WRFI-Meeting Minutes-February 2024

WRFI Board of Directors Meeting

Tuesday, February 11th, 2024 

In Attendance:

-Peter Bakija

-Corinne Shanahan

-Joseph Haefeli

-Amie Herman

-Joe Romano

-Carlos Gutierrez

-Talaya Centeno

-Felix Teitelbaum

-Mike Cook

Not in attendance:

-John Young

-Robin Elliott

-Fred Balfour


Call to Order at 6:08 pm.

Agenda Items:

Board Reflections:  

Joe reflects on the mission statement workshop. Joe felt the workshop was good, but felt that coming up with a specific mission statement with a very open ended process was difficult. Felt that there were many good ideas, but then there needs to be a more specific winnowing process. Peter asks what the best mission statement ideas that we came up with were. Joe touches on community and diversity and information and entertainment, all of which were touched upon in the process. Amie asks if there was a settled outcome; Joe responds that there were three specific outcomes based on 3 groups working. Corrine will expand upon this later in the meeting. Joseph indicates that the workshop was good, and had a solid energy.

Board Specific Issues:

Corrine indicates Chantal Thomas has officially resigned from the board, and the board thanks her for her service. Corrine also indicates that Mike Cook is interested in joining the board, and Mike will be coming to the meeting at 6:30. The board discusses Mike’s potential as a board member. The board discusses board recruitment efforts. Corrine moves to approve Mike Cook as a board member. Joe seconds. Vote passes 7-0. Mike Cook approved and is welcomed to the board.

Strategic Planning:

Corrine discusses the mission drafting workshop in January. Felt it was a productive meeting. The people in the meeting who volunteered to keep working on drafting a mission statement will be meeting in a few weeks to create a few succinct drafts to bring to the board for mission statements to examine in March for adopting in April. Joe indicates that a mission statement should be crystalline—clear and sharp. If a board member would like to join this process who have not yet already volunteered, they should contact Corrine. Next issue Corrine covers is the NFCB’s 5x5 model:


as a model for a station to identify where they are on 5 different domains—Engagement, Programming, Development, Governance, and Compliance. We spend a lot of time thinking about these things already, but this model helps clarify where stations need to go. Corrine feels that this process will help clarify strategic planning. Felix clarifies that the intention is not to do everything in the document, but to use it as a guideline and help us figure out priorities and goals. Amie indicates that it seems like a very good framework, and that we shouldn’t get too hung up on the specific process, and instead prioritize a few things in the process that would be helpful for us in the framework. 

Committee Reports: 

Development and Outreach Committee: Development committee meeting exists on the schedule for Feb 27th; will discuss financial goals, and places where more income can come from, including more underwriting and events, which dovetails into engagement. Will discuss more foundational giving possibilities. Felix adds that he met with folks from the Community Foundation at an open house event; the Community Foundation now offers managing an endowment, which requires a significant seed contribution, but this is a potential service they provide. Other services exist that could handle such complexities as well.

Governance Committee: No updates. 

Personnel Committee: Joe reports that there were confidential personnel discussions, involving ongoing situations, that they are working on resolving.

Finance Committee: No updates.

ED Report: 

ED Report: Felix reports that the January financial books are up to date, and that the financial books are matching what the Financial Dashboard is looking for. Books can be shared with folks other than the Finance Committee. Felix filed EEO Compliance reports. Outreach had a Community Foundation open house. Members of the Community Foundation came and visited the station, including discussing a recent grant that we were not awarded. Felix feels reassured and that we should re-apply for the grant in the spring, including attending a Grant Writing workshop around the same time as the spring grant application process is happening. The Community Foundation seems very transparent, and Felix feels encouraged by the meeting. 

Also, last week, the WRFI Listening Room occurred in the space between PM Press and Angry Mom Records, creating some contacts with other media personalities in the area who attended the event. Felix thanks everyone who helped with the mission statement workshop, and feels that this work in particular will be helpful in the Community Foundation grant application. Felix discusses working with Diane Gayesk’s students (who will be working with the station) in the name of talking to volunteers from the station for recording interviews. 

Felix discusses the CCAP Grant that was awarded to us in 2008 for equipment funds has officially closed out. The Community Foundation grant cycle opens in early March. The Park Grant will likely respond to us in mid March. Engage Cornell/Cornell Sun grant will come in soon. Felix is working on Tax letters for 2023 (i.e. letters to every donor for tax purposes). Discussion of a physical fundraising mailing, that is something that people will keep and think about, such as a station weekly schedule or something of the sort. Felix discusses recent allegations (completely unconnected to the station) in the news against a one time board member, who resigned from the board around the same time as the allegations came to light, and indicates that the station and the board are aware of these things.

Tower Updates:

Discussion of the repairs to the Newfield tower (89.7), indicating that this situation seems to be being resolved positively. The company sent out techs to repair the tower, repairs have been made, the tower is now operating at full capacity, and no invoice has been sent for the approximately $12K repair costs. Felix is hopeful that this has been resolved. Discussion of the Watkins Glen tower and possible ways to resolve the existence of that frequency. 

Consent Agenda: 

Move to approve January minutes, second. Vote passes 6-0. Bylaws are updated to include changes to the Board membership, motion made to adopt new amendments, second, vote passes 6-0.

Meeting adjourned at 7:40 pm.