Spoiler Alert! Directions for CWR Conference 2017:

1. Go North (or East or West)
2. Cross an international border
3. Enjoy the view, but don’t go over in a barrel!

Dear CWR Friends:

In the interest of keeping you informed, the CWR Board of Directors shares highlights of our monthly meetings. The Communicators for Women Religious Board of Directors met via videoconference on Tuesday, February 23, 2016.

A Prayer for Lenten Simplicity, provided by Sister Angela Szczawinska, CSFN, was read by Jennifer Kaminski.

Minutes of the January in-person Board meeting in Indianapolis were approved.

Board Chair Eileen Dickerson reported for the Executive Team that letters were sent to the Leadership members of the congregations of both outgoing and incoming CWR Board members, thanking them for their support of CWR through their communicator’s Board service.

In the month since the last Board meeting, Eileen engaged in collaborative conversations with the GHR Foundation and with FADICA (Foundations and Donors Interested in Catholic Activities).

In sharing First Quarter 2016 account balances, Sister Beth Kress, PBVM, CWR Treasurer assured board members that due to the first installment of $500,000 of the Conrad Hilton Grant for the first quarter and due to the earnings from Conference 2015 and membership growth, the operational budget remains solvent.

Sister Beth also shared that Christian Brothers Investment Services experts indicate that while markets have continued in decline at the end of the First Quarter 2016, the loss in revenues over several past quarters has been predictable with historical market trends and that the decline in emerging global markets (example: China) is not expected to cause a recession in the developed markets (example: U.S.).

As Finance Committee Chair, Sister Beth reported that the CWR contractor/CPA is in the process of doing the compilation of Fiscal Year 2015 reports for the IRS and State of Illinois, where CWR is incorporated.

With assistance from the contracted accountant consultant, CWR Coordinator Susan Oxley is in the process of reformatting the 2016 budget to combine the 2016 operational budget and the budget submitted to Conrad Hilton Foundation for 2016.

The Finance Committee has identified tasks/objectives for finance related to the Strategic Plan.

The Board gave authorization for the purchase of programming services to create an online payment option for conference sponsors/exhibitors.

Strategic Plan Implementation Committee Co-Chair Eileen Dickerson reminded the Board that the deadline for submission of resumes for the new Executive Director position is February 29. At that time, P.J. Lynch Associates will present the resumes of the most viable candidates to the Committee and they will be shared with the Board.

The Board asks all CWR members to please pray for a successful Executive Director search.

Conference 2016 Committee Chair Kathy Gatliff said that the 2016 Conference Committee is staying on track to offer a great program, October 4-7, 2016 at the Hilton Indianapolis Hotel and Suites. Presenter contracts are being finalized, the Save the Date postcard will be arriving in members’ mailboxes soon, and we will begin collecting “Indy’s 500 Ways to Turbocharge Your Communications!” Of special note: This conference will bring us ‘full circle’ – in October 1996, the NCNWR received a grant from the Lilly Endowment Foundation, based in Indianapolis, to further advance the mission of women religious. Now here we are, 20 years later, hosting a conference in October in Indiana with the theme “Advancing Your Mission,” and celebrating another prestigious grant to propel us on to become an even greater organization!

Conference 2017 – After research and discussion and surveying CWR members, the Board voted to hold the 2017 Conference in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. More information will be forthcoming over time.

Board member Dave Eck has accepted the role of Chair of the Conference 2017 Committee. We ask members—especially our Canadian members—to consider volunteering to serve on this committee. Please help to make our first international conference an exciting and meaningful event in CWR history! Contact Dave at dEck@cppsadmin.org.

The Marketing Committee, co-chaired by Jennifer Kaminski, has been very busy sending out press releases for new Board members, CWR brochures to nonmember congregations and a CWR video to LCWR’s New Leader Workshop. The committee also worked with the Conference 2016 Committee to prepare Save the Date postcards.

The Development Committee, chaired by Kate Martin, has begun setting goals and strategizing effective ways to start identifying potential conference sponsors, exhibitors and local ministry marketplace participants. The committee welcomed new member Katherine DiGuilio.

The Communications Committee, co-chaired by Sister Angela and Rochelle Cassella, submitted a report. They are in the process of reviewing the committee’s role in relation to the Marketing and Membership committees.

Next Board videoconference – Thursday, March 22, 2016, 11:30 EST

CWR Board of Directors
Eileen Dickerson, Chair
Sister Angela Szczawinska, CSFN, Vice Chair
Sister Beth Kress, PBVM, Treasurer
Rochelle Cassella
Dave Eck
Kathy Gatliff
Stephanie Hall
Sarah Jenkins
Jennifer Kaminski
Kate Martin
Jean Merry

“The benefits you receive as a member of CWR are made possible by an ALL VOLUNTEER Board. CWR can thrive and grow as long as our members volunteer their gifts through Board service.”