On Monday, the SPJ Board conducted a Skype conference call meeting to appoint a Region 12 director to serve in the interim until national elections in September. The current director Tony Hernandez left Region 12 in December of last year to take a position in Region 10. Per the SPJ bylaws, he could remain RD for up to six months following his move. Replacements are made via a board vote.
The position will be filled by Amanda Womac, who is a member of the East Tennessee Professional Chapter and most recently served as the Region 12 treasurer. Four people showed interest in the position, which goes to show we have amazing people in SPJ willing and capable of taking leadership roles. We are excited at all of the candidates’ interest in serving SPJ, and are eager to have them get more involved!
The position will be filled permanently through the online election process during EIJ15. Any member of SPJ who is located in Region 12 can still run for the position. If interested, please contact staff member Tara Puckey via email for more details.
In the spirit of transparency, we would normally post roll call votes in the minutes, but we have been asked to share that information now. Here are the votes from Monday’s Skype meeting regarding the Region 12 position:
Roll call vote for Amanda Womac (13 yes, 1 no, 2 abstain):
Dana Neuts: Abstain
David Cuillier: Yes
Lynn Walsh: Yes
Bill McCloskey: Yes
Alex Tarquinio: Yes
Jordan Gass-Pooré: Yes
Andy Schotz: No
Michael Koretzky: Yes
Joe Radske: Yes
Rob McLean: Yes
Eddye Gallagher: Yes
Tom Johnson: Yes
Pia Hallenberg: Yes
Matt Hall: Yes
Tony Hernandez: Abstain
Board members not listed above were not available to participate in the call.
Also during the meeting, the board voted unanimously to approve the Generation J Community, which is transitioning from a committee to a community structure. Although it may seem like semantics, the differences between a community and committee are vast.
A committee is a small group of people that serves at the pleasure of the president. A committee manages projects and may provide resources for others. By its nature, a committee is usually made up of about 10-15 people, and it focuses on work at the president’s direction.
A community, on the other hand, is a large group of people interested in a particular topic. They are self-governing and the community grows organically based on the needs and desires of its members. If you have an interest in issues facing young journalists or journalists in career transition, consider joining the Generation J Community. SPJ also has communities for members interested in freelance, international, digital and student journalism.
Please let me know if you have any questions. I’m happy to help!
Dana E. Neuts