Minutes of the Monthly Meeting held on March 11, 2019, at Committee Room #2 City Hall.
Thomas S. Saras
Paraii Media Group
Leila Monteiro Lins
Reimon Chen (Solo Media)
Mohammed Bagher Samimi
Sandie De Freitas
Gezahegn Mekonnen Demissie
Muhacumad NAEEM Islam
Agenda of the day:
- Welcome Remarks by the chair.
- Minutes of the previous meeting
- Report of the President/Discussions
- Presentation By Ontario Chamber of Commerce
- Elections-Board of Directors of NEPMCC
- New Members/New Business
Welcome Remarks by the Chair:
Dr. Tajdolati chaired the meeting and declared the meeting open. Ricky Castellvi moved a motion to approve the agenda. Anfisa Lyasota seconded it. The motion was carried. .
Minutes of the previous meeting:
Leila Monteiro moved a motion to approve the minutes of the previous monthly meeting Michael Homzi seconded it. The motion was carried.
Thomas Saras welcomed everyone to the monthly meeting of March 2019. NEPMCC had another productive year and the organization is working on a number of important projects this year, which will benefit all the members. President Thomas Saras said that this year the Government will reward all legitimate ethnic media houses as it has a budget for it. All members that are in good standing with NEPMCC stands to get benefitted by its association and involvement with NEPMCC. The Government has allocated $10 million for the media industry and there are several programs where the members could apply for funding under this budget.
The media fund would be distributed to the qualified members of the ethnic media industry.Qualified members are those who belong to one of the six media organizations. President Thomas Saras suggested that a committee be formed that would recommend distribution of government funds to ethnic media based on the circulation and reach.
President Thomas Saras met with the ministry of Canadian Heritage regarding funding for the members of NEPMCC. $10 million dollar is allocated for the members of six major media organizations in Canada.
President Thomas Saras encouraged all to renew their membership in 2019 to take advantage of the privileges that arise from the membership. NEPMCC has been over the years fighting for the rights of the members to stand in shoulder to shoulder with the mainstream media.
Educational conference/seminar will be held this year for 3 -4 days. A survey will be sent to the members to finalize the curriculum of the seminar. Daniela Spirlac from BeSoacial Event will send out a survey to the members.The seminar will most likely take place in Seneca College.
President Thomas Saras informed the members that he represented the ethnic media at the standing committee of the senate to inform the committee about the grievances of the ethnic media.
The president also encouraged all the members to apply for an ID or Media Pass of the organization. There are so many benefits; the president said that it is to your advantage to have it.
NEPMCC to build website for 20 members who do not have website this year and another 20 the following 2020.
Motion: Thomas Saras suggested that a Committee be formed to do a needs analysis and the distribution of funds to the members based on their outreach and circulation under the leadership of the Hon. Joe Volpe, M.D Tajdolati and Maria Saras- Voutsinas. Any member interested in joining the committee should contact The Executive Managing Director Maria Saras- Voutsinas.
The President spoke about student internship program in cooperation with the schools of journalism. Internship will be from 3-6 months. The program will cover $15 per hour per student and the rest has to be covered by the respective organizations .Maria Saras-Voutsinas is in touch with student intern coordinator from Seneca College, Ryerson University, Toronto University and York University and other colleges. The program has started from January 2019. Any member interested in hiring students for their publications should contact Executive Director Maria Saras-Voutsinas as it is on first come first serve basis due to limited funds approved by the Government on this project. This is a win- win situation as it will benefit the students as they will gain from the valuable experience as well as the members as they will get additional help in a very subsidized rate to run their publications. There was a suggestion that members receiving assistance for the internship program should make small donation to NEPMCC. The program has already started in January and is in the second phase which will start from April and only those members, who have applied and contacted Executive Director Maria Saras –Voutsinas expressing their interests in hiring Student interns for their media outlets would be given preference and allocated student interns based on first come first serve basis. Effective April 1, in order to qualify of funding for interns- there should be a proper office for the intern to work. Nine publication from Ontario and Quebec will benefited from the program as well as one from Manitoba, One from Alberta, and two from B.C.
Presentation by Ontario Chamber of Commerce
Cearra Copps-Edwards - Senior Communications Advisor
Daniel Safayeni-Director of Policy
Michelle Eaton-Vice President Communications and Government Relations
The delegation from Ontario Chamber of Commerce made a brief presentation on the mission, vision, purpose and history of the organization. They also shared some data on the need analysis as a result of various business researches predicting the economic trend in Ontario for the near future.
For more than a century, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) has been the independent, non-partisan voice of Ontario business.
The OCC’s mission is to support economic growth in Ontario by defending business priorities at Queen’s Park on behalf of its network’s diverse 60,000 members. The OCC’s vision is to foster a vibrant and economically sustainable province that is driven by an innovative, successful and ever-expanding business community. From innovative SMEs to established multinational corporations and industry associations, the OCC is committed to working with our members to improve business competitiveness across all sectors. The OCC represents local chambers of commerce and boards of trade in over 135 communities across Ontario, steering public policy conversations provincially and within local communities.
Through focused programs and services, the OCC enables companies to grow at home and in export markets, providing exclusive support, networking opportunities, and access to innovative insight and analysis for members. The OCC has approved over 1,300 applications through its export programs and companies have reported results of over $250 million in export sales.
