Fall Flocking: Ohio STC Board Meeting (President’s Column)

The birds are starting to flock in preparation for migration (some, like shorebirds, are already in motion). Kettles of raptors, confusions of warblers, committees of vultures, quarrels of sparrows, rounds of robins, gaggles of geese, and chatterings of starlings are getting ready for long flights or winter stays. Ornithologists think flocking provides several benefits. When birds flock, they appear bigger, so predators perceive the flock as a single big organism. When flying, flocking enables birds to fly further, using less energy because the lead bird flaps its wings and it creates uplift for the birds behind. In winter, large flocks of American Robins help when locating food.

The leadership of your Ohio STC also flocks together at this time of year to plan upcoming STC events and activities. We discussed the budget, which in good shape, though it would give us a cushion if we could have some programs that generated some income. Unfortunately, as COVD-19 cases rise, we decided to hold off on in-person events (which can generate more revenue than remote events) for the next month or so. We did start planning some online events, including collaborations with the STC Michigan Great Lakes Chapter. We are also looking for people who can help Kelly Webb Bronstrup organize future events.

Our Social Committee Chair, Angie Dianetti, is planning some networking luncheons and possibly a remote game night. Keep an eye out for notifications when we get our meeting and social plans finalized!

We also discussed what we need to do to regain our STC Platinum award status. This award is given by STC to chapters who meet certain criteria, which include offering social and educational events, outreach to students, mentoring, collaboration with other STC communities, and recognitions of our members. We have done many of the activities that can help us get this award. We have until December 31 to complete the application.

Jason Vensel, Communication chair, reported on our communications channels, which are primarily Constant Contact, Facebook, and Twitter. He is looking into updating those accounts to freshen them up and make sure our Ohio STC logo is included.

Jeanette Evans, newsletter co-editor, is experimenting with a more blog-like approach to our newsletter, putting up new content as it comes in instead of waiting to post it until all the content is gathered. You will still get a bi-monthly notice of newsletter content.

On the academic front, Lisa Mileusnich, Academic Relations Chair, continues to develop and maintain relationships with Ohio colleges and universities. If you know of technical writing internships, let her know so she can pass them along to her contacts.

Lisa Adair, Vice President and Membership Chair, continues to reach out and welcome new members to our chapter. She will also be reaching out to STC members who live in Ohio and Pittsburgh, PA, who are not members of the Ohio STC. The Pittsburgh STC dissolved and we offered to include their members in our chapter.

Julianne Forsythe, website co-chair, reported on the state of our website. She is cleaning up references of “NEO STC” on the website to be “Ohio STC.” Paul Holland, website co-chair, is helping to complete the transition from neo-stc.org to ohiostc.org.

In the round table after the committee reports, we discussed ways of engaging members in other parts of the state. The Ohio STC leaders are from the Akron-Cleveland area. We would like to have representation from other parts of the state and Pittsburgh. When we feel comfortable with in-person meetings again, we also plan to have some regional networking lunches in cities like Columbus, Cincinnati, and Pittsburgh. If you are interested in organizing local in-person events, please let us know.

Yours in technical communication,


Barb Philbrick

President, Ohio STC