Communications Task Force: June 2021


  • Commissioners: Chair Jenifer Tilton Flood, Jessica Nixon, Zachary Maher
  • Staff: Bryan Roche

The Communications Task Force met electronically for its monthly meeting on Wednesday, June 9, 2021 and discussed the following: 

Task Force member status for FY 22

After welcoming the group, Tilton Flood checked in with the Commissioners in attendance to see if they will continue on Communications or if there is a desire to explore a different Task Force. All in attendance affirmed their desire to remain on Communications.

Tilton Flood, who has also served on the Grants Task Force, made a pitch to those in attendance to consider participating in Grants in some way, as she stated her belief that is it is a valuable experience for all Commissioners.

Plan for new Chair

Tilton Flood, who will be stepping down as Chair following the June Commission meeting, stated that discussion around a new Chair will take place during the July Task Force meeting. Tilton Flood expressed a desire to make it a collaborative process.

LD 1010 update

Tilton Flood provided a brief update on activity around LD 1010. First, she shared the bill was passed by the Senate at the end of May, meaning it has now cleared the House and Senate. Tilton Flood concluded by sharing that testimony to the Appropriations Committee began an hour prior to the start of the Task Force meeting.

Staff report

Tilton Flood invited Roche to provide his monthly staff report

  • Recognition from the White House: Resilience Corps AmeriCorps member Will Parker's effort to create an interactive map to help residents in the greater Portland area who rely on public transportation easily find vaccination sites will be noted and explained to President Biden in an upcoming report on the AmeriCorps federal agency's National Month of Vaccine Action (June). Roche credited fellow staff member Michael Ashmore for informing him of the opportunity and providing suggestions on who to send the news to.
  • MAB miscommunication and match implications:
    • Overview
      • Due to a miscommunication with the Maine Association of Broadcasters (MAB), MAB incorrectly told radio stations to pull all radio creative after the month of March. The source of the miscommunication can be tied back to the Service Instigator PSA campaign, as MAB incorrectly assumed that the other radio spots would be pulled and replaced with Service Instigator messaging. However, the three radio spots pulled (AmeriCorps recruitment, Maine Ready disaster volunteering and a general message on volunteering) are ones that were marked for use throughout the life of the campaign by the Communications Officer.
    • Short-term expectations
      • The Q2 match report (April, May, June) will only include results from June
    • Resolution
      • The Communications Officer connected with MAB to establish a detailed creative delivery plan through the life of the 2021 contract.
      • Radio PSAs returned to air before Memorial Day weekend.
      • Due to the miscommunication, MAB generously offered to extend our Public Education Program contract two months, and it will now conclude Nov. 30.
      • Conclusion: The original contract called for seven full months of airtime. Despite the two-month gap, the contract will still be seven full months with Oct. and Nov. replacing April and May.
  • Public Service Announcement Campaign number two under way: Roche reported that the AmeriCorps federal agency made available at the end of May a toolkit for their nationwide "What's at your core" campaign. Roche mentioned that the :30 sec. TV spot provided by AmeriCorps has already been submitted to the Maine Association of Broadcasters for air, allowing Volunteer Maine to earn TV match funds immediately. Roche concluded by sharing he provided guidance and resources to AmeriCorps state programs on how they can use AmeriCorps's do-it-yourself campaign toolkit for recruitment efforts.
  • Roche shared that he plans on using available funds to bring in a freelance photographer to help an effort to provide AmeriCorps state programs with high-quality photography. Roche added that Volunteer Maine will foot the bill and provide images to the programs free of charge. The photos and video clips will also be utilized for any Volunteer Maine-driven outreach and recruitment efforts.
  • Communications plan: Roche walked the group through his content ideas for the FY 22 communications plan. Roche added that he included a few content series that he believes can be the responsibility of any interested Task Force member, doing so as an effort to further engage Commissioners in content creation. Roche concluded by stating he will present the full plan during the June Commission meeting.

Next meeting: Wednesday, July 14, 4-5 p.m.