It’s almost Annual Report time!

It’s that time of year again, to start preparing for Annual Reports!

This is an early notice that your report will be due May 30, 2017 and cover the period from May 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017. We’ll send you the link a bit closer to the deadline, but I wanted to share a few tips for preparing ahead of time to make things easier on both you and the entire chapter board.

  • Start a Word Doc with information about each of the programs you held within the past year (this is a good idea to keep going all year). Pass it around to other board members to gather important details so you’ll have all the info when you are ready to fill out the online form.
  • Keep the questions to the online form in that same Word Doc – technology fails sometimes and it’s good to have a copy!
  • Gather up important information (your chapter links to online locations, information about all board members, your banking information, etc.)
  • Conduct a financial review before the deadline! This is a required part of being a chapter each year so get three or more people together to do a full review – look at the checkbook, look at the bank statements, look at the receipts, look at everything!
  • Collect bank statements for the past year and put them together into one PDF file! If you need help, check out this online tool that merges single PDF documents together.
  • Ask questions in advance. It’s so much easier for me to help you before the deadline than after.
  • Remember how important these are – it’s sometimes the only way we know your chapter is alive, how we assign delegates and so many other things that happen quietly on the back end of our chapter management. Help us help you!

Again, I’m happy to answer any questions or help in any way that I can. Please don’t hesitate to reach out at any time.

Mark your calendars for May 30!


Questions?

Did your chapter get a letter from our friends at the IRS? Maybe you have questions about the kind of non-profit our organization is. Or, you can’t seem to find where to download that SPJ logo for a flyer you’re working on. Whatever it is, the staff at HQ are ready to help. Contact us at any time with any question, big or small.

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Have a holly, jolly 990 deadline and spread that Christmas cheer! 🎄

Get ’em filed, friends!

The deadline is tomorrow! We understand how busy the holiday season is. The IRS, not so much.

They’ve asked that our chapters file their annual Form 990’s by Dec. 15. That deadline is tomorrow, so please don’t delay!

Those chapters whose annual gross receipts are normally $50,000 or less can electronically submit Form 990-N, also known as the e-Postcard. It’s quick and painless and you’ll want to do it ASAP.

Give the gift of SPJ this year

There’s no better gift to give this season than the gift of information through quality, ethical journalism.

Honor those who support the right to know by making them an SPJ Supporter for just $20. 

Have a special journalist in mind? Make them a part of the largest journalism organization in the country by signing them up in one of a variety of membership categories.

Click here to give the gift of all things journalism – give them SPJ.

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Our friends at the IRS and chapter programming for all

Get ’em filed, friends!

It’s that time of year – holiday bustle, good food and great friends, just like the ones at the IRS.

They’ve asked that our chapters file their annual Form 990’s by Dec. 15. That’s a little over a month away, so mark your calendars or, better yet, just get it over with.

Those chapters whose annual gross receipts are normally $50,000 or less can electronically submit Form 990-N, also known as the e-Postcard. It’s quick and painless and you’ll want to do it ASAP.

You had me at pizza.

Professional and student chapters can also try out our super easy Program in a Box. Great time, great food, and a great opportunity to network. We made it even easier for you by creating some downloadable resources to make your event a great success.

Some are as simple as our “Slice ‘n’ Dice” program. We’ve got everything you need in the “virtual” box, including directions, flyers and a sign-up sheet. There are even some nifty table tents to spruce up the place. All you need to do is bring in the pros and order some pizza.

If you don’t like pizza (I don’t believe that’s a thing but if it is, you do you) and prefer a movie night, we have that covered as well. J-Movie Night is another fun and easy program idea. We’ve even recommended some great movies to educate and inspire every journo.

Feedback and suggestions

If your chapter has used one of the programs included in “PIB,” we would love to know how it turned out! Please share both successes and failures so we can continue to build and improve.

Additionally, if you’ve held a successful program that you think another chapter could benefit from or just have something to add to our list, please let us know!

Direct all feedback to  Tara Puckey.

Because sharing is caring, some chapters have let us know what worked and we want to share it with you. Feel free to add your own spin or completely copy these terrific ideas.

