2022 Board Meeting Minutes

January 7, 2024

Meeting called to order at 2:13 PM CST.

Attendance

Katrina Marie - President
Stephanie Derbas - Secretary
Cheryl Barton - VP of Communications
Nicole Locker - Treasurer
Monica Jorgensen - VP of Programs

Not present:
David-Matthew Barnes - VP of Workshops

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

Nicole motions to approve last meeting minutes, Stephanie seconds. All in favor.

President's Report

President report provided by Katrina Marie

Katrina needs to finish getting together with Nicole on the monthly newsletter. Nicole said that Kimberly Ash said that she would take over the monthly newsletters again.  Katrina will touch base with Kimberly and make sure that she has what she needs for the newsletter.

2024 Timeline

Quarter 1 (January – March)

January 7, 2024: Q1 Board Meeting (2:00 p.m. CT)

March 1-14: Mentor Matching Applications open

  • March 15-May 10 pairs work together

March 1: Stiletto Contest opens 

  • Overseen by 
  • Volunteers: 
  • Coordinator: 
  • Judges: 
  • Entries: 
  • PR: 

March 31: Stiletto Contest closes

Quarter 2 (April – June)

April 7, 2024: Q2 Board Meeting 2pm CT

May 15, 2024: Mentor Program surveys should go out

: Stiletto Unpub Scores Due

: Stiletto Unpub Finalists Announced

: Stiletto Pub Scores Due

: Stiletto Finalists Announced
(Finalized dates on this will come once they’re set)

Quarter 3 (July – September)

July 27-28: Virtual Conference

  • Masterclass?
  • July 27, 2024: AGM (Q3 Board Meeting) + Stiletto Awards Ceremony
  • Chapter Service Awards
  • Pitch Event
    • Volunteer: Monica Jorgensen

September 1-14: Mentor Matching Applications open

  • September 15-November 10 pairs work together

 

Quarter 4 (October – December)

October 1-15: Elections coordinator gathers nominations, sets up voting

  • Volunteer: 

October 15: Nanowrimo Group opens

  • Overseen by Katrina  (going to see if she can get volunteers to help run it)
  • Volunteers: 

October 16-30: 2025 Board Elections open

November 1: Novel Celebration opens

November 1: File 990N (Katrina)

November 10: Mentor Program surveys should go out

: Q4 Board Meeting (we will set the date in July for this meeting and set it for November or early December)

  • Newly elected board is invited, discuss transition plans

 

 

Need to schedule?: 

  • 2024 Writing Retreat (Tu Quyen offered to volunteer for the writing retreat. Need to have a meeting and analyze about what’s working and what’s not and figure out how to adapt to make the retreats with more of an attendance. Nashville was a bigger attendance. Possibly look into something that’s more central for more people to attend.)

Treasurer's Report

Treasurer report provided by Stephanie Derbas (outgoing treasurer).

As of 1/07/24, 

PNC Balance: $58,950.44
PayPal: $237.37

2023 Audit: Emily and Velma (volunteers on the audit committee) emailed in the middle of November that they were going to discuss the information that was provided. But Velma didn’t think much of an audit could be done with the documentation provided. Nicole said that she will work on a way to streamline the process better so that an audit is able to be done.

Stephanie will send Katrina the Year End Profit and Loss report.

Secretary's Report

Secretary Report report provided by Cheryl Barton (outgoing secretary)
New/renewals: +32
End of Year: 335 members

Facebook page is up to date through Jan 7

VP of Programs Report

Programs report provided by Monica Jorgensen

Monica is settling into her new position. Going to take the next week or two to figure out the Stiletto Contest. (Katrina mentioned that the Stiletto Contest typically opens on March 1st)

VP of Workshops Report

Workshops report provided by David-Matthew Barnes

David-Matthew not present; report coming.

 

VP of Communications Report

Communications report provided by Cheryl Barton.

Cheryl is settling into her new position and will talk to Katrina on all of the information/responsibilities that she needs to focus on.

Cheryl wasn’t sure on if she needed to set up the website stuff; Nicole said she usually handles the website stuff (changing the board member section, etc.)

Committee Reports

N/A at the moment. That will change in the coming months.

Business Matters

New Business

Possible switch from google to Microsoft teams? (have the board look into teams and get back together in about a week or so to go over if we should move forward)

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at 3:04PM CST.

November 12, 2023

Meeting called to order at 2:08 p.m. CST.

Attendance

Nicole R. Locker - President
Michelle McCraw - VP of Programs
Stephanie Derbas - Treasurer
Tara Baisden - VP of Workshops
Katrina Marie - VP of Communications
Cheryl Barton - Secretary
David-Matthew Barnes - Incoming VP of Workshops

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

Katrina motions to approve last meeting minutes, Michelle seconds. All in favor.

President's Report

President report provided by Nicole R. Locker. 

990 has been filed. 

Need to start our Novel Celebration!

2024 Board Officers elected:

  • President: Katrina Marie
  • Secretary: Stephanie Derbas
  • Treasurer: Nicole R. Locker
  • VP of Communications: Cheryl Barton
  • VP of Workshops: David-Matthew Barnes
  • VP of  Programs: TBD

Treasurer's Report

Provided by Stephanie Derbas: 

PayPal Balance: $237.33

PNC Balance: $58,208.00 as of 11/12/23

Audit is still ongoing. Email went to audit committee today to get a status update. Were doing a generalized audit. Year to date report will be shared once it has been completed. Stephanie will help Nicky complete a year-end total reconciliation for 2023.

