Minutes of the Meeting
President William Lipe called the 61st Annual Business
Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology to order at 5:07 p.m. on April
12, 1996. The Secretary established that a quorum existed. The President sought
approval of the minutes of the 60th Annual Business Meeting (1995) in
Minneapolis, Minn., published in SAA Bulletin 13(4):44. It was so moved,
seconded, and these minutes were approved.
President Lipe then delivered his report, noting that the society's membership has reached an all-time high and that this is the largest annual meeting ever, with nearly 3,000 registrants. He devoted substantial comments to government affairs, public education, and American Antiquity.
The president announced that SAA Executive Director Ralph Johnson is stepping down at the end of April to accept another position and thanked him for the superb job he has done for the society. All present rose for sustained applause in appreciation of Ralph's service. President Lipe described the search that had been undertaken and announced the hiring of a new executive director, Tobi Brimsek, whom he introduced. He noted the high level of SAA activity and suggested that the coming year be devoted to consolidation of extant programs and increased attention to SAA committees.
Treasurer W. Fred Limp then presented his report, including an illustrated overview of the society's $1,023,000 budget. He noted that the society was likely to finish the year with a small surplus and that the society's reserves remain above the 30 percent limit of the annual operating budget set by board policy.
Secretary Keith Kintigh reported the results of the election. Elected were: President-elect Vincas Steponaitis, Secretary-elect Lynne Sebastian, board members Donna Seifert and Melvin Aikens, and 1997 nominating committee members Ruthann Knudson and Katherine Spielmann. The bylaws amendment establishing the Ethics Committee as a standing committee was overwhelmingly approved.
Executive Director Ralph C. Johnson expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to serve SAA. He indicated his great confidence in the society and conveyed his deepest thanks to the members, the committees, the leadership, and the staff of SAA.
SAA Bulletin Editor Mark Aldenderfer reported briefly on the status of the Bulletin. Outgoing American Antiquity Editor Michael Graves reviewed changes to the journal during his term as editor and expressed thanks for the help he has received. Outgoing Latin American Antiquity Editor David Pendergast briefly discussed the journal, commented on the transition to new coeditors Gary Feinman and Linda Manzanilla, and also thanked those who had provided assistance.
Government Affairs Committee chair Judith Bense then reviewed the Government Affairs Program activities coordinated by the committee and by Government Affairs Manager Donald Craib. She described the reorganization of the committee and the appointment of state representatives for the Government Affairs Network (GANSRs). Bense noted the success of the "Washington Politics" forum held at the meeting and reported on the development of an SAA Archaeology Lobbying Day each spring.
Following these reports, President Lipe thanked outgoing Executive Board members John Rick and Julie Stein, outgoing editors David Pendergast and Michael Graves, and outgoing committee chairs and members for their service. SAA awards were then presented by the president. Presidential Recognition Awards went to Antoinette Moore, Jonathan Lizee, Brian Fagan, George Stuart, Carol Shull, Suzanne Fish, and Paul Fish; the Book Award to Mary C. Stiner; the Ceramic Studies Award to Dean E. Arnold; the Crabtree Award to James H. Word; the Cultural Resource Management Award to William R. Hildebrandt; the Dissertation Award to Daniel R. Finamore with an honorable mention to Marcia-Ann Dobres; the Fryxell Award to Elizabeth S. Wing; the Lithic Studies Award to Jay K. Johnson; the Regular/Professional Poster Award to Stephen H. Lekson; the Student Poster Awards to Adam King and Clinton C. Hoffman; the Gene S. Stuart Award to Matt Crenson; the Public Service Award to the Honorable Bill Richardson, Representative of New Mexico; and the Distinguished Service Award to Robert McCormick Adams. While Lipe offered a special citation to Ralph Johnson for his service to SAA, Johnson was presented with gifts from members who had worked closely with him.
