Journalism Education Association General Meeting

Journalism Education Association General Meeting

Note: These minutes are not considered official until approved by the JEA Board of Directors at its next meeting.

Minutes of the Journalism Education Association General Membership Meeting

Friday, April 17, 2009

Hyatt Regency, Phoenix

  • President Jack Kennedy called the meeting to order at 8:05 a.m.
  • In attendance were:

Jack Kennedy, MJE, President and Executive/Finance Committee chair

Bob Bair, MJE, Vice President and New Adviser Outreach Committee chair

Susan Tantillo, MJE, Secretary and Awards Committee chair

Ann Visser, MJE, Past President/Convention Consultant

Bradley Wilson, CJE, C:JET editor and Technology Committee chair, Photography Contest Coordinator

Linda Puntney, MJE, JEA Executive Director

Connie Fulkerson, JEA Administrative Assistant

Mark Newton, MJE, Certification Commission chair

Lori Oglesbee Petter, CJE, Development/Curriculum Commission chair and Publications Committee chair

Anita Marie Wertz, MJE, Junior High/Middle School Commission chair

Norma Kneese, MJE, Multicultural Commission chair and Outreach Academy Committee chair

John Bowen, MJE, Scholastic Press Rights Commission chair

Steve Matson, MJE, Region 1/Northwest Regional Director and Partnership/Endorsements Committee chair

Gary Lindsay, MJE, Region 3/North Central Regional Director

Wayna Polk, CJE, Region 4/South Central Regional Director and Scholarship Committee chair

Brenda Gorsuch, MJE, Region 5/Southeast Regional Director and Administrator Outreach Committee chair

Ron Bonadonna, CJE, Region 7/Northeast Regional Director and Membership Retention Committee chair

Gloria “Lori” Eastman, Nominations Committee chair

Stan Zoller, CJE, Outreach Academy Team

Tom Gayda, MJE, Scholastic Journalism Week Chair

Linda Barrington, MJE, NCTE Liaison/Assembly Director and Mentoring Program Committee co-chair

Julie Dodd, MJE, Scholastic Press Association Directors Liaison, Mentoring Program Committee co-chair

Candace Perkins Bowen, MJE, JEA Listserv Liaison

Logan Aimone, MJE, NSPA Liaison

Reginald Ragland, CJE, Professional Media Advisory Council Liaison

Peggy Gregory, CJE, Phoenix Convention Local Co-Chair

Christine Brandell, CJE, Phoenix Convention Local Co-Chair

Valerie Kibler, CJE, Washington, D.C., Convention Local Chair


Betsy Pollard Rau, CJE, Region 6/Mid-Atlantic and Great Lakes Regional Director

Aaron Manfull, MJE, New Media Committee chair

  • Summary of Board Action…Tantillo

Tantillo summarized highlights of Thursday’s JEA board meeting:

– Passed the Scholastic Press Rights Commission’s rewording and update of JEA’s Statement of Prior Review.

– Agreed all five existing commission chairs should form a committee to study JEA’s options for helping advisers in peril — those faced with prior review, censorship or job loss because of advising publications – and report back at the board meeting in Washington, D.C.

– Passed a budget for 2009-10 after lengthy discussion of JEA’s mission and the impact of the current economic climate. All members must keep in mind that membership retention, membership increase, convention attendance and bookstore sales are the most important ways for JEA to generate income to carry out its projects benefiting all members.

  • Conventions/Headquarters/Financial Reports…Puntney

Profit/Loss St. Louis: Puntney reported shared income with NSPA is $478,885.  The uncollected total at this time is $4,695 representing schools that have not paid. NSPA is working diligently to collect this amount. Note this is less than 1 percent of total income. JEA’s share of income, minus half of the uncollected balance, plus Write-off income is $262,946.98. Total shared expenses are $146,451.94, with JEA’s share $73,225.97.  The hotel rebated a total of $31,884 toward use of the convention center. JEA’s share of that rebate is $15,942. As of April 13, NSPA has paid JEA $263,632, leaving no balance due JEA. St. Louis  drew 5,027 delegates (4,587 paid).

