April 17, 2023 @ 1:00PM
Attended: Amanda Ward, Amy Bradfield, Mark Harvey, Larry Wagenaar, Sandra Clark, Dan Truckey, Brian Egan, Fred Johnson, Steve Brisson, Karen Marrero, Matt Stiffler, Kelly VanWormer
I. Amanda provided updates from meetings (10 minutes)
● A Common Cause for All recap
● Collaborations with Ohio, North Carolina, Wisconsin
● National Level: AASLH & America250 Foundation
● Capitol Historians & Michigan Librarian Collaborations
● Meeting with Detroit Public Television
II. Subcommittee Information (5 minutes)
● Meeting at least once between quarterly meetings
● If you have not signed up, you have been assigned to a subcommittee
● Should we have advisory councils that are a combination of committee members and others? (ie. fundraising, outreach, etc.) Yes – Fundraising and Education for sure.
III. Communications Update (5 minutes)
● Website & Social Media are up and running
● Quarterly Newsletter – 1st blast in July of 2023
● Initial Survey on website in place of Listening Sessions due to lack of time and resources
IV. State Committee Partner Opportunities (15 minutes)
● Review other states guidelines as template for Michigan (NC) Matt noticed that they only had three themes. Amanda spoke about her experience with other states and what she sees them doing with their guides.
● Officially Recognized Events Application – Matt & Brian noted minor grammar issues otherwise good and can be sent to HSM editorial for review Brian, similar application for Civil War events, important to have a way to vet those celebrations. Amanda said subcommittees would then approve applications that related to the themes they were connected to. No one spoke up and said they were against it.
● Local Committees – Amanda is working on a draft of a local committee resolution / application.
V. Strategic Planning (15 minutes)
● Brainstorming discussion
● Expectations for America250MI moving forward.
Focused event at the State Capitol, things that this committee should run and organize.
Learning events (conferences)
Calendar of Events (used for other 1812 and Civil war and was successful), like model because it showcases local communities because it allows them to tell their stories and we provide assistance and guidance.
Amanda going to MSU Archives because they have things collected from previous commemorations and she can see what was done and pull for social media.
Steve: Bicentennial seemed all encompassing, it was everywhere-artwork, parades, TV-cartoons, Bicentennial Minute at top of every hour, big national effort.
Fred Johnson: large gaps in narrative (KKK in Michigan, Owosso). Social media shouldn’t be all the glorious stories-connections to content at some of our orgs to give additional information. Articles for scholars and even younger students.
Sandra: gifts that Canada gave to US (artists, performers) were a good way to get away from it just being East Coast. Provide teachers with questions they may ask about ideals taken from Revolution and reality checks through US History.
Brian: mentioned Frederick Douglass’ 4th of July speech about meaning something different to different people.
Dan: Some political challenges during Bicentennial and in his experience general malaise. Wondering how this has been celebrated by every 50 year increment. Peoples values are different at different points of time – how have we progressed and not progressed. What do these commemorations mean during each of these anniversary celebrations.
Fred: 50 year swings, have issues, have to reach deep to get through them.
Brian: This is all relevant; we are still trying to answer the questions that were “answered” 250 years ago. Historians can point to very specific times where we have gone through similar struggles.
Kelly: The impact we can have on children to foster that sense of hope, importance of serving community (service opportunities and events). Loved the Freedom Train.
Amanda: Working on the program guide will help because the themes are connected to many of these points.
Fred asked if Amanda could share the presentation. Amanda said she will resend what we currently have for the themes to everyone.
Matthew Stiffler asked if there is a directive of who should be involved. Different regions, areas of the state. Larry responded that it’s important to have more people of color representation and geographic, Amy mentioned Advisory Councils would help with that, to include more people from a variety of areas. Larry mentioned that Amanda should reach out to the Library of Michigan and invite a representative to join the state committee. No opposition from the group.
VI. Fundraising (10 minutes)
● Sponsors vs. Partners
● Question asked about what the difference is. Larry suggested partnerships more of helping with program and advancing the program and sponsors would be more financial support of the program. Kelly said this should be a priority because people are interested and asking questions and we should have things available for them.
● Who has experience fundraising? Grant writing?
● Larry- Amanda has worked with Kim, but we need to have an idea of what we need to fund before we start going to fundraisers
● Amy and Amanda have discussed rack card or flyer that can be sent or taken places to promote.
● Grants - MI Humanities – currently submitted, Amanda’s salary and promotional opportunities
● Donor/Sponsor Campaigns – Chamber of Commerce? Who likes to put their name on things in your community?
VII. Adjournment: 2:00PM