Secretary's Report

Provided by Cheryl Barton:

We currently have 353 members. Cheryl will pull together instructions for Stephanie on the tasks of the secretary position by the end of November.

VP of Programs Report

Provided by Michelle McCraw

Retreat is happening this weekend. We had just a few people register, attending in Palm Springs in an AirBnB. 

Had a planning meeting for Conference 2024. Date set for July 27-28, 2024, with Masterclass being July 26, 2024.

VP of Workshops Report

Provided by Tara Baisden

Total income for 3rd quarter was $860. Total going out was $625. Profit was $235.

Workshop calendar for 2024 is complete, not too much wiggle room. October and November each have 2 workshops so far, so we can add more there if needed. January will look like we are overbooked but it is from a rescheduled workshop from 2023 that had to be cancelled.

Nicky needs to add our 2024 workshops to our Workshops page on the website.

VP of Communications Report

Provided by Katrina Marie: 

Need to reauthenticate our socials. Sociamonials is our scheduling program. 

Answering emails from questions coming in. 

Nanowrimo prompts this year have garnered a lot of engagement! 

Working on getting the Google Doc ready to share with Cheryl to take over for next year. 

Committee Reports

N/A

Business Matters

Current officers, please go ahead and share login info with the 2024 incoming officers and begin working on transition during the remainder of November and December. 

VP of Programs appointment: options are Monica Jorgenson and Michelle Libby. Katrina will reach out to Monica.

Nicky will create a webpage that is only accessible by board members that we will store important documents to share information.

Need to look into pricing of using Teams for board usage.

New Business

Next meeting: January 7, 2024 at 3pm ET/2pm CT/1pm MT/12pm PT

Tentative 2024 Schedule: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1twi4dRezau6AhREWCZu5-yCv6i9BhH6-TWdvzKo82x0/edit?usp=sharing 

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at 3:07 p.m. CST.

July 29, 2023

Meeting called to order at 7:32 PM CT.

Attendance

Nicole Locker – President
Michelle McCraw – VP of Programs
Katrina Marie – VP of Communications
Stephanie Derbas – Treasurer
Tara Lynn Baisden – VP of Workshops
Cheryl Barton – Secretary
CRW Membership

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

○ Katrina motioned and Michelle seconded the meeting minutes from the last meeting

President's Report

Nicole Locker:
○ In September, we have another mentor matching program starting
○ In October, we have 2024 board elections coming up. We will need an election volunteer coordinator for that. We are looking for anyone who is interested. Not a large commitment. Sending emails and coordinating who is interested. We will send information out in the next newsletter around this and post in the Facebook group.
○ If anyone is interested in stepping into a board position, let us know.
○ In November, we have our novel celebration for everyone who has published a book since December of last year or written a book and not yet published since that same time can enter for the novel celebration and you could win your dues for next year paid.
○ Thank you to Melanie Greene and Dayna Reidenouer, Monica Jorgensen and the many other volunteers who helped and continue to help moderate conference sessions. The conference has been really good this year. She has not heard of the technical difficulties we had last year. Thanks to Melanie for the amount of work she put in.

Treasurer's Report

Stephanie Derbas :
○ Pay pal balance $4,562.49
○ PNC account has $55,428.56 as of this morning.
○ In the middle of doing the audit for last year. Auditors will make sure they have everything they need next week. Will let us know if they need anything else.

Secretary's Report

Cheryl Barton:
○ Membership currently sits at 355.
○ We have ~ 227 either new or renewed memberships for this year:
■ January 48
■ February 24
■ March 30
■ April 11
■ May 19
■ June 34
■ July 61
○ We have 318 people in our Facebook group

VP of Programs Report

Michelle McCraw:
○ Stiletto contest is complete. We will announce the winners this evening. We received 112 entries across the published and unpublished divisions. Published scoresheets will go out on Monday morning as well as the unpublished finalists.
○ Conference has been amazing thanks to Melanie and Dayna for their efforts.
○ Are working to put together an in-person writing retreat in November. Location is still to be determined. Polls have gone out seeking opinions.

VP of Workshops Report

Tara Lynn Baisden:
○ Brought in $1,410.00 for second quarter and paid out $1005.00 to instructors and CRW earned $405.00
○ Calendar for 2024 is pretty much complete. A few more slots can be filled, but we do have a full schedule. We are slim on business workshops. She’s hoping to find more to add to the schedule

VP of Communications Report

Katrina Marie:
○ Twitter has been a problem with API authorization and posting there. May not be able to post in the future. She’s looking into it.
○ Camp Nano is happening right now. Nanowrimo is coming up in a few months. Send her an email if you want to work on that.

Committee Reports

No report

Business Matters

Nicole Locker:
We did get the IRS forms approved for CRW to be under our own tax-exempt status. We are no longer under RWA tax exempt since December 31, 2021. Everything is now filed and the IRS sent back approval. Effective December 31, 2021, we have our own tax-exempt status as a 501c6 organization.

New Business

No new business

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at 7:46pm CT by Nicole Locker.

April 16, 2023

Meeting called to order at Meeting called to order at: 2:31pm CT by Katrina Marie.

Attendance

Michelle McCraw – VP of Programs
Tara Lynn Baisden – VP of Workshops
Cheryl Barton – Secretary
Katrina Marie – VP of Communications
Stephanie Derbas - Treasurer

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

President's Report

Nicole is traveling. Katrina stated her only report is that the non-profit form has been submitted. She’s waiting for it to process.

