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About the Presidency Research Group

PRG History

Founded in 1979, the Presidency Research Group (PRG) represents the scholarly community whose professional interests focus on the American Presidency.

PRG Members and Membership      Top

Its membership includes scholars from around the world.  Primarily political scientists, the PRG includes members from a number of academic disciplines including communications, history, and psychology.  The PRG is an organized section of the American Political Science Association (APSA), which holds the Membership list.  Prospective new or renewing members should navigate from APSA to Join/Renew Now! or also Individual Membership.  Information on PRG as an Organized Section of APSA is via APSA > APSA Organized Sections > Presidency Research.

PRG Organization      Top

In addition to its general meeting of members held annually along with the national convention of the American Political Science Association, the PRG maintains a Steering Committee to guide the organization.  To maintain capacity for quick decisions, the Steering Committee maintains an executive committee composed of the President, Vice-President, and Secretary/Treasurer.  The Steering Committee conducts business throughout the year via its own list service.  In addition, the Steering Committee organizes working groups and committees.  It maintains permanent prize committees for a number of special awards, including the Richard E. Neustadt Prize and its Founders' Awards series.

Through its Board of Directors, the PRG also participates in a number of national advisory committees on matters related to scholarship, including White House operations, presidential papers, executive privilege, and secrecy in government.

Following is an internal index with links to the current leadership and business meeting of the PRG.  Earlier leadership lists are in PRG Leadership History.

PRG Steering Committee - 2009-2010:      Top; Next Down to PRG Awards Committee

APSA link:  Presidency Research Group - APSA

Jeffrey E. Cohen
Fordham University
Political Science
441 East Fordham Road
Bronx NY 10458

Vice President and President-Elect:
Mary Stuckey
Georgia State University
Department of Communication
P.O. Box 4000
Atlanta, GA 30302-4000
For Courier and Overnight Services (FedEx, UPS, etc.):  Department of Communication
One Park Place South
Suite 1050
Atlanta, GA 30303

Stephen Weatherford
University of California, Santa Barbara
Political Science
Mail Code 9420
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9420

PRG Report Editor:
David A. Crockett
Trinity University
Political Science
Storch Building, One Trinity Place
San Antonio, TX 78212-7200

2010 Program Chair:
Richard Conley
University of Florida
Political Science
309 Anderson Hall
Gainesville FL 32611

Past President:
Charles E. Walcott
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Political Science
528 Major Williams Hall - 0130
Blacksburg VA 24061

Board of Directors:
Randall Adkins (2008-2011), University of Nebraska, Omaha
Meena Bose (2009-2012), Hofstra University
Lara Brown (2008-2011), Villanova University
Lilly Goren (2007-2010), Carroll College
*Christopher Kelley (2009-2011), Miami University of Ohio
David Lewis (2009-2012), Vanderbilt University
Janet Martin (2009-2012), Bowdoin College
Ken Mayer (2007-2010), University of Wisconsin at Madison
Kevin McMahon (2007-2010), Trinity College
Jeffrey Peake (2007-2010), Bowling Green State University
Steven Schier (2008-2011), Carleton College
Wayne Steger (2008-2011), DePaul University
Justin Vaughn (2008-2011), Cleveland State University
Jose Villalobos (graduate student, 2008-2011), Texas A&M University; 2009- UT El Paso
Shirley Anne Warshaw (2007-2010), Gettysburg College
David Yalof (2009-2012), University of Connecticut
David Crockett (Ex Officio), Trinity University
Martha Joynt Kumar (Ex Officio), Towson University

*Kelley only has two years because he's finishing Weatherford's unexpired term.

PRG Award Committees - 2009-2010:            Top; Next down to PRG Executive Board Minutes

The Career Service Award is given every four years during a presidential election year.  The PRG shall form a committee to give an award to recognize career service to the study of the Presidency.

The Richard E. Neustadt Award is given for the best book on the U.S. presidency published during the previous year.  Nominations should be submitted by February 1, 2010.

