MINUTES OF THE COUNCIL OF THE SOCIETY FOR HISTORIANS OF THE GILDED AGE AND PROGRESSIVE ERA Saturday, March 29, 2008, New York City.
President Jack Blocker, University of Western Ontario, called the council Meeting of the Society for Historians of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era to order.
In addition to President Blocker, the following SHGAPE Council and other members attended the meeting: Peter Argersinger (Southern Illinois University) Charles Calhoun (East Carolina University) Kathleen Dalton (Boston University) Rebecca Edwards (Vassar College) Joseph A. Fry (University of Nevada, Las Vegas) Julia Irwin (Yale University) Michael Kazin (Georgetown University) Alan Lessoff (Illinois State University) Jacqueline Moore(Austin College) Christopher Nichols (University of Virginia) Walter Nugent (Notre Dame University) Elaine Parsons (Duquesne University) Ian Tyrrell (University of New South Wales) Nancy Unger (Santa Clara University) Phil VanderMeer (Arizona State University)Jack Blocker reviewed minutes from previous Annual Meeting (March 30, 2007) which had previously been distributed to committee members. Peter Argersinger proposed an addition to the minutes, reminding the committee that the previous meeting had agreed to loosen the restrictions on credentials required for graduate students to gain access to membership through the Hayes Center. With this addition, Michael Kazin moved for the minutes to be adopted. Nancy Unger seconded. Minutes were adopted. Jack Blocker next made a series of announcements. Thanks to Christopher Nichols for Council service (2005-2008). Thanks to members of Prize and Membership Committee members for their service last year. Raymond M. "Skip" Hyser has agreed to chair the membership committee for the following year. Julia Irwin has agreed to serve as our graduate student member for a 2008-2011 term Wendy Gamber has agreed to chair the nominating committee The Fishel-Calhoun Prize committee will consist of Bob Miller (chair), David Macleod, and previous prize recipient Rob MacDougall. Alan Lessoff has agreed to serve as journal editor for another term, from 2009-2014. Nancy Unger has agreed to an extension of her term as book review editor to 2011. Ed Rafferty has agreed to serve another term as newsletter editor, 2008-2010. Roger Bridges has been awarded a life membership in honor of his service to the organization. The Vincent P. DeSantis Book Prize will be presented in 2009 and is currently accepting submissions. The council then reviewed and acknowledged the written reports from committee chairs and editors that had been precirculated. There were no questions or comments in response to the program committee, membership and newsletter reports. Treasurer Phil Vandermeer then discussed his report Alan Lessoff reiterated that Illinois State will be able to absorb this year's increase in the cost of producing the journal. The Council then discussed the potential for increasing costs in the future, and the possibility that we will need to increase our rates. Phil VanderMeer suggested that the Council address the question again next year. Journal Editor Alan Lessoff next discussed his report After reviewing the precirculated report, Alan Lessoff discussed some issues in more detail, including his desire to hire a weekly 10-15 hour employee for copyediting, layout, and related work The Journal quickly accepted our invitation to join JSTOR, but is still considering whether to join EBSCO, concerned that it might diminish institutional subscriptions to the journal. There were no additional questions or comments. H-SHGAPE editorial board chair Jacqueline Moore next discussed her report James Ivy has agreed to stay on as Book Review editor. Hal Williams has agreed to replace Robert Cherny on the advisory board. Thanks to Robert Cherny for his service. Wyatt Evans has decided to step down as webmaster, and she is currently in search of a replacement. Wyatt has suggested that the position be split in two, with one person doing content, and another, perhaps a graduate student, doing the technical aspects of site maintenance for a small stipend. Jacqueline Moore proposes $100 or $200 a year. Chris Nichols offered to do the content should a person be found to do the technical parts. Splitting the position would require an amendment to the bylaws. Jacqueline Moore nominated James Ivy for a second term as Book Review Editor. Phil VanderMeer Seconded. Approved by council. Jacqueline Moore mentioned the need to update the current website. Phil VanderMeer suggested that the Journal be better integrated into the site. Andy Fry suggested that the stipend for the graduate student technical position be larger than $100-$200. Jacqueline Moore suggested bringing in someone on a temporary basis. Jack Blocker nominated Jacqueline Moore for a new term as chair of the H-SHGAPE Editorial Board. Moved and Approved. Alan Lessoff moved to elect Kristin Hoganson and James Connolly to the Nominating committee Phil Vandermeer seconded. Approved. Following this, Jack Blocker initiated a conversation about the desirability of taking steps to allow for a more systematic conduct of the journal’s business affairs. In particular, someone ought to be acting as a liaison to the Hayes Center, particularly on the issue of maintaining the membership list and to be conducting public relations for the journal. This would be too much of a burden for Alan Lessoff, in addition to his many other responsibilities editing the journal. Reading Article 4, Section 7 of the Constitution, Blocker noted that it allowed for the creation of an "Executive Director" position. A lengthy discussion followed, in which the nature of the potential new position, the compensation that would be given to the person who filled it, and whether it would replace or supplement the Secretary-Treasurer position were considered. Jack Blocker said that he would likely email the council with a proposal on the matter soon. Jack Blocker declared the meeting adjourned. Minutes respectfully submitted by Elaine Frantz Parsons.