BJCP Board Meeting 8.14.22

BJCP Board Meeting 8.14.22, 12 pm EDT

In Attendance:
Dennis Mitchel
Gail Milburn
Andrew Luberto
Sandy Cockerham
Brian Cooper
Sal Mortillaro
Bruce Buerger
Omer Basha

Agenda & Minutes

IT Update

  • Update on “New Day” system and phased implementation – This is not just a “new database” – we are designing an entire enterprise resource planning (ERP) product for the BJCP
    IT Director Bruce Buerger has been working on new infrastructure and met w/ Carvin Wilson of Carvin Software (and also a BJCP member). Dennis and Bruce want to work with Carvin’s company.
  • Bruce spoke to the board and went through the considerations and options for the full websystems overhaul.
  • Bruce stressed the importance of an open and flexible system for many people to be able to utilize while also avoiding being tethered to a specific software which could only be maintained and used by people with specific IT knowledge
  • The goal of the overhaul is to push more of the data entry onto the membership in order to alleviate the bottleneck of IT and the directorates entering all the info.
  • Proposed rollout:
    Phase 1: Member portal (ETA: end of 2022)
    Phase 2: Competitions (target: Q1 2023)
    Phase 3: Exams (target: Q2/3 2023)

  • Phase 1 quote (heavily discounted rate) is $9,750. Board approval for reserve expenditure of up to $15,000 for phase one in case of unforeseen work. Dennis ballparked the total overhaul at $50,000 which is significantly cheaper than anticipated based on informal scoping of ERP software provides.
    A board vote for funding will be forthcoming in Slack


  • Representative Brian Cooper brought up the previous discussion of creating a Style Directorate.
    Brian discussed a number of goals he envisions including:
    A) Increased visibility (possibly a page on the website)
    B) Allowing for a clearer path of communication from membership.
    C) Ensure the longevity of the guidelines work (i.e. seamless continuation if one person leaves), establish the necessary infrastructure to create needed support, & can continue to put out guideline updates in a reasonably timely manner.
    D) keeping up good communication with the Board (as well as our members)

  • A discussion ensued about some of the considerations if it does become a directorate, (i.e. budget) and about the possible changes and questions that would need to be addressed if it does transition.
    Andrew brought up the previous discussions about a guidelines webinar and a change log.
    Dennis discussed what a change log would look like and assigned it to the Communications Directorate.

  • Side discussion about Hard Seltzer sprung up. Dennis suggested an article in the newsletter. Sal indicated someone in his region had created informal guidelines for Seltzer that he would inquire about sharing.

Exam Directorate

  • Dennis will be speaking with MED Don Blake later today to check in. He will confirm that the online exam is ready to go to correspond with 2021 guidelines.
    The target change over to the 2021 guidelines is this August 8/22.
  • If anyone has any exam staff suggestions, let Dennis know – there are upcoming gaps that need to be filled ASAP.
  • Brain Cooper spoke about ways to elicit more graders. Dennis talked about the challenges of appointing people to the ED since the ED position has been historically a progressive role from AD making the pool fairly limited.

Organizational Communication

  • Representative communication with members
    Dennis brought to the board the discussion of whether to allow individual reps to access direct membership emails. Discussion ensued and all were in favor of keeping communications through the wordpress site.
  • Representative Andrew Luberto talked a bit about wanting to increase communication within the organization. Dennis will invite directors to the next board meeting and all those going forward. Also, he floated the idea of having a virtual all staff meeting at the end of the year, a casual one hour check in.

Member pin mailings

  • International pins are currently not being mailed. Representative Gail Milburn is still serving as AED and handling domestic shipping but would like to give up the role.
  • Dennis discussed moving the pin fulfillment to the vendor that fills badge orders for the BJCP.
    The badge vendor can handle shipping of the pins too. However, shipping costs would increase.
    Discussion ensued about lessening and off-setting the mailing fee, for example, upping the exam fee or charging for certified/recognized ranks pins. The board consensus was to raise exam and competition fees instead of charging for shipping.
  • Other points were raised, like having members opt in if they want a badge/pin instead of automatically sending one.
  • Raising organizational costs across the board was also discussed as well charging commercial competitions more for registration.
  • Dennis will create a post addressing the pause in international pin shipments.
    The board recognized that Sandy Cockerham & Gail Milburn have put a lot of work into an under-recognized role within the organization.

NHC Schedule 2023

  • President Dennis Mitchel spoke with Julia Herz of the AHA in July and, going forward, will have quarterly calls with her.
    -About 250 BJCP members attended HBC 2022 in Pittsburgh
  • Herz and the AHA are working on improving the HBC experience for 2023 and were interested in BJCP feedback.
  • Discussion ensued about which BJCP events to keep for NHC.
    Exams: yes
    Staff reception: yes
    Board meeting: yes
    Member reception?
    Gail Milburn and others voiced support of a Continuing Ed piece and its importance as part of the member reception.

  • The board also agreed to create a written statement from the BJCP in favor of bringing back the multi round sites and reinstating national first round sites again. Multiple board members were strongly in favor of urging the AHA to bring it back. A letter will be created and sent.

Excess BJCP funds

  • Brian Cooper brought up the previous discussion of creating a BJCP iOS / Android app committee and implementation of it using excess BJCP funds.
  • Dennis Mitchell felt that any app efforts should focus only on providing an off-line version of the guidelines at this point and waiting until the New Day system starts coming online. He also discussed the previous communications he has had with app developers.

Communications Director Search
Only 1 person applied for the communications director position. Dennis feels they are a good candidate and is in talks with the person.

Assistant Representatives
A discussion ensued about removing an assistant representative from the North region. A vote will be forthcoming on Slack.