MGANM Opportunities- July 2020

Editor, Real Dirt

If you like to write and have moderate to good writing skills, editing the MGANM Real Dirt is a TERRIFIC volunteering opportunity.  I did it for over 5 years and enjoyed it very much.  You get to work with a team of gardeners and writers who provide support and feedback.

Read about the job here: MGANM Real Dirt Editor/Chair

Job Summary:

The Real Dirt (RD) is the bi-monthly electronic newsletter of MGANM.  The Editor/Team Chair sets the tone for the RD Committee and contributors.  All articles are to be researched, scientifically-based and represent the most recent best-practices in horticulture.   The Editor/Chair begins the issue development process, brainstorms possible topics, receives suggestions from contributors, and sets deadlines.

Job Duties:

  • By the first of the month, prior to the bi-monthly issue, the Editor sends out emails to the team of contributors.  The email contains ideas for brainstorming relevant topics based upon the season and current events.           
  • Selects topics to research and write for each issue; encourages others to write.  The Real Dirt is divided into six categories:  News and Events, Administration, Serve, Beautify, Nourish, and Steward.  The four latter categories roughly include the chapters in the MG Volunteer Training Manual.  These topic areas are important to keep readers up-to-date on changes in the content.
  • Receives, reads and comments upon articles submitted by others.  Shares all writing with the established team members for inputs and edits.  Relies on those most skilled at editing.  Uses the 15th of the month as an editorial deadline.  Gathers photos to accompany articles when possible.
  • Roughly, by the 20th of the month, begins entering the submitted articles into a content format.  The format follows how articles will appear in the electronic version.  Writes a brief introduction or ‘teaser’ for each article.  The intro should be one to three sentences long and direct the reader as to what will be found in the article content.  Submits the Real Dirt content to the Technology Chair for uploading into the on-line format by the 25th of the month.
  • Receives a draft of the electronic format for final editing.  Re-reads all content and introductions.  Checks each link to ensure that it takes the reader to the proper article.  Sends any changes/concerns to the Technology Chair for final blast on or about 1:00 am on the first of the month.
  • Represents the Real Dirt Team to the Board, MSUE, and MG Training classes.  Recruits contributors. 

MGANM Technology Chair

Job Summary:

The MGANM Technology Chair manages technology-related areas: Website, membership management software, social media, and Mail Chimp for the Real Dirt on-line newsletter and email.  The use of Facebook and social media is an extension of the website as well as a way to network with people and organizations.  Mail Chimp is a program that is used to publish the Real Dirt and to email MGANM information to members or the public.

Job Duties:

  • Maintains log-ins and passwords for all online accounts including MGANM website, Wild apricot, social media, and MailChimp.
  • Works with an outside consultant, currently ProWeb Marketing, who hosts and maintains the functionality of the website to manage aspects of the website such as title fonts, and colors. ProWeb can assist with all major changes or updates.
  • Ensures that the website is kept up-to-date.
  • Creates social media posts and re-shares posts (from external sources), photos, and events that adhere to the Master Gardener Code of Conduct as laid out in the Master Gardener Manual.
  • Creates and maintains a template inside MailChimp to use for all Real Dirt publications. If any changes to this template are to be made, ensure that the Real Dirt team supports the changes. While the publisher has vast control of creativity with the online format, it is important to value the input of all team members and ensure that they are proud of the final product.
  • Attends Board Meetings and Membership meetings.


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