Award Committee Chair: 
Paul Quirk, University of British Columbia

Award Committee Members:
William Howell, University of Chicago

Matthew Beckmann, University of California, Irvine

Martha Joynt Kumar, Towson State University

Richard Waterman, University of Kentucky

The Founders Award named in honor of Stephen Wayne will be given for the best paper presented by a Graduate Student at either the preceding year's APSA annual meeting or at any of the regional meetings in 2009-2010.   Nominations should be submitted by May 1, 2010.

Award Committee Chair:
B. Dan Wood, Texas A&M University

Award Committee Members:
Brandice Canes-Wrone, Princeton University

Julia Azari, Marquette University

Daniel DiSalvo, City College of New York

Bruce Nesmith, Coe College

The Founders Award (PhD.) is named in honor of James Young will be given for the best paper presented by a PhD-holding scholar at the previous year's APSA annual meeting.  Nominations should be submitted by February 1, 2010.  

Award Committee Chair:
John Woolley, University of California, Santa Barbara 

Award Committee Members:
George Edwards, Texas A&M University

Dan Galvin, Northwestern University  

Brian Newman, Pepperdine University

James King, University of Wyoming

The Best Undergraduate Paper completed in the academic year 2009-2010.  Nominations should be submitted by May 1, 2010. 

Award Committee Chair:
Lydia Andrade, University of the Incarnate Word

Award Committee Members:
Shannon Bow, University of Texas at Austin

Karen Hoffman, Marquette University

Jose Villalobos, University of Texas at El Paso

Diane Heith, Saint Johns University

The George C. Edwards III Dissertation Award will be given annually for the best dissertation in presidency research completed and accepted during the 2009 calendar year (January 1, 2009-December 31, 2009).  The recipient will received a $250 award.  To be considered for the award, nominees must submit the following documents to each member to the Award Committee: (1) a hard copy of the dissertation, (2) a .pdf of the dissertation on a CD, (3) a nominee form Nominee Submission Form , and (4) a nominator form  Nominator Submission Form and letter.

The Award Committee welcomes nominations by dissertation committee chairs or committee members.  Nominations are to be submitted by February 1, 2010.

Award Committee Chair:
Karen Hult, Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University

Committee Members:
Richard Powell, University of Maine

Bert Rockman, Purdue University

Randy Adkins, University of Nebraska-Omaha

Christopher Kelley, Miami University of Ohio

PRG Award Committees - 2008-2009:            Top; Next down to PRG Executive Board Minutes

PRG President's Report - 2007-08           Top

Victoria A. Farrar-Myers
August 2008

For my tenure as president, I sought to address two areas that I felt needed the most attention: the continued growth in and service to our members, and the long-term fiscal health of the organization.  Along with the other officers and many members of the PRG, together we fostered initiatives geared toward identifying issues regarding the recruitment and experience of our membership, as well as understanding the trends in our financial position.  I am pleased to report the following summary of our progress this year in ensuring that PRG remains a vital organization to our membership.


*     PRG Report Editor Selection: At the last APSA Annual Meeting, Richard Powell indicated that he would be stepping down as editor.  We commenced a search for his replacement, and David Crockett was appointed as new editor for a two-year term.  Richard facilitated the transition to David, and together they ensured the continued and timely on-line delivery of the Report.  In connection with David's appointment, the Board authorized the expenditure of up to $500 for each year of David's term in case expenses were incurred in the production of the Report in excess of any financial support that David's institution could provide.

*    PRG Report Survey: With the appointment of a new PRG Report editor, we decided to ascertain whether changes to the design and information within the Report should be pursued in order to better serve and attract members.  A link to an online survey along with an email from the PRG President was sent out to all current and lapsed members of the PRG utilizing contact information obtained from APSA.  The survey instrument consisted of 16 short questions and took between five to ten minutes to complete.  The survey was distributed to 1,100 individuals, and 230 responded for a response rate of 21 percent.  Based on the survey findings, the following recommendations were developed and will be considered by the Board and PRG Report editor: (1) Seek alternative/additional ways to engage APSA members and increase the visibility of the PRG Report; (2) Incorporate survey findings and suggestions regarding content into the PRG Report; and (3) Coordinate efforts regarding the PRG Report with other PRG initiatives related to communication with members (e.g., website and listserv).