Treasurer's Report

○ PNC account has $54,168.44. Pay Pal has $142.00
○ She sent the email to the audit volunteers. The one to Emily could not be delivered. Secretary’s Report – Cheryl
○ Current membership sits at 345 members.
○ Cheryl cleaned up FB by removing member’s whose memberships have expired.
○ Do we survey those who didn’t renew to ask why?
○ Katrina noted that Melanie had a document from a previous survey that may be on the Google Drive.
○ Nicole will look into adding something automated to go out asking those who left if they are considering coming back. She stated it’s an involved process. She will look into it.

Secretary's Report

○ Since January 1, we have had 63 new or renewals added to the membership.
○ We have 365 members total as of today.
○ She removed expired memberships through the end of February only. There were issues with the last time I removed some memberships due to issues with the dashboard. I removed 7 people. She will do removals again in May giving people a chance to renew – giving them a little extra grace period to renew.
○ Have been monitoring the FB approvals. Some are looking to join the FB members-only section before joining. I sent back a message asking them to join CRW and then come back.

VP of Programs Report

○ Stiletto contest. Closed entries on the 31st and moved into the judging phase. Believes they have sent out all the judging packets to all judges and those are due in May and June for unpublished and published divisions. We filled four of our 8 categories for the unpublished and 5 categories for the published. They filled a slot for every entry. We have selected the final round judges for the unpublished division. We have just enough influencer judges for the published division. We should be good to go.
○ Conference – Melanie is co-chairing the conference with Dayna Reidenouer They seem to have everything in order. It’s at the end of July 30th and 31st.
○ We do have an in-person retreat for around November 10th or so. We sent out a poll and Palm Springs was one of the top locations. She will look into having one there. Last year we had issues with non-refundable fees. She is still looking for a venue that would be refundable if we don’t fill it up along with a free space for writing. There will be no speaker for the retreat.

VP of Workshops Report

○ For workshops for the first quarter, brought in $1,630. We paid out $1300. She is concerned that we don’t make a lot of money with workshops and enrollment is low, except for the members only because there is no cost for those. We’ve been upside down on a few workshops lately.
○ 2nd quarter – we have 3 workshops coming up for members only. Also, 6 webinars coming up.
○ For 2024, we have enough workshops but low on business workshops. She won’t schedule anything else and look for business only type webinars. She will send other proposals to the conference team.
○ Katrina says workshops have been impacted by inflation like a lot of other things.

VP of Communications Report

○ Twitter is changing their API which could impact scheduling posts in Twitter. She may need some help with posting. Cheryl offered to help with posting to Twitter.
○ She has a few posts to schedule for the Stiletto but she’s waiting on finalists. Donna has already sent her the graphics she needs.
○ She has workshop posts scheduled through the end of May, mid-June. They are ready to go. They are posting out every three days per workshop.
○ We are doing a roundtable in May – Michelle and Stephanie Scott are doing this. There are 3 people, Robin Covington, Brighton Walsh and Mariah Ankenman. This is on May 7th.
○ Katrina can create a graphic for the FB group so that people there can join.

Committee Reports

N/A

Business Matters

None

New Business

None

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at Meeting adjourned at 2:49pm CT by Katrina..

January 15, 2023

Meeting called to order at 02:11 PM CT.

Attendance

Nicole Locker - President
Michelle McCraw - VP of Programs
Katrina Marie - VP of Communications
Stephanie Derbas - Treasurer
Melanie Greene - Past President

Not present:
Cheryl Barton
Tara Baisden

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

Minutes of last meeting approval: Katrina moves, Michelle seconds, all in favor.

President's Report

2023 Timeline

 

Quarter 1 (January – March)

January 15, 2023: Q1 Board Meeting (2:00 p.m. CT)

February ?: Audit Committee Review

  • Overseen by Stephanie Derbas
  • Volunteers: Emily Sewell and Velma Samuel

March 1-14: Mentor Matching Applications open

  • March 15-May 10 pairs work together

March 1: Stiletto Contest opens

  • Overseen by Michelle
  • Volunteers: Natalie Tindall, Rhonda Gilmour
  • Coordinator: Michelle
  • Judges: Carla Luna, Ingrid Pierce
  • Entries: Sadira Stone, Natalie Tindall, Kathy Strobos – need training, possibly from Carla
  • PR: Donna Mortensen

March 31: Stiletto Contest closes

Quarter 2 (April – June)

April 16: Q2 Board Meeting 2pm CT

May 10: Mentor Program surveys should go out

May 8: Stiletto Unpub Scores Due

May 22: Stiletto Unpub Finalists Announced

June 16: Stiletto Pub Scores Due

June 20: Stiletto Finalists Announced

Quarter 3 (July – September)

July 29-30: Virtual Conference

  • Masterclass?
  • July 29: AGM (Q3 Board Meeting) + Stiletto Awards Ceremony
  • Chapter Service Awards
  • Pitch Event
    • Volunteer: Monica Jorgensen 

September 1-14: Mentor Matching Applications open

  • September 15-November 10 pairs work together

 

Quarter 4 (October – December)

October 1-15: Elections coordinator gathers nominations, sets up voting

  • Volunteer: Katina Drennan?

October 15: Nanowrimo Group opens

  • Overseen by Katrina
  • Volunteers: Donna Mortensen, Andrea Jenelle

October 16-30: 2024 Board Elections open

November 1: Novel Celebration opens

November 1: File 990N (Nicole)

November 10: Mentor Program surveys should go out

November 12: Q4 Board Meeting

  • Newly elected board is invited, discuss transition plans

 

 

Need to schedule: 

  • 2023 Writing Retreat (Texas?)

Treasurer's Report

From Stephanie Derbas. 

