SCAA Executive Board Meeting

Richland County Public Library Columbia, SC

January 9, 2009

Present: Debra Bloom, Brent Burgin, Jim Cross, Dawn Hammatt, Dorothy Hazelrigg, Susan Hoffius, Laura Jowdy, Georgette Mayo, Kate Moore, Heather South, Allison Thiessen, Elizabeth West

President Susan Hoffius called the meeting to order at 10:13 a.m.

  • Introduction of New Board Members

    The new Board members were introduced: Dawn Hammatt, the new vice president/president-elect; Allison Thiessen, the new treasurer; and Brent Burgin, the new first-year director.

  • Approval of July Minutes

    There were no corrections to the minutes of July 29. Jim moved that they be approved and Debbie seconded the motion. The minutes were approved.

  • Officers' Reports

    A. Treasurer: Jim handed out the treasurer's report and the proposed budget. There was a small loss this year due to one-time expenses, namely the logo design and the banner. We made a small profit on the fall conference. The report for 2008 does not include the Publisher software Laura purchased (which will be passed on to any future newsletter editors). Income on dues will probably not increase in the new year due to the economy, and the budget reflects no growth. Jim noted that we have not been making more profit on conferences, although they have cost more. He stated that “things have been getting tight for a while,” although we do have solid savings that would cover two or more years' operating expenses. We still have a 13-month CD that we can draw upon, although that will be reserved for a large purchase or an emergency. Susan asked about putting $500 into the budget for awards. Jim said that award money can be taken straight out of the Hart account in the future. There is no limitation on amounts withdrawn from the endowment. Heather commented that the Archives has had large budget cuts and that there will be fewer employees able to attend SCAA conferences. In addition, there may be a charge for use of the space. Susan asked if we should leave the budget as is, or try to reduce expenses now on paper. Everyone agreed to leave the budget as is since it is unclear how much less income we might get. Brent asked about primary expenses of the conferences and Jim reported that it is primarily the food, plus the printing and mailing of brochures. Some ideas for saving money, including box lunches and bulk-rate mailing, were discussed. A typo was corrected on page 2 of the budget. Debbie moved that the budget be accepted and Allison seconded. The budget was approved.

    B. Membership: Kate reported that we currently have about 79 members, although many have not yet paid 2009 dues. She passed out a sample renewal letter that she will soon send out to members who need to renew. The online forms will also be updated. A line for “additional contributions” was added, to allow members to make donations if they wish.

    C. Directors: Heather reported that there was a good turnout at the fall conference. There was a mix-up by one of the presenters on what time they were supposed to speak, but we rearranged the schedule on the fly. People seemed to enjoy the sessions on resumés and public speaking. Opportunities to serve on the committees or the Board should be publicized more heavily and earlier in the year. Debbie suggested that that could become part of the Past President's job and could be handled via email, on SHRAB's listserv, on the website, etc. Kate will send Debbie an up-to-date list of members. Despite cuts at the Archives, Heather thinks that Tim, the graphic designer who has helped with our brochures in the past, will still be able to help us.

    D. Vice President: Susan said that most of her projects had already been covered: last year's social, the awards at the fall conference, and the logo and website updates.

    E. Newsletter: Laura had been attempting a Fall issue of the newsletter, but software problems held it up. Kate suggested a Winter/Spring issue rather than two smaller issues. Laura said that she had enough material for an issue, but would be glad for any additional submissions. Bruce Langley has not yet submitted an article on his travel award and the conference he attended with it. Georgette will send some pictures she took at the fall conference. It was mentioned that a good theme for SCAA this year is our affordability. Laura suggested doing a cost comparison between SCAA, Society of Georgia Archivists (SGA), SAA, and Society of North Carolina Archivists (SNCA) for the newsletter. It could be an effective tool to recruit new members and convince administrators to support their employees attending SCAA meetings. We could also emphasize the Hart awards and their availability for our own conferences. Susan suggested a mailing to administrators with a cover letter. Another article idea was on how budget cuts are affecting archives in the area. For example, the South Caroliniana Library has cut evening hours and the Archives is now closed on Saturday. Laura and Heather will work on this piece. Kate mentioned that she and Dorothy have been working on an article about archival blogs in SC that they could finish for the next issue.

    F. Website: Susan said that Jennifer Welch, who is our webmaster, did not attend the meeting since she is not officially a Board member. If there are corrections to be made to the site, Jennifer will handle them.

  • Old Business

    A. PayPal: Jim researched how to implement PayPal on our website for dues and conference registration. Jennifer and Allison will work together to set it up. They will also write up a protocol to explain how the setup works for future reference. It is not included in our budget per se, but the fees come off the top. It may affect income slightly, but it could also boost our membership and registration. Jim talked with the treasurer of SGA about how it is working for them.

    B. Logo: Heather asked that Jennifer send the logo files to her to be used on the conference brochures.

  • New Business

    A. Awards: Elizabeth asked about the language governing the Hart endowment and the awards. There is no particular deadline as far as we can tell, and the rules do not seem to restrict us to awarding only $500 per year. The limit of $500 seems to be more of a convention, but it is probably a good one since one should not take out more than 5% of an endowed account. Income from the social also goes toward the awards. Kate suggested that we change the language to make it clearer that it is okay to apply for small awards up to $500. Susan said she would like to appoint an ad hoc committee, composed of Debbie, Dawn, and Elizabeth, to review the language governing awards and make it clearer. Perhaps by the next Board meeting they will be able to have some recommendations.

