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September 12, 2018 Minutes: KLSD ArtsALIVE Board of Directors Meeting

KLSD ArtsALIVE Board of Directors Meeting

September 12, 2018

 Call to Order:

KLSD ArtsALIVE Co-President Julie Oyen called the regular meeting of the KLSD ArtsALIVE Board to order at 7:00 p.m. at John Jay Middle School conference room.

Roll Call:

The following Board members / Committee Reps were present:

  • Co-Presidents Julie Oyen & Colleen Cerami
  • Vice President Andrew Meikle
  • Treasurer Maureen Birmingham
  • Recording Secretary Liz Gebbia
  • Corresponding Secretary Barbara Milone
  • Assistant Director of Development Mary Beth Soucy
  • Director of Membership Amanda Godsoe
  • Director of Community Relations Mary Ann Davis
  • Student Board President Angelina Cerami
  • Alumni Representative Sarah McMahon
  • Copy / Newsletter Layout Coordinator Deb Spieler
  • JJMS Rep Sorin Klares
  • IMES Rep Topaz LeTourneau
  • District Liaison Vincent Bell


The following Board members / Committee Reps were not present:

  • Kathleen Fay Wisehart
  • Maria Colaco
  • Jen Dembo
  • Gia Miller
  • Lauren Doyle
  • Margaret Adasko


A quorum was established.

Opening Comments

Ms. Oyen opened the meeting by asking all in attendance to introduce themselves. Following the introductions, Ms. Oyen noted that the board is growing substantially and expanding its representation throughout the district. She added that since the board is larger, we will follow Robert’s Rules of Procedure to stay focused and follow the agenda. If a topic is not on the agenda and a member wants to bring it up, it should be saved until New Business is discussed at the end of the meeting.

Ms. Oyen also requested that all members go on to the KL district website to complete the volunteer form. Ms. Oyen then reviewed the contents of each board member’s binder, which was distributed at the start of the meeting:

  • Meeting Agenda
  • List of passwords that pertain to your position
  • Confidentiality Agreement, which should be completed and given to Liz Gebbia
  • Org chart of board members and their positions
  • Job description of certain positions
  • Flow chart
  • Contact sheet
  • Calendar of board meetings and performance dates
  • Membership drive info
  • Expense reimbursement form
  • Robert’s Rules of Procedure
  • SMART Art series information

Financial Report

Treasurer Maureen Birmingham provided an overview of the KLSD ArtsALIVE financials:

  • $6,745 – Opening balance as of start of 2017-2018 school year
  • $1,695 – Raised through Membership Drive
  • $8440 – Updated Balance including funds from Membership Drive
  • $2,204 – Allocated monies for invoices
  • $6235 – Net funds remaining following payment of invoices


Membership Report – Amanda Godsoe

Amanda Godsoe provided a report on the KLSDAA Membership Drive. Highlights include:

  • We will employ a new approach featuring different levels of membership:
    • Producer’s Circle: $400 (includes KLSDAA swag)
    • Director’s Circle: $300
    • Benefactor’s Circle: $200
    • Patrons: $100
    • Supporters: $50
    • Friend and alum: $25
  • There has been a good response to the membership drive thus far
  • Board members need to join and they will also be requested to help on curriculum nights
  • We received two Producer-level contributions from parents whose children have not been in the district for a while; this type of support indicates that community members have a positive feeling about KLSDAA
  • In the past, others members have joined whose children have also graduated; this is a good sign of ongoing support
  • The annual membership appeal has not yet been sent out to those who have not given in the past
  • Barbara Milone mentioned we cannot have an individual KLSDAA table at elementary school curriculum nights, but we may be allowed to have our materials displayed those evenings
  • JJMS and JJHS KLSDAA tables are confirmed
  • Newsletter – the final draft will come from Andrew Meikle, which then needs to be sent to Maryann Carroll for backpack mail; Ms. Millone will follow up on process to get newsletter distributed
  • Co-President Colleen Cerami mentioned our information can go right to district if we want to have it sent electronically

Sponsorship Update – Mary Ann Davis

There has been a slight delay in launching this effort, but more to come shortly.

PR Update

A press release has been developed and a local newspaper will be interviewing Mrs. Oyen and Mrs. Cerami. Maria Colaco will be doing a digital release.

Regard the KLSDAA Newsletter, Gia Miller is working with Deb Spieler and Andrew Meikle on content, formatting and production. A brief discussion ensured about the best way to streamline the submission and formatting process to meet any distribution deadlines.

