SAA Council Approves Diversity Statement Guidelines, Judiciary Records Issue Brief

January 15, 2021—At its January 13 virtual meeting, the SAA Council:

  • Approved guidelines for a diversity statement that will be required of all those seeking elected positions (President, Vice President/President-Elect, Treasurer, Council member, Nominating Committee member) as well as the appointed positions of American Archivist Editor, Publications Editor, and Executive Director. As noted in the support statement for this motion:  “Requiring a diversity statement as part of the application process for elected positions and certain appointed positions… helps SAA, its leaders, and its members to elect or appoint candidates who are best positioned to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in SAA, the profession, and beyond. It also encourages candidates and applicants to articulate the diversity they bring to their respective positions.” 
  • Approved an issue brief, prepared by the Committee on Public Policy, on the issue of management of judiciary records. The SAA position states:  “The Supreme Court and federal judiciary has enormous influence over the American public. However, with no laws governing the disposition, preservation, and accessibility of the papers of Supreme Court justices and other federal judges, the public often cannot consult these archives for a fuller understanding of the federal courts. SAA supports the enactment of legislation to address these gaps in the management of federal judges’ papers.” See all SAA issue briefs here.
  • Approved the Standards Committee’s proposed revisions to Procedures for Review and Approval of an SAA-Developed Standards. The new procedures address the differences between major and minor changes in standards and the workflows associated with each.
  • Selected three SAA Fellows to serve on the 2021 Committee on the Selection of SAA Fellows. Executive Director Nancy Beaumont will contact these individuals to confirm their consent to serve, and their names will be included in the minutes for this meeting.
  • Discussed at length several scenarios, developed by the Finance Committee, for alternative membership dues structures and schedules. The Finance Committee will continue to refine its proposals based on the Council’s input, with a goal of proposing a new dues schedule for member vote in the fall of 2021.

If you have questions or concerns about these Council actions, contact SAA President Rachel Vagts ( or Executive Director Nancy Beaumont (

The next virtual meeting of the SAA Council is scheduled for March 2021. If you’d like to have an item considered for inclusion on the agenda, submit it to Vagts and/or Beaumont by February 17.