Take the Next Step in Your "Professional Service Career": Volunteer for an SAA Appointed Group!

by Tanya Zanish-Belcher, SAA Vice President/President-Elect

During my many years of involvement in SAA, I have learned just how important it is to be intentional about one’s “professional service career.” From the first time I attended an SAA roundtable meeting to my first appointment as a committee chair, I learned that simply being at the table has given me so many opportunities to network and learn from my fellow archivists and to speak up for our profession.

So it is with great eagerness that I ask you now to share your time, talent, and energy with SAA by volunteering to serve on an SAA appointed group! Our success as an organization—providing needed member services, excellent education and publications, and effective public advocacy and engagement—greatly depends on our volunteer leaders. Making these appointments gives SAA the annual opportunity to renew our association (and our profession) by adding volunteers who represent every aspect of SAA’s varied membership and who are dedicated to its success. And here’s what’s in it for you: This is a great opportunity to network and connect with colleagues who share your interest and to gain experience that will benefit your “professional service career.”

Appointments Committee

As SAA’s current Vice President/President-Elect, it is my privilege and honor to make appointments for all 2017-2018 vacancies. To assist me in this important task, I’ve appointed Jelain Chubb (Texas State Archivist) and Bill Landis (Yale University) as co-chairs of the Appointments Committee and members Andrea Jackson (Atlanta University Center, Woodruff Library), Elena Colón-Marrero (Computer History Museum), Sammie Morris (Purdue University), and Helen Wong Smith (Kaua`i Historical Society).

Appointments Process

This long appointments process begins with you volunteering to serve as an SAA leader! All you have to do is fill out the form at the link below, indicating how you think you can best serve SAA and the profession.

The Committee then has the daunting task of reviewing the full lists of vacancies and volunteers, consulting with current group leaders to ensure they address the needs of each group, and making their recommendations to me. As always, we will follow SAA’s long-standing policy of making appointments that reflect the diversity of our membership in all appropriate ways, including years in the profession, race and ethnicity, gender, geographic region, and type of archival repository. To ensure that as many of our enthusiastic members as possible can gain experience as an appointed leader, individuals will be appointed to one position at a time, and current leaders will not be reappointed to a second term unless there is a critical requirement to continue some aspect of the work beyond their original term. It will be my responsibility and privilege to make all final appointment decisions.

Volunteer Positions

Please be sure to identify on the list below one or two groups in which you are particularly interested, rather than volunteering for everything on the list. In particular, look for a group that plays to your strengths and/or aligns with your passions and interests.

In the meantime, there are a number of other ways to get involved in SAA – as I have written about before! You can volunteer to help with your favorite section, organize a session proposal for the Annual Meeting, or become more familiar with SAA initiatives by attending a meeting of a committee, board, working group, or the Council. You should know that visitors are welcome at all SAA group meetings!

It is in the best interest of SAA that we are able to involve anyone who wishes to contribute to the Society. I know professional associations can sometimes be intimidating, but my focus in the next two years will be on finding creative ways for SAA to be even more welcoming for all its members. For both your “professional service career” and the good of SAA and our profession, I hope you will take the step to be one of the next leaders of SAA! 

Appointments Available in 2017-2018

The following groups will have vacancies (number of vacancies indicated in parentheses) beginning on July 29, 2017. For descriptions of the groups, see http://saa.archivists.org/Scripts/4Disapi.dll/4DCGI/committees/LeaderList.html. To volunteer to serve, visit http://www2.archivists.org/membership/volunteer.

Application Deadline:  January 20, 2017

The American Archivist Editorial Board (2)

Publications Board (3)

Dictionary Working Group (3)

Awards Committee (1 co-chair)

Coker Award (1) 

Distinguished Svc Award (1)

Diversity Award (1)

Emerging Leader Award (1)

Forman Scholarship (1)

Ham Scholarship (1, must be an SAA Fellow)

Hamer Award (1)

Holmes Award (1)

Innovator Award (1)

Jameson Award (1)

Lane Award (1)

Leland Award (1)

Mosaic Scholarship (2)

Pease Award (1, one-year appointment)

Peterson Award (1)

Pinkett Award (1, one-year appointment)

Posner Award (1, must be an SAA Fellow)

Preservation Award (1)

Spotlight Award (1)

 Committee on Education (2)

Digital Archives Specialist (DAS) Subcommittee (3)

Graduate Archival Education (GAE) Subcommittee (5)*

Committee on Ethics and Professional Conduct (3)

Committee on Public Awareness (3)

Committee on Public Policy (2)

Diversity Committee (3)

Finance Committee (1)

2018 Host Committee (Washington, DC) (10-12)

Membership Committee (3)

2018 Program Committee (Washington, DC) (10)

Standards Committee (4)

Technical Subcommittee on Archival Facilities Guidelines (TS-AFG) (5-8)*

Technical Subcommittee on Describing Archives: A Content Standard (TS-DACS) (2)

Technical Subcommittee on Encoded Archival Standards (TS-EAS) (2)

To Volunteer

Log in to the SAA website to view, complete, and submit the self-nomination form below by January 20, 2017. You may save changes and come back to this form; you may also change or resubmit information. SAA membership is required both to view the self-nomination form and to be appointed to an SAA group.

Much information requested on this form is required (*) because more complete information submitted to the Appointments Committee results in more effective recommendations to the Vice President/President-Elect. There are no "right" or "wrong" answers that will ensure or prevent an appointment. In text areas, we are interested in highlights.

Please send any questions to appointments@archivists.org. Thank you for your interest!

Self Nomination Form


*After the call for volunteers was posted, new vacancies on a few committees became available and were added to the call. Read more here

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