WTTW Community Advisory Board minutes (March 2005), with reference to CMA

Posted by Mitchell - April 11, 2005 (entry 294)

Members of the Community Advisory Board seek to assist WTTW in fulfilling its goal to inform, inspire, educate and entertain its viewing audience by presenting distinctive television programming for diverse audiences throughout Chicago, the region and the nation.

Board members continue to explore how they might better discern and communicate emerging needs of various publics to station management. Within the past year, they completed a very successful new member recruitment drive which utilized on-air announcements, as well as articles in various print outlets to solicit candidates for consideration.

Consistent with its operating rules and bylaws, the meetings are open to the public; and public comment is solicited.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005
6 - 8 PM



The following persons currently serve on WTTW's Community Advisory Board:

Thom Clark, Chairman
Gary Durochik, Vice Chairman
Riva Feshbach, Secretary
Barbara Proctor, WWCI Trustee Chair, Television Committee
Carolyn Aguila
Brian Bartoz
Bruce Beckman
Greg Clemons
Howard Denton
Brian Deveau
Eileen Durkin
Janice Goldstein
Afzaal Hafeez
Elizabeth Forkins Harano
Marion Hoyda
Bill Lichtenstein
Lennette Meredith
Mary Lou Mockus
David Nelson
Janet Joyce Nelson
Patricia Oaklief
John Singer
Renee Summers
Charles White
Sidney Zwick

Committee Members:
Gary Durochik, Chairman
Carolyn Aguila
Eileen Durkin, Ex-Officio

The following is the reference in the WTTW Community Advisory Board
Bylaws; Adopted February 10, 2004 that governs the establishment and
activities of the Bylaw Review Committee.

Article VI

Section 1 Standing and Special Committees. All committees shall
have a minimum of three members. All committee chairpersons and members
shall be appointed by the Chairman and approved by the members. All
committees shall adhere to the WTTW CAB's Bylaws and standing rules.
All committees shall report at each regularly scheduled meeting. The
members shall approve all committee work products before release. The
Chairman shall be an ex-officio, nonvoting, member of all committees.
Section 5 Other Committees. Such other committees, standing or
special (e.g., Bylaw Review Committee), shall be appointed by the
Chairman and approved by the membership as the Chairman shall from time
to time deem necessary to carry on the work of the WTTW CAB.

Bylaw Review Committee Objective (presented to the WTTW CAB leadership
team on October 28, 2004):

Objective: Review the current mission statement and bylaws, as published
on the WTTW CAB web page, and propose bylaw changes consistent with best
practices such as Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, tenth edition.

Models to be used:
- WTTW CAB web page
- Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, tenth edition.
- Best Practices

Success dependencies:
- Initial and ongoing participation by committee members
- Initial and ongoing support from all stakeholders

Bylaw Review Committee Activities and Accomplishments:

October 14, 2004 - The Bylaw Review Committee was chartered and the
committee chairman and members were appointed by WTTW CAB Chairman, Ms. Eileen Durkin, and approved by the general membership in attendance.
October 28, 2004 - Ms. Eileen Durkin convened a WTTW CAB leadership team
meeting to discuss committee objectives and to provide direction and
guidance to the committees. Gary Durochik and Chris Bassi participated.

December 9, 2003 - WTTW CAB presentation summary:
- Handed out copies of Bylaws Draft #2
- Lead general discussion with regard to Bylaws
- Solicited additional comments by 1/10/2004
- Meeting minutes posted on WTTW CAB web page reflected comment
solicitation and procedure

January 13, 2004
- Closed comment period
- Developed Draft #3 using input from Chris Bassi, Carolyn Aguila, Todd
Wexman, Renee Summers, and Brian Bartoz.
- Requested legal review through Ms. Eileen Durkin

January 27, 2004
- E-mail distributed to WTTW CAB leadership team asking various
questions with regard to disposition of Bylaws and legal review status

January 28, 2004
- Draft #3 distributed to WTTW CAB members by Ms. Eileen Durkin (assume
legal review complete and up or down vote at February 10, 2004 meeting)

January 29, 2004
- Meeting with Todd Wexman to discuss additional changes to Bylaws Draft
#3. The distribution on January 28, 2004 prevented any additional
changes to Draft #3. The amendment process in Article VIII should be
exercised as a tool for continuous improvement.