*     E-mail Invitation to Lapsed Members:  In connection with the PRG Report survey, we reached out to former group members whose membership had not been renewed to invite them to rejoin PRG.  On April 9, 2008, the PRG President sent an email request to rejoin the PRG to the 567 non-renewed members.  As of July 23, 2008, the PRG gained 13 new members from this list; an approximate yield of 27 percent in renewing memberships of those non-PRG members who responded to the PRG Report survey.  While a marginal gain in membership, a recommendation was made to repeat similar outreach efforts to lapsed/non-renewed PRG members each year.

*     Appointment of PRG Task Force on Membership and Recruitment: The task force was charged to examine, and make recommendations related to, communication with PRG Members, specifically pertaining to the PRG Web site, the PRG Listserv, and recruitment and retention efforts.  The committee consisted of Robert Spitzer (chair), Jody Baumgartner, Darby Morrisroe, and Russell Renka, in consultation with David Crockett and Richard Powell.  The task force developed four specific recommendations for the Board to consider in determining next steps regarding these issues.

*     Comparative Section Review: To help the PRG address issues related to Web sites, dues and other matters, Chuck Walcott, PRG Vice President, conducted a brief comparison between the PRG and the other 35 APSA sections.  The review specifically examined other sections Web sites, journal affiliations and dues structure, newsletters, syllabi, other links, and award offerings.


*     Award Committee Selection: In early August 2007, a call for volunteers to serve on the PRG Award committees was sent to the PRG listserv.  Once again, our members were generous in volunteering their time to this most important activity.  A total of seven committees were filled with a chair and four members each, including committees for our Career Service Award (given every four years) and our new Edwards Dissertation Award.  During the course of the year, the Smithsonian suspended granting the Peck Award, and as a result our Peck Award committee was suspended as well.  The committees were constituted in an effort to provide a balance reflecting the diversity of our section's membership, including such factors as years of PRG service, size and type of institution, rank, and providing opportunities for broadening engagement.

*     Congratulation Letters to Awardees:  The PRG President sent via email and hard copy a congratulatory letter to all PRG Award recipients.  In addition, the President urged the award winners to attend the PRG Business Meeting to be recognized for their accomplishments.

*     Develop Dissertation Award Criteria (and Document History of its Development): In conjunction with the chair and committee of the Edwards Dissertation Award, the submission and selection guidelines for the award were drafted.  Additionally, mechanisms for disseminating the "Call for Submissions" were developed, with announcements sent out through APSA to all departments, via the PRG listserv, and placed in Presidential Studies Quarterly.  The original award deadline was extended to facilitate submissions.  This year, no submissions were received, but the groundwork laid by the committee over the past year will be of great service going forward.  The committee developed a document chronicling the development of the award and its criteria for use by future award committees, along with several suggestions, including using a later submission deadline, to improve the process in future years.

*     Undergraduate Award Submission Date: The committee for the Best Undergraduate Paper Award suggested pushing back the submission deadline to allow spring semester papers to be submitted for consideration.  The committee felt this may aid in generating additional submissions since they have been very light.  As a section, we have the ability to set these deadlines, although APSA requests that award determinations be provided by a specified date each year.  The incoming PRG President and next year's Undergraduate Paper Award committee will take these factors into consideration in determining an appropriate deadline.


*     Fiscal Review:  Jeff Cohen, PRG Secretary-Treasurer, was charged with conducting a five-year historical review of PRG finances and developing a five-year forward projection, the findings of which were presented to the PRG Board for consideration.  It was felt that this analysis was needed in light of our recent membership trends, our section dues structure (including APSA retaining $3 of each member's $10 dues), and the growing costs of core expenditures such as plaques, APSA reception, and other conference-related costs.  The objective was to take a long-term look at fiscal trends in light of these financial constraints to better craft a strategic plan for future PRG initiatives.

*     Edwards Dissertation Award and Neustadt Award Endowments: At last year's APSA Annual Meeting, the Board decided to proceed with endowing both these awards.  The $5,000 endowment threshold that APSA established was reached for the Edwards Award, but we have not yet reached this threshold for the Neustadt Award.  The PRG Secretary-Treasurer has been working with APSA to determine the appropriate accounts needed to manage both these award endowments going forward.  The information gathered will be presented to the PRG Board for consideration, and appropriate policies will be developed regarding these accounts.

