January 8, 2023 ZA Board Meeting Minutes

January 8, 2023 Zimfest Association Board Meeting Synopsis

Members in Attendance: Daniel Lockley, Mandy Walker-LaFollette, Alex Weeks, Janis Weeks, Tendai Muparutsa, Heather Steele, Maria Minnaar Bailey, Jacqueline Fallon, Cloud Petayi
Members Absent: Chris Halaska
Non-voting members in attendance: Claire Jones, Trent Fallon-Muparutsa

Review Agenda (All)

December Minutes/Synopsis (All)


Zimfest 2022 Festival Financial Report (Cloud)

  • Cloud presents and reviews 2022 finances; FYI to new board members, association and festival finances are kept separate. Sometimes this is not practical, but discrepancies are reconciled as necessary.
  • Net income in association (more than budgeted), resulted from donation and grant (Hope First Foundation & Washington State Dept. of Commerce)
  • Festival: budget wasn’t concrete for 2022 since we didn’t know whether there would be in-person festival, or how Covid-19 would impact it. Now, knowing what we did, maybe we can make a more concrete 2023 budget. Budget is mostly for our own discussion context, so it’s not essential to be perfect.
  • Festival: net loss. Major expenses were housing and venue rental.
    • 2022 festival didn’t have as much income from housing markup.
    • Workshops are typically the main moneymaker, and with only 2 days of workshops, that made a big difference.
  • Organization broke even, thanks to the grant and donations, but we can’t count on that in the future.
  • Online 2022 was a net loss. However, still has potential to make money going forward.

Cloud wants to stay on the board, and can advise financially, but his job demands are conflicting with Zimfest needs and deadlines. Suggestion from Alex: Cloud stay on the board, help onboard Gary, and move towards changing Treasurer position to another board member. Cloud, Claire, and all agree. Alex will set up meeting with Alex, Cloud, Claire, Gary, to move forward.

Gary is ready to take on some of our bookkeeping tasks.

2022 Online Programming Review (Mandy)

Burnout is an issue when putting on off-season events. Great set of performances, should plug it again in the future, as the concert is still available to register for and view.

Tech Committee (Janis)

Upgraded plan for the website hosting. Still working on the mission. Looking into a ticketing system for technical problems to assign to whomever will fix the problems.

Gary Spalter Financial Services (Alex)

Alex talked with Gary last week, the main blocker is getting the current quick books file from Cloud, and finalizing the job responsibilities. Gary is willing to take on a large portion of our financial responsibilities.

Heather, Claire, and Mandy expressed interest in attending a meeting to review/edit the job responsibilities and annual calendar (see below). They and Alex will try to meet next week.

Financial Tasks (Alex)

  • Benevity certification (due 12/31) – Done
  • L&I – Gary and Claire working on it, Gary to do in the future. (Post-meeting note: Gary and Claire completed the 4th quarter report together, and Gary now has info needed to take it over.)
  • WA State Annual Report (due 1/31) – Alex is working on it.

Discussion: Fundraising Officer (Alex & Claire)

Discussed the possibility of introducing a new board officer position, in charge of fundraising, and some of the paperwork related to it (such as Benevity, Amazon Smile, etc.). Will discuss in the future.

Zimfest 2023 Update (Claire)

Claire has written to two department chairs (Music Ed and World Languages and Cultures) for the purpose of sponsorship for legally paying honoraria for teachers on B visas. Waiting to hear.

We are considering switching from the announced dates of July 21-23 to August 3-6.

  • Reasons to keep July dates:
    • The MU Ballroom (evening concert venue, reserved for July) is not available in August. There is another ballroom, but it is available only Friday and Saturday nights. A possible work-around, suggested by Alex, would be to hold both day and evening concerts outside, on the same stage.
    • Holding evening concerts outside might have permitting or noise restrictions that make it unfeasible
  • Reasons to switch to August:
    • Improved housing flexibility and location, including the ability to reserve whole dorms and use their lobbies as workshop space
    • Outside evening concerts would be by donation, resolving the B1 visa situation. They also would allow us to reduce expenses by renting only one sound system. The Organizing Committee likes the idea.

Alex and Claire will meet with a University Events representative on 1/09 to get details on the city’s sound permitting process. If outdoor evening concerts look doable (permitting, reservations, sound, etc.), Claire suggests changing to the August dates. If not, we can keep the July dates. (Claire has applied to reserve housing for July.) Board generally approves.

Opening of applications will occur after the dates have been finalized.