As of 1/15/23, 

PNC Balace: $47168.13
PayPal: $1939.44

Stephanie is going to work with our volunteers to start on this year’s Financial Audit. 

Nicole is going to send Stephanie the Stripe Login info.

Secretary's Report

Cheryl Barton was not present for the meeting today. 

Current membership is at 362 members as of 1/15/23. 

VP of Programs Report

From Michelle McCraw. 

Stiletto Contest coming up. Kicked off today and have almost a full slate of volunteers. 

  • Dates listed above in President’s Report!
  • The board is ineligible from entering contest, but committee members are eligible to enter. 

Summer conference – Melanie Green volunteered to lead the planning. Tara has begun working on organizing getting sponsors and donations. 

VP of Workshops Report

Tara was not present for today’s meeting.  Info below provided by Nicole: 

2023 lineup is almost full, just a few more openings to fill for later in the year.  No financials to report yet as it is not yet the end of January.

VP of Communications Report

From Katrina Marie, 

PayPal subscriptions was a big ordeal this year. 

Workshops for February are going out on Social Media. Getting those set about 2 months in advance. 

Not enough member interest to keep Clubhouse up and running. 

Planning to start for Nanowrimo, including possibly a Camp Nano in July. 

Donna Mortensen has some Stiletto graphics to get to Katrina for social media blasts. 

Committee Reports

Reports are above in other areas. 

Business Matters

Roundtable Discussion set for February 15, 2023. Reconnecting With the Joy of Writing.

New Business

Nicole and working on the IRS Form 1024 with the help of Stephanie and Katrina. It will be $600 fee to file, but is required to get our own 501(c)6 status up and running, so needs to be submitted ASAP. Board approval was granted to pay this necessary fee. 

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at 03:06 PM CT.

November 13, 2022

Meeting called to order at Meeting called to order at: 2:04pm CT by Nicole Locker.

Attendance

Nicole Locker – President
Michelle McCraw – VP of Programs
Tara Lynn Baisden – Incoming VP of Workshops
Cheryl Barton – Secretary
Katrina Marie – VP of Communications
Stephanie Derbas - Treasurer

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

○ Meeting minutes from the last quarterly meeting are in the chat. Motion to approve the minutes was moved by Katrina and seconded by Michelle. No one opposed. Minutes were approved.

President's Report

  • President’s Report – Nicole
    • Nicole filed the 990 and loaded it to the Google Drive. This is the non-profit tax document that has to be submitted every year. It’s for our non-profit status so that we do not owe any taxes.
    • There is a novel celebration going on that went out in the last newsletter. We have already received several submissions, which is exciting.
    • Board elections: We welcome the incoming board for next year. Everyone is repeating their role except for Jennifer, VP of Workshops. Tara Lynn Baisden will be the new VP of Workshops.
    • Nicole would like for us all to go back and take another look at the bylaws. The attorney sent through a revised version. Everyone’s feedback is requested by November 30, 2022.
      • Term Limits:
        • It’s getting harder to find volunteers so we need to rethink the current term limits. Do we want to lengthen the term limit? The overall limit is 6 years, with only 2 years in one position.
        • The position of President would need to be someone already on the board and has served at least one year already. We will need a new President for next year. Everyone was asked to think about where they would like to serve next year and consider adding their names in for new positions when their two years are up.
        • Next year, it looks like we will need to fill 5 positions since everyone came in new for 2022.
        • We want to be sure the organization is taken care of for each position.

Treasurer's Report

  • Treasurer’s Report – Stephanie
    • The total in our PNC bank account is $27,184.12
    • The current total in our PayPal account is $19,853.70
    • Stephanie will send over the year-to-date report to Nicole later tonight. These balances are as of the morning of 11/13/22.
    • Nicole will transfer the PayPal balance over to the bank account. She noted that the October instructors still need to be paid.
    • We need to prepare for the audit. There was a volunteer for this year, but the audit wasn’t done. Nicole will reach back to that volunteer to do the audit in early 2023. Nicole noted that there wasn’t good direction on what the audit should look like; there is confusion around the process. We need to get this done in order to have good financial practices and to be sure we are following them.

Secretary's Report

  • Secretary’s Report – Cheryl
    • Current membership sits at 345 members.
    • Cheryl cleaned up FB by removing members whose memberships have expired.
    • Do we survey those who didn’t renew to ask why?
    • Katrina noted that Melanie had a document from a previous survey that may be on the Google Drive.
    • Nicole will look into adding something automated to go out asking those who left if they are considering coming back. She stated it’s an involved process. She will look into it.

VP of Programs Report

  • VP of Program’s Report – Michelle
    • We had 2 retreats this year and we lost money on both. There were about 6 people at each. She believes the people who did attend enjoyed themselves. We need to poll the membership for next year’s retreats. We need to not spend so much money upfront until people are actually registered and paid. Perhaps find a writing space at a free place, like a library for the write-ins.
    • Michelle stated that there was a lot of interest in having a retreat in Texas. Our membership in Texas is large. Nicole noted if we wanted to book in Texas next year, she would be able to find a free space that would accommodate everyone.
    • The issue regarding attendance this year may be because the retreats were close together as far as timing. For next year, consider two different times of the year to spread the out.
    • There is a meeting later today to discuss the summer virtual conference. Michelle hopes to get roles established and reach out at that point. We still need to decide on the date for the conference. She will post a meeting reminder on FB and in Slack.