No new business was introduced. Ceremonial Resolutions were delivered by Chair Jon Muller who diligently prepared and presented the thank-you resolutions for the annual meeting. These included special thanks to this year's program cochairs Paul Fish and Suzanne Fish, outgoing executive board members, outgoing journal editors, outgoing SAA committee chairs and members and condolences for departed colleagues. A standing moment of silence was observed.
The 61st Annual Business Meeting was adjourned at 6:25 p.m. by President Lipe.
Keith W. Kintigh
In her report, Judy Bense will outline the work that has been done in government affairs. At this time last year, we were facing the possibility of devastating attacks on archaeology and historic preservation by some members of Congress. We fought hard to repell these attacks, usually in alliance with the Society for Historical Archaeology and other organizations devoted to archaeology, cultural resource management, and historic preservation. We were successful in preserving core laws and programs, but saw federal and state programs weakened by budget cuts, shutdowns, funding holdbacks, and shifting priorities. There is much work to be done to rebuild a strong national commitment to preserve, study, and interpret our archaeological heritage. Out of this difficult year, however, came much stronger SAA programs in government affairs. In the Washington office, Donald Craib steadily built up the society's information-gathering and lobbying capability, while Judy Bense worked very hard to restructure the Government Affairs Committee and establish a grass-roots network of concerned members throughout the nation.
In response to calls from both inside and outside of our field to make federally mandated archaeology more efficient and effective, SAA and the Society of Professional Archaeologists sponsored a small working conference in February entitled "Renewing Our National Archaeological Program." The participants came from federal and state agencies, academia, the consulting field, and tribal archaeology programs. Recommendations were developed on five topics: (1) improving implementation of the National Historic Preservation Act with respect to archaeology, (2) increasing professional knowledge and expertise at all levels of archaeological resource management, (3) making better use of existing information in decision making about archaeological resources, (4) improving the dissemination of information to archaeologists and the public from publicly mandated archaeology, and (5) recognizing multiple interests in archaeology and in archaeological sites and materials. An SAA Bulletin article and a longer report are planned; it is hoped that these will stimulate further discussion within the society and that they will provide a basis for society positions on related public policy issues.
Public education continued to be a major focus of attention for the SAA, with the Public Education Committee serving as a continuing generator of energy and ideas. One of the notable accomplishments of the past year was launching a pilot project to promote state archaeological education progarms. A grant competition was funded by several federal agencies; 19 proposals were submitted, and the grant was awarded to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission to support coordination of archaeology education activities across the state. The leaders of the Public Education Committee also worked with SAA Executive Director Ralph Johnson to secure outside funds so the position of manager of public education could be filled for one year. This position is now in the capable hands of Dorothy Krass in the SAAWashington office.
Editing our flagship journal American Antiquity is an enormously demanding job, and Michael Graves is finishing his term as editor after having successfully made some major changes. The journal has been redesigned, and is visually much more appealing. The sometimes contentious questions surrounding publication of obituaries and Current Research have been resolved, and American Antiquity from now on will have a significantly higher number of pages devoted to articles and reports. Despite these successes, Michael will be the first to admit that the pressure of his many other professional obligations often caused decisions on manuscripts to be delayed, and that communication with authors was sometimes poor. With the aid of a three-person panel of senior editors, the Publications Committee has recommended changes in policy, procedure, and financial support that are needed to avoid such problems in the future. The SAA board is fully committed to supporting the changes needed to keep American Antiquity strong, and incoming editor Lynne Goldstein is working very hard to implement new procedures.
A substantial part of the success of SAA over the past three years has been due to the skilled and untiring work of our Executive Director, Ralph Johnson. People of his ability are always in demand, so it was not a great surprise when Ralph announced in January that he had accepted an unsolicited offer to become president of a publishing company in Santa Fe at a much higher salary than SAA could pay him. We have undertaken a search for Ralph's successor, receiving approximately 175 applications. Our top candidate, Tobi Brimsek from the Special Libraries Association, has now signed a contract with us. She has approximately 15 years experience in the association management field and, as Assistant Executive Director at SLA, was responsible for a staff and budget larger than SAA's. She is a classic example of a liberal arts major who made good; in addition to earning Phi Beta Kappa honors as an undergraduate, she has Master's degrees in Spanish Literature and Library Science, and also has earned Certified Association Executive status. She will join the staff on April 24. Welcome, Tobi.