    B. Amendments to Bylaws/Procedures: Jim submitted language requiring that the treasurer keep a separate list of members with names and affiliations, while the full information goes to the membership officer. This is because members usually ask the treasurer whether or not their dues are paid. Also, there is a new federal reporting requirement for nonprofit organizations to keep their tax-exempt status, and Jim wrote language addressing this requirement to be added to the procedures. Debbie moved that the changes be accepted and Kate seconded. The changes were approved. Susan said that the webmaster could be appointed to the Board, as is the newsletter editor. Jennifer will draft language describing the webmaster's job and we can vote on it at the next meeting. The editorial changes needed for the procedure manuals can wait until all such changes are ready to be inserted.

    C. Membership Social: Holding the event on Friday seemed a popular change. Dawn said that the Upstate History Museum might be a good possible destination. Susan suggested inviting the Society of North Carolina Archivists.

    D. SCAA Archive: Jim gave Dorothy some files pertaining to his work as treasurer. No one knows if we have an electronic version of the procedure manuals, but it might be found in our archive. The archive is at the South Caroliniana Library. Technically the secretary is responsible for the archive, but Dorothy has not seen it, and departing Board members have not always turned over their material. Susan suggested clarifying the language in the manuals to make it clear that Board members should contribute their papers to the archive.

    E. Membership Survey: Susan said that, with the support of the Board, she had sent a letter of intent to apply to SHRAB for a grant to support conducting a membership survey. Now the application needs to be completed. To receive a SHRAB grant, a 50% cash or in-kind match is required. Possible expenses for a survey include a subscription to Survey Monkey (or similar site) and hiring someone to design a statistically significant survey and analyze results. Dawn knows a survey consultant, and will ask him about a reasonable price for drafting a survey of perhaps 100 questions. SGA did a survey of its members based on the A*CENSUS survey done several years ago. Our survey will help find out what SCAA is doing that is duplicative, what isn't working, etc., and may also draw on the A*CENSUS questions. Susan hopes to arrange a meeting of stakeholders in the survey, including the Palmcop board, CALM officers, etc. She contacted about 12 groups in the SC archival community to get input.

    The meeting adjourned for lunch at 12:15 p.m. The meeting reconvened at 1:55 p.m.

    F. Spring Workshop/Fall Annual Meeting: Palmcop would like to hold a joint fall meeting with us. Susan is working with Marie Ferrara on planning. Georgette suggested that SCAA's tenth anniversary should be acknowledged, perhaps with a recognition of founding members. The spring program could consist of an EAD workshop. Susan has talked with John White at College of Charleston, who has an LSTA grant that could help pay for an EAD workshop, although it would probably need to be held at the College. To have an effective workshop, you would really need a computer lab for hands-on work, so we would need some institution to donate time in its lab. Brent asked how many institutions are using EAD. There was a mixed response among the Board, and no one is really sure how popular EAD is in the state, or what size audience such a workshop would draw. The hands-on workshop we held on digitization was popular, but logistically difficult. Laura suggested a session on “new” tools for archivists, especially open-source ones, such as Archivists' Toolkit. The most popular conference topic suggested on the evaluations was grant writing. Georgette said she had already spoken with Carolyn Lackey, a consultant in Charleston, about possibly speaking at a conference. A session on grant-writing would also be timely in the current economic climate, and might help attendees justify the cost of attending to their employers. It was suggested that a morning session could cover ideas for grants, and different types, including lesser-known grant programs. There could be a basic introduction to grants, then a roundtable, where grant recipients could share experiences and grantors could speak about what gets their attention. The afternoon could focus on how to turn ideas into proposals, with a hands-on component much like the recent press release-writing session. Everyone wanted to make sure to address a variety of audiences with the workshop, including lone arrangers. Possible speakers include John Sands, Jeanette Bergeron, Roy Tryon, and Michael Kohl. Another idea was for a detailed handout that would list grant sources. Potential dates are March 19 or 26, and April 16. Heather will check on availability and cost. She had already looked at availability for the fall meeting, which includes October 26-29. Much of the rest of the fall is already booked, so we need to decide early. Susan asked whether she could give Palmcop a commitment for a joint meeting in the fall. Everyone felt it was a good idea. She suggested inviting a Palmcop representative to one of our Board meetings to help with planning.

    G. SCAA Storage: Heather mentioned that currently the SCAA banner and other materials are stored in her cubicle at the Archives. She suggested that we may want to acquire a metal storage locker to place in one of the alcoves at Archives for storage. Elizabeth suggested that South Caroliniana's John Heiting might be willing to look into getting one for us at surplus.

  • Next meeting

    The next meeting was tentatively scheduled for 10 a.m. on Feb. 24 at the Archives.

  • Adjournment

    The meeting was adjourned at 3:00 p.m.