ASC EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING
Friday April 21, 2006 and Saturday April 22, 2006
Los Angeles Biltmore Hotel
Attending: Robert Agnew, Donna Bishop, Todd Clear, Chris Eskridge, Denise Gottfredson, Julie Horney, Gary Lafree, Janet Lauritsen, Alan Lizotte, Jim Lynch, Doris Mackenzie, Alex Piquero, Michael Tonry, Chris Uggen, Pat Van Voorhis, John Wright.
The meeting was called to order at 3:05 pm, April 21, 2006.
1. Executive Director’s Report
Chris Eskridge noted that the Society is in solid financial condition. Nevertheless, a financial loss is expected for the Los Angeles meeting, due in part to the costs of busing participants between hotels and the convention facility.
2. Treasurer’s Report
John Wright described the ASC budget and financial reporting plans and procedures. The society has a short-term shortfall linked to the Los Angeles meeting but should also anticipate long-term increases in staffing costs and other expenditures. The Board discussed ways of increasing revenue without placing undue burden on the membership.
3. ASC Committee Reports
A. Award Committees
1. Sellin-Glueck – In progress.
2. Herbert Bloch – The Board unanimously accepted the Committee’s nomination of Rosemary Barberet.
3. August Vollmer – In progress.
4. Edwin Sutherland – The Board discussed the nomination procedures that permit publishers to make nominations. A motion to accept the committee’s report and nomination of Dan Nagin was accepted (with 1 opposed and 1 abstention).
5. Ruth Shonle Cavan – In progress.
6. Fellows – The Board unanimously approved the Committee’s nominations of Gary Lafree, Peggy Giordano, and Neal Shover.
7. Michael Hindelang (final due 9/1) – In progress.
8. Outstanding Paper (final due 9/1) – In progress.
9. Presidential Justice Award – The Board accepted the nomination of Matt Perez by unanimous vote.
B. Constitution & By-Laws Committee (no new report)
C. Future’s Committee
Gary Lafree described the activities of the new ASC Future’s Committee. Chris Eskridge was excused from the room as executive director and the Board met in executive session to discuss office operations.
1. The Future’s Committee is considering the ASC’s current location in Columbus, Ohio and the possibility of moving the business office to a new site. Ohio State has made improvements to the Columbus space and requests that the Society to sign at least a five-year lease. The organization plans to hire a three-quarter-time bookkeeper, and two administrators in Ohio who would have knowledge of the Society and its operations. After some discussion, a motion to authorize Chris Eskridge to sign a lease for five years with Ohio State was approved with 1 abstention.
2. The committee recommends that the Society begin planning a redesign of the ASC website. Janet Lauritsen has agreed to lead the effort to help develop a more professional face for the organization, make the site more user-friendly, and integrate new features. A motion to authorize expenditures of up to $10,000 for website redesign was unanimously approved by the Board.
3. The Criminologist and its current functions are also under review. The Board discussed issues of design, the frequency of publication, online availability, ways to incorporate content from ASC divisions, avenues for publicizing new books by members, and possible columns to be written by Society officers. Robert Agnew will take the lead in developing new content and putting forward recommendations.
4. The Futures Committee is also considering other scholarly functions that the ASC might provide, including training, support for teaching, policy forums, and communication strategies. The Committee asked the Board to consider retaining a management consultant with expertise in non-profit organizations and associations, bringing a concrete report and proposals to the Board within a year. The consultant could advise the Society on long-term planning and finances, issues such as relocation, new or amended functions, and staffing. Chris Eskridge spoke in favor of hiring a management consultant to address long-term strategies but stressed the Society’s immediate staffing and office needs. A motion to authorize up to $10,000 for a management consultant with specialization in non-profit and professional associations was approved unanimously. Michael Tonry volunteered to begin the search for a consultant.
5. A motion to continue the Futures Committee for one year with its current membership (augmented by past and future ASC presidents) was approved unanimously.
D. Membership Committee – no report
E. Minority Affairs Committee - final report due 8/15
The Minority Affairs Committee proposed splitting the award to authorize 4 rather than 3 Graduate Fellowships for Ethnic Minorities awards. A motion to accept the report and authorize 4 rather than 3 awards was approved 8:6 with one abstention.