The OCC undertakes important research on Ontario’s most pressing policy issues, advocating for solutions that will foster the growth of Ontario businesses and lead to the creation of jobs in the province. This work is based on the belief that strong businesses are the foundation of a prosperous Ontario. As a strong collective voice representative of its Chamber Network and members, the OCC continuously assesses its effectiveness and searches for opportunities to innovate, collaborate and partner. The OCC continues to ensure that the issues and concerns of Ontario businesses are not only heard but sufficiently addressed through a strategic and collaborative approach with the Ontario Government.
Following the presentation the delegation answered questions raised by the members on various subjects related to their presentation.
Michael Homzi, MareckGoldyn, Lydia, Karim, and others participated in the roundtable discussions following the presentation
The New Board 2019-2021.
The New Board for the period of March 2019 to March 2021
Joe Volpe moved a motion to approve the new board seconded by Michael Homzi. The motion was unanimously carried.
The New Board for the period of March 2019, to March 2021 will be:
Ex Officio Members of the Board:
Mohammad Tajdolati Ph. D. “Humanities and Social Sciences” Ombudsman, Chief Electoral Officer, Chair of the Awards Committee. Iranian.
Maria Voutsinas, B.A. Executive Director and Commissioner For taking Affidavits and administering the oath for the members of the NEPMCC.
Daniela Spirlac. Director-coordinator of Marketing and Promotions
Members of the Executive:
Thomas S. Saras: President, CEO and Chairman of the Board. “Patrides, Review”
Susana Donan Senior VP, Alternate President Latino
Maria Voutsinas, Executive, Managing Director, Senior VP,Greek
Hon. Joe Volpe, Senior Vice President Press and Electronic Media.Italian
Kathy L.Lin Senior VP, Professional Development. Chinese
Hermie Garcia, Senior VP,Policy and Constitutional Affairs.Philippine
Neel Nanda, Comm. Senior VP, Secretary General. Indian
Arif Ahmed, Senior VP, Treasurer. Bangladeshi
Logan N. Longedralingam, Senior VP, Internal Corporis Affairs. Tamil
Luba Cherny, Senior VP, Cultural & International Affairs. Russian
Ahmed Shah Hotaki, Senior VP, Special Events Coordinator Afghani
Enzo Di Mauro, Senior Consultant to the President. Italian
VICE PRESIDENTS :
Ricky Castellvi, VP, Public Relations, CNE and New Comer Days. Philipino
Paul Nguyen, VP, Social Media (New Trends). Vietnamese
Lydia Sun, VP. Public Relations, Community Outreach. Chinese
Margaret Bonikowska, VP European Affairs. Polish
Ranjit Wickramasinghe, VP, South Asian Affairs. Singhalese
Mila A. Garcia VP, Humanitarian and Immigration Affairs. Philippine
Dimitris Vohaitis VP, Issues of Justice and Equality. Greek
Eugenia Bakchinow,Human Rights and Free Speech.Russian
Mulugeta Zergaber, VP,Photojournalism.Eritrean
Saad Alsafar, VP, Free Press and Democracy.Arabic
Nishantha Don, VP, Marketing and Promotion. Sri lankese
Ned Blair,VP Education/ Training/ New Membership. Caribbean
Dumitru Popescu,VP Print-Membership, “Observatorul”. Romanian
Isa Melo, VP Events Organizer/ Magazine Membership.Brazilian
Mohammad-Bagher Samimi, VP, Free Lance Journalists. Persian
Mieczyslaw Kolosowski, European Affairs. Polish
Emmanuel Ayiku VP, African Affairs “Ghanaian News.” Ghanaian
Teshome Woldeamanuel VP, Community Outreach. Ethiopian
John S. Saraidaris VP, Public Image Coordinator/ Editor in Chief. Greek
Vahakn Karakachian, Co-Chair “the Armenian Horizons” Armenian
Dimitris Yantsulis Co- Chair. Public Relations, Comm. Outreach Greek
Helen Wang Chair “Manitoba Chinese Tribune” Chinese
Phillip Lam Chair “Vietnam Times Magazine” Vietnamese
Vinnie Combow, Senior VP, Chair of Provincial Council. South Asian
William-Doyle Marshal, Board Member. Caribbean
Maura De Freitas “Board Member.” Irish
“The authority and powers of the Agent General are equal to those of a Senior Vice President. Each Agent General represents the Council in his Province and is responsible to organize the members of the local Ethnic Press and Media, in the area of his/her jurisdiction.”
The President of NEPMCC hoped that the new Board will work continue to work hard towards renewed success and progress of the ethnic media industry in Canada.
New Members/ New Business:
Karim Mirshahi invited everyone to International Nawroz Festival celebrating Persian New Year from March 15 to March 20 held at Centrepoint Mall which is hosted by International Nowruz Festival and IRadios.ca
Yousif Iba Statement :
“Yousif Iba a Kurdish Citizen and journalist from Northern Kurdistan (Turkey) had started a hunger strike in solidarity with his MP in Turkey Layla Guven who has also started a hunger strike in protest against the political prisoners carried out by Turkish regime. The Toronto Kurdish Community Center is calling out, The Canadian Government, Canadian Public Opinion and NGOs based in Canada for their attention in this matter.”
Marek Goldyn invited all members to the European Day inMay in celebration of the European Heritage month in May 2019.
Adjournment: Ricky Castellvi moved a motion to adjourn the meeting and Susana Donan seconded it. The motion was carried. The Chair, Dr.Tajdolati adjourned the meeting at 9 pm. The next monthly meeting would take place on Monday, April 08, 2019 at committee room N# 2 at the Toronto City Hall.