.

If anyone knows anyone with some financial background, it would be great.

Pamela Camerra-Rowe has stepped down as a Collegian advisor due to time constraints. And as P.F. Kluge spends much of the spring semester abroad, the paper is currently advisor-less. The Interim Board suggested a few people on campus for advice on a more informal basis. But the editors were also wondering whether any alumni might be interested in being giving informal advice or looking over the paper and offering thoughts?

Without a Finance Committee, this is a rather informal report, but here goes: Our checking account currently has a balance of $411.78. We also have a $70 pledge that has not yet been received.

Of the total, however, $150 -- plus the $70 pledge -- are proceeds from the silent auction during the reunion, which had been designated for helping the Kenyon library buy a scanner to digitize the Collegian archives for use by the newspaper staff and the public.

While this campaign seemed a good idea when endorsed by the Interim Board, the unexpected birth of the Kluge Collegian Fund has put the scanner campaign on a back burner. The Interim Board discussed this at its final meeting, and its suggestion was that, if we can receive the final pledge (which also means making sure that the person actually received the item he was buying), we make a $220 donation to the Kenyon library for the scanner purchase, and tell them we are suspending this campaign for the time being.

What do people think?

Also in terms of the Kluge Fund, I talked briefly with the head of development for Kenyon, and he's agreed to send us an update on the Fund's balance and interest each fall, when Kenyon compiles these numbers for its own bookkeeping.

The main topic of the final Interim Board conference call was program suggestions for the new Board. The main things brought up:

-- Creating an internship or job bank, where Collegian staffers (or other alumni) could find out about jobs posted by alumni. One way to do this could be through our blog, simply having alumni write in with a job opening and we put it up there. Our mirror blog, collegianalumni.wordpress.com, comes with the ability to easily "tag" messages, which would then allow someone to click on a "jobs" link and then see all posts with job openings. This could be an easy and effective way to get more posts to the blog and create a continuously growing job bank.

-- There was some discussion about possibly having a workshop/small-scale reunion at the start of the fall 2008 semester, when new students and editors might want some help on writing, design, etc.

-- One suggestion was that the Collegian editors, each year, think of a certain need, and the Board could help find a way to meet that need. However, it was noted that this might be what the Kluge Fund is designed for -- as it should provide at least $2,000+ in funding each year -- so the better policy might be to support that.

-- There's still some uncertainty about the new Collegian office. It's going to be on the third floor of Peirce, and Kenyon has said that the paper would have its own office and be able to share a second space. But not much new is known right now. There was some concern that the College could have the paper share space, then after the editors object, say it's too late to change. But Leslie doesn't think this is likely to happen, and there's also the fact that an alumnus gave substantial money to help furnish that floor of Peirce with the understanding that it would help the Collegian office. So all in all, there was no need seen for alumni to do anything at this time -- if anything, it could seem like meddling.

What would people like to see in the next couple years?


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