Alumni Council Meeting Minutes November 4, 2006
General Session Minutes
Alumni Council Meeting
November 4, 2006
Bill Roseen, Alumni Association President, called the meeting to order at 10 a.m.
Terry Walton, Chaplain, opened us with a prayer.
Dr. Briggs, Berry College President, welcomed the group with a few words.
Faye Fron, Alumni Relations Director, provided some updates about her staff and department:
- Fred Mercer, Coordinator of Regional and Campus Events, has now officially joined the Alumni Relations Department and is the staff representative for the Heritage Committee
- Rose Nix is now the staff representative for the Financial Support Committee
- Introduced staff members present: Brenda Jenkins, Fred Mercer, and Lisa Nichols
- Provided an overview of the materials in our meeting folder, the calendar of events (Rome chapter Christmas dinner is November 30, 2006 on campus), and nomination form for Alumni Council membership
Approval of Minutes: There was a motion to approve the minutes by Martha Bowen and the motion was seconded, and passed with no opposition.
As part of the SACS accreditation, a quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) must be put in place as part of the accreditation process, a 5-year plan. Bill is on QEP committee. There are three topics up for vote, and the committee hopes to make a decision by the end of the year.
Consultant’s Report – Findings and Recommendations:
- Council size – our Council is larger than other schools reviewed in the report, roughly half again as large on average
- Identified database inadequacies that make a “single point of contact” for alumni difficult
- Create a strategic plan in keeping with that of the College
- Chapter structure and governance should be reviewed in light of current bylaws
- Maintain focus on students and young alumni while continuing relationships with other alumni
- Create and nurture relationships with the admissions department and college faculty
- Set a goal for the Alumni Association to become indispensable to the college
Board of Trustees Meeting:
- Financial support of the alumni was presented to the Trustees
- Form subcommittee of alumni trustees to discuss: “indispensable to the college”
Student Work Panel: Dean Mike Burnes, Dr. George Gallagher, Tammi King, and students, Victoria Aiello and Alison Stanley, were present to talk about the student work program and answer any questions the Council members had for them.
The meeting was adjourned for lunch at 12 noon, and following lunch, committee meetings commenced.
Closing session at began 3 p.m. with committee meeting updates.
Committee Meeting Updates
Alumni Awards – Lewis Copeland
- This year the committee received 16 new nominations, 14 of which were received electronically
- Two new student awards were proposed but the committee declined to add them
- Dr. Briggs visited with the committee during the meeting
- The committee voted to recommend that it remain as a standing committee of the Council. That recommendation was accepted by consensus.
Events – Betty Whitten
- Thank you to the volunteers that helped with the Ford Festival and Mountain Day; looking to make the Ford Festival a city wide event; and Mountain Day was very successful
- Candles and Carols will need volunteers - please contact Johnnie Curry
- Work Week committee has started meeting to plan next year’s activities – please plan to attend
- Motion was made in the committee meeting to make a video of work week and the motion passed
- Motion was presented to the Council to conduct a survey to measure alumni interest in having study activities as a part of Work Week and to conduct a survey of interest in bringing back a work day; motion was seconded and passed with no opposition
Financial Support – Ed England for Barbara McCollum
- Electronic giving was discussed
- Working to endow work scholarships
- BITS program is funded by Randy Berry and his wife
- Alumni Council has contributed $76,000 in unrestricted gifts
- 24% of the Alumni Council members have pledged donations and 77% of the financial support committee has pledged a donation
Heritage – Harlan Chapman
- Continuing work on 10 year DVD history of the college – Ryan Simmons and Daniel Greear are helping with this project
- Dr. Briggs is scheduled to attend a Dalton area event in April
- Overview of Berry history on DVD is also in the works – Rebecca Roberts is helping with this project
- The committee is soliciting volunteers for Founder’s Day to help provide tours and information in Hoge Building and Roosevelt Cabin
- Jennifer Dickey reported about historic Berry and some of the work being done in that area; there are some structural concerns with Possum Trot
- A motion was made to conduct a survey of interest in a Berry retirement village and cemetery, the motion raised several questions and was tabled
Young Alumni and Student Relations – Valerie Loner
- Presented the electronic Christmas card that will be going out to all students and young alumni for the Christmas holidays from the Alumni Association
- Water hand-outs at both Freshman move-in day and Mountain Day were very well received
- Rome chapter is planning a career networking social – Heather Henderson and the Career Development Center are planning the event
- The committee is researching a candle lighting ceremony for graduating seniors that Wesleyan College does; a group is planning to attend the ceremony in the spring
Nominations for 2007-2009 Council Positions
· Nominations are due by November 15, 2006 to the alumni office
· The nomination committee consists of: Cecily Crow, Ouida Dickey (Chair), Joy Neal, Brad Roberts, Carolyn Smith, Kim Terrell and Leann Yoda, with Faye Fron and Bill Roseen serving as ex officio members.