I'm also honored to take this occasion to introduce a delegation from the International Union of Protohistoric and Prehistoric Sciences (UISPP). The Union is sponsoring a major congress next September in Forli, Italy. I'm pleased to welcome the General Secretary of the UISPP, Jacques Nenquin, and the leaders of the Forli Congress--Carlo Peretto, Carlo Giunchi, Silvia Costantini, and Lorene Rafiani. The UISPP has made a strong effort to include American scholars in the Forli Congress, and on behalf of the SAA, I express my thanks for these efforts, and encourage SAA members to become involved in the work of the UISPP.
As for the coming year, I do not see us launching major new programs or initiatives. We have much to do in following through on programs and projects recently begun and in continuing to nurture those that have long been in place. In particular, I hope this can be the year of the committee--one in which we focus on providing better communication with and better service to those groups of volunteers who are so vital to the character and work of the society.
It has been an important goal of the Executive Board to increase the information provided to the membership about matters of importance to them and particularly about the society's finances. I hope that all members have reviewed the very detailed financial information provided in a recent Bulletin article. This detailed data is the result of an excellent automated accounting system now in place and careful attention to budgeting and billing by the central office staff, particularly David Whitlock, Director of Finance and Administration, and Leon Bathini, Manager of Accounting Services.
In keeping with the thrust to provide more information on the society's finances, I would like to review a number of multi-year trends. As shown in Figure 1, membership has grown substantially over the last five years.
Membership in FY 90 was 4,606. For this year, membership is projected to exceed 6,000, a more than 30 percent increase. Meeting attendance has seen similar growth (Fig. 2). In Las Vegas our attendance was 1,736. In New Orleans there were 2,946 registered as of the business meeting. Our last meeting in New Orleans had 2,140 present, so we have seen a meeting attendance increase of more than 37 percent for the same venue.
Institutional subscriptions to American Antiquity and Latin American Antiquity have both grown over the last six years (Fig. 3). In 1990 we had 971 institutional subscribers to American Antiquity and 95 for Latin American Antiquity. In FY 95 there were 1,016 and 251 respectively. Given the declining budgets for libraries, the fact that these subscriptions have not only held their own but have grown is a very positive sign.
The trends in the society's overall fiscal situation are shown in Figure 4. The society's income in FY 90 was $518,377 and its expenses were $498,640; by comparison, the expenses in FY 95 were $984,067 and the revenue was $976,118. In FY 90, 91, 92 and 93 the society had budget surpluses.
These surpluses were intentionally built while the society was managed by the Bostrom Corporation and did not have its own staff, programs, or offices. The surpluses were designed to provide for the many expenses associated with the development of a professional staff, creation of a central office, and development of many member programs. These developments resulted in a deficit of $27,753 in FY 94 and one of $7,949 in FY 95. Over this period, the society has not had to borrow money while making substantial--but essential--capital investments. As a result, the society's cash reserves, which were $300,711 in FY 90, are now $307,262 in FY 96 (Fig. 5). More significant, the society has increased its fixed assets from only $4,873 in FY 90 to $115,251 in FY 96. Even though the reserves are larger in dollar amount, they are currently a smaller fraction of the society's annual budget (32 percent) and have had their value reduced by inflation.
An important factor in any organization is how it allocates its expenses and revenues (Fig. 6). Using the society's accounting system, it is possible to determine where various income and expense charges should be allocated. The central office staff keeps careful track of their efforts and staff time, and other costs are allocated to the appropriate budget category. Awards expenses are those associated with the purchase of awards, and the income is interest from accounts allocated to awards. Governance expenses are those associated with the president, officers, and board.
