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From our Community Blog:

Board of Directors Meeting Minutes: March 17, 2023

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Meeting date/time: Friday, March 17, 2023 at 3:30pm Eastern
Attendees: Ed Beck, Rachel Cherry, Phil Crumm, Kiera Howe, Dash Kees, Reed Piernock, Eric Sembrat
Invited: L. Danielle Baldwin, Ed Beck, Rachel Cherry, Phil Crumm, Dash Kees, Kiera Howe, Reed Piernock, Eric Sembrat


  • Approve the final charter for WPCampus 2023 conference.
  • Discuss the addition of an official vice-president role.
  • Address concerns about Google Meet for meetings.
  • Review options for inviting members of the general public to board meetings.


Roll Call

  • Note attendees of this meeting (in the Details section above), and list any absences.

Approval of Minutes

Old Business

  • A motion to determine the length of a conference committee was proposed but not established.
  • A motion to determine which Board members will serve one-year terms, and which two-year terms, was proposed but not established.

Reports or Presentations

  • Rachel has a proposal for the Board, and would like to start the conversation on that proposal.

New Business

  • Approve the final charter for WPCampus 2023 conference.
    • Reserve time for other discussion regarding the conference.
  • Discuss the addition of an official vice-president role.
    • If approved, vote on Danielle as nominee.
  • Address concerns about Google Meet for meetings.
    • Consider alternatives to Google Meet, e.g. Zoom.
  • Related to above, review options for inviting members of the general public to Board meetings, and how to foster community participation.

Action Items

  • Confirm resolved action items.
  • Discuss unresolved action items.
  • Assign to Board members new and unresolved action items.
    • Set deadlines as necessary.


  • Confirm date and time for the next meeting.
  • Final thoughts, reminders, or general chit-chat.


Call to order

Dash called to order the monthly meeting of the WPCampus Board of Directors at 3:37pm (Eastern) on 17 March 2023, virtually in Google Meet.

Ed, Rachel, Phil, Dash, Kiera, Reed, and Eric were in attendance. Danielle was absent.

Reed reviewed the minutes from the previous meeting. No additions or corrections were needed.

Determine the length of a conference committee.

At the previous meeting, a motion to determine the length of a conference committee was proposed but not established. The Board decided to table this motion until July 2023, by the time of this year’s conference.

Determine term limits for select Board members.

At the previous meeting, a motion to determine which Board members will serve one-year terms, and which two-year terms, was proposed but not established. The Board then discussed its options, with Ed, Kiera, and Phil volunteering to serve one-year terms, ending on December 31, 2023. Dash will remain on the Board, serving as Past President when Rachel’s term expires.

Reed asked what would happen if there are few applications for incoming board members for the 2024 calendar year. Dash and Rachel confirmed that the outgoing, one-year term board members would need to apply again for the next year, which would count as their second consecutive year of service.

Review the work of the WPCampus 2023 conference committee.

Rachel presented a spreadsheet of this year’s budget, explaining what has been spent, and what still needs to be bought and/or ordered. That spreadsheet is stored in the conference planning drive, and is available upon request.

Rachel stated that so far, both registration and proposal submissions are low. She explained that this is normal compared to previous years, in which both spike as the deadline approaches. Most registrants have also signed up for on-campus lodging, although more would be needed to hit the lodging target.

Rachel and Ed confirmed CampusPress and as sponsors; they will follow up with other connections that have previously sponsored conferences. The Board speculated on gaining sponsorship from Pantheon — a long time sponsor and supporter — due to their recent layoffs.

Christine Donovan from CampusPress reached out to Rachel regarding sponsorship of the upcoming conference, specifically naming rights. CampusPress would like to contribute more money in return for renaming the conference to include their name in the title. Rachel did not want to respond to this inquiry without discussing it with the Board.

Kiera and Reed asked about other sponsorship opportunities, and what the opinions of other sponsors may be if the Board approves this type of sponsorship.

Phil maintained that the yearly conference is an independent, community-driven event, yet still expensive to run; he suggested this type of sponsorship could be considered a “title” sponsorship level, but asked if the money contributed would be worth accepting. Rachel confirmed that the organization would still have a good conference without the extra money.

Ed suggested that people may not feel welcome if the conference were branded with a single company’s name, wondering if potential attendees would not consider the conference as “their thing” and would assume that the conference was only presenting CampusPress’ product. He suggested instead that we remove the limit on the upper sponsorship levels to allow higher financial contributions.

