Board meeting Minutes/24 Aug 2015

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Prior:
8-9 Aug 2015
Board meeting Minutes Next:
14 Sep 2015



Minutes approved: 14 Sep 2015


Unspecified
Move your name to Present or Apologies prior to the meeting!
Present
(Subject to verification) Ski Kacoroski (chair), Steve VanDevender, Matt Disney, Paul English, Atom Powers, Thomas Uphill
Apologies
John Boris, William Bilancio, George Beech
Guests
 ?
Opened
9:10 PM Eastern Time
Closed
9:37 PM Eastern Time

Consent Agenda

No consent agenda

Action Items

No Action Items

Standing Reports

Treasurer's report (Disney)

  • Balance info
    • BoA Account: $48,859.86
    • PayPal Account: $4,690.70
    • TDBank: $2,000.89
    • Total: $55,551.45
      • +/- from last meeting: -$6,939.28
      • LOPSA Balance: $44,465.74
      • CasITConf Balance: $11,085.71


  • Summary of expenditures since last report:
    • F2F Meeting Costs
  • Summary of income since last report:
    • Membership dues


  • Top priorities
    • Cascadia: accounts payable
    • New budget framework
    • Scott Koch refund
    • Transition bank accounts
    • 2013 990
    • 2014 990
    • Assuming HootSuite charges
  • MISC
    • Matt Proposed a deadline of this Friday August 28, 2015 at midnight to have all F2F expenses submitted to the Google Drive folder. That will allow us to go ahead and proceed with full reimbursement. There was no objection to that proposal.
    • Matt proposed to use the Google Docs he setup for all submittals. There was no objection for that

Membership report (VanDevender)

  • See CiviCRM
  • Previous Month:
    • New: 17 (16 students)
    • Renew: 3 (0 students)
    • Lapsed: 45
  • Month to Date:
    • New: 14 (10 students)
    • Renew: 2 (0 students)
    • Lapsed: 15
  • Total: 647 (471 paying)

Conference/events activities report (Bilancio)

No Report

Lisa'15 (Kacoroski)

  • Thomas will setup a signup for working the table at LISA.
  • The discount code is up on LOPSA.org. $45 is the Member discount
  • Our table will be in the hallway as it was last year.
  • Ski will contact USENIX for holding the room for the Town Hall Meeting and the Mentorship BoF
  • Ski will contact the bar for the LOPSA After Dark session

Local Chapter Committee report (Bilancio)

No Report

Development report (Kacoroski)

No Report

Communications (LOPSAgram, etc) (Kacoroski)

  • Paul trained on how to do LOPSAgram. Planning on driving the next one.
  • $45 LISA discount announcement sent out

Pending work:

  • Budget for remaining 2015 (Paul & Ski talk offline)
  • comms-admin@lopsa.org to take ownership of HootSuite account
  • repair links between HootSuite and all social accounts (eg: LinkedIn currently broken?)
  • Tidy up social accounts (eg: Facebook "page" vs. "group")
  • Paul, Ski and Craig as members
  • 50% non-profit discount
  • more volunteers
  • research which additional social media would be helpful, particularly to reach younger sysadmins, or potential. Youtube? Pintrest? Instagram?
  • consider how to tie in locals and conferences (CasITConf has 500+ followers on Twitter)

Proposals:

  • comms-announce@lopsa.org - Board members (or other Approved People) can get things announced "on all the media" just by sending email
    • It will speed up the turnaround time.
  • one board member per month (or more frequently) write a blog post about "LOPSA stuff" (ie: not a tech post) that we can push out for marketing and engagement
    • Can be about what you're working on as a board member, future, past, etc.
    • Atom recommended one board member per week which would only be once every 9 weeks for a board member.
    • rotate through Committees/strategy topics?
    • Thomas recommended we included #LOPSA when we do a post and have the Board members retweet it.
  • Paul wanted to keep this easy to do and possibly setup a schedule and reminder to nudge the Board member when their turn was coming up.
  • Ski will start to do a "From The President" one


Liaison reports (LC, etc.)