Member programs and services revenues include those from merchandise and workshops, and the expenses are those of the society's committees, task forces, and the on-line system. Organization and administration expenses are those of the central office that cannot be allocated to the specific categories and other expenses, such as rent. Income is interest on investments. Public programs income is grant income and the expenses include the public archaeology programs (including the newsletter) and the government affairs programs. Publications include the cost of production of the two journals and the Bulletin, editorial costs, and mailing. Income includes advertisement and institutional subscriptions. Meeting expenses are all those associated with the annual meeting, and revenue includes registration fees and income from the rental of exhibitor booths. Finally, membership includes income from memberships, and expenses are those necessary to serve the memberships, such as for mailings and ballots. Clearly, the society's finances are membership driven. The great majority of net income is from membership dues though there is a modest net revenue from the meetings. As is the nature of any similar organization, all other society programs are supported by dues with public programs having the greatest difference between income and expenses, followed by organization and administration and governance. Viewed in a somewhat different way: one-third of the society's expenses go for publications, one-fourth each for annual meetings and public programs, and the rest (about one-eight) to organization, administration, member programs, and governance.
* as President-elect, Vincas Steponaitis
* as Secretary-elect, Lynne Sebastian
* to the at-large Executive Board Positions, Mel Aikens and Donna Seifert
* elected members of the 1997 Nominating Committee are Ruthann Knudson and Katherine Spielmann
On behalf of the society, I want to thank the other individuals who agreed to stand for election: Margaret Conkey, Patricia Gilman, Judy Bense, Tim Kohler, Sarah Schlanger, Barbara Voorhies, Linda Cordell, Tom Dillehay, Vergil Noble, Jr., and Thomas Patterson. For assembling such a fine slate of candidates, we commend the Nominating Committee chaired by Jeremy Sabloff with members Judy Brunson-Hadley, Kathleen Deagan, Michael Moratto, and Debora Nichols, with Barbara Stark serving ex officio.
The proposed amendment to the bylaws establishing the Ethics Committee as a standing committee was approved by an overwhelming vote. In the 1996 election, a total of 1,672 valid ballots was received by the deadline, representing 28 percent of the voting members of the society. It is a traditional secretarial courtesy not to state publicly the vote totals, but such information is a matter of record open to any member. I thank Ralph Johnson and the executive office staff for efficiently conducting the elections on behalf of the secretary.
I've reserved just one word for the leadership of the society--Bravo! I respect your vision and your dedication. I commend your commitment to creating an organization that excels in serving its members, providing leadership to the profession, and advocating--emphatically and consistently--for public policy that encourages protection and interpretation of the archaeological record. Rather than "playing it safe," you have been receptive to new ideas and approaches, and willing to take risks while fostering a more robust and vigorous organization.
There is another collection of individuals who have been an inspiration to me as well--the staff at SAA headquarters. I cannot imagine working with a more committed, bright, innovative, energeticand--on most days--festive group of colleagues. I appreciate the thoughtful work you do and the constantly enlarging body of knowledge you are developing on the society, its objectives, and its programs.
Finally, I want to thank the society for providing a tremendously challenging and rewarding opportunity to me. It has been my pleasure to dream and plan and collaborate with you. My interaction with you has expanded my understanding and enriched me immensely. Thank you very much.
This has been a busy year for us, and I hope you've seen some of the changes we've made in both the content and design of the Bulletin. As most of you know, we now have a new obituary policy, and soon, all obituaries will be published in the Bulletin. I know this has been a difficult and divisive issue, one that has taken a good bit of soul-searching to decide. I will appoint a new editor for obituaries shortly, and I hope you'll be patient with the transition.
I'm pleased to inform you that I have kept the promise to appoint associate editors for Latin American affairs. Jose Luis Lanata of the Universidad de Buenos Aires has agreed to become editor for the Southern Cone, and will shortly assume his duties. He has some great ideas about how to disseminate information in both directions, and has been giving some thought to how SAA might expand its presence in Brazil. I've been less successful in finding a Mexican editor. My first candidate, Linda Manzanilla, has gone on to be coeditor of Latin American Antiquity. She has, however, suggested some new candidates and I hope one of these will elect to work with us.
