Board Minutes – November 9, 2014

Board Minutes – November 9, 2014

Board of Directors & Current Administrative Leadership
Online Via Skype
Sunday, November 9, 2014
12:00 -3:00pm EST



A. Welcome

  • Members Present: Mary Jane Warner, Scott Martin, Tanya Evidente, Linda Caldwell, Catherine Limbertie, Ann Kipling Brown, Melissa Sanderson, Casey Avaunt

B. Acceptance of the Agenda For November 9, 2014

  • Motion: To accept the agenda for November 9, 2014. Moved: Scott Martin; Seconded: Linda Caldwell. Approved.

C. Approval of Minutes September 21, 2014

  • Motion : To approve the Minutes of September 21, 2014. Moved: Tanya Evidente; Seconded: Linda Caldwell. Approved.

D. Business Arising from the Minutes


  • Constitution: Mary Jane felt that the draft new Constitution was too detailed and some sections might be better handled by bylaws or policy statements. Scott explained that New York Stage regulations required very detailed information.
  • 2015 Regional Assembly: Mary Jane gave an update on the 2015 Regional Assembly venue. It will be held at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.  Tim Slaughter is the liaison person.
  • 2017 Global Summit: Mary Jane stated we are still considering Montreal for the 2017 Global Summit; however, Canadian Dance Assembly, a potential  partner, is now considering a smaller regional location for 2017. Hold off making decision for now.
  • Memberships: Scott reported he gave memberships to 25 Americas  members since there was so much confusion around joining or renewing at the Global Summit.
  • Archival project:  Because the records are so monstrous to sort out, Linda suggested just sending the documents to the University of North Texas to organize, and digitize.
  • Youth: Casey will start a Facebook Page for our younger members.
  • Mexico for 2016: Lourdes  is currently meeting with her contacts in Mexico about possibly hosting  the 2016 conference.
  • Video Concert: Melissa and Zihao are working together on organizing video choreographic concerts.

E. Financial Report

  • Mary Jane suggested paying an intern or someone to help with the WDA website and other tasks to relieve the pressure for Scott.
  • Scott stated that it is better to pay with a stipend because New York State hourly pay is $14 and costs can add up quickly. He emphasized that an intern cannot be treated like an employee because the work must be an educational experience. He also strongly encouraged selecting someone with a strong background in technology. Preferable to have someone from the University of Texas who could work closely with Scott.
  • Scott suggested amalgamating the various intern job descriptions into one related to the Hawaii Assembly.
  • Linda suggested WDA pay for the flight of the intern to the Hawaii Assembly rather than an hourly wage.
  • Does the intern have to be a student or could a Board member assist Scott in return for free trip to Hawaii Assembly? Either would be acceptable if they have the needed skills.
  • Mary Jane suggested that we consider increasing the registration fee for the Assembly possibly to $200, but we need to do a cost analysis before setting registration fees.

F. Membership Report

  • Scott reported we have 64  current members; 5 organizational; 267 expired memberships.
  • Scott noted memberships will be renewed once people begin applying to present at the Assembly.

G. Revision of Constitution and Elections


  • Scott recommended a small committee to work on the constitution. Scott and Mary Jane will be on the committee. Scott nominated Marcia as a third member because she is from New York State.


  • How can we get elections conducted in the midst of constitution revisions and changes in length of elected terms?
  • Scott suggested shifting to a 3 year term for anyone newly elected. If  someone resigns, the Board can appoint a replacement. We already have several appointed people on the Board, if appropriate they could be slotted into vacant positions.
  • Those appointed to the Board have voting rights.
  • Mary Jane mentioned that Hazel Franco has not been on Skype for over a year and perhaps it is time to appoint someone else as Vice President for Caribbean and Central America since her term has expired.