*     Endowment Solicitation: Original solicitation efforts for the Edwards and Neustadt Awards endowments were spearheaded by Martha Kumar, who has now turned over this responsibility to the PRG Board.  The PRG President sent out a year-end solicitation for these awards in 2007, and included information regarding this ongoing effort in the PRG Report.  The President and other officers, on behalf of the Board, will continue yearly solicitations going forward.


*     Bylaws Interpretations:  A question arose regarding the appropriate interpretation of the Bylaws provision stating: "Excluding service as an officer, Steering Committee members shall serve no more than two consecutive three-year terms, excepting that the Committee may waive this rule by two-thirds vote."  The PRG President produced a one-page outline of the interpretive issues involved for the Board's consideration.

*     Bylaws Revisions:  In reviewing the Bylaws in connection with various ongoing matters including the interpretation issues outlined above, the PRG President noted that they do not reflect the undergraduate paper award and the dissertation award (although there is a catch-all that "The PRG shall give such awards as it deems appropriate").  Both awards were previously approved by the Board, but it appears that the Bylaws have not been systematically updated to keep up with current policy.  In light of these issues, the President recommends that the Board consider reviewing/updating the Bylaws next year.

*     APSA Section Head Selection:  The PRG President, in consultation with the other officers, selected Randall Adkins of the University of Nebraska-Omaha as the Section Head for the 2009 APSA Annual Meeting.  Randy was chosen based upon his years of contributions to the PRG through his service on the Board and numerous award committees.

*     Developed PRG Officer Task List Description:  To provide a more formal means of conveying to new and potential officers the tasks that each PRG officer is expected to perform during their term in each office, the PRG President, in consultation with the other officers, crafted a description of these tasks that can be updated for use going forward by future officers.

*     Compiling Section History:  Richard Powell began an effort to collect and post on the PRG Web site old editions of the PRG Report.  In conjunction with this effort, the PRG officers began the process of culling together other historical information regarding the PRG.  With assistance from APSA, a listing of former PRG Section Heads for APSA Annual Meetings was developed, as was a listing of previous section officers.  Future issues of the PRG Report will include historical information such as this.  I would strongly encourage that the PRG continue to document important developments in its organizational history and make them available via the Web site and other means of communication.


*     PRG Section Short Course: An email was sent to the PRG listserv to see if any of our members would be interested in developing and organizing a short course to be held on the Wednesday before the APSA Annual Meeting.  Leah Murray graciously volunteered to lead this effort, resulting in a short course entitled "Teaching the Presidency: Best Ways to Engage Your Students."

*     Mentoring Program:  Martha Kumar and George Edwards continue to advance our efforts to provide mentoring opportunities for junior scholars.  This program has been a hallmark of the PRG, and provides an important recruitment tool for new members to join our organization.  I, along with many others, have benefited from this program and became members of the organization because of it.  I would strongly recommend that efforts continue to ensure the success of this program as well as pursuing means to disseminate information regarding these opportunities to emerging scholars in our area.

*     Listserv Policy:  Over this past year, as President I had to make several judgment calls about what should and should not be posted on the PRG listserv, as well as heard some criticisms from membership for when certain types of items were posted (e.g., job openings for non-presidency positions).  I would recommend that the Board, in conjunction with any other PRG website/listserv initiatives, consider developing policies or guidelines as to what information should be posted and by whom.  An additional benefit is that doing so will provide clarity to members about appropriate and relevant content, which may encourage greater use of the listserv.  Ensuring a vibrant e-community will not only allow our members to continue to communicate throughout the year but also can be a valuable benefit of PRG membership.

*     Proposed PRG Conference:  At last year's APSA Annual Meeting, the Board approved exploring the feasibility of hosting a PRG-sponsored conference in Spring 2009.  Various organizations were contacted in an effort to raise sufficient funds to support the conference, and a non-binding commitment for funding eventually was obtained. Due to the lateness in obtaining this commitment and other logistical planning concerns, however, we could not ensure a successful execution of a Spring 2009 conference.  I would recommend that the PRG continue to explore the feasibility of such a conference at some future date as a way to foster greater membership interaction and networking.