We have had limited success in getting back issues of the Bulletin on line. We presently have every issue under my editorship [volumes 11(3) through 14(2)] in some electronic form, and I have accumulated a number of the issues of volumes 9 and 10. I hope to be able to get at least these volumes up over the summer, and we'll look into earlier volumes when and if we can locate copies of them.
One success has been the creation of a new column on technology and archaeology--Interfaces. I see this column as a means by which archaeologists can learn about emerging technologies in a timely manner. I want it to have a practical dimension as well--how new technologies can help you do a better job with your field or lab research. We've run columns on laser measuring devices and handheld computers, and I look forward to presenting other columns. If you have any suggestions, please let me know.
If you have access to the Internet, you probably have noticed the changes we have made in the electronic Bulletin. We've changed the design of the page, added a search engine so you can find out how many times your name has appeared in the Bulletin over the past three years, created a guestbook for the registration of complaints and kudos, and finally, you can sign up for automatic updates whenever we make changes or additions to the page. In many ways, the development of the electronic Bulletin has been the most exciting aspect of my editorship, and I honestly believe SAA, along with its new web page, is well ahead of the curve for a scholarly society in terms of its willingness to engage in the exploration of future-oriented technologies.
I see the coming year as one of consolidation. We'll continue to report on society business and initiatives, and I hope our columns will engage your interest and stimulate your imagination. Thanks for your continued support, and as always, I look forward to your comments and advice.
My editorship has witnessed and paralleled the substantial changes represented in the discipline and in our professional society. When I began receiving papers for review in early 1992 and I considered the state of the journal, I started thinking about the role American Antiquity should play as one of the society's flagship publications. Over the next three years and after consulting with the Executive Board, we have shifted some of the departments formerly represented in American Antiquity (e.g., Current Research, and soon, Obituaries) to other venues and I have consciously limited the number of editorials published in the journal. Publishing the backlog of Obituaries will be completed this year. The goal here was not only to place these departments where their function made more sense, but also to increase the number of pages devoted to papers reporting on research in American Antiquity. Since 1992 and with roughly 800 pages devoted to each volume, the proportion of pages for research findings has increased from 70 to nearly 85 percent of the journal space. That is more than 100 pages per volume.
I have also encouraged the publication of papers covering regions outside of North America, and within North America, regions which might not have had as much exposure previously, including Canada, the Pacific Northwest, the Northeast and Atlantic regions. Nonetheless, American Antiquity remains an Americanist journal, primarily one devoted to North America. The percentage of papers published in American Antiquity pertaining to regions outside of North America constitute less than 20 percent of the total. The criteria used to publish these papers continues to emphasize their general method related or theoretical contributions to the discipline as a whole.
During my editorship I have also been sensitive to the issue of author representation in the journal. I have some data indicating that we have increased the diversity of authors published in American Antiquity. I have been especially successful in increasing the representation of authors affiliated with nonacademic positions (e.g., in contract archaeology or in governmental historic preservation programs) in American Antiquity. I felt this would to some extent ameliorate the effects of our decision to limit the publication of Current Research in the journal. By my estimation the percentage of non-academic authors has grown from 10 to 30 percent of all the authors listed in the research contributions. We have also witnessed an increase in the percentage of authors at academic institutions which do not offer doctoral degrees in anthropology. I remain concerned, however, by the leveling off of contributions authored by women in the past three years.
I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge the important role played by the Reviews and Book Notes Editors, Charlotte Beck and Tom Jones (Hamilton College). They have eliminated the backlog of reviews and have shortened the time between the publication of a book and its review in American Antiquity. I also need to thank Douglas Givens (St. Louis Community College) for serving as Assistant Editor for Obituaries and History. Again, we have eliminated the backlog of unpublished obituaries. Finally, Chris Carr (Arizona State University) and Hector Neff (University of Missouri) for serving as Assistant Editors for mathematics and statistics.