Quarterly Profit/Loss: The 2008-09 (July 1-June 30) overall JEA budget is based on projected income of $1,074,475 and projected expenses of $1,130,308 with the difference to be made up, if necessary, from reserve funds. As of April 11, 2009, Puntney reported JEA income of $534,519 and expenses of $651,717. The discrepancy is primarily due to poor investment performance and loss of interest on investments.

Puntney said, “We have money in the bank and we are doing fine.” To date Puntney has not had to transfer money from savings or investments.

Investments: JEA’s total portfolio value as of March 31, 2009, was $591,045.24. This compares to $790,114.76 on March 31, 2008, and $618,853.90 on Dec. 31, 2008. Puntney noted the portfolio’s value on Dec. 31, 2002 was $383,331.27, showing a gain of 2.84 percent over time since then. “Over the long run, we are as well off as anyone,” Puntney said, “and we haven’t lost our original deposits. It’s not time to panic but we are not putting in more.”

Membership: Puntney called attention to membership maps and statistics as of April 7, 2009. She said she is concerned about overall membership (2,347) and voting membership (2,122) being at their lowest point since spring 2004 (2,238 and 2,002 respectively). Puntney reminded board members of their responsibility to promote membership and urged Regional Directors to remind State Directors of their role in building membership.

In honor of JEA’s 85th birthday, Lifetime Memberships will be available during 2009 for $415, an $85 discount.

  • Wilson…Online election and C:JET

Wilson asked for feedback about the online election process and asked members to volunteer to write for C:JET.

  • Mentoring Program…Dodd, Barrington

The program has 20 mentors with 58 mentees. The JEA board has pledged financial support through 2013. Yellow Chair and the NAA Foundation are additional sources of financial support. In 2009-10 the program is expected to expand into Arizona, Alabama, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Iowa and to include a third mentor in both Wisconsin and Illinois. [Note: By Saturday of this convention, Dodd and Barrington announced Washington as joining the previously mentioned states for 2009-10.] Training for 2009 will be June 15-18 at Kansas State University.  Mentor forums are a part of each national convention now. The program’s spring report will be available at under the Resources tab.

Kate Moore, Oregon mentee from Franklin HS in Portland, told the group she would not have made it through the year without her JEA mentor, Bill Flechtner, MJE.

  • Scholastic Press Associations…Dodd

Saturday’s SPA Roundtable from 10 to 11:50 a.m. (note time change from usual) will focus on solutions to problems created by current economic issues.

Dodd announced coming changes to three state SPAs:

– H.L. Hall, MJE, has retired as director of Tennessee HSPA. The association will move from Vanderbilt University to Lipscomb University in Nashville. Dr. Jimmy McCollum is on board as the new director.

– John Hudnall is retiring as director of Kansas SPA but will continue to teach at the university. Jeff Browne, former Director of Student Media at Colorado State University and 2006 recipient of JEA’s Friend of Scholastic Journalism Award, will take over as director.

– Due to budget cuts at the University of Florida, Florida SPA is on the verge of losing Judy Robinson, CJE, as its director. At this convention, Dodd is circulating petitions on Robinson’s behalf.

  • Scholastic Press Rights Commission…J. Bowen

The newly adopted revised and updated Statement of Prior Review is online at by going to the news update in the top left corner. It is also available at Additional materials to go with the statement on prior review are available at or

The commission is also working on three levels of brochures about scholastic journalism – one for counselors, one for students and one for administrators.

  • Phoenix Convention

Visser moved and Nancy Hastings, MJE and JEA State Director for Indiana, seconded that the organization go on record to commend the Phoenix local committee for its great job in organizing for the spring 2009 convention. Motion carried by acclamation.

Brandell reminded members about tonight’s silent auction at the adviser reception. Proceeds benefit Student Press Law Center and Arizona’s JEA mentors.

  • Certification Commission…Newton

Newton reported on the commission’s winter retreat. The commission is working to align questions on both CJE and MJE exams with the Standards for Journalism Educators adopted by JEA and the Scholastic Journalism Division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. In addition, the commission is revising the scoring guides and rubrics for both exams and MJE projects, creating and implementing a comprehensive training program for certification candidates, creating a comprehensive marketing plan for certification, updating all printed materials and the Web site to reflect all the changes. Anyone interested in the certification report Newton distributed at the board meeting should contact him (

“Get certified,” he said.

