July 22, 2003
How quickly time flies! About a year ago, I sat down with my FOCUS co-editors, Linda Lopez and Dr. Maria Luskay, to discuss the possibility of developing an online newsletter for MCA-I NY, one that would benefit both our members and our sponsors by giving them the opportunity share their news with other members. And here we are one year later as more than six hundred media professionals in the tri-state area are reading our fourth issue.
FOCUS is successful because of the extraordinary dedication of its editors and the knowledge and experience of its contributors. They understand the PR value in an online newsletter such as this. If you would like to become involved and put your writing and/or HTML skills to good use (see below for details), this is the place to be. To paraphrase our Cleveland member Phil Stella: “Never pass up an opportunity for free press or free learning!”
Still the First with the Best
Many other thing things happened during the past year. Your MCA-I NY chapter was one of the first organizations in the city to present a seminar on Wi-Fi, the latest wireless technology for businesses and individuals. A few weeks later, that topic was on the covers of many magazines including Business Week.
We were also the only organization in New York that screened the short form documentaries that were nominated for an Oscar this year. Our First Annual MCA-I Documentary Film Festival was a real success. The next one is scheduled for February 2004, so watch out for program announcements.
MCA-I National News
On the national level, many things have changed, as well. We once again have an executive director, Ernie Stewart, to ensure prompt and knowledgeable feedback to members and non-members alike. In response to members’ requests, our national board has approved an MCA-I conference for next year in cooperation with InfoComm (read MCA-I President Cameron Sanders’s letter).
Many of you have asked about health insurance. Once again National listened and just in the past few days MCA-I finalized the first plan for health insurance for our members (go to http://mcai.ashcorpbenefits.com for more information).
Your NY chapter board is busy developing programs for the upcoming year. Just this past Saturday, we had a board retreat, where we discussed the challenges and opportunities for MCA-I NY in the coming year.
Two of our biggest challenges will be increasing membership and offering more membership value. To this end, we are developing programming that will bring buyers and sellers together more efficiently.We’re also working on establishing new relationships with other businesses and organizations. Stay tuned for updates.
We have two new board members, Jeffrey Traister from electrifi, who will develop sponsorships and business relationships, and Gale Grant from Globalworks, who is our new VP of programming. I agreed to stay on as president for another year to finish up the tasks I started.
We’re all very excited about the upcoming year and the opportunities ahead. We invite you to become involved. Organizations like ours thrive through the contributions of their members. MCA-I NY offers many opportunities to show off your skills. Remember, the more people know about you, the more they will think about you when the next job opportunity comes along.
Here are our committees and their chairpersons. If you’re interested, please email them directly:
1. Programming – Gale Grant (email@example.com)
Our programs are designed to inform, educate, and provide opportunities for networking. The topics for our upcoming program year are very exciting. This is an opportunity to show off your producer’s skills. You will work directly with Gale, and are free to use your knowledge and contacts to create a seminar that will be interesting to our members.
2. Communications – Linda Lopez (firstname.lastname@example.org)
We need communications experts in a few areas: 1) staff writers and editors for FOCUS, our online newsletter; 2) HTML support for both FOCUS and the new MCA-I Web site, which is in BETA stage now but will formally launch in September; 3) writers for our marketing and membership development pieces; and 3) if you have public relations experience, media research and placement.
3. Editorial – Dr. Maria Luskay (email@example.com)
MCA-I NY has many ways to provide information, among them our online newsletter FOCUS and our print newsletter NY Spotlight. There are plenty of opportunities for writers to strut their stuff by covering our events, reporting on the latest developments in our industry, and writing articles that help our members do business better.
4. Sponsorship & Business Development – Jeffrey Traister (firstname.lastname@example.org)
We want to develop greater connections to companies, sponsors, and other organizations, and integrate them more into our projects and programming. If you can contribute with ideas and connections, we’d like to hear from you.
5. Database Management – Corinna Sager (email@example.com)
This is the life blood of our organization — knowing who our members are and what they do. We’re currently developing a more detailed database, which we’d like to make available to our members. However, it takes a lot of effort and dedication to keep up with the constant changes. This is a chance for those of you with database management experience to step up to the plate and help us offer our members the benefit of knowing who’s who.
6. Special Events – Lee Spinelli (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Our Kick-off Party is scheduled for September 22 (location to be decided). We also have our Holiday Party in December and our Wrap Party in June ’04. If you like to plan special events, this is your chance to work on some fun stuff with Lee. All others stay tuned for email invitations from us, and check our website at www.newyork.mca-i.org for updates.
We look foward to hearing from you. Have a wonderful summer!