*  APSA Siting Policy:  The PRG officers were contacted by the APSA Director regarding APSA's consideration of its Annual Meeting Site Selection Policy.  The officers determined that it was more appropriate for all members to have an individual opportunity to comment on the proposed policy rather than have the PRG take an official position. 

* FOIA Policy: Martha Kumar contacted me regarding having the PRG be a signatory along with the APSA on a letter developed by the National Security Archives to the new administration regarding the development of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) policy.  The issue was circulated to the Board for its consideration.

On a personal note, I would like to extend my appreciation to Diane Heith for an outstanding job in organizing the panels for this year's APSA Annual Meeting, to Leah Murray for spearheading the short course, and to Randy Adkins for agreeing to be next year's Section Head.  Many thanks also to the Task Force on Membership and Recruitment and to the members of all the award committees, especially Mary Anne Borrelli for her work as the first chair of the Edwards Dissertation Award committee.  I would like to recognize three members for their continued vital contributions to the organization: Martha Kumar, for keeping so many of our programs and interests at the forefront of APSA; Terry Sullivan, for overseeing our listserv; and Russ Renka, for maintaining our PRG Web site.  Finally, I would like to extend my personal gratitude to the Board, officers, and the PRG Report editors for their continued vigilance on behalf of the organization.  It has truly been an honor to serve as your president this past year, and I will be forever grateful for having had the opportunity.

Victoria Farrar-Myers

PRG Executive Board Minutes - September 3, 2009            Top; Next down to PRG Business Meeting

PRG Executive Board Minutes
September 3, 2009
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I.  Welcome and call to order:  Chuck Walcott made everyone behave and pay attention around 6:30 p.m.

Board members present: Stephen Weatherford, Wayne Steger, Lara Brown, Lilly Goren, Justin Vaughn, Jose D. Villalobos, Nancy Baker, Andrew Dowdle, Randy Adkins, David Crockett, Steven Schier, and Martha Kumar.

II.  Minutes Approved: Yes, indeed, they were. 

III.  President's Report:  Chuck reported that the president (Obama, not Chuck) had rescinded the EO on FOIA and has signed a new EO on presidential records, making it more difficult for families to maintain secrecy after a president's death. 

He also announced that the Edwards Award has been fully funded, and that we are well on our way to funding the Neustadt. 

IV.  Secretary/ Treasurer's Report: See attached. 

We continue to be a bit worried about membership.  Many sections have journals or journal discounts as part of their membership benefit; we of course can't do that.  It will be a continuing conversation. 

V.  Program Chair's Report: See attached. 

The big news is that we lost two panels this year and that APSA has a new algorithm for calculating panel allocations and bonus panels. We are hurt in the latter because of high acceptance rates. 

Randy noted that his goal as Program Chair was to expand the number of people with spots on the program—so many panels have 5 papers.  Our acceptance rate is also high because of co-sponsorship.  The issues were discussed, but there was no resolution. 

VI. PRG Newsletter:  David Crockett has produced two (very good) issues this year.  He asks that we send articles for future issues.  He also noted (with unseemly joy), that his term is almost over and that we need to be looking for a replacement.  He believes that this person should have desk top publishing skills and (more importantly), institutional support.  We believe that he is irreplaceable, but will turn this over to Jeff nonetheless.

VII. Section Breakfast Meeting:  Chuck (with Mary interrupting) reported on the breakfast meeting.  The web services are about to go on line, and they are very excited about that. They also argue that members need value for their money (see IV) and that our value seems to be the PRG Report. 

VIII.  Martha Kumar:  Reported on her (very important and much appreciated) work.  She noted that the president (Obama, not Chuck) rescinded the EO on FOIA. She also reported on the search for a new National Archivist.  The president (still Obama, not Chuck) has nominated David Ferriero, who Martha considers to be an able administrator with solid management experience. The nomination remains before the Senate.  Finally, Martha reported that the transition project remains important—and that there is strong evidence that the people in the White House both read and appreciate the reports. 

