About the Program

Traveling “Beyond Borders”

835, 5th Avenue, Gaslamp Quarter; former home of Wyatt Earp’s Gambling Hall and Saloon (Cristela Garcia-Spitz)

It was not “a dark and stormy night” in September 2010 when then-President-Elect Gregor Trinkaus-Randall contacted us and asked if we would serve as the 2012 Program Committee co-chairs, but all the elements of a cliffhanger were there: We had never met, neither of us really liked conference themes, the list of Program Committee volunteers was long and filled with unfamiliar names, and SAA was coming off a stellar 75th Anniversary conference in Chicago, brilliantly crafted by Nancy McGovern, Richard Marciano, and their ten Program Committee colleagues.

But when we looked more closely at the list of committee volunteers and their qualifications, we saw that we had an opportunity to do something special. We selected a very exciting and diverse group of colleagues to join us on the committee, and we looked forward to meeting them in Chicago. We exchanged some emails, uncommitted about choosing a program theme, and then Gregor wrote and asked us to make a theme around cooperation and collaboration. Petrina suggested the theme “Collaborating Across Borders,” Rob suggested “Crossing Borders,” and then Program Committee member Kathy Hertel-Baker wrote “Beyond Borders.” It was the perfect moniker for the San Diego location and the emphasis that Gregor favored!

Beginning at the 2011 Annual Meeting, we shared our dreams for a diverse program and some creative format changes, including more lightning talks and more 60-minute sessions. At section and roundtable meetings and in the hallways, we talked to individuals with exciting program ideas, and we talked about endorsements and the importance of complete, competitive proposals. The SAA membership delivered!

On a warm Veteran’s Day weekend in Chicago, SAA staff members welcomed and encouraged the full committee. Our enormous task was to discuss and select from a whopping 150 program proposals and 22 poster session proposals! SAA members took the program theme to heart and delivered an astounding array of proposals that featured an exciting variety of geographic, professional, and ethnic topics and formats, including 11 lightning talks. The Macs and PCs were evenly divided among the Committee members, and we worked our way through a lengthy and complicated Excel workbook of proposals, topical data, and preliminary rankings previously submitted by Committee members. Together we experienced the joy of accepting 69 session proposals and the sadness of rejecting so many that SAA members had worked hard to submit on time. Thirty-eight of the record 52 proposals that received section and roundtable endorsements were accepted.

Ballooning over San Diego County (Cristela Garcia-Spitz)

Although the “Beyond Borders” program that we crafted includes the technical program sessions that one would expect on digital preservation, electronic records, Web access, digitization, and descriptive standards, we’re also gratified by the number of sessions that feature archives of diverse cultures and faiths, issues of social memory, and such other skills and important areas as advocacy, fundraising, appraisal, reference, archival management, records management, collaboration, ethics, and professionalism. The Program Committee worked with several session proposers and chairs to reduce some 90-minute proposals to 60 minutes – and we’re especially excited to present seven lightning sessions (one in each track) that are sure to engage attendees in a whirlwind of discussions on a variety of important archival topics.

SAA members answered the call and they’ve delivered a delightful and informative slate of engaging conference sessions. We hope you’ll join us at the lovely San Diego Hilton Bayfront from August 6 to 11. Even sun, sand, and surf won’t keep you from the intellectual delights that our colleagues are preparing for us as we travel “Beyond Borders” in 2012!

— Program Committee Co-Chairs Petrina Jackson and Robert Spindler

2012 SAA Program Committee

Petrina Jackson (Co-Chair)
University of Virginia

Robert Spindler (Co-Chair)
Arizona State University

Sarah Buchanan
The Neon Museum

Riccardo Ferrante
Smithsonian Institution Archives

Kathleen Hertel-Baker
Sisters of Charity of Nazareth

Kira Homo
University of Oregon

Nadia Nasr
Towson University

Tiffany Schureman
Fort Worth Museum of Science and History

Mark Shelstad
The University of Texas at San Antonio

Tomaro Taylor
Louis de la Parte Florida
Mental Health Institute Research Library

Brittany Turner
Brittany Turner Consulting

Robin Chandler
University of California, Santa Cruz
(Ex officio – 2013 SAA Co-Chair)

Nancy Zimmelman Lenoil
California State Archives
(Ex officio – 2013 CoSA Co-Chair)

Laura Tatum
(Ex officio - 2013 SAA Co-Chair)

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