Meetings Committee Annual Report 2022-2023


  • Clare Gaynor Willis
  • Mike McMillan


  • Jesse Bowman
  • Jon Hawkins

Committee Accomplishments: 

The committee coordinated 4 business meetings. Two were virtual, and we brought back in-person meetings.

Business Meeting Logistics

  • Meeting dates. We recommend setting the dates for all Business Meetings at the beginning of the year. This makes it easier to plan and coordinate with venues and should also make it easier for Vice President to coordinate with speakers.
    • Choosing Days? Tuesdays may be best option for in-person meetings as it seems like a day that most people with hybrid schedules are in the office.
  • Food/meeting cost. We have been at $25 for a long time despite a bit of inflation in past few years. It’s probably time for an increased cost. It seems that Board approved dues and business meeting cost increases for 2023-2024?
  • In-Person Meeting Materials. Name tags and check-in sheets is always something to consider for in-person meetings. 
  • Dietary restrictions? We didn’t hear any complaints, but not sure if there’s a good way to collect this info. Is there a place to do this in Neon? Clare and Mike tried to consider vegetarian options when making menu selections.
  • AV Equipment. Good to try figuring this out on front end when coordinating with venues. Do we have a budget?
    • We ended up scrambling a bit for the November meeting since it’s something we forgot to consider and then realized that Wildfire didn’t have microphone/speaker or projector/screen. We ended up using Craig Schultz at AV Pro Connections (craig@avproconnections). He was great helping accommodate us last minute, but was a bit expensive.
    • Osteria Via Stato was great as they already had this stuff available for reasonable price.
    • Projectors add extra challenges. Some folks have them at work and can bring them, but it can be hard to coordinate. Are there any low-cost very portable options already within CALL or something to invest in maybe?
  • Guest speakers. It’s definitely nice to have them, but it’s probably OK if we don’t get one. It allows for more time for CALL business and networking. We’re not totally clear on how much time speakers have and/or if that should be enforced somehow. Mike forgot to include guest speaker at May meeting so something to try to remember.
  • Zoom testing for virtual meetings. Some technical issues getting things set up on Zoom, partly due to login/password issues. We recommend running test runs a few days ahead of time, including any guest speakers and/or others who might have presentations they want to include.
  • Event Registration. Neon can be difficult to figure out when setting up events. It’s not always super-intuitive and finding certain settings (vendor opt-out, dietary restrictions) seems to be tricky.
  • Sponsors. We had a few sponsors who asked if they could make sponsorship payments with credit card. We were able to create a separate event in Neon for 1 attendee and the sponsorship cost to facilitate. This system seemed to work well. 
    • Sponsor/vendor reps. We need to know how many are coming. What is the policy and how flexible is it? Bloomberg wanted to send 4 people and did (I think only 3 stayed for lunch or maybe didn’t partake in lunch?).
    • Raffle prizes. Bridget MacMillan at Lexis has been great about keeping an open invitation for these and we then coordinate with the winners via e-mail. Someone mentioned that Blythe McCoy at Westlaw also threw the idea out there that they would be interested at some point, but that’s hasn’t been explored.
  • Other committee members. Mike wishes he would have done a better job keeping the other committee members (Jesse and Jon) involved. Might suggest that they feel free to insert themselves along the way. This committee also used to be a good option for newer members as they could help out at sign-in/welcome table and get to know other people.

Other Meetings

Book/Media club was suggested as early as September, but difficult to plan these types of events in addition to Business Meetings and Happy Hours. Perhaps something that other committee members can take more of a lead on. The Personal Librarian and Code Switch were 2 book suggestions.

Committee Coordination

    • Community Service. Mike also served as member on the committee and tried to coordinate for community service and donations messaging to go with meeting announcements.
      • Speaker Connections: It’s nice for Community Service to know our speakers so they can consider charities/organizations that speakers might be connected to for fund-raising, and/or avoid possible conflicts.
    • Bulletin. Secretary provides write-up for Bulletin. Should photos be included?


  • Surveys. What do members want? We ended up skipping on surveys. Should Meetings Committee be doing them? Are they useful? It seems that a fairly simplified version might be advisable to make the feedback easier to consume and implement.
  • Communications/Social Media. How are people getting information/news on meetings and events? It seems like e-mail would be the best way. But it seems like a few members ran into confusion related to the May meeting due to an old posting on CALL website that listed a Thursday date that was later changed to a Tuesday. There were multiple e-mails with the correct date though.
  • Instructions. Scott Vanderlin did send a list of instructions on 9/9/2022 and there are the items that were overlooked or unclear. Not sure how crucial these might be and/or if instructions should be revised.
    • Posting meeting information on Discussion Forum and Social Media. Not clear on what Discussion Forum consists of or what Social Media platforms.
    • Display boards. Should we bring these back? Thoughts on formatting and how to get them? Kinkos or other?
    • Accommodating and recognizing new members. Unclear on exact mechanisms in place to identify and recognize new members. And new members also entitled to one free meal, so not sure how to facilitate.
    • Surveys (as mentioned above).

2022-2023 Meeting Details

CALL Meetings organized between September 2022 and May 2023:

  • September 22, 2022 – virtual with author Daniel Scanlan
  • November 17, 2022 – Wildfire with  Aaron Annable
    • 45 registered.
    • Good for first in-person meeting: venue we’ve been to before, service and food were great as always.
    • Issues: scramble to figure out equipment (microphone, screen, and projector) Wildfire did not have.
  • February 23, 2023 – virtual with Judge Edmon Chang
    • Zoom seemed to go better, partly because we arranged some test runs with guest speaker.
  • March 21, 2023 – Happy Hour at Beatrix
    • Trellis offered to sponsor a free happy hour and the Board asked us to coordinate for March 21, 2023 at Beatrix. Carrie Port started the ball rolling and then Clare and Mike coordinated with the venue and Todd Hillmer for payment.
    • Some challenges trying to figure out what our exact parameters and budget were involved.
  • May 16, 2023 – Osteria Via Stato with Judge Jesse Reyes
    • 68 registered (and I think only 3 people who couldn’t make it)
    • Seemed to be a great option. We received several compliments on the food and the venue offered a lot of nice menu flexibility for us to help meet our price point. The onsite staff members were super friendly and accommodating.
    • The venue also had equipment available for rent at reasonable prices.

Considering Venues

The committee gathered costs and/or minimums at the time, which are also available.

  • Lettuce Entertain You is a great option as they have lots of great restaurants and a form for entering meeting criteria and selecting multiple restaurants. The restaurants still have to be dealt with individually, but it does help streamline things a bit.
  • Hub 51 – Looks like neat space and interesting menu (too interesting for our group maybe?). 
  • Osteria Via Stato – Looks like a great option with good space and I think A/V options. There is an additional charge to use their microphone/speaker system.
  • Joe’s – maybe too expensive, but awesome restaurant and some menu versatility.
  • RPM Steak – would be special opening since they are not generally open for lunch. 
  • RPM Italian – decent space
  • Shaw’s – not sure on space, but can check it out. Menu a bit limited maybe.
  • Lil’ Ba Ba Reeba – can check out space. Tapas charged per person. Maybe a decent option.
  • Aba – Has a minimum.
  • Tallboy Taco – 40 seated, 50 reception style. Probably not flexible enough sizewize. 
  • RPM Seafood – decent space probably. Lower cost for cheapest buffet than for seated sharing.
  • Ema – space looks decent and food yummy. Additional cost per person to add dessert. 60 max people for space.
  • Il Porcelino – nice looking space, but looks like 50 max so maybe not flexible enough. Additional cost per person to add dessert.