Technical Services Report (Bilancio)

No Report

Mentorship Report (Beech)

No Report

Leadership Committee (Kacoroski)

Warner has agreed to run the Leadership Committee and also has agreed to be on the Finance committee. Matt asked if the meeting with Warner on the finance committee was scheduled yet. Ski said the meeting was not and he will touch base with Warner to come up with a date.

Conference Sponsorships (Atom)

Facts:

  • LOPSA East, Cascadia IT, and any other LOPSA conferences need sponsors.
  • These conferences are relatively small and may have difficulty attracting and keeping sponsors.
  • Without at least $10k in seed money it is nearly impossible to start a conference.

Proposal:

  • LOPSA becomes a parent organization for regional conferences.
  • Each conference will create sponsor packages to be approved by the board.
  • All conference sponsors will be considered both conference sponsors and LOPSA sponsors.
  • All sponsors will remit payment directly to LOPSA.
  • Conference attendees will also remit payment directly to LOPSA.
  • LOPSA will assume financial responsibility for the conference.
    • This probably means LOPSA should be involved with and approve conference expenses, via the conference committee.

Risks and Rewards:

  • If a conference doesn't "break even" LOPSA will be liable for those costs.
    • Should we investigate the possibility of a LOPSA subsidiary for this? One subsidiary per conference?
  • If LOPSA doesn't oversee conference expenses the risk that the conference doesn't "break even" increases.
    • Cascadia has no problem sharing this information and responsibility, does LOPSA East?
  • If a conference is profitable it benefits LOPSA as a whole and becomes a revenue stream.
  • Each conference gains the backing and support of a national organization, which may increase sponsors.
  • It may be possible to share sponsors between conferences, or at least solicit them for both.

P.S. Cascadia IT Conference intends to rename to "Cascadia IT, a LOPSA Conference"; unless a better idea is proposed.

  • Matt explained that for Cascadia IT 2015 LOPSA did a one off where if a Sponsored Cascadia LOPSA would make you a LOPSA Sponsor. This has to formalized better for the upcoming conference.
  • Thomas stated that there should be a separate account for the conferences. Atom added that there has to be some protection that if a confernece goes over budget it does not hinder the other conferences. Also there should be oversight to the conferences just to keep this from happening.
  • Ski suggested that he, Matt and Warner discuss the financial side of the proposal.
  • Thomas suggested that a new naming convention be developed. Ski added we need to keep the LOPSA brand in front of people.
  • Matt suggested that we should have a check list or certain requirements that would say "This is a LOPSA conference." In the case where we ,LOPSA, doesn't front the money for a conference, that the Local is doing the conference. So that would have to be discussed.
    • Thomas stated that as a minimum it should be stated that $45 of the conference fee comes back to LOPSA for a membership for the attendee.
    • Ski stated if LOPSA is taking on the risk it is a LOPSA conference
    • Thomas stated that we have to insure that it does not turn into a vendor fair.
    • Matt added to the membership return that the conference should abide by the LOPSA Ethics and etiquette policy. We don't want to add too many check points that it becomes overly difficult to qualify as a LOPSA conference.
  • Ski asked Atom to see if Cascadia IT can conform to this suggestions. Atom will work on that.
  • Matt restated that these conference arrangements has to be beneficial to both LOPSA and the Locals.
  • Atom stated that from his talks with USENIX they are all for LOPSA putting on more small conferences.

Committees (Atom)

Theory:

  • Reducing the number of active committees will enable us to focus our efforts and complete more projects.

Facts:

  • We have 13 committees and 9 board members.
  • Due to current volunteer levels, each committee is expected to be chaired by a board member.
  • All board members are volunteers with full time jobs.

Conclusion:

  • "Ain't nobody got time for that."

Proposal:

  • Reduce the number of active committees to focus on core values: Community, Professionalism, Education, and Philantrophy

Existing Committees

Committees or functions which are intended to keep LOPSA running, create value for LOPSA, and support core values.

Leadership Committee Not staffed by the board so doesn't detract from board efforts.

  • Proposal: Unchanged

Finance Manage budgets and expenses. This is significant work and can't be dropped or postponed.

  • Proposal: Unchanged

Technical Services Manage software services. This is significant work, especially during the "reboot".

