Minutes of the Oregon Poetry Association (OPA) Board Meeting of February 23, 2021
The meeting was scheduled to begin at 7:00 pm via Zoom.
Present: Jennifer Rood (President, Historian), Sue Fagalde Lick (Vice-President), Dan Liberthson
(Secetary), Rana Tahir (Treasurer), Dave Mehler (Membership Co-chair)
Not Present: Dale Champlin (Newsletter and Verseweavers Editor), Susan Morse (Assistant Secretary, Fall Adult Poetry Contest Chair), Lorna Rose Hahn (Membership Co-Chair, Outreach Chair), Rayn Roberts (At-Large)
I. Jennifer called the meeting to order at 7:05.
II. Approval of Minutes
A motion by Dave to accept the January 17, 2020 board meeting minutes was seconded and approved unanimously by voice vote.
III. Officer Reports
A. President’s Report (Jennifer Rood)
Marc Janssen of the Salem Poetry Project reserved a 30-minute reading time for OPA to present readings from the Pandemic 2020 anthology on Thursday, April 8 via Zoom and he left the selection of presenters up to the Board. After discussion, it was decided to invite Pandemic Anthology contributors in the Salem Area to participate.
Jennifer contacted Kate Weber, President of the Oregon Association of School Libraries (OASL) to ask if she would be interested in a collaboration in which OPA and the OASL would promote Oregon Poet Laureates in a display for National Poetry Month. OPA would provide a display of 10 Oregon poet laureates and OASL would host the historical/informational display, beginning with the Grants Pass High School Library during April—National Poetry Month. Jennifer wrote the Oregon Cultural Trust to see if they could provide an 8×10 photo of our 10th Oregon Poet Laureate, Anis Mojgani, a short bio, and a permission to include a poem of hers in the display. We have photos of all other Oregon poet laureates, and Jennifer is compiling bios for them. We will need to purchase an 11×14 frame and mat for Anis Mojgani’s picture, and possibly other small frames for bios. This cost will come out of the operations budget.
Although the Board approved the purchase of a Zoom business account at the last meeting based on the assumption that it would cost $199 per year, it turns out that the actual cost is $199 per year with a minimum of 10 users, for a total outlay of nearly $2000 a year. This is not feasible given our budget. However, a Pro Account costs $149 for 1 license permitting up to 100 people per meeting and up to 500 people for $50 more. That would be doable, so Raina moved to purchase one license of Zoom Pro, which was seconded and unanimously approved. This license will not include cloud storage but up to 1 hour of video could be downloaded.
Jennifer met with Lisa Story (our website designer) on January 18 to discuss the website redesign and look at examples of well-designed and poorly-designed websites from other poetry groups. Lisa also talked with Stacy Clements (our web host) and it is clear that we will need to use WordPress for the redesign (as it has plug-ins and licenses that would not work with Wix, which Lisa recommended). The website redesign is still underway.
B. Vice-President (Sue Lick)
C. Secretary (Dan)
D. Treasurer’s Report (Rana Tahir)
An external drive was purchased and labeled.
Past treasurer files and data are being consolidated into one master sheet.
A new OPA Treasurer’s handbook is being written and compiled based on the recent transition.
The Wild Apricot free trial is underway. The bill will be due in March 2021.
The exact budget, honorarium, and registration rates for the Spring workshop series must be established. The budget for both the conference and these workshops is $8,000.00.
Rana propose creating a budget section specifically for publications, separate from the operations fund. She moved to allocate $4,000 to this publications fund. The motion was seconded and approved unanimously.
Following is a table of available funds by category.
Current funds are $39,713.49.
IV. Committee Reports
A. Membership (Dave Mehler)
Current total OPA membership is 336 active members. 78 are due to renew in March. Postcards and emails for the 78 will go out on March 15. Dave says we need to think about the different types of memberships: family, 1 year, 2 years, student, and senior. Couples are buying individual memberships. Do we want to discount for couples? Wild Apricot was discussed: we need to weed out extra designations but everything except the contests can now be switched over from Submittable. We could sell publications including back issues (we would need to discuss and set prices) using the online store. Dave said that Wild Apricot site will be up and running by March 7. Membership will be individually tracked and automatic notice of renewal can be set up, including reminders. Lapsed memberships can be tracked. The site is https://opa1.wildapricot.org/
B. Contests (Susan Morse)
The Spring contest is up and running. It will close on March 15, but there are only 15 entries so far. Jennifer asked if we should we extend the deadline due to low enrollment and power outages and then proposed waiting until deadline is closer and then deciding. We would need to check if the judges are OK with extending. No change was made; the contest deadline was left at March 15. The under 30 category may be a problem: in prior years there were very few entries.
C. Verseweavers, Pandemic 2020 Anthology, Newsletter (Dale Champlin)
Dale communicated to Jennifer that Verseweavers copies are in the mail.
D. Social media (Lorna Rose Hahn)
In an email report, Lorna wrote that at present we have 950 Facebook followers, up 23 in the past month. She is posting member news and national poetry news, but most traffic is from memes and quotes. The ideal time of day to post is around 6 pm. We have 26 followers on Twitter.
V. Old Business
None or previously described.
VI. New Business
After discussion, it was decided to have April readings by Pandemic Anthology contributors, as organized by Dale, and do workshops later in the year as April will be crowded with events. Verseweavers readings will be on March 16, 23, and 30. Using information provided by Jennifer, Sue will contact Verseweavers contributors to determine who will read and when. Jennifer will host and work with others to do publicity.
The next board meeting will be March 9, at 7 pm.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:33 pm.
Minutes recorded and prepared by Dan Liberthson, Secretary