Homecoming Update –  Julie Oyen

  • JJHS Homecoming is Sept 29th; this year, there will be an opportunity for KLSDAA to be involved and bring an artistic experience to the event; our presence will help to create awareness of KLSDAA
  • Sporting events start Friday evening and conclude Saturday night with the football game and float parade
  • On Saturday, between 3:00 p.m.- 6:00 p.m., there is a lull in the activities as there are no games being played. KLSDAA can fill this timeframe with bands/musical acts to encourage people to stay on campus
  • This timeframe could be an opportunity to access talented students who might perform outside the district and give them a chance to perform
  • We may ask for donated food/baked goods, but we can’t compete with other groups that may sell food; we may also offer face painting
  • Our events would take place on JJHS front lawn and start at 3:00 p.m.
  • We may explore kids singing the National Anthem at each game

Student Board Update – Angelina Cerami

  • The Student Board has not had its first official meeting yet, but members did briefly meet with Ms. Urban; the plan is that the group will meet monthly
  • At the JJHS Club Fair, 22 freshmen signed up to be involved with KLSDAA; there still needs to be outreach to the upper classmen; the plan is to do an email blast and flyers around school
  • Regarding the singing of the National Anthem at Homecoming, the group discussed if there should be a contest to select who can perform at the football game (2nd place could sing at other games, etc.)
  • Cerami noted they will talk to Ms. Urban and Dr. Siciliano on the contest details
  • Colleen Cerami asked Mr. Bell if JJMS could participate in the Homecoming Float Parade with their banner. Mr. Bell replied it would not be appropriate for the middle school to be involved since the float parade is truly a high school event, but he added he is still open to involving more students. He said they should continue the conversation with Chris McCarthy.

District Performing Arts Calendar Review – Julie Oyen

  • Oyen requested that the Board review the dates of upcoming performances / exhibits and make an effort to attend whenever possible
  • She noted there can be a hectic transition between concerts at the middle school when different grades have their concerts on the same night; Sorin Klares will speak to the JJMS principal, as well as Monica Bermiss, who is the performing arts liaison
  • It has been announced that Harvey will be the fall drama for JJHS and Twilight Zone will be performed by JJMS
  • JJHS Freshman drama will be A Tiny Miracle with Fiber Optic Unicorn, which will be directed by seniors
  • The KLSDAA-sponsored Rising Stars chorus is getting started; there will be 60 spots for students in grades 3-8; there will also be a mentorship program for the older students to provide guidance to younger students; Sarah McMahon will serve as student advisor; the hope is that families of the student participants will come to their performances, which will help increase visibility for the arts program, in general
  • Encore Cabaret will take place on January 4, 2019; a fine arts student from JJHS will create the poster promoting the event. The theme for this year’s show is “Broadway Magic”; students will begin working on the poster next month and a gift card will be awarded to the student whose poster is chosen

Smart Art Series Update – Julie Oyen

  • The objective of this new speaker series is to create awareness within the school and overall community about the relationship academic achievement and arts education. KLSDAA will sponsor speakers who will discuss the role of arts and its connection to academic success
  • There has been a discouraging recent trend: arts course offerings are shrinking because students focus more on academic courses as they think only academics are important for college admission
  • We should encourage our students to have an arts-rounded transcript
  • We are researching speakers and fees and will talk to Mr. Bell about the Arts in Education partnership in terms of covering some of the costs involved
  • The Smart Art events are open to both adults and students; we will offer two events at JJHS and two at JJMS
  • Dates are confirmed (listed in everyone’s binder) and we are still recruiting some speakers

June 2018 Minutes – Julie Oyen

Ms. Oyen noted the June 2018 minutes had not been voted on at the opening of the meeting. The minutes from the June 12, 2018 meeting were then accepted by Colleen Cerami and seconded by Maureen Birmingham.

Committee Updates – Committee Leads

Many committee updates were covered earlier in the meeting. A discussion then ensured about promotional items, including phone pop sockets and phone wallets, that can be KLSDAA branded and sold to raise money for KLSDAA.

New Business

  • The group discussed the need to ensure our page on the district website is up-to-date, particularly the link to the performing arts section on the district homepage; this has not been updated since 2017
  • There is an alumni corner on our KLSDAA website where we can post significant accomplishments and news releases; this content can also be posted in the performing arts hallway; it was requested that Sarah McMahon draft an article to help create more awareness
  • Cerami noted we will deploy our newsletter via backpack mail and email through district mail
  • Milone noted that we should consider leveraging Max News as a communication channel; she added we can include content in these PTA newsletters


There being no other business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned at 8:06 PM by Julie Oyen.

Minutes submitted by: Liz Gebbia

Minutes approved by:



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