  • Professional Learning Community…Newton

The PLC will meet this summer to create a manual to expand the program. The group hopes to expand the PLC model within the next year. Anyone interested in the PLC report Newton distributed at the board meeting should contact him (

  • Student Journalist of the Year…Polk

Polk reported receiving 30 state entries for 2009. She thanked those who helped to get the winners to the national convention. Polk said last year’s JOY winner, Alejandro Bonito from Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, and his adviser, Lisa Van Etta from Cypress Falls HS in Houston, Texas, will present a two-hour session with Polk at 9 a.m. Saturday with tips about preparing a winning JOY portfolio.

  • Curriculum Commission…Oglesbee Petter

She said the commission will meet at 11 a.m. Saturday in the Board Room. Brainstorming will be about creating curriculum components.

  • Washington, D.C., Convention…Kibler

Kibler invited everyone to the D.C. convention, Nov. 12-15 at the Marriott Wardman Park with room rates beginning at $209. She commended Ragland for his role in recruiting newsroom pros as featured speakers. The Newseum will have reduced and special pricing for convention delegates. To honor the 100th birthday of cartoonist Herblock in 2009, the Herb Block Foundation is conducting a national student cartooning contest. One high school and one junior high/middle school student will each receive a $500 monetary award, a copy of the Library of Congress 2009 book about Herblock and roundtrip airfare for him/herself and a parent to attend the Washington, D.C., convention. JEA has agreed to waive the convention registration fee for each winner. The convention will also feature a cartooning strand of sessions. The administrator strand will feature a panel discussion with administrators who support student freedom of expression and students making content decisions.

  • Portland Convention

The convention will be April 15-18, 2010, with all events at the Oregon Convention Center. Housing is split among four hotels with a penalty clause at each hotel for not filling its block: Hilton Portland and Executive Tower, Doubletree Hotel Lloyd Center, Portland Crowne Plaza, Red Lion Hotel. Information about each property and instructions for room reservations will be online at once the link is established. The Hilton reduced its room rate to $175 and agreed to a reduced block. The other three properties each have room rates around $150. Erin Simonsen, Lakeridge HS, Lake Oswego, Ore., and J.D. McIntire, Sandy (Ore.) HS, are co-chairs of the local committee.

  • Importance of Conventions to JEA members and services…Kennedy

Kennedy said conventions are crucial to JEA’s continuing its wide-ranging programs and member services since about half of the organization’s income comes from conventions but only about one-third of its expenses go to conventions.

He suggested every adviser in the room bring a new school to the Washington, D.C., convention.

JEA has never had to dip into its savings to balance a budget, even though the possibility has been there for years. However, there is always a first time. In creating the 2009-10 budget, the JEA board considered carefully its mission and its programs and member services. The board decided not to reduce funding for our support of Student Press Law Center, JEA awards, the Professional Learning Community initiative, the Mentoring Program, the Write-off Contests, the Adviser Institute, the diversity initiatives and the new media outreach. In short, JEA’s money is not being spent on frills. It is being spent on valuable services and programs for members. Housing for convention delegates is becoming a major issue. Because not all delegates choose to stay in the official convention hotel or hotels, JEA runs the risk of not meeting its guaranteed room block. The guaranteed block is what allows JEA to book meeting rooms in the hotel at no additional charge. Failure to meet our room block, however, would ultimately result in huge financial penalties to the organization as a result of members booking rooms and then canceling them and others choosing to get “a better deal” by staying in a nearby hotel that is not official. “We are all in this together,” Kennedy said in urging advisers to do the right thing for the good of the whole.

  • Support for SPLC…Oglesbee Petter

Herff Jones, Walsworth, Taylor and Jostens have each agreed to match the money collected for SPLC when NSPA passes baskets at Saturday’s awards ceremony. Thus, every $1 donated at that time will become $5 after the matching.

  • Reminder to all to attend today’s 1 p.m. keynote session where Mary Beth Tinker will help delegates understand the significance of the 40th anniversary of the 1969 Supreme Court ruling in Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District.
  • The next regular meeting of the JEA General Membership will be at 8 a.m., Nov. 13, 2009, at the Marriott Wardman Park, Washington, D.C.

Motion to adjourn at 8:40 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Susan Hathaway Tantillo, MJE

JEA Secretary

















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