Agenda & Sessions

Saturday, June 2, 2018

12:00 pm – 5:00 pm • Institute Registration
5:00 pm – 6:00 pm • Institute Welcome Reception
6:00 pm • Group Dinners
**Note: Sign-up sheets will be available at the registration table for Group Dinner restaurants

Sunday, June 3, 2018

9:00 am – 3:30 pm • Registration
10:00 am – 11:00 am • CCA New Member Orientation
1:00 pm – 1:30 pm • Institute Welcome
1:30 pm – 2:30 pm • CCA Business Meeting
2:30 pm – 3:30 pm • Opening Session
Y’all, we’re not clowin’ around, this opening session will wet your whistle for the great program to come, and rev up your creative juices to boot! Just wait and see what we have in store.
3:30 pm • Afternoon on your own

Monday, June 4, 2018

7:30 am – 4:00 pm • Institute Registration
7:30 am – 8:30 am • Regional Breakfast
8:30 am – 9:00 am • Regional Breakout
9:00 am – 10:30 am • Shades of Wisdom-Mastering Smartphone Photography
(MCC 5 points – Technical Communications Knowledge)
Mark Hirsch
Mark will share an introduction to his book project That Tree, which features photographs that were all made using only the camera in an iPhone4S. Lessons Mark learned from this project serve as the foundation for his expertise with smartphone photography. Mark’s goal is to help everyone master the techniques necessary to get the best performance from the camera in their smartphone. Mark will talk about the best iPhone and android apps. He will share smartphone tips and techniques for generating the best quality images with a smartphone camera. He will also give attention to preparation, and composition when making photos with the shorter built in lenses in a smartphone camera.
10:30 am – 10:45 am • Break

10:45 am – 12:00 pm • Co-op 101

(MCC 5 points – Knowledge of Cooperatives)
Bob Cohen
An overview of the economic, historic, philosophical, and legal basis of cooperatives, structure and practices, and different types of cooperatives. We will also examine the role that cooperatives play in the overall economy. This session is designed to meet the qualifications of the “Knowledge of Cooperatives” requirement of the Master Cooperative Communicator designation.

10:45 am – 12:00 pm • Engaging the Next Generation of Co-op Members

(MCC 5 points – Planning & Programs)
Chellie Phillips
We know our cooperative model resonates with Millennials and Gen Z. How do we use that to our advantage to build a strong co-op membership for the future? This session will highlight not only successful youth programs, but cover the questions you should ask before you begin. Once you’ve established these programs, you’ll see how to grow that relationship and even gain more loyalty and satisfaction from a different demographic … … their parents. If you’re looking to engage youth and a younger segment of the population at your co-op, this program is sure to be an idea starter

12:15 pm – 2:15 pm • Communications Contest Lunch & Program
2:15 pm – 2:30 pm • Break

2:30 pm – 3:30 pm • How to make boring photos more interesting

(MCC 5 points – Technical Communications Knowledge)
Mark Hirsch
Making meaningful photos from routine situations and from annually recurring assignments can be a challenge. Mark will talk about preparation, anticipation, and planning as a way to help you make unique and interesting photos for publication. Mark will also help participants understand DSLR cameras, f/stops, shutter speed, lighting, and compositional techniques for producing better storytelling photos.

2:30 pm – 3:30 pm • Hazardous Invasions: Preparing your co-op for computer security incidents

Joe Priestley
Joe will share the story of a cooperative that was the victim of Malware, how it reacted, and stories of other security incidents that have occurred in real life. You will leave the session with a checklist of prescriptive items every cooperative should consider and be prepared to ask the important questions of your cooperative.

3:30 pm – 3:45 pm • Break
3:45 pm – 4:45 pm • More than Words— Give your Communication More Power and Credibility
(MCC 5 points – Publications & Writing)
Cathy Merlo
Effective writing helps your co-op reach readers—and boosts your value to the organization. This session will explore the essential elements that create successful writing, both for print and online pieces. We’ll cover interviews, leads, story structure and pacing. We’ll look at ways to tighten your copy and make it more readable. We’ll talk about using facts, figures and AP Style, creating good headlines, beating writer’s block— and much more.
5:30 pm • Meet bus to depart for off-site event
6:00 pm – 9:00 pm • Billy Bob’s Texas Honky Tonk

