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Board of Trustees Meeting Minutes

Monday, March 14, 2022 7:00 p.m.

Via Zoom


The meeting of the Board of Trustees was called to order at 7:00 p.m.   Present were Josh Krugman, Chairman, and Trustees Neil Brafman, Jim Burress, Ted Doran, Jennifer Faria, Dan Hendriksen, Brad Louison, Suzanne Nassise, Mell Roca, and Margaret Veresko. Also present were Trustees ex officio Executive Director Elaine Cunningham and Artistic Director Christine Noel.


The minutes of the January 10, 2022 meeting were approved.                              


Strategic plan:  The planning committee is working on the strategic plan; Josh has sent Trustees a link to the latest draft.  Josh discussed two of the six strategies the committee is working on:  expanding public awareness and concert attendance, and long-term financial growth and stability.  Josh hopes to have a final draft for the May Board meeting.


Personnel:  Mell Roca and Elaine reported that the In Harmony director position has been posted on various websites.  Mell said she’s hopeful that there will be upcoming COVID changes, including the possibility of a mask-optional April concert.


Finance:  Dan Hendricksen said we’re waiting on financial results from the March concert, but expected that it will be close to budget.  Our investments are doing pretty well in the current market environment.


Resource Development:  Jen Faria encouraged everyone to circulate posters about the upcoming concert.  Christine is featured in articles in upcoming issues of Providence Monthly and Hey Rhody.   We received contribution in memory of Katrina Avery.  Jen referred Trustees to a resource tracking all the grant applications Elaine is working on.  We are looking into acquiring new risers, and Jen solicited Board support for an on-line auction, not only items to be auctioned but somebody to chair the event.  She encouraged 100% Board participation in 401GIVES.


Governance:   Suzanne Nassisse said we have twelve Board members and are looking for six more, to bring the complement up to the eighteen authorized in the by-laws, and she will be talking to committee chairs to learn of their interest in continuing. 


Artistic Director:  Christine expressed her appreciation for the chorus’ performance at the most recent concert, and also the Providence Baroque Orchestra.  She commented that the chorus is growing back to its pre-pandemic level.  She is pursuing leads for the In Harmony music director.  Next season, she is thinking about Haydn’s Creation for the fall concert using a chamber orchestra version.   Her goal is to program well-known works that will bring in a lot of audience members and also offer works that are relevant for our audiences and effect social change.   For the March concert, she has approached a Black composer about a commission for next season around social justice and he is considering the offer.  Other BIPOC composers are also under consideration if he is not available.  If it is compatible with the commissioned work, she is thinking about programming Brubeck’s The Gates of Justice as the second piece on the March concert.  A strong gospel choir would be brought in for this concert as well.  Messiah would be performed in December and the Verdi Requiem in May.  

Executive Director:  Elaine expressed confidence that we will make our fundraising goals for the fiscal year.  She is currently focused on sales for the April concert.  Our CDs will be included in Mother’s Day gift baskets, accompanied by a note about our upcoming concerts.  She hopes to send out a newsletter by the end of March.  


Dan Hendricksen proposed that Board members make one-minute remarks which he called “Board Minutes” at rehearsals, to remind Singers about the existence and work of the Board and provide relevant information.  The proposal was met with general agreement.  Elaine and Christine both observed that singer volunteering has slipped and this would be a good way to encourage singers to volunteer.  


The Board then voted to go into executive session for discussion, after which the Board voted to end the executive session.  

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.

Jim Burress, Secretary

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