Board of Directors, January 6, 2013, Seattle, WA

The Board of Directors of the American Philological Association met at the Sheraton Seattle Hotel, Seattle, WA, on January 6, 2013.  Those present were Profs. Denis Feeney, President, and Ronnie Ancona, Dr. Adam D. Blistein, Profs. Joseph Farrell, Sara Forsdyke, Bruce W. Frier, Michael Gagarin, Mary-Kay Gamel, Kathryn J. Gutzwiller, Jonathan M. Hall, Jeffrey Henderson, Ralph J. Hexter, Sarah Iles Johnston, John F. Miller, Kathryn A. Morgan, Matthew Roller, and Ralph M. Rosen.  Prof. Feeney called the meeting to order at 11:10 a.m.

Action:  The Directors approved the agenda for the meeting that they had received in advance.

Development

Dr. Blistein reported on a meeting of the Development Committee held on January 4 to which members of the Gateway Steering Committee had also been invited.  While acknowledging that annual giving contributions were somewhat disappointing to date, Committee members felt that donations would increase during 2013 now that both the Gateway Campaign and the recent election were past.

The Committees had a good discussion of lessons learned from the Gateway Campaign and efforts that should be taken in short term to maintain its momentum.  These included making sure members know how Gateway funds are being used and having organizers of Friends funds give nonmember donors an update on the success of those efforts.  Any future campaign will require that the Association hire an additional staff member.  This person could be a very high level administrative person without the fund-raising experience that Development Director Julie Carew had had.  Depending on the fund-raising expertise of the next Executive Director, it might be necessary to have a fund-raising consultant again as well.  In the interim, the Committee thought that Dr. Blistein should consider whether he needed part-time help with future prospect research and cultivation.

Prof. Henderson had reported to the Committees about the work of the Cabinet to date.  As the APA starts to implement some of the goals of its strategic planning process, it might need to conduct brief campaigns to raise a specific amount for a specific project.  The Committee felt that the APA should contemplate a proposal that had emerged from the planning process:  adding a Vice President for Development to the Board.  Before taking such a step, however, the Board should consider whether the Nominating Committee could find suitable candidates for such a position.

The Committees had discussed the upcoming Spring 2013 annual giving appeal.  The members felt that this appeal should both reach out to people who did not feel they could give in 2012 and express gratitude to the third of the current membership who had contributed to the Gateway Campaign.  As had become customary, an e-mail would follow the transmission of the appeal by regular mail.  In addition, Prof. Feeney had agreed to send an e-mail to members at the end of January that would discuss the success of the annual meeting and how Gateway Campaign funds were being used.  Finally, the Development Committee had invited all Gateway Steering Committee members to join it.

Action:  The Board agreed to make the Chair of the Development Committee an ex officio member of the Board without a vote and to consider in the future a change in the By-Laws that would make the holder of this office a voting member of the Board.

Committee on the Web Site and Newsletter

Prof. Feeney reported on a meeting of the Committee which had taken place the previous day.  This group consists of the members of the Cabinet plus Information Architect Samuel Huskey, as Chair.  He distributed to the Board a document prepared by a subcommittee of the Cabinet that outlined the steps to be taken and costs involved in moving the Association from a position where it relied almost exclusively on its web site for an online presence to one where it could fulfill some of the promises for a digital portal made during the Gateway Campaign.  The Committee had discussed with Prof. Huskey his willingness and ability to carry out the plan outlined in this document, and the Board proceeded to discuss the plan as well.

Action:  The Board authorized the Cabinet’s Subcommittee for Information Technology to oversee the redesign of the Association’s web site, the creation by Prof. Huskey and colleagues of custom programs to carry out Association functions such as abstract submission, and the expansion of the Association’s presence in social media.

Reports of Vice Presidents

Publications and Research.  Prof. Gagarin reported that Prof. Katharina Volk, Editor of Transactions, continued to publish the journal on schedule and oversaw a prompt review process.  The number of submissions had held steady from the previous year.  Prof. Volk’s term would end in January 2014, and Profs. Gagarin and Henderson had therefore formed a search committee consisting of themselves, Profs. John Bodel and Christina Kraus, and Dr. Blistein.  The search committee had received four applications and had decided to interview two of the candidates at the annual meeting. 

Action:  The Board unanimously accepted the search committee’s recommendation to appoint Prof. Craig A. Gibson Editor of TAPA for a four-year term beginning in January 2014.

Prof. Gagarin reported that one final publication accepted for the Monographs Series was in press.  He had asked Oxford University Press to consider one other submission for the Series that the Association had received.  One new textbook was in press, and three other submissions for the textbooks series were either in review or would be reviewed once submitted.  Prof. Gagarin thanked Prof. Sander Goldberg to continue to serve as Editor of the Textbook Series after the formal conclusion of his term.

Work continued on the Digital Latin Library (DLL) project funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.  The scholars currently editing texts of Servius for the Association might publish their work through this project rather than in print.  Prof. Gagarin felt that the Association now needed to devote its energies to this and other digital projects rather than print publications.  He and Prof. Goldberg had met with APA’s Editor at Oxford University Press (OUP), and they had agreed that the Association’s current agreement with the Press would remain in place.  OUP was interested in collaborating with the APA on digital projects.