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

8:00 am – 4:00 pm • Institute Registration
8:00 am – 9:15 am • How to Turn a Communication Crisis into a Win
(MCC 5 points – Planning & Programs)
Sarah Schmidt and Keith Stapleton
Crises come in all shapes and sizes. Is your organization prepared for any communication challenge that comes your way? Do you have a crisis communication strategy? Does your cooperative’s leadership understand the value of having a plan and meeting communication challenges head-on? In this panel session, hear how Associated Milk Producers Inc. and Sam Houston Electric Cooperative successfully dealt with recent challenges and came out on the other side with stronger member relationships.
9:15 am – 9:30 am • Break

9:30 am – 10:30 am • Cowboys & InDesigns: BegInDesign

(MCC 5 points – Technical Communications Knowledge)
Mark Bagby
Saddle up for a quick roundup of InDesign, from creating a new document through some of the best features of Adobe’s premier page layout program. This session is great for those who are brand new or seldom work in InDesign, but seasoned hands might still l’arn a thang or two. NOTE: This is a hands-on class; bring your own computer and work with files provided. Please have InDesign and Adobe Bridge installed on your computer before we start. I’m only asking once, mister…

9:30 am – 10:30 am • Communicating to Build a Safety Culture

(MCC 5 points – Planning & Programs)
Kevin Osbourn
East Kentucky Power Cooperative (EKPC) has been on a journey to a culture of safety since 2011. Through effective leadership and by engaging all managers, front-line supervisors and employees with compelling communications and activities, EKPC transformed its safety culture. The co-op’s safety record went from mediocre to achieving the safest records in its entire history. In this session, you will learn how to use effective communications, marketing and activities to foster a culture that helps ensure that your employees go home safely to their families every day.

10:30 am – 10:45 am • Break

10:45 am – 11:45 am • Cowboys & InDesigns: InDepthDesign

(MCC 5 points – Technical Communications Knowledge)
Mark Bagby
We’ll dig a little deeper into InDesign, picking up where we left off in the prior session. This session is mainly for those for who In Design ain’t their first rodeo, but if you make the first session, you won’t be lost as we look at more tools, tips and tricks and how it all works before the big showdown at high noon. NOTE: This is a hands-on class; bring your own computer and work with files provided. Please have InDesign and Adobe Bridge installed on your computer before we start. I warned ya, pilgrim…

10:45 am – 11:45 am • Attention, Writers: Here’s How to Hold On to Today’s Readers— What the Research Shows

(MCC 5 points – Publications & Writing)
Cathy Merlo
Low reading-comprehension levels. Online audiences who skim more than they read.
Shorter attention spans. Those are the sobering realities for writers today. If you’re not aware of today’s widespread reading habits, your efforts to produce your co-op’s communications could be a waste of time. But the good news is that readers are hungry for information – and good writing still matters. In this session, we’ll look at ways to boost your copy’s readability and hold on to more readers.

12:00 pm – 12:45 pm • Lunch
12:45 pm – 1:45 pm • Roundtable Discussions

1:45 pm – 2:45 pm • Making Better Photographs

(MCC 5 points – Technical Communications Knowledge)
Robin Conover
Making better photographs is as much about the art of seeing as it is about technical knowledge. Robin will lead you through basic concepts and techniques to improve the way you see light and composition to improve your images. Whether you have a smart phone or a high end DSLR, Robin will help you improve your photography skills.

1:45 pm – 2:45 pm • A Communicator’s Best Friend: The Infographic

(MCC 5 points – Technical Communications Knowledge)
Savannah Chandler
We strive to help our audience absorb information quickly. Sometimes, we bury excellent ideas beneath the text. You’ve heard the saying “a picture is worth a thousand words,” well… an infographic is worth a lot more than that. In this session, you’ll learn about: Why Using Infographics is Smart; Different Types of Infographics; Examples to Inspire Your Next Idea; Topics Best Suited for Visual Interpretation; and Inexpensive Resources. You will also hear tips from a graphic designer to help ensure your content stands out among the growing trend. Whether you are illustrating data or simplifying a complex idea; an infographic can be the perfect tool in your communicator’s toolbox!
2:45 pm – 3:00 pm • Break
3:00 pm – 4:30 pm • Blind Trust: how new perspective can change everything
Ashley Eisenmenger, Triathlete on the U.S. Paralympic Development Team
Life can be challenging and goals can seem impossible to achieve, but that doesn’t have to be what limits us in the long run. After all, life is a marathon not a sprint, right? How we handle the small challenges matters just as much as how we handle the big ones. Through a unique perspective, anything is possible.
5:30 pm – 6:00 pm • Honors Reception
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm • Honors Banquet