Closing her year as ASIS&T president, Diane Sonnenwald looks back with thanks to the many who volunteered time and effort as committee and task force chairs and members. Their accomplishments span promoting the discipline and advocating for information professionals, reaching beyond national boundaries through social media and meetings, and establishing an investment program to enhance finances. Committees also managed the awards process, expanded continuing education offerings and coordinated with ISO and NISO on standards. A name change will be voted on by the membership to recognize the associationís international scope. Membership categories are under review, and organizational collaborations and conference partnerships are being examined, all to promote the discipline and the association.
information associations information professionals continuing education international aspects collaboration meetings honors marketing
Bulletin, December 2012/January 2013
Diane H. Sonnenwald
2012 ASIS&T President
Head of School and Professor
School of Information Science and Library Studies
University College Dublin
Writing this Presidentís Page in early October as my term winds down, I want to use the opportunity to revisit some of the activities we undertook during the past year and to highlight discussions by the ASIS&T Board of Directors. Subsequent activities by the Board and members will be covered in the Presidentís Page of incoming president Andrew Dillon.
The Board met in August to review our finances and activities and to consider ways forward for our organization. ASIS&Tís finances continue to be strong under the leadership of Vicki Gregory, ASIS&T treasurer, and Dick Hill, our executive director. Task force and committee volunteers have been working on a variety of projects and deserve our thanks for donating their time and energy to make our organization successful. Their recent accomplishments are highlighted below. In looking to the future, the Board discussed ASIS&Tís name, membership categories and benefits, the Annual Meeting, partnering with other conferences and possible future collaborations with other organizations. Summaries of those discussions are provided below.
Task Force and Committee Activities
First of all, Iíd like to thank all committee and task force chairs and members for their efforts during the past year.
The Information Professionals Task Force, led by Sandy Hirsh, Prudence Dalrymple and Marcia Bates, is creating plans to strengthen our efforts to advocate for our discipline. Their plans include creating a first draft of a website to help market and advocate for information professionals.
The 75th Anniversary Task Force, led by Toni Carbo and Bob Williams, planned Ė and then implemented Ė an interesting pre-conference workshop and website celebrating our 75th anniversary. For those whose Annual Meeting plans changed with Superstorm Sandyís arrival, you can read the interesting historical information on the website at www.asis.org/asist2012/historyofASIST.html.
The Publications Committee, chaired by Bob Allen and Neil Smalheiser, has worked this year with Melissa Weaver at ASIS&T headquarters to increase ASIS&Tís presence in social media, while the International Relations Committee, chaired by Mei-Mei Wu, is investigating the feasibility of holding an Annual Meeting outside North America. Thanks to all members who completed their recent survey.
The Budget and Finance Committee, led by treasurer Vicki Gregory, researched and established an investment program that was approved earlier by the Board. This program will enable ASIS&T to earn income from its cash reserves.
The Standards Committee, chaired by Mark Needleman, has continued to expertly review ISO and NISO standards and make recommendations regarding these standards on ASIS&Tís behalf.
The Awards & Honors Committee, chaired by Katharine McCain and Ann Prentice, expertly arranged the many awards review processes, while the Nominations Committee, chaired by Linda Smith, selected an excellent slate of candidates for the membership to consider.
The Leadership Committee, led by Iris Xie, worked to create the leadership workshop at the Annual Meeting and review the applications for the James M. Cretos Leadership award.
The Information Science Education Committee, led by Kathleen Burnett and June Abbas, and the Online Education Task Force, chaired by Diane Rasmussen Neal, supported interesting Webinar offerings and explored future online education opportunities for ASIS&T.
Donald Case, leading the Constitution and Bylaws Committee, and Steve Hardin, serving as Parliamentarian, kept us all well informed about our rules and regulations.
Thanks again to all who worked on the task force groups and committees. All members appreciate your willingness to serve and your contributions. Your efforts help other members and our discipline in countless ways.
Looking Toward the FutureÖ Board Discussions in August
Vote Regarding Our Name. The Board voted to have a vote regarding our name, specifically, whether ASIS&T should become the ASsociation for Information Science & Technology instead of the American Society for Information Science & Technology. This issue was discussed in an earlier Bulletin (see www.asis.org/Bulletin/Apr-12/AprMay12_PresidentsPage.html) and in a Quicktopic discussion list (see www.quicktopic.com/47/H/bvJVhSC8HTs). All active members have received a ballot.
Exploring New Membership Categories and Benefits. The Board also discussed membership categories, and we will be exploring new forms of institutional memberships, initially focusing on what membership benefits might encourage information science educational programs/schools to join ASIS&T.
Improving Annual Meeting Processes. Previously, co-chairs of our Annual Meeting had to pay a registration fee in addition to working hard for over a year to organize the Annual Meeting. The Board voted to provide free registration to the co-chairs as a small token of our appreciation for their efforts.
The Board also established a subcommittee, consisting of Diane Neal, Katriina BystrŲm and Andrew Dillon, to create an Annual Meeting guidelines document to assist future co-chairs and headquarter staff. No such documentation exists currently.
The Board further established a second subcommittee, consisting of Cassidy Sugimoto, Shelly Warwick and Dick Hill, to investigate how workshops at the Annual Meeting might better meet the needs of chapters and SIGs.
Partnering with Other Conferences. The Board has voted to partner with the Library 2.012 (www.library20.com/page/2-012-conference) and the International Symposium on Information Science (ISI2013). Last year the Library 2.011 Conference had 6800 people, who signed up from more than 150 countries. ISI2013 (www.isi2013.de) is the main conference for information science in German-language countries, attracting 200-300 participants. The Board voted to be a no-cost partner for each of these conferences. This type of partnering helps increase ASIS&Tís visibility in communities that overlap with our own with no financial obligation.
Possible Collaborations with ALISE and iSchools. The current and incoming presidents of ALISE, the iSchool Caucus and ASIS&T recently held a conference call to discuss possible collaborations among our organizations in the future. During the call we brainstormed regarding possible areas of collaboration, including advocacy for the information professions. We hope these discussions will continue.
In Conclusion, Thanks to All
Cassidy Sugimoto (IU) has again worked hard this year on behalf of ASIS&T, serving as Chapter Assembly Chair and member of the Board. Her term ends with the Annual Meeting in October. Other Board members whose terms end this year are Elaine Toms and Prudence Dalrymple. Thank you very much for your efforts.
I also wish to thank the Annual Meeting co-chairs, Crystal Fulton, ShanJu Chang and Julie Hersberger, as well as the many track co-chairs. Few who have not co-chaired a conference of this size realize just how much work is involved in planning a meeting that is not only enjoyable by all, but also inspiring to its audience through the various workshops, presentations, meetings and networking events.
My thanks also to all Board members, including Linda Smith, immediate past president, and Andrew Dillon, incoming president, and to ASIS&T staff. Itís been a pleasure working with everyone this year, and I look forward to serving as immediate past president in the upcoming year.
Diane Sonnenwald was 2012 ASIS&T president. She is head of school and professor at the School of Information and Library Studies at University College Dublin and an adjunct professor in computer science at the University of North Carolina. Prior to joining academia she worked at Bellcore. The National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation and European Science Foundation, as well as private corporations and foundations, have funded her research. She can be reached at diane.sonnenwald<at>gmail.com>.
Articles in this Issue
President's Page: Diane Sonnenwald