IX.   New Business: The president (Chuck, not Obama) had 4 issues; 2 others came from the floor:

1. Reference book award:  This is a fuzzy area of the bylaws, and it isn't clear how often it should be given. He recommended that we (a) establish a separate committee for the award (b) charge the section leadership with remembering to appoint a committee for that purpose on a regular schedule. After discussion, it was agreed to appoint a separate committee on three-year intervals.

2. There has been a proposal that we have a panel every year, consisting of previous Neustadt winners, to honor that year's Neustadt winner.  After discussion, it was decided not to do this because in a time of shrinking panel allocation, we don't want to give one to this.

3. PRG Web page: We're getting closer now that APSA is willing to host.  No news, but it's in progress.

4. Bylaws: They need updating; Karen Hult (bless her) has agreed to do so.

5. Steven Schier moved that we thank the president (Chuck, not Obama) for his service; there was so much applause we never voted on the motion.

6. Jose Villalobos noted that the Midwest's Latino Caucus has gotten approval to offer its award winners a remission of the next year's convention registration fees.  After much discussion of what a great idea that was, we agreed that Mary would hunt down the section people and see if we could get approval for such a program, with particular interest in offering such a deal to student award winners (grad and undergrad papers and dissertation).

X. Elections: They were held and Stephen Weatherford was elected Secretary/Treasurer.  After Steven Schier flipped his loonie, Christopher Kelley was elected to complete Stephen Weather ford's unexpired term, and the following people were elected to full terms: Mary Ann Borelli, Meena Bose, David Lewis, Janet Martin, and David Yalof.

XI. Adjournment: The president (Chuck, not Obama) adjourned the meeting at 7:30.

PRG Business Meeting - September 5, 2009, Toronto           Top

PRG Business Meeting
September 5, 2009
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Welcome and call to order: In a room that was, as usual, too small and poorly ventilated, the president (Chuck, not Obama) finally got the membership's attention around 12:15.  The first order of business was telling George Edwards all about the Jays' defeat of the Yankees the previous evening (Roy Halladay, in a display of prowess, pitched a one-hitter, final score 6-0).  No roll was taken, but it was noted, with hilarity in some cases and well-masked chagrin in others, that the division is establishing a clear trend of electing officers who are unable (or unwilling?) to attend the division's meetings.  Incoming president Jeff Cohen, was kept at home because of his duties as departmental (not divisional) chair, was much missed throughout the meeting.

Minutes Approved: Yes, indeed, they were.

Program Report: Randall Adkins noted that we lost two panels this year and that APSA has a new algorithm for calculating panel allocations and bonus panels.  We are hurt in the latter because of high acceptance rates (ours are the 4th highest in APSA).  He encouraged us to send in more paper proposals.  Members were encouraged to submit both good proposals and bad ones (please label which is which to avoid embarrassment all around); if interested in cross-listing with another division, please also indicate that.

Richard Conley, the 2010 Program Chair, had to attend the Program Planners' luncheon, and could not be at the business meeting, demonstrating through his absence both his willingness and his suitability to be considered for divisional leadership in the future.

Award Presentations: Awards were given; plaques (and in the case of the Edwards Award, money) were given, pictures were taken, applause was offered.

Treasurer's Report: Mary announced that most of the numbers were almost right (see attached); declared that the Edwards Award is fully funded, and noted that George Edwards, who both gave generously of his own money and then gave equally generously of other people's money, has assured us that the Neustadt Award is now also fully funded.  If you gave to either award, we thank you.  If you gave to neither, please consider doing so.  If you promised money but have not yet given it, we know who you are and you will be hearing from us.  George refused to stand on a chair, but we thanked him for his hard work anyway.

President's Report: The president (Chuck, not Obama) was happy to report that fundraising is no longer an issue for us and that the president (Jeff, not Chuck or Obama) will no longer have to do that.

He also noted that the division is in good financial health, and that membership is still a concern.

