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Ensuring Timely and Open Communications

Thoughts on Mechanisms

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Date of ExCom Approval:


  1. The Executive Director* will hold weekly conference calls and regular face-to-face meetings with SECOORA staff to coordinate work plans and guide committee activities.
  2. The Executive Director* shall maintain regular monthly or more frequent communication with the SECOORA ExCom at scheduled meetings and through e-mail, and/or telephone, to provide updates on SECOORA activities and plans.
  3. The Secretary with SECOORA staff support shall prepare minutes of the outcomes of all ExCom meetings to be distributed initially to the ExCom for review and approval within 7 calendar days of such meeting.
  4. Minutes of meetings of both the SECOORA ExCom and SECOORA Board shall be available to the SECOORA membership immediately upon approval.
  5. SECOORA Committee Chairs (or their designated staff contact) shall forward any items which require SECOORA ExCom and/or Board review and/or decision to the ExCom via designated staff (Susannah Sheldon), who will consult with the SECOORA Board Chair and Secretary to ensure that such items are included on the agenda for the next scheduled meeting of the ExCom. The ExCom will review, comment, and decide on such items for which it has authority, and shall review and forward those items that require full Board action to the Board for final review and decision. Committee recommendations should be preceded by a Committee meeting. Committee meeting minutes should include a record of attendance and that the recommendation was approved by the committee members.
  6. Staff should maintain the record of Committee minutes and these should be made available to ExCom, the Board, and the membership via web posting.


Interactions with Member Organizations (Member Relations)

  1. SECOORA staff will prepare and distribute a regular communiqué which will serve to inform the SECOORA membership (and other interested parties) about SECOORA program activities, updates, and other key information.
  2. It is important that all individuals involved with ocean observing efforts at member organizations feel free to contact and communicate with the SECOORA leadership, Board, and staff.


Communications from Outside Interests

  1. Communications from outside interests will typically be directed to the SECOORA office (113 Calhoun Street, Charleston, SC; 843-727-6497); Susannah Sheldon occupies the office. If she cannot address the inquiry directly, she shall direct such inquiries to the appropriate SECOORA official, staff member, or other person that can.


Media Contacts

  1. Media inquiries regarding SECOORA shall be referred to the SECOORA Executive Director*, the SECOORA Board chair, or SECOORA Board vice-chair, in that order, based on their availability. In this interim period, they should be referred initially to the SECOORA Board chair.
  2. It is incumbent on the SECOORA official to gauge the interest of the media contact, and to refer that individual to the appropriate SECOORA officers, members, and/or staff depending on the nature of the inquiry.


Communications from/to National Representatives

  1. National Federation of Regional Associations (NFRA) –The SECOORA Executive Director and Chair are the official SECOORA representatives on the NFRA Board. Summaries and actions of NFRA shall be communicated to the SECOORA ExCom, Board, membership, and staff in a timely fashion (these usually take the form of the NFRA Executive Director’s monthly updates). Information originating from SECOORA to be delivered to NFRA shall be communicated through SECOORA’s official representatives.
  2. NOAA IOOS Program and NOAA CSC (re: programs, activities, operations, etc.) – Communications with the above agencies on matters involving SECOORA programs, activities, operations, etc. shall be with the SECOORA Executive Director.
  3. Rapid Response Requests – There are frequent times when information/analysis is requested from national institutions (e.g., HF radar analysis; conceptual design documentation; etc.). To expedite communication of these requests out to the SECOORA leadership, staff, members, and in cases where it is desirable, to the broader regional community, the following general procedure will be used:
    1. The Executive Director will field these requests and will serve (with staff assistance) as the conduit for the collection and transmittal of requisite information back to the requesting party.
    2. The Executive Director will communicate the request to the SECOORA ExCom and staff, and a response strategy (necessary actions to be taken) will be formulated.
    3. When appropriate (depending on the nature of the response strategy), the SECOORA staff will communicate the request and response strategy to their respective committee chairs where appropriate; the committee chairs will communicate them to their committee members.
    4. SECOORA staff will be responsible for collecting information from the relevant committees and working with the Executive Director in crafting the final response.
    5. The SECOORA Executive Director will communicate SECOORA’s final response to the appropriate party.
  4. NOAA CSC and IOOS Program (re: grants and cooperative agreements) – Communications with NOAA on matters involving SECOORA grants and cooperative agreements shall be made directly through the office of the S.C. Sea Grant Consortium, which presently serves as the fiscal agent for SECOORA. These communications shall be reported to the Executive Committee and, as needed, to the Board. After the Executive Director is hired, communications will be by the Executive Director with reports to the Executive Committee and the Board.


*In the absence of an Executive Director, the Temporary Leadership Committee (TLC) will stand in his or her place.

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