Annual review of the Constitution and Bylaws: It is time for the annual review of the constitution and bylaws; parliamentarian Bart Cox will be heading up the committee along with Tracy Batchelor and Tim Howard.
The meeting was adjourned at 3:30 p.m.
Submitted by: Kim Terrell
Minutes of November 4, 2006 meeting
Members present, Lewis Copeland, Patty Etchison, Robin Hice (for Joyce Shelton), Tom Jarrett, Clara McRae, and Lisa Nichols.
Meeting opened by Lewis Copeland.
- Lewis noted members need to have gifts to Berry in by the February meeting and should find out if their employers make matching gifts.
- Lewis presented a timeline of the awards process and emphasized that it is important for the Committee to stick to this timeline.
- Lewis read the minutes of the last meeting and they were approved by the members.
- Lisa reported on our efforts (see below) to increase the number of nominations. These efforts produced great results: 16 new nominations (which doubled or tripled the nominees in each category), 14 of which were submitted electronically.
- A memo was sent to the Deans and Department Heads
- Announcement at Faculty Convocation
- Tom Dasher’s office distributed a brochure
- On-line nomination forms
- Nomination forms include criteria for the award
1. Dr. Briggs joined our meeting. In addition to meeting all of the members, Dr. Briggs discussed the work program (Clara shared: “No work is dirty save that which soils the soul”) with our group and asked for input regarding methods to attract students who could attend a state school for free but must pay to attend Berry.
2. Lewis gave an overview of the award nominees and explained the new roll-off rules (3 years instead of 5). Lisa is gathering information on the nominees and will provide us with folders. She received some references even before she received a nomination. Lewis also explained the role of the community committee and their independence from the school and each other.
3. Lewis noted the executive committee, based on the consultant’s report, had inquired about the future status of the awards committee.
4. Celeste suggested the Awards Committee could work with the new affiliate alumni organizations to create a hall of fame for each school. Discussion indicated this would be a difficult task for the Committee to take on but we could share our process with the affiliates.
5. We discussed the possibility of adding two new awards: Student Award and Service to Berry Award. After discussion, the Committee voted unanimously not to add the Student Award. The Committee voted unanimously to table the Service to Berry Award.
6. Lewis noted the Heritage Committee is looking for volunteers for Founder’s Day.
Actions Requiring Council Approval
Events Committee Minutes
November 4, 2006
Members Present: Betty Whitten (Chair), Luci Hill Bell, Ouida Dickey, Peter Hendriksen, Johnnie Curry, Madison Alexander, Terry Walton, Tom Bowen, LeAnn Yoda Blackburn, Stewart Fuqua, Geraldine Bridges, and Brad Johnson
Betty Whitten (Chair) called the meeting to order at 1:15 pm. The Reverend Walton offered the opening prayer.
1. Ford Festival: Tom Bowen and Johnnie Curry reported that the Ford Festival was a success although there was a loss of approximately $300. The loss was attributable to decrease in the number of cars registered for the event. (There were 112 antique cars registered and the quality was excellent.) They agreed that major changes are being planned for future festivals. Tom reported that the City of Rome has expressed interest in participating with city-wide events. An active committee is already working on the 2007 festival.
2. Mountain Day: Betty reported that Mountain Day was very well attended. Many young alumni and reunion classes participated. Re-emphasizing class reunions for young alumni and the use of name tags for registrants were appreciated. Betty thanked all those who volunteered to help with this event.
1. Work Week 2007: Stewart Fuqua reported that he had met with Jennifer Dickey and identified needed work projects. These include: rework and refinish memorial benches, clear around Victory Lake, clean-up Possum Trot buildings and cemetery, clean-up Oak Hill, locate and clean-up the old amphitheater, re-do boat house at Reservoir Lake, and others. He also reported that Gail Guyndle, who will head up activities has many interesting activities planned.
2. A motion was made and passed that a video presentation of Work Week be prepared and sent to Berry Alumni Office (Lisa Nichols) to be linked to Berry’s Web Site. This would be used as a recruitment tool for future Work Weeks. Peter Henriksen will prepare the video and Luci Bell will coordinate narration.