New software was facilitating the work of the American Office of L’Année philologique (APh).  Income from the Gateway Campaign endowment as well as donation, royalty, and subvention revenue were permitting the Office to operate on a break-even basis.  Prof. Hans-Friedrich Mueller was serving as an effective Chair of the Office’s Advisory Board and was representing the Association well at the meetings of the Sociéte Internationale de Biliographie Classique (SIBC).  In addition, Prof. Dee L. Clayman, Director of the Database of Classical Bibliography project, would become President of SIBC in a few years.

A record number of candidates had applied for the next APA/NEH Fellowship at the Thesaurus Linguae Latinae.  When it was time to submit a renewal application for this project to the NEH, the Association might request a second fellowship.  As part of a Mellon-funded project to add functions to the online version of APh, Prof. Eric Rebillard had overseen the creation of a list of classical texts, the Classical Works Knowledge Base (CWKB), that provided links to these texts in various online resources.  The Committee on Translations would use CWKB to prepare a list of translations of classical texts, mainly ones from the last 150 years.

Outreach.  Prof. Gamel stated that the Committee on Outreach, possibly in collaboration with the Committee on Education, would attempt to stimulate more interest about the annual meeting in each city where the meeting took place.  The Committee was also working on a mission statement for the Association’s outreach efforts and was organizing a panel for the 2014 meeting on members’ outreach activities.

The Committee on Ancient and Modern Performance had mounted a successful production of Alcestis in Seattle and was organizing a performance of Rudens for Chicago.  The Committee was also drafting a statement for review by the Board on the scholarly value of work on performance.  The Committee on the Classical Tradition and Reception would submit a proposal for longer terms of service on the Committee.  The Amphora editorial board was discussing the possibility of publishing some material electronically in addition to articles that appeared in the printed issue. 

Professional Matters.  Prof. Miller reported that the Committee on Professional Matters had had a useful discussion of the kinds of data that the Association should collect.  The members had agreed that the three overarching questions that the APA needed to ask were as follows:  Who and where are we?  What do we do?  What happens to our students?  The Association would need to secure the assistance of experts in survey design before issuing questionnaires.  The Committee on the Status of Women and Minority Groups was looking forward to analyzing the information to emerge from these questionnaires and was pleased with the series of sessions it had organized for recent annual meetings.

The Classics Advisory Service had successfully assisted a few departments that had been threatened with closing or reductions in scope but had received more requests from departments seeking help to carry out periodic reviews.  Editors of Classics journals continued to be concerned about a recent amendment to the Statement of Professional Ethics that set guidelines for the length of time during which manuscripts should be in review.  Prof Miller had pointed out that the new language was advisory rather than prescriptive. 

Prof. David Potter, Chair of the Placement Committee, had reported that the Committee’s panel the previous day on nonacademic careers had been well attended.  Improvements to the online Placement Service portal had made it possible for the Service to operate more smoothly during the year although there had been at least one instance of an institution conducting interviews in Seattle without scheduloing them through the Service.  At the meeting of the Placement Committee on January 5, AIA Officers had announced their intention to stop participating in the joint service and to establish a separate career service on February 1 that would focus on the listing of positions being filled throughout the year, not just at the usual times in the academic calendar.  APA representatives had urged AIA to reconsider this step.  The existing online Service could easily accommodate more nonacademic listings throughout the year, and a separate service could cause confusion for academic candidates especially around the time of the annual meeting.  The Board discussed this matter at some length.

Action:  The Board voted to urge AIA to reconsider this decision or at least postpone it until the end of the current academic year.  If AIA proceeded with its plan, the Board voted to replace the two AIA representatives currently on the Placement Committee with two APA members with a background in classical archaeology and to continue to encourage candidates in this field to register with the Service and institutions with openings in the field to continue to list them with the APA’s service.

Program.  Prof. Farrell reminded the Board about the importance of selecting attractive locations for the meeting.  Higher attendance created a better intellectual product and supported the Association financially.  He was concerned that too many speakers for the Seattlemeeting had cancelled their presentations at the last minute.  During the Fall, the APA had regularly highlighted various aspects of the meeting on its Facebook page.  Prof. Farrell did not think that this effort had increased attendance, but he did think that it had improved the experience for members who did attend.  The innovation of having at-large members of the Board participate in an initial review of individual abstracts had been successful, and he hoped to continue it in future years.  This might make it possible for the Program Committee to hold only one meeting. 

Education.  The Committee on Education and the Joint Committee on the Classics in American Education (JCCAE) had examined again a plan to use income from gifts donated to the Gateway Campaign in support of teacher training. 

Action:  The Board approved a proposal to use income from gifts to the Gateway Campaign in support of teacher training to give two kinds of awards:  Pedagogy Awards to support projects to improve teaching proposed by either collegiate or precollegiate classics teachers and Zeph Stewart Latin Teacher Training Awards to support precollegiate teachers seeking state certification to teach Latin.  The Pedagogy Awards would have a value of $500 to $2,500; the Stewart Awards could be up to $1,500.  Awardees would be selected by a subcommittee of the JCCAE, and applicants would not have to be APA members.

Prof. Ancona reported that the Guide to Graduate Programs in Classics would no longer appear in print.  As an interim measure, a listing of graduate programs along with the degrees each one offered, would be posted on the APA web site, but the Committee on Education wanted to return to collecting and publishing data about each program.  During the Fall, the Committee had posted on the web site a revision by Prof. Kenneth Kitchell of Careers for Classicists, but it continued to print copies of this pamphlet.  The Committee on Education and the Committee on Ancient History had held successful panels during the Seattle meeting.

Other Business

Dr. Blistein stated that the Board would meet by conference call in June and in person in September.  There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 3:30 p.m.

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