Board Meeting Minutes -– January 15th, 2011

Date: 1/15/2011
Time: 10:00 to 12:00
Place: Golisano Children’s Hospital conference room

Attendance:Nancy Lyon, Bonnie Miner, Donna Parks, Roberta Rolland, Peg Ryan, Dean Szigeti, Robin Wensel, Darcy DeFruscio

1. Welcome and Review of Minutes

Minutes from 10/19/2010 were reviewed and accepted.  Meeting minutes will be posted on the website and facebook.

2. Officer Reports

  • President’s Report – Roberta commented on the strengths of Omicron Alpha:
    • 14 years “young”
    • Two Chapter Key Awards earned
    • OA received the very first Media Award from STTI for the chapter’s website
    • Dean Szigeti’s strong support in the chapter
    • Bonnie and her strong abilities in dealing with the chapter’s financial status and keeping organized records
    • Donna Parks and her commitment to the programs and committees and working independently
    • Nancy Lyon - “the glue” that keeps us all together and working smoothly

    Roberta asked for our commitment to continue to move forward and improve communication to membership and the community, work closer with the College of Nursing, and help members become familiar with the benefits and opportunities Sigma Theta Tau International has to offer. Roberta feels that our involvement will strengthen membership. She asked that we all continue to work toward becoming a stronger chapter and continue to promote leadership.

  • Vice President’s Report – deferred
  • Treasurer’s Report – Bonnie Miner distributed a handout that detailed all accounts that OA has including checking account, savings accounts, and CD’s. Bonnie discussed the current interest rates of the CD’s.
    A question was posed as to why we have 2 CD’s and Bonnie explained the timing of when the CD’s were purchased and the maturity dates did not coincide.
    Another question was asked as to what was the long term plan for the finances. Bonnie explained that we need to keep money available. Dean Szigeti explained that money in the bank was part of criteria to become a chapter and that a certain percentage from each chapter goes to national headquarters annually.
    The budget for the upcoming year was reviewed.  The group discussed the finances gained with each new member and membership renewal. Omicron Alpha has not increased their part of the dues for several years. An increase is not planned for the near future.
    Bonnie discussed that financial papers from OA were sent by certified mail to an auditing company in Ithaca. Bonnie received notice that the papers were received by the auditing company. The company said that they did not receive the papers and cannot find any papers from OA.  Bonnie re-assured the group that all financial transactions are done electronically therefore copies of financial records can be produced. The group proposed that the finance committee use a different auditor and have copies made of electronic transactions to complete our records. This was seconded and all agreed. There was not a need to pursue any action with the auditing company because OA has the ability to reproduce the records in question..
  • Secretary’s Report – Roberta stated that a correspondence from Rho Gamma was received thanking OA for the donation to sponsor a harpist for The Year of the Nurse Celebration. Roberta attended the event in Elmira.

3. Committee Reports

a. Governance Report – The Governance Committee reviewed and updated the chapter bylaws which had not been physically updated since 2005. Bylaws did not require many changes despite this length of time since last update. Any reference to bylaws has been through the most recent bylaws through STTI headquarters online templates.
A discussion took place to develop a policy for members of Leadership Succession who wish to seek an elected position. The policy would involve the member of leadership succession to resign their current position before the ballot is set. The Governance Committee will draft a policy and contact headquarters for a possible template and assistance.

b. Leadership Succession Report - Roberta discussed the election process with Janine Morris from the Leadership Succession Committee Janine was not able to attend the board meeting.
The process will be as follows:
*A request for nominations will be electronically mailed in mid-March to membership identifying the open positions and details about each of those positions. There are a few members that receive post office mailings because of limited internet access.
*Nominees will be contact to confirm acceptance.
*Ballot will be set electronically with a 30 day response period. There are a select number of post office mailings.
*Results will be announced at the annual meeting/picnic planned for the beginning of June.
c. Faculty Counselor’s Report - Nearly 150 inductees, members, and guests – were present to welcome and congratulate nearly 50 new inductees into Sigma Theta Tau International Omicron Alpha Chapter.
d Research Advisory Group - Phone conference meetings have worked well and take place usually the first Tuesday of the month 9:00AM. Please contact Melanie Kalman ( if you are interested to attend a phone conference meeting with the Research Advisory Group. All interested members are welcome regardless of research experience.

