Board Members Present: Arnold Barr (Chair), Ed Hayes (Treasurer), Keith Stanger (Secretary), Steve Weiss Community Member Present: Francine Hyman (email@example.com), Greg Winterhalter
The meeting was held at the Washtenaw County Library and was called to order at 2:00 p.m. by Mr. Barr. The Board waived notice of time, place and subject of the meeting.
The Board approved the minutes of the meeting of July 6, 1997. The financial report for the period ending August 31, 1997 was posted on the HVCN web site and was approved by the Board.
Mr. Barr gave to Mr. Hayes original HVCN 501(C)3 application materials and other papers related to HVCN financial contributions.
Mr. Weiss presented an HVCN Technical Committee report:
Mr. Winterhalter said he would create a Backtalk conference item on HVCN's mission.
Mr. Barr reported that hardware, software and furniture were ordered for the Ypsilanti District Library/Ypsilanti Historical Museum project. He worked with Paula Drummond of the Ypsilanti District Library on the job specifications for the part-time (9 a.m. - 1 p.m.) project employee who will scan and digitize Museum materials. A graduate of the University of Michigan School of Information was hired--Maria E. Schieda. Mr. Barr said he would work with Mr. Hayes to submit a bill to the Ypsilanti District Library grant administrator so that HVCN could be compensated for Mr. Barr's consultation time. Dean Russell, a retired photographer with PhotoShop experience, volunteered to help with the project. Mr. Weiss suggested that Microsoft Access be used for the creation of the Museum's database. He said there were two different strategies HVCN might use to serve up the database:
For the near term he favored the second option because of HVCN's small size and lack of money.
Mr. Winterhalter asked Mr. Weiss what he thought the minimum hardware requirements were for a Windows NT server that would meet HVCN's needs. Mr. Weiss replied that a 486 with 64MB ram would be the minimum configuration. Mr. Winterhalter said it might be possible to get such a 486 computer donated by a business, after which HVCN could spend a little money to upgrade the memory and hard drive. Mr. Winterhalter said he would investigate the possibility of obtaining a donation of a 486 computer. Mr. Weiss noted that if HVCN did acquire a second server, we would have to consider where to put it. The current HVCN server is situated at the offices of the Information Services Department of Washtenaw County. HVCN would have to talk to them about the placement of another machine and another IP address. Mr. Barr said he would talk with Mary Udoji and Rebecca Head about asking for a second server at the Washtenaw County site.
Mr. Barr wrote an html file describing the Ypsilanti District Library/Ypsilanti Historical Museum project and gave it to Mr. Weiss for placement on the HVCN web site in the Library InfoCenter. It was agreed by the Board to put a pointer to the project description on the HVCN front page for a short period of time. Ms. Hyman suggested that Mr. Barr rewrite the project description as a press release and that it be issued both on the HVCN web site and as a press release directed to local press. HVCN could have on its site an HVCN press release archive, documenting organizational achievements. Mr. Barr said he would work with the Ypsilanti District Library's public relations officer on both the content and the distribution of the press release. Mr. Winterhalter suggested adding a call for volunteers to work with HVCN on this and other projects. Mr. Barr said he would see if Dan Romanchik was available to help with the press release.
Mr. Hayes gathered some more signatures and information for bank authorizations for the HVCN board.
Mr. Hayes asked about the status of the Pittsfield Township web site. Mr. Barr said he left a message for Laura Frey, but had not yet received any feedback.
Mr. Hayes said HVCN should send renewal letters to people whose HVCN memberships have expired. Mr. Hayes and Mr. Stanger will work out the details.
Mr. Hayes had a brief discussion with Jennifer Goulet, director of Ypsilanti's Department of Community and Economic Development, after she spoke at a Kiwanis meeting. Among other things, her office helps small organizations acquire financial support for their projects. The Board agreed that Mr. Hayes should schedule a meeting with Ms. Goulet to discuss HVCN's fund raising grant possibilities.
Mr. Barr noted that the Ypsilanti District Library has budgeted funds their connection to the Internet as well as their web project with the Ypsilanti Historical Museum. Mr. Barr observed that HVCN has helped with both projects and an HVCN representative should work with the Library to insure inclusion in the publicity campaign.
Mr. Winterhalter and Mr. Weiss both noted the need to recruit HVCN volunteers for many tasks, e.g., publicity/"ambassadors", fund raising, site development and maintenance. Ms. Lyman suggested that the HVCN web site should include descriptions of volunteer opportunities, including tasks to do, skills needed, and duration of commitment.
Ms. Lyman suggested that HVCN might raise some money by allowing organizations to pay HVCN additional money to have a banner advertisement placed on the HVCN web site. Mr. Weiss noted that current HVCN policies say that organizations that pay membership dues above a certain level will be acknowledged on the web site. This has not yet been implemented. Mr. Weiss said he was not anxious to see banner ads on every page, but thought a featured volunteer/contributor of the month could be appealing. Mr. Barr mentioned that he planned to ask Border's and Barnes & Noble to donate some books explaining the use of the software acquired to support the Ypsilanti District Library/Ypsilanti Historical Museum project. Mr. Barr said that acknowledgement of contributions on the relevant HVCN pages would be an incentive for the stores.
Ms. Hyman said she would review the HVCN web site design and provide feedback. Mr. Weiss suggested that she provide the feedback to the entire board: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The next meeting was scheduled for Sunday, October 5, 1997 at 2:00 p.m. at the Washtenaw County Library.
The meeting was adjourned at 3:30 p.m.
Keith Stanger, Secretary