Rachel withheld her opinion until members of the board provided theirs; she did not want to influence anyone else’s considerations. She agreed with the perspectives of other board members that the conference would appear as a commercial or corporate event, and not the community event it strives to be.

Dash agreed with other board members on the commercial implications of branding the conference and granting naming rights. They suggested that if the Board were to approve CampusPress’ proposal, it not grant naming rights but consider a different word for this sponsorship level; they also emphasized the importance of notifying other sponsors so no one would be surprised by this change.

Dash called for a vote regarding CampusPress’ naming rights. The Board decided to err on the side of “no” due to its impact on the community.

Phil and Dash suggested CampusPress, or other interested sponsors, could instead extend their financial contribution by fully sponsoring only a part of the conference; examples included swag, lunch, social events, or keynote speakers. Ed agreed regardings social events, but reiterated that everything else should be community-based or -run.

Approve the final charter for WPCampus 2023 conference.

Dash stated this year includes the organization’s first board, with this year’s conference being the first with a charter that requires Board approval. They recommended a template based on the 2023 conference charter, with notes made on what worked and what needed adjustments.

Ed favored a stronger relationship between the conference’s sponsorship coordinator and the Treasurer of the board.

Rachel committed to transitioning her duties as sole director of WPCampus and as conference chair. She has been moving relevant documents from her personal drive to the appropriate shared drives of either in the conference planning committee or the Board.

Dash inquired about the conference committee timeline. Rachel confirmed the conferences are traditionally held in July, and the conference committee would need approximately three months after the conference to review its communications, to follow up with any outstanding budget concerns, and to establish a storage location for any leftover physical conference items, e.g. swag.

Phil asked what would happen if a conference committee member or conference volunteer were to abandon or inadequately perform their duties. The Board determined these items need to be considered, and included in the organization’s Bylaws and not the conference charter. The Board also granted power to the conference chair to remove the person from their role on the conference committee, in consultation with the Board.

Review the safety and responsibility guidelines for WPCampus 2023 conference.

Rachel submitted the draft policy of the WPCampus 2023 safety and responsibility guidelines, and reminded all that WPCampus is a “community of empathy”. Dash reiterated that masking sets the tone of the event, and asked if a masking policy would fall under the organization’s Code of Conduct item regarding “appearance”. The Board agreed it did, and maintained that attendees must respect each other’s decision on wearing masks.

Phil concurred that decisions on wearing a mask are covered by the Code of Conduct, but further stated that attempts to require attendees to wear a mask could be overly burdensome. The Board agreed.

Reed noted the United States public health emergency expires on May 11, 2023. However, the Board recognized that some attendees may still want to wear masks. If an attendee is uncomfortable with someone without a mask being too close to them, the unmasked person must either wear a mask or refrain from social contact.

Dash commended the conference committee on doing a “bang-up job” with the policy.

Discuss the addition of an official vice-president role.

The motion to consider an official vice president position on the Board was tabled until Danielle could be present.

Address concerns about Google Meet for meetings.

The Board decided to move the conversation regarding video conference calls to asynchronous discussion in Slack.

Review options for inviting members of the general public to Board meetings.

The Board briefly proposed a limited ability Zoom meeting, or a Zoom-to-YouTube stream for open board meetings.

Action items

Action items were assigned, and are captured in our action items document.

  • Kiera and Eric to draft a Conflict of Interest form for the Board of Directors.
  • Research insurance options or requirements for the organization and/or Board of Directors. (Question if Phil has information on this.)
  • Dash to draft the charter for the 2023 conference committee.
  • Reed to create a list of the current members of the 2023 conference committee.
  • Rachel to list all email existing addresses for the organization.
  • Reed to ask the 2023 conference committee about a Google Group.
  • Reed to invite all members of the Board to the Board of Directors Google Group.
  • Dash to investigate US/Alabama/Canadian complications re: Kiera for treasurer. (Financial implications are top priority.)
  • Rachel to send the announcement for the new Board of Directors
  • Rachel update the website with Board of Directors information
  • Reed to find out options for a calendar in the Google Group (is it possible?).
  • Ask Rachel for contacts regarding corporation documentation.


The Board confirmed Friday 21 April 2023 at 3:30pm (Eastern) as the date and time for the next meeting.

Rachel requested a special meeting regarding a proposal she has for the board. The Board approved. Dash will create and distribute a Doodle poll to find a meeting time.

The meeting adjourned at 5:06pm.

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