  1. Research Collaborative Event – {Omicron Alpha, Omicron, Upsilon Upsilon (Keuka), and LeMoyne}
    Collaborative event planned for September 15th possibly at St. Joe’s Hospital. Next meeting is scheduled for February. Details will be shared once available.
  2. Research project – initiated by Omicron Alpha Research Advisory Group involving area hospitals – details will be shared once available
  3. CON/OA Research Poster Presentation- date not confirmed as yet but planning for possibly April 14th or 21st.
  4. Melanie Kalman will complete her term as Research Advisory Group Chair. The position will be open later this spring. Anyone interested in chairing the Research Advisory Group please contact Roberta Rolland ( or Melanie Kalman (

4. Regional Report

  • The Circle – all members are encouraged to go on-line to read about The Circle and complete your personal profile ( The Circle is a networking tool for membership to communicate within the chapter and among all STTI chapters. The Circle is fairly new to STTI. OA has just begun to establish profiles and learn about The Circle.
  • Regional Coordinator, Dee Welk, would like a phone conference with our board members – Roberta to check with Dee and looking at March 1st at 5pm or March 2nd at 5pm.  Bonnie offered to secure room in Galisano Tower for conference. 
    Our Region 11 Coordinator Dee Welk is running for the STTI position of Region Coordinating Committee Chair at this November’s Biennium. She has proved to be knowledgeable and helpful with STTI affairs.
  • Chapter Membership Involvement – Priscilla Worral is on a committee that explores improving membership involvement. Past discussions involved the difficulties with juggling commitments to multiple professional organizations.
  • Governance Task Force – Guidelines Committee – Roberta reported that they are reviewing information links within the guidelines of the bylaws.
  • Region 11 Conference – March 30th –April 1st Elmira, NY Details will be shared once available
  • Region 11 Newsletter – please see the College of Nursing/Omicron Alpha website or facebook for a copy of the latest newsletter.

5. Old Business

  1. Induction Review
    Venue – the group discussed the venue and arrangements that were made this past year for induction. Board members decided to pursue WSK Hall 9th floor auditorium for This fall’s induction and utilize the 9th floor cafeteria for food and mingling after ceremony.  All agreed.
  2. Amaus Sock Drive
    Dean Szigeti will take the lead with the Amaus sock drive. The group discussed accepting monetary donations as well as socks.
  3. Leadership Training
    Robin reported on her training at the leadership academy held in Texas. She attended lectures on the structure of STTI and strategies for chapter health. In addition she took the opportunity to network with other chapter representatives.
  4. Board Member Training and Resources
    Headquarters offers leadership training sessions targeted towards various roles.  The website has a new Tools and Resources Page: ( >Chapter Information >Tools and Resources
  5. Syracuse Chapters Collaborative Committee
    Representing OA are Maria Lumbrazo, Darcy DeFrusio and Barb Fero. A program is planned for February 15th at Traditions at the Links with Presenter: Sari Ann Yonaty, Ph.D, RN, FNP. Additional details will be shared when available.
  6. Bylaw Updates
    An updated template of the bylaws was presented. It will be sent to STTI Headquarters for their review.

6. New Business

a. Communications

  1. Bonnie will be working with Sanju to update the chapter website.
  2. Laptop Computers Set Up at Chapter Events: Plans are to have laptop computers set up at chapter events to help members learn how to navigate the STTI website, The Circle, and assist members with renewing membership on-line. Robin and Roberta will be set up at events starting in March.

b. Small Job List - Roberta proposed a “small job list.” Many members would like to help in some way however do not wish to make a long term commitment. This gives members an opportunity to get involved based on their personal schedule. It also introduces members to the business end of OA if they are entertaining a more involved commitment down the road such as an elected position or committee chair.

**Some items for the “Small Job List”:

  1. Registration table for OA event (need for March event)
  2. Team Leader and team walkers for Alzheimer Memory Walk September 2011
  3. Laptop set up at an event (we can teach you how to navigate the website ahead of time)
  4. Amaus Health Services volunteer (Once or twice a month – well rewarding)
  5. College of Nursing Bulletin Board
  6. Other small jobs are open to member suggestions
    Please contact Roberta if you are interested in a small job or involvement at any level (

c. Upcoming Programming –

  1. The theme for the 2010/2011 OA year is Global Nursing keeping in line with the International Year of The Nurse. An event is planned for early March on Nursing in China. Details will be shared once available.
  2. It was discussed that programs should follow an annual theme and promote STTI’s mission.