3. Peter Henriksen led a discussion of a possible Summer Study Program in conjunction with Work Week. He suggested that we implement a pilot program in which participants could both study and work during the week. He suggested that we try to determine if there is interest among alumni for this type of program or for a Senior Scholars’ program. A motion was made and passed to authorize a survey to be published in the Berry Magazine to determine the interest of alumni and friends in (1) a Summer Study Program and (2) re-instituting a Work Day as a means of recruiting young alumni.
4. Johnnie Curry asked for volunteers for the Carols and Candles event. Betty Whitten reminded the Committee that volunteers will be needed for Founder’s Day activities.
5. Betty reviewed the Committee’s long term goals and summarized on-going efforts being made to meet these goals.
Actions Requiring Council Approval
1. For recruiting participants for future Work Weeks, prepare a video presentation of Work Week that would be linked to Berry’s Web Site.
2. Conduct a survey in the Berry Magazine for possible interest in Summer Study Program and for interest in re-instituting Work Day.
Submitted by: Betty Whitten
Berry Alumni Association
Financial Support Committee Minutes
November 4, 2006
Members Present: Martha Bowen, Ed England, Andrew Landis, David Lewis, Doyle Mathis, Barbara McCollum, Robin Muretisch, Rose Nix, Roger Sundy, Ron Thornton and Whit Whitaker.
Meeting opened by: Barbara McCollum at 1:20 p.m. Ed England provided the inspiration and Rose Nix was introduced to the committee as the new staff support representative to the committee.
1. Barbara McCollum and Rose Nix discussed the letter that went to committee classmates in mid-September. It was sent to all non-Martha Berry Society classmates (those with gifts of less than $1,000). Each committee member was e-mailed a list of classmates and asked to personally contact 5-10 classmates. Several committee members indicated that they did not receive the e-mail and Rose Nix will follow up and make sure they receive a copy of the letter and the class list. It was noted that Ed England’s class of 1957 will be solicited by the Class Reunion Committee given their 50th reunion is in the planning process. Also, Drew Landis (class of 2006) will be working with the class of 2005 since the most recent graduating class is not solicited for financial support. Roger Sundy, Doyle Mathis, and Barbara McCollum discussed their efforts in making personal contacts with classmates. Since many of the committee members had not actively participated in this process, Barbara asked committee members to continue to work in this endeavor. Follow-up discussions will be continued at the February committee meeting.
2. Ron Thornton, Class of 1961, made a presentation regarding their successful reunion giving which may be helpful to committee members in making personal contacts. Ron provided a handout “Path to a Successful Reunion and Increased Donations for Berry”. Ron went into detail on how a subcommittee was formed and the strategy used in making personal contact with each classmate.
3. A letter was recently sent to all Alumni Council members either thanking them for their pledge and/or reminding them of the importance of an unrestricted gift to the Annual Fund. The letter was signed by committee VP, Barbara McCollum. Barbara challenged the Financial Support Committee to be at 100 percent participation by the February Alumni Council meeting.
1. The Key Indicators report provided by the Advancement Office was reviewed which compares October 31, 2006 to prior year October 31, 2005. Ed England asked if the Alumni Council could be added to this report. Rose Nix will check into this.
2. A spreadsheet developed by Rose Nix and Barbara McCollum was reviewed. In view of the committee’s main focus on increased unrestricted annual fund giving, the spreadsheet was developed with this focus in mind. Barbara reminded the committee that the goal for unrestricted giving for fiscal year 2006-07 is $805,000 and 50 percent of this amount will hopefully be given by Alumni. Total gifts from the Alumni Council are $290,144.76 which includes deferred gifts for a participation rate of 24.39 percent. The Financial Support Committee is at 77 percent participation which includes outstanding pledges. Results for individual classes for committee members were reviewed which showed total gifts, outstanding pledges, group count, donor count, and percentage giving. It was determined that there was a misalignment in the class information and Rose will update the spreadsheet and e-mail to committee members.
3. A letter to all Martha Berry Society members will be mailed in the next few weeks. It will be signed by Barbara McCollum and will be similar in content to the letter that went to Alumni Council members.
4. Pledge follow-up will be discussed at the February committee meeting.
Actions Requiring Council Approval: None
Meeting adjourned at 3:00 p.m.
Submitted by: Barbara McCollum
Berry Alumni Association
Heritage Committee Minutes
November 4, 2006
Members Present: Bob Aiken, Harlan Chapman, Jean Curran, Jennifer Dickey, Mitch Elrod, Daniel Greear, Buford Jennings, Fred Mercer, Bobby Moon, Mary Patrick, Ryan Simmons, Carolyn Smith and Virginia Webb
Meeting opened by: Harlan Chapman at 1:10 p.m.