VP of Workshops Report

  • VP of Workshops Report – Jennifer
    • Jennifer submitted her report ahead of time since she couldn’t attend today’s meeting.
      • Workshops Report 3rd Quarter 2022
      • Profits from Workshops
      • August $245.00
      • September $1655.00
      • October $60.00
      • I have the majority of the 2023 calendar filled. I am still looking for a few workshops to finish out the calendar.
    • Nicole suggested adding in Terry Wilson. She had a huge turnout for her Hallmark presentation. Michelle suggested asking her to do a holiday romance writing class.

VP of Communications Report

  • VP of Communications Report – Katrina
    • The clubhouse idea will be scrapped. 3 people volunteered. She emailed them and no one responded back.
    • Nanowri
      • She’s working to engage with posts. People are interacting with each other on Nano, Slack and FB.
    • There have been some email issues with Gmail. Everything was going to spam. Stephanie believes the issue has been fixed as emails are once again coming through.
    • Town Halls
      • Not much happening with town halls. As we are getting larger as an organization, we need to work on ways we can increase communication. All of our ways to communicate are on the events calendar and in the newsletter.
      • Cheryl recommended posting more of the ways we communicate behind the CRW wall (website) where members only can access. We can post that link on our various platforms. Nonmembers can’t access unless they subscribe.
    • Workshop communications
      • Katrina will promote workshops starting in January when the event dates/times/subjects are available. We don’t schedule workshops in December.
    • Sprints
      • Nicole moved her sprints to early Thursday mornings. Evenings were not working out. She could add in another morning or two in November if we want more writing times.
      • Cheryl will start a sprint on Wednesdays at 5:30am – 6:30am ET starting this week.
      • Michelle had been doing one, but only one other person joined.

Committee Reports

Business Matters

  • Business Matters and other updates – Nicole
    • Tara should get with Jennifer this month to work on the transition of the position of VP of Workshops.
    • Discord as a means of communication
      • Nicole stated that when we first started building our own membership after separating from RWA, we asked the membership which method of interacting they preferred. We went with Facebook and Slack. Discord was an option but didn’t get a lot of votes. Nicole suggested we ask the membership again about considering using Discord.

New Business

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at Meeting adjourned at 3:08pm CT by Nicole..

July 9, 2022

Meeting called to order at 7:04pm CT by Nicole Locker.

Attendance

Nicole Locker – President
Michelle McCraw – VP of Programs
Katrina Marie – VP of Communications
Jennifer Noseworthy – VP of Workshops
Cheryl Barton – Secretary

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

Nicole offered a motion to approve the minutes and they were approved by all in favor from board members in attendance.

President's Report

Nicole:

Meeting minutes from the last quarterly meeting are on our website. Nicole offered a motion to approve the minutes and they were approved.

Big thanks to John Jacobson from Harlequin Desire for leading the pitch event today. The Spring mentorship program is wrapping up soon. It ended on July 3rd. There were 4 pairs of mentor-mentee connections. The feedback questionnaire will go out next week. The next mentorship program will open in September 2022.

Treasurer's Report

Nicole:

Stephanie sent her report in ahead; she was unable to attend. Nicole presented her report.

In our PayPal account, we have $11,825.62 which we will transfer over into the bank account.

In our bank account, we have $35,593.97.

On her to-do list, she will be contacting Laurie, a volunteer, to help with our audit this year. That will be underway shortly.

Nicole added that payouts to conference speakers are pending once the conference is complete. That will be coming out of our current balances.

Secretary's Report

Cheryl:

The membership number is up to 325 as of today, with 53 being from July alone.

VP of Programs Report

Michelle:

Flag the upcoming programs

Eastern “just write” retreat will take place at the Nashville Embassy Suites. There will be a conference room for group writing or a space to write on your own. You can also do your own brainstorming. This gives you time away from home responsibilities and to focus on your work in progress. The dates are September 16 – 19. Stay as many days as you like. We have the conference room for 2 days, Saturday and Sunday. Early bird pricing ends in July at $99. May be able to extend that into August. She will check with Nicole. Sign up on our website.

Western retreat in San Diego. This one will have a speaker, Laurie Schnebly who will be presenting 4 workshops. October 21 – 23rd at the Hilton Garden Inn. Not sure how long the early bird pricing will last. $200 for all of those presentations. Sign up on the website.

Stiletto contest winners will be announced shortly. She offered thanks to all who assisted with the contest this year. They are: Nola LiBarr, chairperson, Melanie Greene, entry coordinator, Avery Flynn, Judge Coordinator, Mariah Ankenman, Caro Carson, Carla Luna Cullen, Donna Mortensen, Megan Randall and Sadira Stone.

Virtual conference. Thanks to those who helped: Melanie Greene, Chair, Nicole Locker, Christi Barth, Cheryl Barton, Dylann Crush, Carla Luna Cullen, Stephanie Derbas, Susannah Erwin, Despina Karras, Jennifer Noseworthy, Katrina Marie, Donna Mortensen, Robyn Neely, Dayna Reidenouer, Stephanie Scott, Anne Stone, Kathy L. Wheeler.

VP of Workshops Report

Jennifer:

Profit from workshops for the second quarter total is $550.00. Used Eventbrite to help make us more visible to get more people signed up that way. She will poll members for 3rd quarter workshops to see what kind they want to have in 2023. Nicole mentioned there is a lot of work that goes into planning the workshops; Kudos to Jennifer. She said any help with this would be helpful.

VP of Communications Report

Katrina:
So far things are going well. There are some Gmail spam issues, but she’s looking at ways to work around that. She wants to help bring more of the community aspect in and will be restarting the weekly Clubhouse chats. They were started last fall, but things got hectic and we dropped off. She’s looking for volunteers and they will be rotated. Be on the lookout for that signup.