F. Minority Scholar (final due 8/15) – Todd Clear
The committee received five proposals but decided not to make any awards this year. Each scholar/mentor team received comments and suggestions on their proposals.
G. Nominations Committee (final due 10/1) – progress report
The Executive Board’s composition and nomination procedures were discussed. A request to limit Board membership to no more than one person from a single institution and to reserve at least one seat on the Board for a representative from a non-Ph.D.-granting institution was considered. The Board discussed avenues for securing more nominations. The current nomination process allows any ASC member to be placed on the ballot by obtaining 50 signatures, and it allows for self-nominations as well. Chris Eskridge volunteered to respond to the proposal with information on the nomination process and an invitation to come forward with nominations.
H. Publications Committee
1. Blackwell is now bundling Criminology & Public Policy with Criminology, which will likely increase subscriptions to Criminology & Public Policy. Full text for both journals is now available online.
2. Denise Gottfredson described the work of the Publications Committee to archive books by members. Under one plan, the Society would pay approximately $10,000 per year. Because the Google organization is now digitizing the entire holdings of five major university libraries, the Committee did not think it wise to invest further in digitizing these materials ourselves. Books that are out-of-print but remain under copyright may also be archived, so long as the copyright holder gives Google permission to digitize the work.
3. Criminology & Public Policy editor recommendations. Denise Gottfredson recused herself from the Publications Committee because of a potential conflict of interest and David McDowall assumed the chair of the committee. The Publications Committee brought two bids forward and the Board discussed the merits of each proposal, including the journal’s mission, the proposed Editorial Boards, and the availability of institutional resources and support. A motion to enter into final negotiations with Florida State University was approved unanimously with four abstentions.
I. Liasions to Related Societies
1. COSSA – Jim Lynch reported on the Consortium of Social Science Associations. COSSA is an effective advocate for the Society when important ASC interests are threatened (e.g., regarding the availability of data or federal funding to the National Institute of Justice or the Bureau of Justice Statistics). The Board noted that COSSA has organized hearings with researchers on important political topics and the Society’s responsibility to the scientific community to contribute to COSSA. A motion to continue to fund COSSA was approved unanimously. The Board discussed mechanisms for making the membership more aware of COSSA’s activities via the ASC website, committees, and commissioning Howard Silver of COSSA to write an article for The Criminologist that would help explain the organization and its functions to the membership.
2. AAAS – No Report
3. United Nations – The ASC United Nations coordinator serves as the Board’s liaison and coordinates the activities of other ASC members vis-à-vis the UN. The Board views United Nations involvement as an important and complex issue meriting further consideration once a report on the first year’s activities by UN coordinator Ineke Marshall is received. The Board discussed the proper role of ASC delegates at the annual Crime Commission meetings, emphasizing that no delegate is authorized to speak for the Society as a whole. The Board is working with the UN Coordinator to identify a reasonable and pragmatic selection mechanism to define and facilitate ASC participation at UN meetings. A motion to request a report from the UN Coordinator for the November meeting, to fund her request for $1,800 in travel expenses, and to make no additional NGO commitments until the November meeting was approved by unanimous vote of the Board.
J. Student Affairs Committee (including Mentoring Program).
Bonnie Berry submitted a report to the Board on the costs and activities of the Mentoring Program. Her request for $500 to help offset these costs was approved by unanimous vote.
K. Student Awards Committee (final due 8/15) – in progress.
4. CRIMINOLOGY Report
The first issue under the new editorship was published in February. A new style guide is available and the online submission system is being debugged. The Board considered Denise Gottfredson’s eligibility to re-apply for a second term as editor in light of her succession of Ray Paternoster at the University of Maryland. Under current policy, editors may serve consecutive terms. A solicitation for competitive bids for the next editorial team will be advertised in The Criminologist in fall 2006. The new editor, who will be responsible for the 2009, 2010, and 2011 volumes, will be selected at the November 2007 Board meeting.