January 31, 2004
- E-mail to Ms. Eileen Durkin that included questions relevant to Bylaw
Review Comm. work

February 10, 2004 - Project Closeout:
- Final report and present the Bylaws for an up or down vote at the

February 10, 2004 WTTW CAB meeting.
- Legal review was requested but not provided.
- The bylaws were discussed, updated, and approved by the general
- A clean final approved copy of the Bylaws is attached for your use.
- Any additional changes to the Bylaws must be handled through the
provision in the Bylaws under Article VIII, Amendment to Bylaws.
- The objective of the Bylaw Review Committee has been achieved.
- The Bylaw Review Committee is released.

Respectfully submitted,
Gary M. Durochik
Chairman, Bylaw Review Committee
WTTW Community Advisory Board (CAB)
Meeting Report for Regular Meeting Tuesday, February 8, 2005

**NOTE: Next CAB meeting Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Thom Clark called the meeting to order at 6 pm. The reports for the two previous CAB meetings (10/10/04 and 12/14/04) were approved.

Reports of Officers and Committees
Responding to requests from CAB members, Thom Clark asked the CAB to vote on whether e-mail or regular mail should be the primary means for communicating with the CAB. The CAB voted for continuing to use regular mail. Thom Clark offered to handle the outgoing mailings until our new support person at WTTW was able to take care of it.

Thom Clark reported briefly on the meeting that he, Gary Durochik, and David Nelson had with members of the WTTW management, and commented that it was a positive meeting and cleared up many concerns (see New Business for additional discussion of this meeting).

Thom Clark, speaking on behalf of the Program Committee, said that Gary Durochik would review his notes of the meeting with management at the next the Program Committee. As part of an ongoing effort to clarify the role of the Program Committee, the committee will present a revised mission statement at the April 12 meeting.

David Nelson reported from the Membership Committee. He reminded people to send in suggestions for new CAB members to replace outgoing members. Note: Officers and Committee chairs will be voted on at the April meeting.

Unfinished Business
Bruce Beckman presented proposed revisions to the CAB by-laws. The revisions clarify the relationship of the CAB to the WTTW Board of Trustees; and address CAB access to station operating information. Other revisions mean that the by-laws now more completely reflect the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) statement of CAB objectives. The changes to the by-laws were voted on and approved. Counsel for WTTW will review the by-laws.

Bruce Beckman also provided an update on his research into CABs at other community licensed stations (about have of public stations are community licensed). A complete report will be made at April meeting.

New Business
Thom Clark reported on meeting with WTTW management. He, Gary Durochik, and David Nelson met with Dan Schmidt (president, CEO), Randy King (Exec. VP for Television), and Paul Buckner (V.P. of Production).

He then introduced VJ McAleer (director of community partnership programming) who will be the new CAB/WTTW liaison. He has been at the station for 18 years, in various positions including as producer of "Chicago Matters." In his position, which involves managing existing partnerships and developing new ones, he sees the role of the CAB as being an important link into the community.

Several CAB members had questions for VJ McAleer. Bruce Beckman asked about developing locally produced children's programming. VJ McAleer said that WTTW doesn't produce children's programming, and in general a local focus is more important for adult programming than for children's programming and the station's "ready to learn" initiatives. There was a follow up question about what kinds of community partnerships the station is developing. VJ McAleer talked about a project with CHS to get Chicago history programming (including "Chicago Stories") into the public schools; a project with Chicago Lighthouse for the Blind; a project to develop TV courses for high schools; and "Hoops High," a project in which students produce shows for local access programming.

There were other questions for VJ McAleer. Will WTTW broadcast with the controversial "Postcards from Buster" episode? Yes, but he couldn't comment further since he wasn't involved in that decision. There were also suggestions for locally produced kids programming, especially the young adult after school audience, such as news programming. There was some discussion of "interstitial" programming (fills gaps between shows that don't run the full hour). The programming used by Twin Cities Public Television or WYCC coverage of local community leaders might be a model for getting more community involvement.

In response to a question about the status of the "Network Chicago" strategy, VJ McAleer commented on original goal of creating a branding identity. But in the end, this kind of branding didn't turn out to be important to the viewers. He will report further at the April meeting.