Terry Sullivan and Russell Renka were visibly delighted with the news that APSA may actually do what they've been promising these many years, and host a web page and listserv, thus relieving these two of those duties.  Jody Baumgartner has agreed to take over the web page but can't until APSA is ready, so we remain in limbo and Russell and Terry continue to do their (much appreciated) work for the division.  In desperation, Russ has been threatening to retire, but we refuse to let him go until APSA has gone online, so we look forward to continuing our long association with him as webmaster.

Section Breakfast: Chuck (with Mary interrupting) reported on the breakfast meeting.  APSA appreciates us and wants us to increase our members, and used a lot of words to tell us so.

Continuing Business: Martha Kumar reported on her (very important and much appreciated) work.  She noted that the president (Obama, not Chuck or Jeff) rescinded the EO on FOIA.  She also reported on the search for a new National Archivist.  The president (still Obama, not Chuck or Jeff) has nominated David Ferriero (previously head of the New York Public Library), who Martha considers to be an able administrator with solid management experience.  The nomination remains before the Senate.  Finally, Martha reported that the White House Transition Project remains important--and that there is strong evidence that the people in the White House both read and appreciate the reports.

Election of New Officers: Having persuaded Steven Schier to keep his loonie to himself, we calmly and quietly ratified the election of Stephen Weatherford (who, in keeping with divisional leadership norms, had already left the meeting to catch a plane) as Secretary-Treasurer.  Note was made of the weirdly undemocratic methods of choosing divisional leadership.  The president (Chuck, not Jeff nor Obama) announced that in a weirdly democratic moment (for those of you who were not paying attention, that would be my characterization, not his), we again had more nominees than slots for the Board, and had thus actually held a meaningful election.  Christopher Kelley was elected to complete Stephen Weatherford's unexpired term, and the following people were elected to full terms:  Mary Ann Borelli, Meena Bose, David Lewis, Janet Martin, and David Yalof.

One newly elected board member, who contrary to usual practice, was actually present, seemed both mystified and disturbed by news of that nomination and election.  Terry Sullivan suggested that (a) since election to service roles should probably not come as a surprise to people, (b) in the future, people should actually check with the people they nominate for leadership positions, and (c) the president (Jeff, not Chuck or Obama) should probably check that this has been done.  That idea seemed to receive a good deal of approval, especially by those who felt themselves in some danger of being nominated in the future.

Board Meeting: The president (Chuck, not Jeff or Obama) reported on two matters:

1.  Reference book award: This is a fuzzy area of the bylaws, and it isn't clear how often it should be given.  He recommended that we (a) establish a separate committee for the award (b) charge the section leadership with remembering to appoint a committee for that purpose on a regular schedule.  After discussion, it was agreed to appoint a separate committee on three-year intervals.

2.  He then mentioned that Jose Villalobos reported that the Midwest's Latino Caucus has gotten approval to offer its award winners a remission of the next year's convention registration fees.  The Board had agreed that Mary would hunt down the Section people and see if we could get approval for such a program, with particular interest in offering such a deal to student award winners (grad and undergrad papers and dissertation).  Mary has been unable to find these people, but email inquiries have been made, and she considers it her mission in life to get this information.  Suggestions for following up without getting arrested for stalking were made, as were ideas for negotiating.  Mary will report to the president (Jeff, not Chuck or Obama) over the next year and to the membership next year.

New Business: Steven Schier moved that we thank Chuck for his years of distinguished service to the division, and presented him (Chuck, not Steven) with a plaque.  Members were too busy applauding to actually vote.

Announcements were made concerning available jobs, conferences, and other items of interest.

The president (Chuck, not Jeff or Obama), found himself unable to pass along the trappings of power because (a) the previous president (Victoria, not Chuck, Jeff, or Obama) was unable to attend last year, and so he didn't have them, and (b) because the incoming president (Jeff, not Victoria, Chuck, or Obama) was unable to attend this year and was therefore unable to receive them.  Fearing that this may lead to an extension of his terms as president, he adjourned the meeting at 1:30.

Respectfully submitted

Mary Stuckey


Tuesday, 26 January 2010 05:39:33 PM -0600

Russell D. Renka
Sunday March 28, 2004 04:03:49 PM