S-USIH Minutes 1.11.2012

S-USIH Executive Committee Meeting

Prepared by Andrew Hartman

January 2, 2012

January 13, 2012, 11:00 a.m. (EST), via teleconference (organized by Ray Haberski)

  1. Reports from ExComm Officers (make sure everyone re-reads minutes from November meeting before preparing your reports)
    1. Andrew Hartman, President
    2. Mike O’Connor, Treasurer
    3. Ray Haberski, Secretary
    4. Ben Alpers, Publications
    5. David Sehat, Conference

Proposal: Keynote honorarium ($250): Discuss and vote.

  1. Proposal: Book prize—discuss/vote on whether to form an ad hoc committee to implement a book prize.

Discuss/vote to approve revised budget (attached) (as prepared by Treasurer, Mike O’Connor).

  1. Proposal: Nominating committee—discuss/vote on whether to form an ad hoc committee to seek out nominations for this year’s S-USIH elections.
  1. Proposal: Working Group on Gender and Women in Intellectual History, as proposed by Lillian Barger. Discuss/vote on whether to form an ad hoc committee—or else proceed differently.
  1. Diversity survey: the membership committee would like to survey existing membership on how they would like Society to proceed in terms of diversity. How to proceed?


Add review of minutes

Add Ray between points 5 and 6

Review of minutes: strike Menand from David’s statement about possible speakers for the next conference

Waive Robert’s rules

Did we post minutes from business meeting in November?

Minutes approved with revision

Andrew’s report: President

In touch with ad hoc committees, but no one has done much since the conference

Membership committee—David Weinfield—sending out emails to grad programs.  Collecting data but not done anything with it.

Julian Nemeath is creating a database and survey on historians who graduated from IH programs

Diversity survey is in the mix here as well.

Discuss the other ad hoc committees later in the meeting

Put an ad out in Perspectives and other journals to announce the existence of the committee

Mike’s report: Treasurer

We lost $500 on the conference because of the reception at Brendan’s

Brown bag was a big hit–$1000 to pay for everyone’s lunch

Not a cash generator

Not able to rent rooms without raising fees for the conference

Sponsors for social events would help offset cost for society

Need advertisers for newsletter and journal

CUNY will give $2740.00 to the society—Fund partially from 2010 conference

Did not use membership dues to pay for the conference

The budget is solvent as presented

$1000 left over

Outreach and promotion of the society is paramount

Mike has not submitted paperwork for non profit status

Ben: brown bag—charge people small fee for lunch

What different ways to charge money for lunches, plenaries, etc.

Ray’s report: Secretary

Membership total (126) and unpaid conference goers ~ 20

Ray will send the list of those who didn’t pay to David

Changes to constitution—Ray will send out new formatted version

Website is bigger than this office

Ben’s report: Chair of Publications Committee

New blogger and publications person—Lora Burnett

She will be a weekend blogger

Ronnie Greenberg as a new blogger as well

Diversify bloggers

Three women bloggers in the group now

Other kinds of diversity: age, field, time period

Ben would like writers who can speak to earlier periods

Peter Wirzbicki and John Fea are leads in this regard

Blog policies: make official by posting them

Blog is responsibility of the publications chair (and committee)

Bloggers had made decisions regarding policy, but the chair is really constitutionally empowered to do this

Ben will run the policies by the bloggers in the process of formalizing these policies with the publications committee

Mike: should we require a minimum number of posts?

Ben: List of regular bloggers and list of occasional bloggers

Won’t invite more occasional bloggers but regular bloggers could become occasional bloggers

Migrating to wordpress for the blog

Hosting site on wordpress.com

Relationship between blog and website

Archiving and storing old posts

Tabled the migration to wordpress

Discoverynet proposal not impressive

Smithsonian proposal is still there but need to solidify the web presence of the group before any negotiations begin

Newsletter: pass along society news to members, constitutional changes also might include:

THAT camp summary

President’s column

Re-publication of posts and book reviews

Member news and news from the field

Solicit news from members

Wrap up of conference of 2011?

Mike: not interested in doing this.

Standardize workflow for newsletter

Ben layout editor; Tim and Lora are copyeditors

Distribute out through the membership list

Book reviews: increase and make more substantial

Book review editor who will assign reviews

Need a small budget to send books to people

e-journal: a platform to publish peer-reviewed scholarship

Journal of Jonathan Edwards is one example, as is Commonplace

Work with university presses?