Committee Reports

Business Matters

Nicole:

Old business:

We received the Restated Certificate of Formation from the Texas Secretary of State. That will allow us to move forward on some of the other steps we need to take for our disaffiliation process from RWA. We are disaffiliated. We had to clean up a few behind-the-scenes business matters. It takes some time, so we are making headway on that.

New Business

New Business:

Nicole:

A member asked when are elections?
Elections are held in October. We will announce new board members in November. We then take December to do some shadowing – teaching the new people, if anyone isn’t reprising their role in the coming year. Leading up to October, if we need positions that we need volunteers for and if you’re interested, email Katrina and let us know.

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at 7:20pm CT.

April 23, 2022

Meeting called to order at 2:01 PM CT.

Attendance

Nicole Locker (president)
Katrina Marie (VP of Communications)
Michelle Orloff (VP of Programs)
Melanie Greene (Past President)

NOT in attendance but reports sent ahead of the meeting by:
Jennifer Noseworthy (VP of Workshops)

NOT in attendance but reports sent after meeting by:
Cheryl Barton (Secretary)
Stephanie Derbas (Treasurer)

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

Minutes of last meeting approval: Michelle moves to approve, Katrina seconds, all in favor.

President's Report

Report provided by Nicole Locker.

  • Spring Mentor Program: low turnout this round.  Only 3 requests for mentor, and we have 3 mentor volunteers.
    • Mariah Ankenman is matching. 
    • Matches will begin in April and commence in June after 8 weeks.
    • Fall Mentor Program will be in September 2022. 
  • Begin thinking about board positions for 2023.
    • Who wants to reprise their positions or move to another board position, and which positions do we need to begin recruiting for.
    • Board elections October 16-30, 2022
  • Next board meeting: July 9, 2022 (AGM)
    • Pitch event agent/editor interest?
      • Kathy Wheeler no longer able to coordinate due to personal matters.
      • Michelle and Melanie are going to create a one-pager to send to the Stiletto agent/editor contacts to see who can participate in the Pitch event at the summer virtual conference.
      • Melanie found a feature on Hopin that allows scheduled meetings that we may be able to use for our Pitch event at the conference.
  • Q4 board meeting: November 13, 2022
  • November 13: Q4 Board Meeting
  • Other reminders: 
    • November 1: Novel Celebration opens
    • November 1: File 990N (filed by president)

Treasurer's Report

Report provided by Stephanie Derbas.

Audit Committee Review status?

 

Secretary's Report

Report provided by Cheryl Barton:

Current member count: 292

New Memberships:February – 19
March – 24
April – 21

VP of Programs Report

Report provided by Michelle Orloff.

  •  Stiletto
    • Moved into the judging phase!!
    • Smooth transition so far, no problematic entries reported so far.
    • Condensed number of categories.
    • Entries are down this year from last year. 67 total entries.  (Last year, we remember being in the 80s).
  • Virtual Conference
    • Pitch event plans listed in President report. 
    • Full lineup of speakers booked at this time. Event is completely planned out.
    • 3 speakers still need to return the speaker contracts.
    • Hopin upgrade occurred on April 1, 2022.
    • Ready to begin promoting registrations to CRW and outside contacts/social media.
      • Nicky will make a Holler Box graphic for the CRW website. 
      • Katrina will begin posting on CRW social media accounts.
      • Let speakers know they can begin promoting the event as well.
    • Door prizes: some have been donated, we will continue to request more. 
    • Melanie is going to look into putting the Virtual Conference on Eventbrite.
  • Western Retreat
    • October 21-23, 2022 with speaker Laurie Schnebly Campbell in San Diego, CA
    • We have enough details now that we can begin taking registrations
    • Tu Quyen sent Nicky a list of questions to go in the registration form.
      • Nicky will create the registration form and put that in the next Member Newsletter.
    • Hilton Garden Inn San Diego Downtown/Bayside booked for the event.
  • Eastern Retreat
    • September 16-19, 2022 in Nashville, TN (no speaker)
    • We have the agreement/contract ready to sign from Embassy Suites Airport location in Nashville.
      • Nicky will sign that and fill out the payment info.
    • Conference room over 2 days will cost $955
      • If 12 people attend, that will come out to $79.58 
      • Early bird $79, raise to $99 August 1, 2022
    • Nicky will get the registration form created and also shared in the next Member Newsletter

VP of Workshops Report

Report provided by Jennifer Noseworthy.

Profits from workshops

  • January – $200
  • February – $115
  • March (only 3 workshops, not 4) – $235

First-quarter total: $550

Jo Ann Brown/Ferguson – canceled August workshop – family issues. I’ve replaced her with Sarah Allan’s workshop on demystifying the editing process.

Eventbrite – I need our bank information to finish setting up the direct deposit -or- who to forward the Eventbrite email to, so they can update it. We have $40 waiting to be deposited.

VP of Communications Report

Report provided by Katrina Marie.

  • Camp Nano
    • Katrina wants to send a poll on Slack or FB to see how many people participate in the Camp Nano events.
  • Communications are going out to whoever they go to. 
  • Sometimes emails come in on the weekends with people registered for a webinar having an issue. Probably need to direct people who register to Webinars to contact a certain person/email if they have trouble logging on so that they can be responded to timely. 

Committee Reports

No committee reports at this time.

Business Matters

  • Disaffiliation update: 
    • Still waiting on Secretary of State filing updates. Not much progress there. 
    • Attorney has reviewed bylaws and returned a suggested revision.
      • Finalize and have members vote
      • At some point we’ll need to pay the attorney and ask about next steps
      • Nicky will share to Slack on Google Docs so that everyone can give final comments before we move forward.
  • PNC Update: 
    • Melanie was removed and Nicole added in February 2022. 
      • Debit card updated, Nicole has updated payment info on hopefully everything the chapter had recurring payments pulling from the debit card. 

