Meeting Minutes-SAA, San Diego, 2012

Joint Meeting of the Issues and Advocacy Roundtable and theLatin American and Caribbean Cultural Heritage Archives Roundtable, Roundtable Meetings III, Aug 8, 2012--5:30 PM - 7:30 PM

Welcome and Introductions and I&AR Election results were made known.  There were no contested seats and the steering committee includes Laura Starratt and Jeremy Brett as co-chairs and Shawn San Roman, Erin Santiago, Allison Galloup, Matthew Francis, and Rachel Chatalbash filling out the other seats.

Frank Boles from SAA’s Government Affairs Working Group (GAWG) asked for volunteers to work with GAWG to monitor issues and offer suggestions to the council for action.  He stated that we could offer suggestions as a group, personally contact him to volunteer, or nominate others to serve. We can contact him at

Updates on projects from past year for Latin American and Caribbean Cultural Heritage Archives Roundtable included the approval of minutes from 2011 annual business meeting; New approaches to LACCHA’s use of social media; and SAA panels sponsored and accepted (SESSION 107 - From Hidden Collection to International Incident: The John Cutler Papers and the Guatemala Syphilis Experiments, Aug 9, 2012, 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM and SESSION 604 - A Bilingual History: Promoting Spanish Language Collections to Tell the History of the American West and Mexico, Aug 11, 2012, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM).

Also discussed was the collaboration on the Displaced Archives Project between Issues and Advocacy and the Latin American and Caribbean Cultural Heritage Archives Roundtable as well as the possible addition of other roundtables once there is more discussion of how to proceed.

Presentation by Council Representative, Donna McCrea (Issues and Advocacy) and Deborah Richardson (LACCHA).  Council wants to make remind the roundtables that they should identify how they fit within the strategic initiatives that have been set forth.  There is also a new blog put out by the Council and Vice President entitles “Off the Record,” and will act as another access point in which to put out information.  There are also new guidelines for the nomination of elected leadership positions.  Donna added that there are a number of ways to contact council through email directly to members or through the Council Liaisons.

Presentation by representative from the 2013 Program Committee, Huffman (first name?).  Next year’s meeting will be held in New Orleans, LA.  As of now, the session proposals are due October 5th. He reminded the roundtables that they can endorse two proposals.  The meeting will be theme-free, so there are no restrictions on the subjects.  More information can be found at  And there will be free WiFi in the meeting rooms next year.

Erin Lawrimore announced that SAA Task Force will have an open forum at noon on August 9th to discuss the issues facing the meeting and also that there will be an open table at the conference to discuss items if you can’t make the forum.

Update on Projects from the past year for Issues and Advocacy


  • On the Closing of United Auto Workers’ (UAW) library;
  • To the State of New York government about the issues involved in the DORIS restructuring;
  • On the Indiana State Archives’ need for a new facility;
  • To Spike TV and pushed a petition about the damage caused by Spike TV show, American Diggers;
  • To Columbia College to reconsider closing the Center for Black Music Research.

Highlighting Issues:

  • Collected comments on the closing of the United Auto Workers’ Library;
  • Promoted White House petition to ensure that every child in America has access to an effective school library program;
  • Promoted White House petition to create a commission to support the digitization of Federal holdings;
  • Highlighted H.R. 2531 (helping NHPRC retain funding).

Work within SAA:

  • Endorsed SAA presentations, one of which was accepted: SESSION 309 - Rules of Engagement: The Politics and Pleasures of "Living Archives." August 10, 2012,   8:30 AM - 9:30 AM;
  • Nominated Loretta Parham of Atlanta University Center for the J. Franklin Jameson Award;
  • Designated Shawn San Roman as the roundtable’s liaison to the SAA Standard’s Committee;
  • Worked with Communications Technology Working Group on how SAA can effectively use communication technologies;
  • Collected comments on the Institutional Review Board (IRB) recommendations to SAA.

Research for upcoming/on-going projects:

Displaced Archives Project was discussed and volunteers were requested. As the project is in its infancy, there is not a lot to report on, but the committee is working with Trudy Huskamp Peterson to discuss how to best go ahead with the project. The mission statement is as follows:


Throughout history, peoples and nations alike have suffered from the removal – both partial and total - of their documentary heritage through many different forms of aggression such as domestic upheavals, internal rebellions, imperialistic expansions, and foreign invasions. The forces of both history and humanity have scattered these “displaced archives” among repositories across the globe. The Society of American Archivists Displaced Archives Project is dedicated to identifying these archival materials and the repositories in which they reside and, ultimately, creating a comprehensive directory of their locations and a catalog of their holdings. Our work has a threefold purpose:  It will allow citizens victimized by the removal of their documentary heritage to find where their history has gone; it will allow researchers to track the dispersal of such materials and reconstruct the story of the materials’ forced removal; and it will allow archivists to better understand the origins and provenance of many of the collections in their care.

Suggestions included keeping a detailed document on what decisions were made and the reasons behind them, using crowd sourcing as a way to locate new information (creating a portal to allow this).

It was agreed that the roundtable should focus on advocacy this year and suggestions were made to do that.  It as suggested that we look for experts in the field (not on advocacy, but on topics that could interest others) and create an advocacy toolkit to help organizations.  We also discussed the nature of archival advocacy including steps to take and also to designate a way to document our steps, thinking about what we are doing and what we should be doing.

Kathleen Williams, Executive Director, National Historical Publications and Records Commission explained the NHPRC is interested in awarding grants on a number of topics.  She encouraged the group to identify programs and projects and to seriously consider applying for NHPRC grants.

Jodi Allison-Bunnell, Program Manager, Northwest Digital Archives presented on an NHPRC-funded grant for mergent archival programs that focused on effective advocacy.

Alison Stankrauff encouraged members to get involved and suggested that they become mentors with the mentorship committee who were actively looking for volunteers.

Also mentioned was the contest for a free membership in the Academy of Certified Archivists.  In order to be considered, you would have to join.