Have a good week,
Chrystal Parvin
Membership Coordinator
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Congrats & Annual Reports!

Chapter Cash

Congrats to another chapter for receiving a 2013-2014 Chapter Grant to fund some of their awesome programming. The Columbia University SPJ Chapter will be hosting a program about FOI issues and we’re sure it will be great. Congrats again!

Annual Reports

It’s Annual Report time for chapters, but don’t worry. We’re trying to make it as painless as possible. We’ll have the report posted soon, we’ll send you a link and you have plenty of time to complete them – both campus and pro reports are due May 30. Questions? Contact Tara Puckey at 317.920.4784.

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Round 3 of Chapter Grants: More money!

Three more chapters were awarded funds from SPJ’s Chapter Grants, which provides money to chapters for unique and innovative programming, thanks to a little help from the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation.

Chapters receiving grant funds include:

  1. Rio Grande Pro
  2. East Tennessee Pro
  3. University of Maryland Campus

Didn’t get in on the money train? No worries, we’ll have one more round of grant applications. The due date for submissions is April 1 so start thinking up those great programs now!

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More money for chapters

Congratulations to three chapters who were recently awarded Chapter Grants for their upcoming programs! DePaul University will host a symposium about women in sports journalism, Texas A&M San Antonio plans to hold a workshop about developing community news sites and Delaware Pro will host a series of hands on FOIA programs around the state.

Don’t forget – your chapter can apply to receive a grant, courtesy of the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation, during our next round of applications due in February. For more information, visit the Chapter Grants section of the website.

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A new round of Chapter Grants dishes out more cash

Congratulations to the three chapters who were awarded Chapter Grants this month! Each chapter was awarded up to $500 to put on their unique, amazing and brilliant journo program. Once they’ve finished, we’ll post a recap here so you can steal some great ideas.

cash

Grants were awarded to the following chapters:

1. Louisville Pro

2. Oklahoma Pro

3. Kennesaw State University

Congrats again! Now go do great stuff!

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Two more chapters get cash in May

Two chapters have been awarded funds for their awesome programs thanks to SPJ Chapter Grants. We ended this years program on a great note by dishing out the cash to SPJ South Florida and the Fort Worth chapter for some great ideas.

According to their grant application, “SPJ South Florida and the Miami chapter of NAHJ are following the lead of their national organizations- who are joining forces for EIJ this summer in Anaheim – and we’re sponsoring our own mini-conference on Saturday, July 13, at the Mayfair Hotel in Coconut Grove.” For more information on the event, visit their website.

The Forth Worth chapter plans to host an in-depth program about investigative journalism at the request of many of their members. They also hope to help out the community and had this to say: “By providing in depth training, the community will benefit as journalists apply theskills learned to report on the misuses and abuses as well as the beneficial events occurring in ourarea as well as beyond it for those reporters who take these skills with them into other areas.”

Either way, both chapters are set to provide quality programming with some extra in their wallets. Look for information about the next round of Chapter Grants in the future and congrats to these two great chapters!

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Chapter leaders: Let’s talk web stuff

From SPJ Director at Large, Carl Corry:

In an effort to help SPJ chapters improve their all-important web presences, or to start one, please take a few minutes to fill out the survey if you’re a chapter leader. We’ll share the results.

The goal: to help bring attention to the great work you do and improve your ability to attract and retain members.

Additionally, SPJ Director at Large Carl Corry is offering to help you get started by providing one-on-one advice to any chapter. We will also host a Google+ Hangout on the subject.

Please reply by June 14.

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Free pizza, the First Amendment and serious fun

The Arizona State University chapter recently hosted a First Amendment Free Food Festival, affectionately known to most enthusiastic SPJers as FAFFF. Chapter president, Anne Stegen, reported that “exactly 162 people gave up their First Amendment rights for pizza.” Two dozen people didn’t appreciate the fun lesson and turned it down. For the details, check out this story on the event.

Here are some pictures of the awesomeness. Does your chapter want to host FAFFF? Do you have pictures of your last great event? Tell us!

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