The Board discussed adding a key personnel clause to the Society’s policies governing changes in editorship. The Society contracts with the editor’s home institution but makes decisions on the basis of key personnel such as editors. A motion to change policy such that the contract can be renegotiated at the instance of ASC in the event that the named editor ceases to act as editor was accepted by unanimous vote of the Board.
A motion to ask the publications committee to investigate the desirability and feasibility of doing book reviews and the appropriate venue for doing so was approved by unanimous vote of the Board.
5. CRIMINOLOGY & PUBLIC POLICY Report – Todd Clear.
6. ASC Division Reports
A. Corrections and Sentencing – no report received
B. Critical Criminology – no action items
The Division is currently in deficit, but they are working to resolve this issue.
C. International Criminology
The Board will further discuss the role of the United Nations coordinator at the November 2006 meetings. Chris Eskridge will reply directly to each of the Division’s action items.
D. People of Color and Crime – no report received
E. Women and Crime – no action items
7. 2007 ASC Committee Appointments - Michael Tonry.
Michael Tonry worked to include a larger fraction of non-US members and more junior scholars on the Program Committee and other ASC committees. A motion to accept the slate of nominations was approved by unanimous vote of the Board. Because the ASC has a greater number of meeting rooms available for the 2008 Atlanta meetings, the sessions will not begin until 9 am and the lunch hour is left open. The program book cover will feature an Atlanta-based theme, and local music, food, speakers, and photo displays are planned.
8. Los Angeles Site Visit and Report
Doris Mackenzie and Alex Piquero reported on the Los Angeles site visit and meeting. The online submission system was discussed. Each area chair was trained on the conference software system by the All-Academic organization. There will be a large number of thematic panels, six authors-meet-critics sessions, two didactic workshops, professional development panels, at least 150 posters, at least 35 roundtables, 3 lunch plenary sessions, 6 mini-plenary sessions, films in the convention center theater, and evening programs to be held at the Biltmore Hotel. Powerpoint and overhead projectors will be available in all rooms, with brunch in the convention center. The buses will run from the hotels to the convention center from 7 am until 7 pm and then across and between each of the hotels. The university parties will be held at the Biltmore.
9. Criminologist Lead Article Concerns
The Board addressed the issue of research in progress being reported in The Criminologist without undergoing peer review. The matter was referred to the publications committee, which will be coordinating with Robert Agnew of the Futures Committee on the possible redesign of The Criminologist. In the interim, a disclaimer will be placed on any such articles noting that the essay is an opinion and discussion piece and not a peer-reviewed article.
10. Endorsing/Supporting External Meetings and Activities
At our last meeting the Board decided against making an official ASC nomination for the Stockholm prize. The Society will continue to be listed among the sponsoring associations. The ASC has historically responded to requests for such endorsements on an ad-hoc basis. Executive Director Chris Eskridge forwards requests to the President, who carries such requests to the Board for approval when necessary.
11. International Initiatives Budget
The Society devotes approximately $15,000 per year to a broad range of international initiatives. These include (a) support of international associations, such as providing seed money for new criminological associations; (b) support for ASC officers to attend international meetings; (c) funding for UN representatives as discussed and approved; (d) ice cream socials at other professional societies. A motion to allocate $5,000 for international initiatives was accepted by unanimous vote of the Board.
12. Teaching Award Committee proposal – Robert Agnew
Robert Agnew suggested forming an ad-hoc Teaching Committee to coordinate teaching workshops at the annual meeting, present a teaching award, investigate syllabi collections, and perform other teaching-related functions. A motion to establish an ad-hoc Teaching Committee to meet during the November meetings and report to the Board at the 2007 midyear meeting was approved by unanimous vote of the Board.
13. National Research Council Developments – Ron Huff
The NRC now recognizes criminology and criminal justice as an emerging field. This sets the stage for more comprehensive rankings. A motion to send a letter expressing the Society’s appreciation and support was approved by unanimous vote of the Board.
14. New Business – Finances
In view of the financial pressures on the Society (noted in Items 1 and 2 above), the Board unanimously approved a motion to raise fees for exhibitor’s booths at the annual meeting by $200, to raise 2007 dues by $10 for each category of membership, and to marginally adjust advertising rates upward.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:02 pm
The Board’s next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, October 31 at 3 pm in Los Angeles.