In an effort to increase community input, at the December 2004 meeting, the CAB decided to begin inviting community members to talk about their organizations and how WTTW might be able to address their communities' needs. Kevin Jackson, director of the Chicago Rehab Network, was the first one. He talked about housing issues in general, and how the "Chicago Matters" series "Housing is Fundamental" helped people understand how housing integrates all kinds of policy and advocacy issues (education, transportation, etc.), and is not just a issue for the city of Chicago, but for the entire region (and WTTW service area).

The meeting was adjourned at 8 pm.

WTTW Community Advisory Board (CAB)
Meeting Report for Regular Meeting Tuesday December 14, 2004

Thom Clark called the meeting to order at 6 pm. The report for the October 10, 2004 CAB meeting were not circulated, therefore, the vote to approve the minutes was postponed to the next meeting. Thom Clark asked for additions to the agenda. There were none.

Hand-outs for the meeting: Community Advisory Boards Statutory Language; the Community Advisory Board's conclusions regarding Chicago Media Action's Recent PBS/WTTW Study; summary of University of Chicago's conference on public television; a list of current WTTW television staffing; letter from Richard Reinauer to Bob Sirot; Motion regarding view mail.

Reports of Officers and Committees.
Gary Durochik, CAB Vice-Chairman, has been reviewing the Federal guidelines regarding the formation and role of the CABs for community-licensed broadcasters, and recommended modifying the WTTW CAB by-laws to reflect this language. The CAB voted to support this. A special meeting of the By-laws committee will be held in late January. Bruce Beckman will chair this meeting and contact committee members to schedule.

Riva Feshbach, CAB secretary, recommended that the CAB return to distributing all official CAB mail (meeting notices, agendas, and reports) via regular mail to accommodate the fact that not all CAB members have internet access. She also pointed out that this was one way to make sure that WTTW fulfilled its obligations to support the CAB.

Unfinished Business:
Renee Summers, Chair of the Programming Committee, addressed the Chicago Media Action's analysis of "Chicago Tonight." She read a statement prepared by the Programming Committee identifying areas of the study that warrant further examination. The CAB discussed the statement and reiterated that despite the reputations of some members of CMA, their report supports the general impressions of the CAB. Therefore, the CAB voted to accept the Programming Committee's statement, and requested that Thom Clark submit it to Dan Schmidt, WTTW President and CEO; Randy King, Exec. VP of Television; and Barbara Proctor, WCCI Board of Trustees, and CAB liaison, by December 24, 2004. The report can be found at www.chicagomediaaction.org. In the box "The Activism," click on "Public Television," scroll down to "Round Three," and click on "download study." Or: http://www.chicagomediaaction.org/pdffiles/CMA_WTTW.pdf

Thom Clark spoke to Randy King about the process for handling letters regarding programming when the CAB gets them from the public. This was prompted by receipt of a letter about the British sitcom "Coupling." Randy King said, yes the CAB should write back to acknowledge receipt for such letters.

Although Randy King notified Thom Clark that he would be attending this CAB meeting and would begin addressing questions about WTTW's process for setting programming that the CAB first submitted in May, 2004, he cancelled at the last minute. Dan Soles, VP for Programming, attended in his place. When the CAB asked Dan Soles if he could speak to the issues that we expected Randy King to address, Dan Soles said that Randy had not prepped him in anyway for this, and so he couldn't speak to the CAB's questions.

General discussion followed in which the CAB expressed its ongoing frustration with trying to get basic information from WTTW regarding how the station operates. This discussion included: The CAB understands that Randy King often has last minute obligations that prevent him from attending CAB meetings, but wonders why he can't prep another member of his staff to attend and keep the process of educating the CAB moving forward; The CAB pointed out that the Board's role is as a bridge between the community and the station, and that if properly educated about the station's operations, they can help educate the community, and also be advocates for the station.

New Business:
Thom Clark reported on the conference "The Future of Public Television," held by the University of Chicago's Harris School of Public Policy (December 2-3, 2004). Bruce Beckman also attended and commented. They discussed some of the ideas being pursed by other public televisions, and asked what we can do to encourage WTTW to look at these models. For example, Minneapolis Public Television has developed some innovative approaches to additional local programming. Thom Clark distributed a brief written summary of the topics discussed at the conference.

Related to this discussion, Dan Soles offered insight into the different kinds of "public" television (ex. University-owned vs. community-licensed), and information about the European system of funding public television.

