Interviewing Art

Arthur FlamingKoda: Hello Art, Would you introduce yourself to Apogaea community?

Art: Hello community, my name is Flaming Art. You know, art and fire, what Apogaea is all about. Oh, I am also an Apogaea community liaison.

Koda: You smell punny, if you don’t mind my say’n.

Art: I AM a pun, like all the best fictional characters. I was created by a volunteer who wants to facilitate communication between the Apogaea board of directors and you, the community. You might have seen my posts on the Apogaea Facebook page and the Apogaea website.

Koda: So, what do you mean by “community liaison?”

Art: You can think of me as your inside informant. My mission is to improve transparency in communication between the board and the community. I see this as a two way street: I will report to the community with news on what the board is doing, and I will report back to the board with feedback from the community.

Koda: Why do we need you, Art?

Art: Why do we need Art?! Why do we need food and air, Koda? What would Apogaea be without flaming art?

Koda: Right! No, I mean why do we need Flaming Art, the community liaison and inside informant.

Art: The biggest challenge in the Apogaea organization involves communication, particularly between the board and the community. I want to inform you, the community, about what the board is doing and help you figure out what opportunities exist to become more involved. I also want to make sure that the board gets feedback from the entire community, not just a vocal minority.

Koda: Who is your alter ego?

Art: Would Superman reveal the identity of Clark Kent? I can tell you she is a member of Ignition, which is the voting body of Apogaea, composed of people who assume leadership roles for some part of the event (like parking, building the effigy, leading BAMF, DPW, etc.).

Koda: Effigy, BAMF, DPW, what are all of these strange words and acronyms you’re using?

Art: The effigy is a large piece of flaming art! BAMF and DPW are examples of departments within Apogaea. There are many different departments and responsibilities involved in organizing the big event, and all these things happen because people take on leadership roles and MAKE them happen. You can learn more about Ignition and everything they do for Apogaea on the website: https://apogaea.com/about/ignition/.

Koda: As the community’s inside informant, how do you get inside?

Art: All board meetings are open to the public, so all I have to do is show up (be sure to look for Art at Apogaea board meetings). I attend the board meetings for the purpose of reporting back to the community about what was discussed and so I can tell the board what I’m hearing from you, the community. I will also publicly post the agenda (when available ahead of time) before each board meeting so you can attend when the topics are interesting and relevant you. All Ignition members (including my alter ego) also have a board liaison they can contact directly about the board’s activities.

Koda: Word on the Internet is that you’ve been hanging around on Facebook. What’s that all about, you being a fictional character and all?

Art: A lot of our community members are active in the Apogaea Facebook group, so I hang around there to post important information and to listen to feedback. Friend me if you want to, so my posts will appear in your news feed, but I only post in the Apogaea group and all my posts are public, so you don’t have to friend me to interact with me. That said, who wouldn’t want to get friendly with Art? I will also be posting on the blog and in the newsletter. The most accurate information will always be found on the website and I will link back to the website in all my informative posts.

Koda: Now that you’re here, should we expect to hear directly from the board of directors or Ignition members less often?

Art: Absolutely not! Board and Ignition members are encouraged to engage the community, especially in their area of expertise. My posts on the website are reviewed by the board so you can trust that the information you get from me is accurate, but my role is to help communicate information that might otherwise be lost or skipped over. In addition to announcements and board meeting information, I will be posting some editorial pieces like your interview with Rev. Tommy Tommy Tommy, Koda.

Koda: What other changes have happened or are planned?

Art: Look for big changes in the website soon! The new website will make information easier to find, and it will be easier to tell what information is current. We are also planning on evolving the way we use mailing lists and social media. All these changes are designed to improve communication so feel free to communicate right back to me about what’s working and what’s not, as well as any ideas you have for improvement. Until we get everything set up, the best way to contact me is through my Facebook profile.

Koda: If someone is not on Facebook, how can they get information about Apogaea?

Art: The most current and accurate information is always on our website: apogaea.com. As mentioned, there are big improvements in the works. In addition to the website, there is an Apogaea Yahoo! group you can join. We will still be posting to the other mailing lists that some Apogaeans are accustomed to, but future focus keeps the website as our central hub of information.

Koda: Is your alter ego going to be in the Apogaea 2012 beauty pageant?

Art: I can’t speak for her, but we already know I’m the hottest thing at Apogaea, who needs a pageant to confirm it?

Koda: Be sure and thank your alto ego for volunteering, and welcome aboard.

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