All of these changes and accomplishments have been achieved without any loss of quality in the papers published in American Antiquity. I would argue, in fact, that each issue of the journal is now more likely to include research on topics of interest to most members of the society and the discipline of archaeology.
In the last two years we have also changed the appearance of American Antiquity along with the other publications of the society. New cover art for each issue of the journal was professionally designed, along with new cover color combinations. We also altered the size of print and introduced double-wide columns. I have had only positive reaction to these changes, which have made American Antiquity more visually appealing and easier to read.
During my editorship we have also changed the location and position of managing editor. Janet Walker was hired and she coordinates the production of the journal out of the Washington D.C. office. Janet has been instrumental in streamlining some of the paperwork involved and in improving the production values and schedule for each issue of the journal. I have come to understand how important the position of managing editor is for running interference for the editor and for helping to maintain the timely review of papers. And it has been in these areas where my editorship has experienced the most difficulty. For those who have had decisions on their papers delayed, I offer my apologies.
As I pass the editorship on to Lynne Goldstein, I would like to take one final opportunity to thank the Executive Board and the staff of the Society for American Archaeology for the support that I have received during these last three to four tumultuous years at American Antiquity. To those who submitted papers to the journal and to those whose papers we published, I want to express my deep appreciation for your commitment to keeping American Antiquity at the forefront of archaeological method and theory while adding significantly to our substantive understanding of Americanist prehistory and history.
I want also to take this opportunity to express my thanks to my editorial assistant, Julia Murphy, who came to archaeology from social anthropology and has somehow managed to survive the experience. My thanks go as well to Janet Walker, whose tireless assistance has done so much to make the journal what it is today. My one regret is that the dates on issue covers do not yet reflect times of appearance. The fault for the lateness lies entirely with me, and I am convinced that it will be corrected very quickly by the new editors. If they see this statement as a very heavy stone hanging over their heads by a very thin thread, they are absolutely right.
Finally, I want to express my gratitude to Ralph Johnson, not only for his unflinching support, but also for the increase in jollity that he has brought to Executive Board meetings, and for his enrichment of the language through the introduction of the deathless phrase "mind-numbing time suck."
I work with the remains of an ancient society that was very focused on termination rituals, and it seems only appropriate--as I complete my cycle--that I do as the ancient Maya would have done and bring things to a proper end. Now, in the presence of this august body and under the ever-watchful eye of the Rabbit Scribe, I ceremonially break my editor's pencil.
Be it resolved that the appreciation and congratulations on a job well done be tendered retiring Officer Fred Limp, retiring Board Members John Rick and Julie Stein, retiring Editors and ex officio Board Members Michael Graves and David Pendergast, and last but not least, Executive Director Ralph Johnson, and others who have served the society on its committees and in other ways;
To the staff who planned the meeting, and especially Brighid Brady-de-Lambert who will soon be leaving the SAA executive office, and to all the volunteers who worked at registration and other tasks;
To the Program Committee, cochaired by Paul Fish and Suzanne Fish, and Assistant Program Chair, Arthur McWilliams, and members David Anderson, James Bayman, Stephen Kowalewski, Teresita Majewski, Emily McClung de Tapia, Katharina Schreiber, Joseph Schuldenrein, Steven Shackley, Carla Sinopoli, and LuAnn Wandsnider.
To the Local Advisory Committee chaired by Jill-Karen Yakubik.
And be it further resolved that thanks again be given to those who inform us of the deaths of colleagues, and finally,
A resolution of sympathy to the families and friends of Enver Y. Bostanai, Ricardo Bueno Cano, Heidi Fogel, Franklin Folsom, Christoph von Fürer-Haimendorf, Jacquetta Hawkes, Clarissa Hunter-Tate, L. B. Jones, Henri Laville, H. Douglas Osborne, Arnold Pilling, William A. Ritchie, Harriot Topsey, Jacquiline Adams Turner, Terah Leroy Smiley, Jerome Voss, Mildred Mott Wedel, A. Helene Warren, J. Raymond Williams, Warren Wittry.