Paul Buckner, the new Production Manager, was introduced. In answer to questions from the CAB, he briefly described his job (producing existing programs, developing new shows); he has come from Fox TV; WTTW staff is deeply committed to their work; funding is the most serious ongoing problem.

Thom Clark noted that there have been some changes at WTTW. Renee Weingard will no longer be providing staff support to the CAB, Thom will find out who will be taking her place. Thom will also ask that the meeting reports be posted on the WTTW website in reverse chronological order to make it easier for the general public to stay updated on CAB activities. The CAB also expressed concern that Barbara Proctor has not be in regular attendance at CAB meetings. Given the importance of her role as liaison the WWCI Board of Trustees, it would be appreciated if she could send someone in her place when she is unable to attend. Thom Clark will pursue.

Dave Nelson, Chair of the Nominating Committee, said that it is time to submit names of people who might be interested in joining the CAB to fill empty spots. The CAB will encourage members with one year terms to sign up for another term. The nominating committee will contact members who have not been attending regularly to confirm their status. Names of nominees should be sent via e-mail to Dave Nelson, along with contact information and other relevant information. The CAB reiterated its desire to increase the diversity of its membership to more accurately reflect the Chicago viewing area, and to bring younger people (under 40) into the CAB.

Public Comment:
The CAB notes that members of the public only rarely attend CAB meetings and speak up during the public comment period. It was suggested that we follow the WBEZ model and invite members of different organizations around the Chicago area to address the questions: Is WTTW successfully serving their constituents? And how might WTTW better serve them?

The CAB will purse this. Ideas, organizations, and contact information should be sent to Thom Clark. Some topics mentioned are: housing, youth, minority business, social service organizations like DuPage United, Mental Health Association of the North Shore.

Bruce Beckman brought up his research on what other CABs do. In an ongoing effort to figure out how to have a positive impact on WTTW (and in the absence of direction from the station) the CAB formed an ad hoc committee to expand this investigation: Bruce Beckman, Riva Feshbach, Howard Denton.

Gary Durochik took the chair. Thom Clark raised the following motion: "The Community Advisory Board strongly recommends that in the interest of promoting sound journalistic practice, WTTW program management institute a policy regarding on-air use of viewer mail: that, said viewer be notified in advance when such mail is to be read on air."

General discussion focusing on "Chicago Tonight" followed. Thom reiterated that the point was not to revisit specific examples, but to recommend that the station adopt and articulate a policy regarding viewer mail. The CAB asked Dan Soles about the station's policy and the policy at "Chicago Tonight." He is not aware of the policies, but will report at the next meeting. Members of the CAB asked whether or not Bob Sirot has been informed about recent issues.

The motion regarding viewer mail was passed. Thom Clark will submit the recommendation to Dan Schmidt.

The meeting was adjourned at 8 pm.



Meeting was held Thursday, February 5 at Saint John's Lutheran Church.

1. Bringing Board into compliance with new bylaws.

The by-laws state:
- The WTTW Television Community Advisory Board (CAB) shall consist of 27 members.
- Members shall serve three-year terms.
- Terms shall be staggered so that nine members are selected every year.
- No member shall serve more than two full terms.
- Partial terms shall not be considered toward length of service.

Difficulty finding any records as to who came on the board and when.
Proposed solution:
Using the honor system we will pass out cards at the 2/10/04 meeting (and mail cards to CAB members not present asking for only the following information:
- Name
- When you remember attending your first board meeting. (Honor system)

Then we will have some information as to how to structure terms
- Exactly how that structuring will be accomplished will be decided at the next committee meeting and presented to the CAB for its approval.

2. Helping the CAB match the demographics of the Chicago viewers.
In order to do this we request the following information from WTTW staff members:
- Demographic data for Chicago television
- Demographic data for WTTW viewers.
- We will develop a survey instrument to determine if and how the CAB can better reflect Chicago and WTTW Demographics.

3. Remind the CAB of this by-law:
At its Spring meeting of every year, the CAB shall elect the following officers:
- chair, vice-chair and secretary.
- The term of office for officers shall be one year.

Please submit your nominations to me either by mail, phone or preferably e-mail to CrumsNDave@aol.com. Please write the words WTTW - CAB in the subject line.