H. Video Concert

  • Melissa reported on her discussions with Zihao about the video concert. The board tried to resolve some of the questions they raised.
  • Should we categorize the submission of work? For now we should stay open to maintain the interest of all choreographers. Later we might explore specific calls for site-specific work, or dance made for the camera.
  • What would be the criteria to evaluate or what would be the rubric? Important that rubric is seen through a cultural lens. Suggested the applicant write a 500 word artistic statement on the intention of the work, and how it was viewed by the audience.
  • Melissa added questions such as: Was the work clearly documented ? Are the dancers visible or well lit? (footage must be clear – HDTV is preferable).
  • The call for submissions deadline should be March / April.
  • The best three submissions would be shown at the Assembly.
  • Scott to create a group online with all of the information so we can give feedback about the proposal and the criteria.
  • If the winners attend the conference, each could talk about the work and do a Q&A after the showing
  • Video Presentation should be 5-8 min in length.
  • Melissa posed Zihao’s question “ Will there be a money prize for the top three?” Scott suggested that cash prize would be difficult, but we might waive the registration fee for the top three.
  • Melissa suggested there might be several categories but review all in one pool with plan to select 6-12 to put online. Zihao suggested at least 3 board members to review this. Perhaps Scott, Lourdes and Catherine can be the 3 to review the videos.

I.  Partnership with Dance Critics Association

  • Mary Jane reported that she has been in contact with Robert Abrams, President of Dance Critics Association. He is interested in a partnership offering us space for a report in their newsletter, and possibly having a dance critics interest group on our website. They may join us for the 2015 Assembly. However we should plan without depending on them and insert some panels related to criticism in our programming.
  • Abrams also asked if we would be interested in office space in New York. Scott said it would be great to have an address for the WDA.
  • Mary Jane noted there will be 2 critics participating in the Asia Pacific Dance Festival — Elizabeth Zimmer from New York and University of from Thailand ; perhaps they could participate in a talk back, or even be a reviewer for our online video concert.

J. Hawaii Regional Assembly 2015

  • Mary Jane reviewed the information gathered so far about the University of Hawai’i at Manoa as the host venue for the 2015 Assembly.
  • Scott mentioned that it would be good to have someone from the University to speak as a representative of the region.
  • Mary Jane suggested doing something perhaps at the opening reception that honours the tradition of Hawai’i, perhaps a site specific work because of the location.
  • Along this theme, Scott suggested tying it in with the Choreographic lab submissions and have them present at the very end of the day – make it into an outdoor concert

      Suggestions for the order of the week July 26 – 31st:

  • Sunday July 26, 2015  –  Opening Reception
  • Monday/ Tuesday/ Wednesday – Repeat performances in an informal space
  • Thursday – Major performance in 600 seat Kennedy TheatreFriday- Site specific outdoor concert
  • Theme: Spaces and Places: Exploring Dance Narratives through Alternate Lenses.

      Other Suggestions:

  • Mary Jane noted that we have to make sure committee members are sensitive to other cultures. We need criteria about quality, and we must make sure the Americas is highlighted.
  • Mary Jane suggested that master classes for both older and younger members be included as well as a panel for young dancers to discuss issues.
  • We must also find ways to include those with limited English language skills, while making it clear that the primary language will be English. Catherine suggested that the presenter should provide themselves with a translator.
  • Linda will write the criteria for the papers.
  • Everyone agreed with the preliminary announcement developed by Mary Jane. She will send it to board members to circulate widely.
  • We will review proposals as they come in and notify applicants immediately if it is a clear acceptance.
  • Scott suggested a numerical rubric for reviewing all applications as it will then set a threshold.
  • Applicants for Master classes should provide credentials and a video of them teaching
  • Suggested that there be a reduced rate for students and performing groups of 3 or more.




 Mary Jane Warner:

  • Work on Constitution with Scott and Marcia
  • Follow up with Robert Abrams on partnership and DCA participation in 2015 Assembly
  • Continue working out details with Tim Slaughter on Hawaii Assembly

Scott Martin:

  • Work on Constitution with Mary Jane and Marcia
  • Send archival records to University of North Texas
  • Combine intern job descriptions into one to assist with Hawaii Assembly
  • Set up online group to work on video concert

Casey Avaunt:

  • Set up Facebook page

Melissa Sanderson:

  • Continue developing video concert details

Marcia de la Garza:

  • Work on Constitution with Mary Jane and Scott

Lourdes Pelaez:

  • Report on meetings with Mexican colleagues about potential 2016 Regional Assembly

Linda Caldwell:

  • Develop criteria for scholarly papers, panels, pecha kucha

Ann Kipling Brown:

  • Develop criteria for master classes


  • Distribute initial announcement on Assembly once Mary Jane sends it to everyone


Submitted by Tanya Evidente and Mary Jane Warner