South Carolina Archival Association Executive Board Minutes

Archives and History Center, Columbia, South Carolina

May 24, 2007

    Present: Debra Bloom, Jim Cross, Dorothy Hazelrigg, Mike Kohl, Kate Moore, Heather South, Elizabeth West

  • Welcome

    President Elizabeth West called the meeting to order at 10:31 a.m.

  • Approval of minutes

    There were no corrections to the minutes of the February 22nd meeting. Mike moved that the minutes be approved and Debra seconded the motion. The minutes were approved.

  • Reports from Officers

    Vice President: Debra reported on the plans for the June 23 social in York. The mayor of York, Dr. Eddie Lee, will conduct a walking tour of the town. The group will also visit the McCelvey Center with Nancy Sambets. Debra set up a table at the spring conference with information on the social and emailed flyers to the membership list. Heather also put information on the event on the website. Elizabeth suggested trying to get it onto the events calendar in The State. Everyone was pleased with how well-organized the event is this year and hopes for a good turnout.

    Treasurer: Jim reported that the spring conference made $922.57 net profit. We had $2,800 in registrations. Mike noted that the response from inviting the public librarians was good, although it may be due to a digitization-related topic. Jim noted that among the county public libraries that sent representatives were Florence, Lancaster, Richland, Greenville, and Beaufort. He said some library attendees also joined as members. Response from the historical societies was less, although it was agreed to keep the societies on our broader mailing list. Mike said that a mailing of around 200 might result in perhaps 50 attendees. Mike asked if the treasurer's reports are placed online. Elizabeth said that the information is distributed at the fall conferences.

    Membership Officer: No report, as Henry Fulmer was absent. Elizabeth said that Henry told her there were no new members. Jim said he actually does have new additions for the membership list. Heather said that Henry told her to talk to Jim to get an updated list. Jim said he sends the membership info on to Henry and does not keep it himself, only copies of checks. Heather suggested that perhaps the membership is down because the records of who has joined/paid are confusing or incomplete. It was agreed that better records need to be kept to avoid looking unprofessional.

    Directors: Mike said that the costs of the spring conference were in line with previous ones, and we did not pay any honoraria this time, as our speakers gave talks as professional archivists. It was discussed whether professionals who are not members should receive honoraria (it is assumed that members who speak will not). At the very least they should be reimbursed for travel expenses, if any. Kate asked if the $922 profit was average. Mike said past conferences made more like $400-500. Mike discussed the evaluations. It was agreed that the lunch break was too long. The exhibits session began early, as there were many people sitting in the room ready to begin long before the scheduled time. A few people who work at the Archives went up to their offices and came back at the scheduled time, so they missed a few minutes of the session, but generally the response on the evaluations was good. Elizabeth was disappointed in the lack of evaluations of the scanning sessions. She said the logistics of transportation were fine, but that there wasn't enough time for everyone to get hands-on time. Jim said it was difficult to have any technical-themed workshop because of the unsuitability of the Archives facilities for hands-on training. Another complaint was the delays in getting Power Point presentations loaded onto the Archives computers. Heather suggested that presenters could send their presentations ahead of time, or come in 30 minutes early, to avoid problems. The issues with Power Points seem to occur at every conference. It may be necessary to require presenters to submit ahead of time. Mike thanked Heather for her work on the technology issues and said that it was just one reason that having an Archives staff member on the SCAA board is essential.

    Newsletter Editor: Kate reported that she had put out a special issue of the SCAAzette for the spring. She asked if we should aim for a summer issue, or just wait until fall. Everyone threw out ideas for a summer issue, including the spring workshop write-up, the social, the Pascal meeting of May 11, and a calendar of fall events. Dorothy said that a shorter, more frequent newsletter might not be a bad idea. Kate said she would attempt to get a summer issue together after the social. Debra said that someone from the public libraries could be asked to contribute news.