  • Proposal: Unchanged

Development Build relationships and solicit sponsors.

  • Proposal: deactivate until we have something to offer sponsors. There is work that can be done to build a prospectus and I don't think that directly supports our core values or requires an entire committee at this stage of the "reboot".
  • Second (Paul): Conference sponsorships can feed through and they are our "best shot" right now of getting sponsorship money. This committee can work on grants (we are a non-profit after all) in the future when we have time to focus on it.

Partnership & Liaison Build relationships with like-minded organizations.

  • Proposal: merge this with another committee. Education, Conferences, and LISA committees may each need to build relationships with like-minded organizations and/or individuals. Let those committees be responsible for those relationships until we have more need for centralized relationship management.

Membership Answer questions from members.

  • Proposal: merge this with the locals committee. There is future work to be done to support membership and provide services for members. At this stage I believe we need to get better, not bigger.

Conferences Support and facilitate LOPSA conferences and presence at other conferences.

  • Proposal: Unchanged. There is significant work here and both of the stated goals support our core values and help us get better.

Locals Support local groups and meetups.

  • Proposal: merge this with the membership committee until we are ready to provide real services for locals. Local can and do run themselves. The little support they need can be provided by the membership committee.

Mentorship Manage the mentorship program.

  • Proposal: unchanged. The mentorship program directly supports our core values.

Education & Training Bootstrap education and training efforts for systems admins.

  • Proposal: Split this into two committees: Speakers Bureau and Education. This is a large effort and much of the focus of the "reboot" effort. Putting all this effort into a single committee increases the risk of failure.

LISA + 10th year anniversary Setup a party at LISA

  • Proposal: unchanged. This may be significant work and, if done right, can provide real benefit by increasing our presence.

Recognition Awards and LPR program

  • Proposal: unchanged. Providing recognition directly supports our core values.

Proposed Committees

This would leave us with the following committees that need board support:

  • Finance - LOPSA budgets and money management
  • Tech Services - LOPSA web sites and services
  • Membership - Support members and locals
  • Conferences - Support LOPSA conferences and organize presence at other conferences
  • Education - LOPSA library, "training the trainer" materials
  • Speakers Bureau - Build relationships with speakers/trainers and promote them for conferences
  • Mentorship - the mentorship program
  • LISA Party - publicity and LISA presence
  • Recognition - awards and LPR reboot

A discussion on the proposal and Proposed new Committee structure followed. The consensus of the Board was that this made sense and was a good thing to do. Ski asked about combining the Lisa Party with the Conferences committee. Ski and Atom came to agreement that the Lisa Party Committee would be an Ad Hoc (spin off) from the conferences committee as would any other venture like that for another conference.

Ski asked about the breaking out of the Speakers Bureau from the Education Committee and Atom felt with the emphasis this year on Education that it would take a large effort and would be better served if ran separately.

Committee Organization

Initially we can't rely on volunteers to staff the committees. Until we have enough volunteers I propose:

  • Each committee should have a chair and a deputy-chair from the board.
  • Each chair should be the primary chair on one committee only.
  • Each board member should have exactly one chair and one deputy chair position.
  • The chair is responsible for the committee and reporting committee results during board meetings; the deputy-chair assumes those responsibilities if the chair is unavailable.

Committee Charters

  • The chair and deputy-chair will recruit volunteers for the committee.
  • The board will collectively determine the mission of the board.
  • The board chairs will determine the specific objectives, metrics, policies, and other operational functions of the committee, with board approval. Each committee is responsible for their own success.
  • The committee chair will report the status of the committee during each board meeting.

As volunteers become available and are recruited:

  • Each committee should be staffed by three to five volunteers.
  • The board members retain their chair positions; we are a working board and maintaining a functional presence within the committees provides a buffer against volunteer turnover.

Conclusion

The outcome of the Committee proposal was that a new policy will be written up for full board approval. Matt did question that at the Face to Face we had two Board members on a committee to stop a single point of failure. Atom stated that he expected that a Board member would be chair on one committee and co-chair on another. Thomas stated that intent was not in the original proposal.

New Business

First new item...

Notes/announcements

Adjournment

Matt motioned for Adjournment Thomas seconded.