 

New Business

No new business to report at this time.

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at 03:01 PM CT.

January 16, 2022

Meeting called to order at 2:02 PM CT.

Attendance

Nicole Locker – President
Michelle McCraw – VP of Programs
Katrina Marie – VP of Communications
Jennifer Noseworthy – VP of Workshops
Cheryl Barton – Secretary
Stephanie Derbas – Treasurer
Melanie Greene – Past President

Minutes of Last Board Meeting

Minutes of last meeting approval: Katrina Marie moves, Stephanie Derbas seconds, all are in favor, and none opposed.

President's Report

Report given by Nicole Locker, 2022 President.

  • Note – Town hall meetings – keep to every other month or once a month?
    • Katrina recommends keep to monthly, new members meeting every other month. Nicole attended the most recent – one person attended.
  • 2022 Timeline:
    • Quarter 1
      • January 16: Q1 Board Meeting
      • February ?: Audit Committee Review
        • Nicole noted that there is one volunteer for the Audit committee. Laurie Ryan is the one volunteer. Nicole will share her contact information with Stephanie. If we need more, we will try to round up a few more people. Let Nicole know.
        • Mel – This is the first time that we’ve done an audit. An audit is looking at what we have as we undertake being an independent organization. We want to make sure all the numbers are in the right place from last year. From a regulatory standpoint, the audit from last year will be an important one and can serve as a baseline. One person working with Stephanie can do it.
      • March 5: Stiletto Contest Opens
          • Michelle is moving ahead with this.
      • March ?: Mentor Program #1 Begins
        • Mariah Ankenman and Cathy McDavid are member volunteers, dates will be decided among them and Nicole on exact start date.
    • Quarter 2
      • April 3: Q2 Board Meeting
        • Sunday April 3rd; will keep the current time.
      • April 8: Stiletto Contest Closes
      • May 27: Stiletto Unpub Scores Due
      • May 31: Stiletto Unpub Finalists Announced
      • June 24: Stiletto Pub Scores Due
      • June 28: Stiletto Pub Finalists Announced
    • Quarter 3
      • July 8-10: Virtual Conference
        • Masters class add on for the 8th
        • July 9: AGM (Q3 Board Meeting) + Stiletto Awards Ceremony
        • July 9-10: Pitch Event (1 of 2)
      • September ?: Mentor Program #2 Begins
    • Quarter 4
      • October 16-30: 2023 Board Elections open
        • October 2023 for elections to open – what does that look like?
        • Do we keep it open for 2 weeks? Mel will check to be sure. She believes it’s two weeks to have people nominate or self-nominate. Elections are then held and we are done. Only one person per seat for this year, making it easy to close out.
        • Dates for October 2022, 16th – 30th.
          • Then you have November to do the transitions.
      • October 15: Nanowrimo Group opens
        • Katrina has a helper for this year.
      • November 13: Q4 Board Meeting
        • Where we invite the newly elected people to transition.
      • November 1: Novel Celebration opens
      • November 1: File 990N
        • Nicole – Who files this? Nicole does, per Mel. Takes a few seconds to complete.
    • Need to set dates for:
      • In Person Retreat #1 (Michelle, can you coordinate with committee?)
      • In Person Retreat #2 (Michelle, can you coordinate with committee?)
      • Pitch Event #2 (Kathy Wheeler is helping Nicole plan for this)
      • Writing Challenges (Nicole can coordinate this with Carla Luna Cullen)
      • Accountability Groups (Nicole can coordinate this with Tanya Agler)
      • Audit Review (Stephanie, can you coordinate with Laurie Ryan?)
      • Mentor Programs (Spring and Fall) (Nicole can coordinate with Mariah and Cathy)
      • Chapter Led Sprints
        • Nicole – can anyone volunteer or are we good with the couple of days we have now? Nicole will look at a different time or day away from her usual Thursday.
        • Michelle has Saturdays but can’t do evenings.
        • Let Nicole know if anyone else has availability to host any sprints

Treasurer's Report

Report given by Stephanie Derbas, 2022 Treasurer. 

  • Current balances:
    • PNC funds are $38,307.53 as of December 31, 2021
    • PayPal as of yesterday (01/15/2022) is $730.31
  • Ainsley removed all of the automated rules in QuickBooks to fix problems that were occurring. She sent Mel what she needs for the IRS for when Erin files the form to establish ourselves as an independent organization, disaffiliating from RWA.
  • Outstanding debts – none to note
  • Mel stated she is owed $50 from the mailing to the IRS. Once the IRS cashes her personal check, CRW will reimburse this expense.  Mel will let us know when that clears.

Secretary's Report

Report given by Cheryl Barton, 2022 Secretary. 

  • Nicole will show Cheryl how to pull membership numbers from the back end of the website. Per Nicole, it looks like we had 248 members as of today (01/16/2022).

VP of Programs Report

Report given by Michelle McCraw,  2022 VP of Programs.