Survey what is out there in e-journals: six months of survey time

By early summer we would have a formal proposal

Mike questions: when can we get to a better blog site; nice to have it on the website

Ben: one possibility to do a wordpress.com for the blog and the publications

Mike: do we need another position for the book review editor?

Ben: no, the book review editor falls under the pub comm can delegate work for book review editor

David: when we create a journal we would probably need to create a new position for publications editors.  Could appoint ME Lennon to an administrative position for editing the reviews for the blog

Ben: agreed. A new journal will need a new position.

Andrew: all society publications are under the pub comm. But all new publications will need to be approved by the excom of the society

Ben: we have no official editor for the blog; all new publications need to go through the excom.

Andrew: need to get this report done before the next round of elections

Ben: yes a report will be done before the elections

David’s report: Chair of 2012 Conference

Working with CUNY, and a date is close: November 1 and 2, 2012

No conflicts that David can see with these dates

Will move quickly to get the keynote: but needs to know the honorarium

Or move to a presidential address and forgo a keynote address

Will announce CFP with a number of new regulations:

No individual papers; only panels

Participate on only one panel

Cannot specify a date and time for participation

Net effect: fewer graduate students; fewer big names because of scheduling conflicts

Mike: can we do more to help people assemble panels?

David: grad students need to be able to do this

David: wants the entire conference to be successful for the two days with people committed to the conference

David: no shuffling with times and slots and one point person who takes care of looking for replacements

Ben: a problem with committing to the entire conference—there might be a higher number of drop-outs once they no longer get the time slot they wanted

Andrew: supports the new regulations to increase commitment to these new rules

Keynote Honorarium $250

Ben: if we have a keynote address, we pay $250, not if there is a presidential address

David: need tax form for the honorarium

Vote: Andrew: yes; Ben: yes; David: yes; Ray: yes; Mike: yes

Book prize

Form ad hoc committee to give the prize

David: a lot of work

Ben: happy to serve on the ad hoc committee to create the committee that will serve on that committee

Mike: the report will need to address all the work that David has pointed out will entail

Andrew: vote to create an ad hoc committee

Vote: Andrew: yes; David: yes; Mike: yes; Ben: yes; Ray: yes

Andrew is empowered to staff the committee

Revisions to Budget

Andrew: changes to help make a reserve of $1000 (money from CUNY)

Increased one-time seed money for conference

Book prize and keynote are now line-items

Andrew: yes; Mike: yes; David: yes; Ben: yes; Ray: yes.

Creating of ad hoc committee for a nominating committee

David: concern over appointing people who might be our successors; understand the need to make the election viable and a true contest

Andrew: this election few will probably care about a nominating committee; but in the future it might be quite necessary.  If Andrew appoints committee, then only he has direct involvement adding members with the stipulation that he will not run for president

Ben: will candidates nominated by this committee be candidates?  Should not this committee try to encourage people to run?

Mike: We need people to be encouraged to run for office. But we want to avoid the excom to do this.

Ben: nominating committee cannot run for office; and we need many people for other roles in the society

Ray: we are doing this prematurely, we should let the society grow

Andrew: no one will run for anything if any of us run again or if any of us decides to step down.

David: establishing another committee to get people to run for office doesn’t seem to do the job we hope the committee will do.

Mike: value in having people on the slate

David: the committee will not nominate people that disagree with them—in short it won’t do the thing that excom would hope it would do.  We don’t have enough bodies.

David: send out email to all members to accept nominations including self-nominations.

Ray: I am the contact person. I will draft announcements, notify members, set nominating period, collect nominations, set election for first week of May.  Nominating period closes; address gaps; and then put the vote forward.

Table nominating committee

Andrew: yes; David: yes, Mike: no; Ben: yes; Ray: yes

Raising Capital

Ray: raising capital for the website

Ben: need to look at competitive bids; neither SUSIH nor HistoryIT can do an e-journal; we need a university press to do our e-journal

Mike: proposal to raise capital doesn’t seem to go forward to any one place

Andrew: need to raise capital, but look for competitive bids; do not tie an ejournal to an IT company; secretary can’t do this by himself;

David: agree that we need a good website; it will cost money to do it right; financially conservative so we need to do something but we are not there yet.

Mike: we need a website but we don’t have money to pay for it

Ben: HistoryIT is a package deal but we need something that goes beyond what we’ve got now.

Take last items at next meeting, and distribute HistoryIT proposal.  Set up conference call for three weeks from now, after January 30.

…..meeting adjourned, 1pm EST