1. Harlan discussed the importance of having 100% giving among the Alumni Council members by the February 3rd Alumni Council meeting.
2. Harlan reported on an initiative for preparing a DVD of the last ten years of Berry history with an emphasis on the last year. Ryan Simmons and Daniel Greear requested material from the committee to include in the video. It was decided to make the video 8-15 minutes in duration. Jean Curran said she will work with Jennifer Dickey and Rebecca Roberts to research the last ten years of Berry history. Jennifer Dickey recommended a script be developed before video clips are produced to better tell the story. A further report will be made at the next meeting.
3. Harlan discussed the importance of Dr. Briggs “meet and greet” events. There will be an event on April 10, 2007 at the First Presbyterian Church in Dalton, Georgia. Harlan stressed the importance of attending these events in your area.
4. Harlan reported on the plans for a DVD of the overview history of Berry. This DVD will be produced professionally so the results will be high quality. Due to the high cost, it was suggested to try and make this a class project so Harlan will recommend this project to his class for their 50th reunion in 2008.
5. Fred Mercer gave a report on the Mountain Day events including the number attended and diverse activities enjoyed. Harlan reported that Jim (Larry) Ellison (57C) made pictures and a video with clips which might be used in the 10 year DVD.
6. Harlan reported on the upcoming Founder’s Day activities. Volunteers were determined as follows:
Hoge 2:00-3:00 Lewis Copeland and Oak Hill staff member
Hoge 3:00-4:00 Jean Curran and Oak Hill staff member
Roosevelt 2:00-3:00 Virginia Webb and Carolyn Smith
Roosevelt 3:00-4:00 Jennifer Dickey
7. Jennifer Dickey reported on Historic Berry. Oak Hill and the Martha Berry Museum will be closed during the month of January 2007 for renovation. Campus restoration projects will be presented to the Board of Trustee members in February 2007.
8. Harlan opened a discussion on a Berry retirement village and cemetery. It was agreed to conduct a survey to determine how many alumni may be interested in both of these projects.
9. It has been suggested that the members of the Heritage Committee discuss ways for celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Alumni Association in 2008. This will be discussed at the February 3, 2007 meeting and the suggestions will be reported to the Alumni relations office.
10. Meeting was adjourned at 2:55 p.m.
Submitted by: Fred Mercer
Young Alumni and Student Relations Committee
November 4, 2006
The Young Alumni and Student Relations Committee of the Berry Alumni Association met on November 4, 2006. Vice President for Young Alumni and Student Relations Valerie Loner called the meeting to order with a welcome and opening prayer shortly after 1:00 PM. Members present were Valerie Loner, Bart Cox, Jennifer Beard, John Cason, Rhea Clemmons, Heather Henderson, and Kimberly Terrell.
Valerie first noted the success of two recent projects undertaken by the committee. Members and volunteers provided water to parents and students at freshmen move in day in August and to students at the recent Mountain Day Olympics. Valerie was able to report positive feedback and an overall impression of alumni serving students and Berry.
Heather Goodwin, Assistant Director of Residential Life at Berry, next made a presentation. Heather is an alumna of Wesleyan College in Macon; she described a candle lighting ceremony that is a popular tradition at Wesleyan. She said the ceremony involves welcoming seniors into the alumni association a short time before graduation. It was felt that a similar ceremony at Berry might be a positive way to link students with the alumni association. Jennifer Beard mentioned inviting alumni celebrating their 50th reunion
years to serve as candle lighters in the ceremony. Much discussion followed, and Valerie and others plan to attend the actual Wesleyan ceremony this school year.
Also, committee member Jeffrey Arwood has designed an email Christmas card. This card, depicting a snow covered College Chapel, will be sent to current Berry students and young alumni, from the alumni association. This action was heartily endorsed by the committee.
In conjunction with the Berry Career Development Office, an informal campus event is planned for January 2007. The event will provide a chance for current students and young alumni to meet, network, socialize, and have Berry Career Development staff review resumes.
Also discussed was another social gathering, to further introduce President Briggs to young alumni. Although further discussion is required, the event is foreseen as more social in nature, and to take place in the summer of 2007.
The possibility of having an on campus young alumni service day was discussed. Further planning is required, although the possibility of aligning this event with sophomore service day was very well received. John Cason is following up on this.
The meeting ended with a short brainstorming session on using technology to communicate with current students and young alums. Topics discussed included adding a discussion board to the alumni website, and making career development services more available online.
Valerie Loner closed the meeting shortly before 3:00 PM.
Submitted by: Bart Cox