The Greensboro Association
2012 Report
Communications Committee


Linda Ely, Chair;  Betsy Hunt, Web; Cilla Smith, Green Sheet Calendar; Ann Cassidy, Directory and Member records; Annie Clay Paumgarten, Survey; Niall Kirkwood, Newsletter; Susan Wood and John Stone, consultants.

The Communications committee is responsible for all print and online communications which are sent to the membership, including the membership mailing and president’s letter in January, the newsletter in May, and the printed directory.  We also maintain the website  and update the Greensboro Association group and page on Facebook.


Our major goals for this year were to provide a robust web presence for the Greensboro Association and to enable online communications, electronic dues payment, and migrate to a totally online member database.

  1. During Fall 2011, the website was migrated to a new platform in WordPress, with the membership database assembled in GroupSpaces.   These new website is easier to maintain and less cumbersome to use for email communications. Many thanks to Betsy Hunt for her very hard work to get this done.
  2. This year the president’s letter, the membership letter, and the newsletter were created, printed, and mailed directly from the printer.   For the second year all were sent via email as well as regular paper mail, and were posted on the website.
  3. Electronic payment was added to the website.    19 members paid via Paypal, including 3 new members.   A robust calendar function was added to the website.  Events areawide were added to the GA calendar, and we added a link to the paper “Green Sheet” created by Cilla Smith so anyone can print it.
  4. Ann Cassidy again updated the membership database and the directory, and was the interface for the printer.   Thank you again Ann.
  5. We have sent 3 push emails with information about summer programming to all members of the GA who have given us an email address.
  6. We are actively managing a Greensboro Association facebook page and group with information about GA activities, local organizations and businesses, and fun events.
  7. Annie Paumgarten wrote and analyzed a survey touching upon Greensboro Association goals.  The results were presented to the GA board and available to the membership in April 2012.


Ann Cassidy and Annie Paumgarten are both retiring from their positions this year.   The work which Ann Cassidy has done for many years on the GA membership and directory has been thorough, time consuming, and very very appreciated by all of us.  The records for the GA are exemplary, and the directory has been on time and budget for as long as I can remember it being printed.  Many, many thanks to Ann.  Annie Paumgarten has not only spearheaded the recent survey, but was the mover and shaker behind the very useful and successful book on how to preserve Caspian Lake.  A .pdf of the booklet is on the website.  Thank you Annie!

Online communications are more cost effective for the Association and enable us to use Association dues elsewhere in the community.   Overall, our response this year to adding an online communications facility has been positive, although there have been a handful of members concerned that we would stop paper mailings. We understand there are members who rely on paper contact, but also know there are members and potential members who primarily and preferentially use electronic communication and are less likely to join if it means writing a check and sending it via mail.   We will accommodate both, but we will encourage members to opt out of paper mailings if they feel comfortable doing so.


Goals for 2012-2013

a)          Contact members this fall via email and ask them to update their membership information online in a password protected database, and specifically to opt out of paper mailings if they feel comfortable doing so,

b)         Maintain the online database as the primary membership and information database, and create the directory from the online membership database,

c)          To send the paper membership mailing and the newsletter directly from the printer, and to send both electronically and encourage electronic updating and dues payment.

d)         To improve the use of the calendar function by the community at large, specifically the scheduling of events for the summer,

e)          To urge the take up of electronic communications by the membership

f)          Send a Fall and Winter push email with information about winter programs here, charitable organizations in the area which need support, holiday gift giving opportunities from Greensboro vendors and any other association business.

g)         Maintain the GA presence on facebook, and present a winter and summer “face” to the world of Greensboro and its year-round life,

h)         Institute a “ride board” on the site or facebook – and examine the benefits of a rental section available to GA members for discussion next year,

i)          Increase the vendors who are on our resource database, and encourage membership as a way of improving their reach into the community.




Respectfully submitted,   Linda Ely