  • Old Business

    Jim asked if the website redesign was still planned. Kate said that Geoff LoCicero, who had been contracted to do it, had promised again to get around to it. He will not be paid until the work is done, although he has been paid for the newsletter design that he has already done. Heather asked why not get someone else to do it, since it had been repeatedly put off. Elizabeth said she would like to see it wrapped up this year, and Debra suggested setting a deadline, perhaps in time to advertise our “new” website at the fall conference. Jim suggested asking for a draft from Geoff by a few months from now, so there is time to revise/approve changes.

  • New Business

    Nominating Committee: The past president (Suzanne) chairs the committee and is responsible for recruiting members. Up for election this fall are the Membership Officer, Secretary, Mike's Director position, and Vice President.

    Awards Committee: This committee is chaired by the Vice President, and the same awards are not always given, but the established awards include the Archivist of the Year, Friend(s) of the Archives, Career Achievement Award, and President's Award. It was suggested that award nominations be solicited in the newsletter, although response has been historically poor. The list of past recipients and information about the awards has been slated to go up on the website, but no one knew if it had.

    Fall Conference: SCLA's meeting this year is October 31-November 2. The target dates for our fall conference were narrowed down to October 16-17 and 23-25. Heather will check on availability of the building. SCAA had been presented with a conference session idea from SCLA via Craig Keeney, which pertained to sustaining support for grant projects. The proposed panelists are Georgette Mayo, Greg Wilsbacher, and Bryan Collars. Jim said this could be done next year, along with other sessions about metadata, etc., when Pascal is further along with its digital efforts. Elizabeth said that waiting on this idea might be good, as some of the projects in question (the Avery Center's, USC's) have not yet resulted in any products.

    Session ideas from the spring conference evaluations were discussed. One was “using digital cameras in archives”, although it was unclear whether the suggestion referred to patrons' use or staff use. Kate brought up the possibility of expanding this idea into a broader discussion of policies and procedures generally. “Insuring collections” was another idea from the evaluations that could be addressed under this theme. Debra suggested a title of “Protecting Collections” for this session. Dorothy said that that title implies a focus on security. Elizabeth said that security could also be discussed-thefts, open stacks, etc. Another idea from the evaluations was the use of volunteers and/or student helpers. Various types of student workers were mentioned, including high school workers, those performing court-mandated community service, undergraduates vs. graduate students, etc. Debra said that a public library's use of students is different than most archives' use, so that would be a good counterpoint to address.

    The theme for the conference was decided to be policies and procedures, “Archives 101”, with four sessions: Insurance/Security, Reference/Patrons, Volunteers/Student Employment, and Deeds of Gift/Donor Relations.

    The organization of the fall conference may best be arranged into four shorter, sequential sessions, with no concurrent sessions, and saving extended Q & A for the end of the day. Mike reminded the Board that the business meeting would need to be included in the schedule. Jim said that with the approach we're considering, a lunchtime guest speaker may not be necessary or desirable. It was decided that the day could be less formally divided than usual; for example, beginning with announcements, proceeding directly into the first session, and breaking “organically” when a natural break occurs before the second session; then lunch and the business meeting, and an afternoon meeting covering the third and fourth sessions. Possible speakers mentioned include:

    Linda Rice, Clemson, insurance issues

    Herb Hartsook, USC, donor relations/deeds of gift

    Steve Tuttle, SCDAH, reference/patrons

    Robin Copp or Graham Duncan, USC, reference/patrons

    (Graham Duncan would also be qualified to speak about volunteers/students)

    Sarah Murray or Agnes Corbett, Camden Archives, volunteers

    Nancy Sambets, York Historical Center, reference/patrons

    Tonya Browder, Thompson Library, reference/patrons

    Grace Cordial, Beaufort County Public Library, volunteers

    Elizabeth and Mike will begin to contact some of the suggested speakers to see if they are willing to participate. Everyone will continue to think of possibilities for a lunch speaker, if necessary.

  • Date for next meeting

    There should be two more meetings before the fall conference, one perhaps a month or six weeks out, and one in July. The suggested date was July 11, at the Archives.

  • Adjournment

    Elizabeth adjourned the meeting at 12:53 p.m.