BATS Board of Directors
BATS Board Members and guests at a recent board meeting
This week, we want to introduce you to the BATS Board of Directors, one of the many groups of people working hard behind the scenes to help BATS survive and thrive. This is a voluntary group of leaders who bring diverse skills and experience in the service of BATS. They have fiduciary responsibility for the finances of the organization and are overseen by the President of the Board (Christina McFadden), Vice-President (Jade Shipman who has recently succeeded Edward DesMaisons), and Secretary (Marcy St John). Our Bylaws state that management and budgetary decisions may be passed by majority vote of the board. Our Artistic Director, and Managing Director, are non-voting members of the board.
Our board meets bi-monthly for about 3 hours to review the status of the organization and discuss any major challenges and opportunities. In between meetings our board members, who are called Directors, are hard at work on multiple committees including finance, marketing, fundraising and EDI and are joined in several of these committees by members of the wider BATS community.
As a medium sized non-profit organization with a modest staff, the board plays an invaluable role in bringing expertise and volunteer labor to the organization, enabling us to achieve and stretch more of our goals.
Here are some of our board members areas of expertise in addition to a love of Improv:
- Anita Diaz - digital marketing and analytics
- Molly Tapias, marketing and fundraising strategy
- Jade Shipman - economics, risk and financial planning
- Meeta Ojha - accountancy
- Marcy St John and Archana Ojha - legal expertise
- Ethan Karson and Basel Al Naffouri, passion for EDI, and data analysis
- Christina McFadden- leadership coaching, business and strategic planning
- Kirk Livingston - deep knowledge of BATS, fundraising
Here are some of their achievements since pandemic hit:
- Finance committee helped to plan strategy for rent negotiation securing abatement and investigated sources of federal relief
- Fundraising committee spearheaded year end campaign, BATS 10for20 and several individual gifts
- Marketing committee oversaw implementation of digital marketing and Google analytics consultancy, plus appointment of our first ever digital marketing manager
- Marketing Committee in process of reviewing website and exploring new design and build
- Board members on EDI committee ensure prioritization of equity throughout organization
- Weekly support and leadership coaching to Managing Director and Artistic Director
All members have contributed countless hours actually working on and delivering the above initiatives in the past year, often meeting frequently and taking on major chunks of work.
Here are some things that our board members had to say about their experience of serving on the board:
“Serving on the board of BATS Improv brings a whole range of experiences: delightful, challenging, fun, humbling, inspirational, and, ultimately, meaningful. I’m honored to have worked with the other volunteers on the Board. The work is never done, but we get to grow together with each step we take. Looking back, I can see we’ve helped BATS grow in return. And that feels good.”
-Ted DesMaisons, Outgoing Vice-President
"As a company member, serving on the BATS board gives me a voice in how Hannah and Lisa guide the organization, especially how we spend our time and money."
“Each meeting I'm blown away by the willingness of this talented group of people to dive in and volunteer their time and talent making BATS better. There's expertise across disciplines from marketing to finance to management and the members are really wonderful people. And it's FUN! I'm so grateful.”
“The current group on our board are not only kind, considerate and fun people to work with, they are also super pro-active and get things done! Couldn’t ask for a better group!”
- Kirk Livingston
“Being on the BATS Board gives me the opportunity to work with people who believe in play and in creating a space to enable everyone to discover the joy of improv.”
-Marcy St John
“I see our job at the board to help support Hannah and Lisa as they drive the ship of BATS. We are a diverse group of people and opinions and we all LOVE BATS. This past year the Board has double downed on our efforts to help ensure we (BATS) weathers the storm of covid. Our work is often quiet and please know we are here in a big way.”
For reference: BATS Improv Board Members as of May, 2020