Winter 2007: Austin

Winter 2007 Conference
February 28, 2007

Austin, Texas
4 p.m.


PRIMA President Patty Wente called meeting to order at 4:05


Minutes presented by Christina Kuzmych.
Motion to approve by Keith Neisler
Seconded by Al Bartholet
Approved unanimously


PRIMA Treasurer Dorie Vallillo reported.
Balance in checking account 9/1/06 $13,259.17
Income $11,698.15
Expenses $18,883.34
Balance in checking account 9/1/06 $12,167.53
Transfer from closed MM account $ 6,093.55
Motion to approve by Keith Neisler
Seconded by Dan Skinner
Approved unanimously


Patty Wente gave an overview of the year and a summary of what transpired in the PRIMA Board retreat. The Board had met in September to assess current status and future direction for PRIMA. Michael Ostroff, President of the Ostroff Group, was the facilitator. The group identified several directions for PRIMA to take, and compiled an agenda to present to membership. One change will affect membership immediately:
There will be a modest increase for membership in PRIMA — $200 a year for full members; $100 for associates. This will continue to keep dues low, yet raise funds to help cover operational costs. The value of regionals to public radio managers was discussed. In the post-PRC era, the need to converge in face-to-face discussions is important to communication and national cohesion. The need for building leadership was discussed, and ideas proposed as to who should undertake training.
Patty introduced Susan Ramming, President of the Board at WUOM.
Past-president Craig Beeby was honored for his 29 years of service to public radio. Craig is moving to a new position as President of U:SA.


NPR Board report provided by Tim Eby.
Discussed the importance of upcoming NPR Board meetings – they will be instrumental in defining the relationship of stations to NPR. Eduardo A. Hauser is a new Board member from Miami. Cephas Bowles is rolling off the Board. John Stark and Rob Gordon are up for re-election. Anyone interested in running for an NPR Board position needs to submit a letter of interest to Neal Jackson. Jon Schwartz talked about the rewarding experience associated with serving on the NPR Board. PRIMA doesn’t have that much representation on the Board after the Tim Eby and Scott Hanley terms expire. Only Dave Edwards will be representing PRIMA. Scott Hanley reminded the group that part of the reason managers are reluctant to run for the Board is that the actual process of “running” entails much work. However, the work associated with being a member of the NPR Board is rewarding.
Content Deport report by Scott Hanley. The plan is to turn off the old system at the end of April. We are still learning about Content Depot. Only about 20-some stations have jumped on fully.

Leadership training for managers.
Tim Eby mentioned the need for leadership training for managers. In his visits to stations as NPR Board President, he heard this message from many managers as well as personnel in other areas. The message reiterates the idea that management in today’s challenging and volatile times demands a different skill level. Tim Emmons said that training of management, staff, and volunteers is essential for continued significant service to the American public and also recommended an investment in training. Discussion ensued as to the value of a leadership training initiative, and who would be best suited to undertake it in an effective manner. There was consensus that this is an area that needs immediate attention. It also needs to come from a central area, like CPB. Jon Schwartz offered a Resolution: PRIMA urges CPB to take leadership in establishing formal management and leadership training system wide forthwith.
Cleve Callison seconded the Resolution.
Unanimously approved.


Prima election is coming up.
Nominating committee –Eric Nycklemoe, Keith Neisler, Patty Cahill, Regina Dean. Patty Cahill is chair of the nominating committee.

A-Reps meeting in April.
Dana Rhem apologized about not being able to communicate as effectively as she would have liked about the A-Reps meeting. Planning started about a month ago with the basic question? Why get membership together? What is the purpose of this meeting? Since PRC, we don’t have a course that we’re following from year to year. We have a generous amount of data gathered through the New Realities meetings that needs to be sifted through, and some of it implemented. Found a concept – keynote from Alan Deutschman, author of the new book Change or Die will be the key speaker. A draft agenda is being compiled. The structure will allow for both group and individual discussion. There was some discussion about holding a PRIMA meeting during the A-Reps meeting in D.C. The idea was shelved for further discussion.

Capitol Hill Day.
Mike Riksen reiterated the importance of participating in Capitol Hill Day. As long as you receive money from hill, you need to go attend Capitol Hill Day. Public broadcasting is now in an opportunistic environment – we can ask for more money based on our aspirations. There will be a ½ day hour training session on how to lobby on the Hill, and how to lobby the rest of the year in your own districts. April 24 will be the training session. Capitol Hill Day will be Wed 25.
Fall meeting is 40th anniversary of MPR. Eric Nycklemoe invites PRIMA to St. Paul. Should we meet before or after the PRPD? PRPD starts September 22. This issue will be decided later.

DEI July 12 through 14.
Stations are encouraged to attend and to bring their development departments. The conference will be help in Reno. Doug Eichten provided background information about some of the sessions that are being planned.
Arbitron. Regina asked if there is new information about Arbitron. Tim Eby said that Tom Thomas has been involved in this issue and may have more information to offer at his session during lunch. In general, there is progress, but it is moving very slowly. Patty said there was careful thought given in approach and how to talk to Arbitron. Doug Eichten said that group met with sales team at Arbitron and that this was a “getting to know you” meeting. The heavy discussion hasn’t started yet. Initial talks are on a positive note and there are a number of conference calls and meetings taking place. It’s an on-going conversation. David Giovanoni wrote a good article in Current recently on the ramifications of this issue.


Motion to adjourn meeting made by Phil Corriveau.
Seconded by Dan Skinner.
Approved unanimously.
Meeting adjourned at 4:50.

Respectfully submitted,

Christina Kuzmych, Secretary
Public Radio in Mid-America
February 28, 2007

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