 d. 50th Anniversary Celebration of the College of Nursing Saturday March 26th, 2011 - All members are encouraged to support the College of Nursing. Please watch for any mailings from the College of Nursing and support our alumni.

e. 2011 Biennium Delegates – Two delegates are needed to represent Omicron Alpha at the 2011 biennium (Oct. 28th thru Nov. 2nd) – Donna and Peg are considering the 2011-2013 delegate positions.

f. Annual Picnic – Reserve Dewitt Pavilion

g. Meeting Times - The group discussed meeting times noon meetings vs. Saturday mornings vs. after work weekdays. Most felt 5:00pm meetings during the week were best.

h. Syracuse Area Chapters - Omicron Alpha, Omicron, and LeMoyne College Nursing Honor Society have met for the past year and a half to discuss working together and the possibility of at-large status. Roberta, Dean Szigeti, and past president Barb Fero have attended the meetings. All were in favor of working together to promote programming. The options of chapter structure in the Syracuse area discussed were:

*Each individual institution to have their own chapter and work separately with programming|
*Each individual institution to have their own chapter and work as a consortium with programming
*Omicron and LeMoyne join at-large
*Omicron Alpha and LeMoyne join at-large
* All three Omicron, Omicron Alpha, and LeMoyne join at-large

Pros and cons to forming an at-large chapter were discussed. (Information on at-large chapters can be found on the STTI website)

It was decided at the spring meeting that the next step was to explore how the three groups can work together with program planning. The Deans and presidents were to step aside and have representatives of the organizations carry out the project. OA included our vice-president Maria whose primary role is chapter program planning and two other members, Darcy and Barb. The program is planned for February – details will be shared once available. Roberta was asked to attend the January 6th meeting and did so. It was revealed that business at the previous program planning meetings also included discussions about an informational town hall meeting this spring and a vote for at-large status for late spring.

7. Open Forum

  1. Proposal - Roberta proposed that Omicron Alpha does not pursue at-large status at this time. Dean Szigeti seconded and the proposal was then open for discussion.

    Discussion - Roberta stated reasons for her proposal were based on:

    1. Concern about communication among the three groups - It was decided that in the spring that the Deans and presidents were going to bring in the vice-presidents whose role is programming and let them carry out their role. Roberta was not contacted to inform her of the change that the other groups were not sending other members to carry out the programming.
    2. At-Large formation was discussed at the program planning meetings without the presence of Dean Szigeti or Roberta. This was awkward for the OA group sent for program planning because they were briefed that the purpose of the meeting was strictly program planning.
    3. It was discussed at the spring meeting that the program planning members would keep minutes to document the process of the three groups working together. Roberta received minutes from September’s meeting at the January 6th meeting and was told that there were no minutes from the October meeting.
    4. Because of these concerns it was felt by Roberta and Dean Szigeti that the three groups have not demonstrated clear communication and organization with working together at this time.
  2. Some members agreed that at-large status could benefit the area with combining membership and resources.
  3. Members felt that more information was needed about the financial structure.
  4. Another concern was that Omicron Alpha was at risk to lose its identity.
Decision: The board agreed that Omicron Alpha was not ready to move forward with at-large status at this time. The board was open to the town hall meeting to get more information about the process.


  1. Collaborative Event – February 15, 2011 Traditions at the Links, 5:15 registration, check emails and facebook for further details
  2. Nursing in China – event planned for early March – watch for details
  3. Call for nominations – email coming mid March
  4. Region 11 Conference –Mar 30th –Apr 1st Details shared once available
  5. College of Nursing 50th Anniversary March 26th
  6. College of Nursing/Omicron Alpha Poster Presentation April 2011
  7. Annual Meeting/Picnic June 2011
  8. Transition Board Meeting June 2011 All current, outgoing, and incoming board members strongly encouraged to attend to plan 2011/ 2012 business. 

Membership Renewal – Please visit Online Membership Renewal Form Or call – (888) 634-7575

TUESDAY MARCH 1st - 5:00 
At The Golisano Children’s Hospital - conference room 12405
District Coordinator Dee Welk will attend via phone conference

Respectfully Submitted,
Robin Wensel, Secretary

Joyce Griffin-Sobel, PhD, RN

Joyce Griffin-Sobel, PhD, RN
Dean, College of Nursing
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