  • Stiletto – Had a meeting last week for Stiletto. Nola will be the chair for that and will run the activity. Michelle will have a follow-up meeting in a few weeks to prepare to accept entries on March 5th. She’s still looking for more volunteers for judges and entrants.
    • Nicole on Stiletto volunteers– She and Katrina were on a clubhouse meeting and got an idea. When asking for volunteers, break it down to people helping on a short-term basis so that it doesn’t feel like a huge undertaking long-term. That may help with volunteers. Michelle can post in the FB group about the Stiletto volunteers and set a time frame around what’s needed. Each role is different. She will be specific about the time needed.
    • Nicole – One thing mentioned on the member welcome meeting, Dayna Reidenouer is one person to link in. She has great ideas. Could possibly help with stiletto.
    • Nicole on emails – we send one newsletter a month to members – perhaps send emails more frequent as things are happening during the month – perhaps a weekly email – on workshops, townhalls, etc. She may do that and see how it goes and ask if members feel like that’s a good or not good thing to test it out.
  • Virtual conference – Michelle and Nicole have reached out to people to have workshops and sponsors lined up. Looking at the list, we need more diverse speakers. If you know of anyone to pull in, she welcomes ideas. Michelle has scheduled a kickoff meeting for next Saturday afternoon (1/22/2022). If anyone know of others, put their names in the slack channel. She will do a push starting on Tuesday.
    • Mel – Do we have a master spreadsheet to start record things like who we asked in order to keep track? Michelle started a document adding to the one Mel sent. She will drop it into slack.
  • Retreat
    • COVID makes having an in-person retreat a little hard. It may be possible to schedule on in late spring and the Fall. Will need to lock down the speaker and the dates.
  • Pitch Event
    • Michelle hasn’t moved on the pitch event yet. Nicole is the lead for the pitch event.

VP of Workshops Report

Report given by Jennifer Noseworthy, 2022 VP of Workshops. 

  • No information about income from workshops yet this year. First workshops will close at the end of January and she will have numbers then.
  • 35 members signed up for the Members Only workshop for January, and the paid workshops for January have 22 signups combined so far.
  • No issues with workshops or instructors. Jennifer has been monitoring.

VP of Communications Report

Report given by Katrina Marie, 2022 VP of Communications. 

  • She and Nicole worked to clear out old issues in email.
  • Social media – she is working on ways to post more than once every few weeks. She is posting about February workshops this month to keep reminders out for people who are following. Not much going on.
  • Nicole – We have overhauled website and have our own membership portal. We are fixing things along the way. There are some glitches with renewals that she has to manually fix when it comes to expirations.
  • Nicole – Suggests using Slack more for the membership. Perhaps create a tip sheet on how to do basic things in Slack. Maybe have a Q&A channel on how to operate in Slack.

Committee Reports

  • Katrina – Nano
    • She will get with the nano volunteer (Stephanie Bourbon) see if she wants to do anything for the mini camps. One will be in April and one in July. Stephanie Derbas (VP) will also help. Add both Stephanies and they will spread the responsibility out.

Business Matters

  • Disaffiliation
    • Mel – disaffiliation process/ Bylaws, PPM, Code of Ethics
      • All of this is getting us officially recognized by the IRS as a 501c6 organization. It’s a long process, which is expected. The steps are, first have to get the Texas Secretary of State to remove reference to RWA. That’s outstanding. She filled in the form, sent in and they said to send a restatement document. She can’t send it on their form. She had to send everything they wanted but on plain paper back in October. She resent everything in mid-December. There is paperwork that our lawyer, Erin will fill out for us based off of the information we give her. We need to send her the drafts of our bylaws and our code of ethics and conflict of interest documents – all the things we developed but have not formalized. Nicole and Mel need to look over them again before they are submitted to her. Nicole will need to go back through the bylaws. Nicole will post the documents to the Slack channel and asks everyone to review again and not anything that stands out. Deadline to review is next weekend.
  • Documents to review:
    • Bylaws
    • P&P 2022
    • Code of ethics
    • Conflict of interest
  • Vote on amount to pay Nonprofit lawyer $275/hour billed monthly, expects to take a few billable hours in total. $2,000
    • Vote on amount to pay nonprofit lawyer – she charges $275/hour. She will not charge us a retainer because she knows us. She will bill us monthly. Her work will take a few billable hours in total. Consider $1000. Other lawyers were between $5,000 – $9,000 dollars
    • Katrina recommended $2,000. Board voted and agreed to start with $2,000, assuming this amount will cover Erin’s costs. Nicole – do we want to start at 1,000?
  • PNC bank update status
    • Mel – She needs something that says Nicole is the president and take Mel off. Michelle is the backup on the account. Mel needs a letter from CRW that the incoming president is Nicole. Everything will then move from Mel to Nicole in the PNC system. Mel will then do it as close to when Nicole can go to a PNC.
    • Cheryl will include the names of the board President in the meeting minutes and Mel can use that as a reference for the bank stating that as of January 1, 2022, Nicole Locker is the new CRW President.
  • In-Person retreat:
    • Do we pay for board members to attend in-person retreat, one or both? Board agreed to delay this discussion until there is more information on when/where, etc. We can always call a special meeting to discuss outside of board meetings. Michelle said the speaker gave us dates in September or October. We need to check back once we decide to see if she is still available.

New Business

  • Membership drive
    • Check with other affiliates and their members for possible interest in CRW. Nicole will pull a list to connect with.
    • Mel recommended a $5.00 discount. Board voted and agreed.
  • Industry News
    • Pamela Ferguson sent her first article on industry news. Katrina sent it to Nicole.
  • Diversity committee
    • Mel, Nicole and Katrina are volunteers on this committee. This still needs a committee chairperson. They want to have the committee look at rules in scoring areas for the stiletto contest.
  • Writing retreats chair
    • Michelle had a volunteer or two from the west coast (Tu Quyen Pham & Rhonda Gilmour)

Meeting Adjourned

Meeting adjourned at 3:42 PM CT.