Following one of the most well-attended lunch meetings in several years, there also was a strong turnout at the May 16 Press Club of Southwest Florida Board meeting. In addition to approving two new members—Joan F. Wood, as a full member; and Jerry Flagel, as an associate member—the Board reviewed suggestions for upcoming lunch program speaker/panelists, the schedule for “Sizzling Summer” media mixers, the Journalism Scholarship Committee report and plans for this year’s Young Journalist Awards. The board then dedicated a portion of the meeting to discussing the draft strategic plan. The plan includes short-term and long-term goals, strategies and tactics. The draft plan will be reviewed in greater detail at the two-hour board meeting on July 11.
In its current draft, goals include:
• Broadening the geographic reach of the press club to include working and retired journalists in both Collier and Lee Counties.
• Becoming positioned as the organization to make local public announcements (newsmakers/news-making events).
• Becoming recognized as thought leaders and the “go to” place for spokespersons in the realm of the First Amendment, Freedom of the Press, Sunshine Laws and supporting/defending journalists and journalism.
• Becoming more widely recognized among selected target audiences including current and retired journalists, media and PR/communications professionals.
• Building the infrastructure to maintain a vibrant and sustainable organization.
The plan outlines strategies for how the organization will continue to take steps to become more relevant and responsive to working journalists by expanding programming into the Fort Myers and Bonita Springs areas and gearing up to host “newsmakers” as important announcements are made in Southwest Florida.
In the next two months, a nominating committee for the 2020 board will be named and the recommended slate of officers and board members will be ratified at the annual meeting on December 5. If you wish to become more involved in the Press Club of Southwest Florida, we have many opportunities, including serving on the board, joining the program committee, becoming SCOOP (monthly newsletter) editor and writing summaries of the monthly lunch programs. Please let me know where you’d like to make your contributions to create a more vibrant and relevant organization.