The regular business meeting of OutWorlders was held on Sunday, March 21, 2010, at 11:35 am at Atlanta Diner. Edward DeGruy, Wm Boozer, Michael Green, Jeff Smith, Kris Harter, Robert Marshall, Vandy Beth Glenn, Cassie Gaul, and Lizbeth Dison were present. President DeGruy called the meeting to order.
Mike Henigan is temporarily serving as our Events Coordinator.
Vice President’s Report
We have $3,375.75.
Bil and Edward met earlier in March to change the bank records to reflect that the two of them are the authorized signatories on the organization’s bank account
No new sponsoring members joined between the February business meeting and the March business meeting. There were 10 paid sponsoring members prior to the March meeting. At the meeting, Kris and Cassie became sponsoring members.
There were three expenditures for March:
$119.40 was spent to renew the Web site registration.
$360.00 was spent to reserve our table at Atlanta Pride in October.
$30.00 was spent to renew our corporate registration with the State of Georgia.
Events Coordinator’s Report
The position remains vacant.
Public Relations Coordinator’s Report
Outlantacon has a table at Frolicon; OutWorlders does not yet.
The Twitter account has 18 followers.
Cassie volunteered to run the OutWorlders party for Outlantacon.
Internet Coordinator’s Report
Special Interest Groups Reports
No members were present.
Strategy Gaming appears to be defunct. The last scheduled attempt was canceled for lack of attendance. It will be removed from the regular calendar and perhaps made an “ad hoc” activity until interest waxes again.
An amendment to Section 5 of the bylaws, proposed last month, was read and considered. The question was called and voted on.
There were 3 votes for the amendment, 3 against, and one voting “present.” Since amendments require a two-thirds majority, the question failed.
Scott Tatum has submitted our bid to host Gaylaxicon 2011.
Our tenth anniversary will be June 14th. We will have a party, but the 14th is on a Monday, so we will have it on Saturday, June 12th instead. Lizbeth will organize this, and it may be a picnic or picnic/pool party.
The Spring Picnic will be on Saturday, April 17th instead of Sunday the 18th. The location is still to be determined. The organizers are Cassie and Kris, and it will run from 11am to 3pm.
The table for Pride is paid for, and we hope to have an Event Coordinator in time for it.
We will have a Charity Game Day soon, with Chris Kids as the beneficiary. Edward will coordinate this.
The discussion over the amendment made us realize there is room for improvement in the bylaws. Edward will soon empanel a bylaws committee to explore a possible revision.
Lizbeth suggested we buy an ad in the Outlantacon program book and the TimeGate program book. Each would cost up to $100.
The following two proposals were introduced:
Proposed: That OutWorlders allocate $100 for an ad in the Outlantacon 2010 program book.
Proposed: That OutWorlders allocate $100 for an ad in the TimeGate 2010 program book.
Lizbeth will do public relations to find new applicants for the Events Coordinator position. Edward will send her a job description which Lizbeth will post on social media.
We then discussed the various items on Lizbeth’s attached document. Everyone was particularly interested in item #3, the survey of our membership. Kris suggested possible survey questions, and Bil designs such things in his job and is interested in helping. This would be a targeted email survey, preceded by about a week by an email alerting members to the upcoming survey, so it won’t be deleted as spam.
Robert will set up an email alias for Lizbeth in her role as Public Relations Coordinator.
We realized that there is no requirement in our bylaws for the annual budget to be approved by anyone other than the Treasurer; the Treasurer must only inform the members of the budget. Bil will write an amendment to address this.
We have no fan table for Dragon*Con 2010 yet, despite the fact that we host one of the biggest parties every year and have co-hosted the Rainbow Flag party with Trek Track. There are no tables left at the Hyatt, and the Sheraton is currently “locked out.”
Lizbeth suggested that Quicksilver Productions may be willing to share its table with us. She will see.
If Trek Track, under its new management, does not want to co-host the Rainbow Flag party with us, we will explore the idea of getting a different programming track to co-host.
The meeting adjourned at 1:14 p.m.
Respectfully submitted by Vandy Beth Glenn, Secretary, Atlanta OutWorlders.
21 March 2010
Recommend an increase in membership dues for the organization.
I believe that an increase in dues should be proposed for FY 2011. During 2010, we can work on enhancing membership benefits (primarily the business discounts), providing these to all members as a trial. For 2011, we would then propose to provide these enhanced benefits only to paid members.
Reach out to local businesses to obtain sponsorships for local events as well as secure discounts for paid memberships of OutWorlders. With a broadly diverse membership in regards to employment, we have an established network of business contacts already in place. This is an excellent place to start outreach, and could easily be build on from there.
Survey the membership
What do we know about the membership? A brief, non-invasive survey would be a helpful and vital tool to begin utilizing our membership’s strengths and abilities to reach our PR goals for 2010. Questions asked would include availability or willingness to service on committees, areas of interest for volunteer work and work experience/current employment.
Establish a password secured-site on the existing website with membership contact information. This could be available (listing and access) only to paid members to cut down on internal work as well as promote the paid membership. This would be a valuable networking tool for members.
Establish a job bank on the current website and encourage our sponsor companies as well as members to list career opportunities. Recommendation that this be a benefit open to all members so as to have the broadest reach for applicants as well as be a charitable benefit to help all OutWorlders members in a time of need.
Broaden social media
OutWorlders Facebook presence is adequate and seems to be a viable communication tool. However, Twitter needs to be more aggressively pursued and a LinkedIn page should be established.
Network with similar organizations
Are there ties with similar organizations in the Southeast or nationwide? Would it be possible to contact these organizations and see about co-sponsoring events, sharing business contacts or cross-promotions?
Pitch for more press coverage in both gay and mainstream media, locally and nationally. Again, a survey of the membership may uncover some valuable contacts within our own organization.
PR committee and volunteers
I have set some lofty goals that will require more than just a single person’s efforts. Using the membership survey, I would recommend that we build a network of committee volunteers that could be called upon per project, per event, or who might be willing to work on an on-going basis. An involved membership is a more committed membership. Members who feel an ownership in their organization build a stronger organization and are the key tools to reaching these goals set above.