Respectfully Submitted,



The name of the Organization shall be: WTTW Community Advisory Board (WTTW CAB)


The objective of the WTTW Community Advisory Board (WTTW CAB) is to assist WTTW Television in fulfilling its mission to inform, inspire, educate and entertain its viewing audience by providing distinctive television programming for the Chicago metropolitan area and the nation. The WTTW CAB fulfills the objective by representing diverse constituencies within the Chicago metropolitan area, monitoring and evaluating programs, giving voice to underserved segments of the community, serving as a sounding board for ideas presented by WTTW staff and bringing issues of community concern to the attention of the WTTW station management.


The WTTW CAB shall be a diverse group with regard to race, gender, age, and community of residence.

Section 1
Maximum Membership
The WTTW CAB membership shall be limited to 27 members.

Section 2
Membership Term

Members shall serve three-year terms. Terms shall be staggered to facilitate the selection of nine members every year. No member shall serve more than two consecutive terms.

Section 3
Membership Eligibility and Admission Procedure

Members shall be recruited from the WTTW viewing area by the Membership Committee. All persons interested in being nominated for membership shall complete an application.

Section 4
Initiation Fees and Dues

The WTTW CAB shall not assess an initiation fee or annual dues.

Section 5
Resignation from Membership

Any member desiring to resign from the WTTW CAB shall submit their resignation in writing to the secretary of the WTTW CAB.

Section 6
Membership Maintenance

Any Member that fails to attend more than two regularly scheduled meetings of the WTTW CAB over a one year period that coincides with their term commitment shall be deemed no longer a Member in good standing and is ineligible to continue as a WTTW CAB Member and shall be replaced by the Membership Committee.

Section 7
Responsibilities, Member

Each Member shall:
- Be responsible for determining policies and priorities for the organization, ensuring effective operations, and providing leadership, advice, and directions to the staff and management of WTTW Television.
- Approve the policies and operation plans of the WTTW CAB.
- Elect the WTTW CAB Chairman, Vice-Chairman and Secretary.
- Delegate authority for the proper implementation of policy and plans.
- Attend, annually, at least four (4) regularly scheduled meetings of the WTTW CAB.
- Serve on committees and actively participate in committee activities.
- Support the objectives of the WTTW CAB.


Section 1

The officers of the WTTW CAB shall be Chairman, Vice-Chairman and Secretary. The officers shall be elected at the annual meeting. The term of office shall be one year. Individuals are eligible for nomination to hold office after their first full year as a member.

Section 2
Duties, Chairman

The Chairman shall:
- Coordinate all WTTW CAB activities under the direction of the members.
- Preside over all regular WTTW CAB meetings.
- Prepare agendas for all regular WTTW CAB meetings.
- Be the primary spokesperson for the WTTW CAB, although this duty may be delegated.
- Appoint committee members as necessary.
- Ensure that all commitments between the WTTW CAB and WTTW management are satisfied.
- Assist in orientation of new WTTW CAB members.
- Report after each regular WTTW CAB meeting to the Chairman of the WTTW - Community Engagement Committee of Window To The World Communications, Inc. Copies of report shall be made available to WTTW CAB members, as well as WTTW management.

Section 3
Duties, Vice-Chairman

The Vice-Chairman shall:
- Assume the duties of the Chairman, in the case of the Chairman's absence or inability to act.
- Report at regular WTTW CAB meetings on activities by standing and/or special committees in the absence of the committee chairman.
- Perform other duties as assigned by the Chairman.

Section 4
Duties, Secretary

The Secretary shall:
- Oversee WTTW CAB record keeping and ensuring compliance with relevant provisions of the Bylaws.
- Keep or arrange for the keeping of the minutes of the regular meetings of the WTTW CAB in one (1) or more books provided for that purpose.
- Ensure that the regular meeting minutes are posted on the WTTW CAB web page in a timely manner and distributed to the members.
- Ensure that notices are given in accordance with the provisions of the Bylaws or as required by law.
- Maintain regular meeting attendance.
- Establish and maintain systems and controls to ensure that WTTW CAB records are protected for long-term safekeeping.
- Maintain member contact information.
- Certify all WTTW CAB documents as true and correct copies thereof.
- Sign WTTW CAB documents and correspondence, as required.
- Monitor parliamentary procedure, as needed.
- Perform other duties as assigned by the Chairman.


Section 1
Regular Meetings

The WTTW CAB shall meet at 6:00 p.m. on the second Tuesday of February, April, June, August, October and December. All regular meetings will be held at the WTTW

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