The 118th Business Meeting

President James McPherson, Princeton University, called the annual business meeting to order at 4:50 p.m. on January 10, 2004, in the Marriott Ballroom Salon 2 of the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel. Michael Les Benedict of Ohio State University served as parliamentarian for the meeting.

1. Report of the Executive Director: Arnita A. Jones supplemented her written report (see page 00), stating that the Association’s vital signs are sound—the current fiscal year will end with a healthy budget surplus, membership numbers are stable, and the AHA owns an office building with a desirable location on Capitol Hill. She reported that the AHA’s domain name would soon change to historians.org, to coincide with a complete overhaul of the Association’s web site. Additional improvements will be introduced during the coming months, including electronic submission of annual meeting session proposals and online election of officers. Ms. Jones encouraged members to visit the site and propose suggestions for additional improvements. She provided updated information on several ongoing projects, including the Gutenberg-e electronic publication program, advocacy efforts, and the Committee on the Master’s Degree in History project.

Ms. Jones noted that more than 5,300 individuals were in attendance at the Annual Meeting, and commended the Program Committee for presenting a wide-ranging and comprehensive program. She highlighted new events scheduled before the program of sessions, workshops about online digital scholarship and the Committee on Graduate Education‘s just published report The Education of Historians in the Twenty-first Century. Concluding her remarks, Ms. Jones thanked members of the Program Committee, the Local Arrangements Committee, and the AHA staff for their efforts in making the annual meeting a success.

2. Report of the Editor: Michael Grossberg, Indiana University, made additional comments to his published report (p. 00). He stated that the journal’s staff continued to find ways to speak across disciplinary lines and invited members’ comments on a forthcoming electronic-only article by William Thomas and Edward Ayers, “The Differences Slavery Made: A Close Analysis of Two American Communities.” Mr. Grossberg reported that the AHR staff recently developed a new policy on plagiarism and beginning with the February 2004 issue, that film and book reviews will be integrated into the topical and geographic lists.

Mr. Grossberg thanked members of the Board of Editors rotating off in May 2005: Rudy Koshar, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Patrick Manning, Northeastern University; Gale Stokes, Rice University; and Kären Wigen, Stanford University. He also thanked the staffs of the AHR and the AHA, particularly Ms. Jones; Robert Townsend, assistant director, research and publications; and Roy Rosenzweig, Vice President of the Research Division.

3. Report of the Nominating Committee: Joyce Chaplin, Harvard University, committee chair, announced the results of the fall election. Jonathan D. Spence of Yale University and James Sheehan of Stanford University and were elected president and president-elect, respectively. Patrick Manning of Northeastern University was elected Vice President of the Teaching Division. Elected to the Council were Kevin Reilly of Raritan Valley Community College and Pamela H. Smith of Pomona College. Divisional members elected were Mary Lindemann of Carnegie Mellon University (Professional); Robert C. Ritchie of the Huntington Library (Research); and Emily S. Tai of Queensborough Community College, CUNY (Teaching). Julia Clancy-Smith, University of Arizona, was elected to the Committee on Committees. Elected to the Nominating Committee were Antoinette Burton, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Olivia Remie Constable, University of Notre Dame; and Clarence E. Walker, University of California at Davis. 

4. Reports of the Vice-Presidents: Vice-presidents William A. Weber, California State University at Long Beach (Teaching); William D. Cronon, University of Wisconsin-Madison (Profession); and Roy Rosenzweig, George Mason University (Research) reported on their respective divisions’ activities and projects. Their reports appear elsewhere in this publication.

5. Other business: (a) Expressions of Appreciation: Mr. McPherson thanked Association members who had worked diligently on the 118th annual meeting: the Program Committee, chaired by Joe Trotter of Carnegie Mellon University and cochaired by John K. Thornton of Millersville University of Pennsylvania, and the Local Arrangements Committee, chaired by Robert Griffith of American University and cochaired by Barbara Franco of the City Museum and Historical Society of Washington, D.C. He also expressed gratitude to Convention Director Sharon K. Tune and the AHA staff for their hard work throughout the year.

(b) Resolutions: AHA members present adopted a resolution affirming free speech and a resolution regarding Yale University and the Graduate Employee and Students Organization (GESO), to be considered for acceptance, nonconcurrence, or veto by the AHA Council at its January 11, 2004 session. See accompanying box on this page [Take the text from page 19 of March 2004 Perspectives].

Concluding his term as president, Mr. McPherson introduced incoming president Jonathan Spence, Yale University. Accepting the gavel and noting there was no further business, Mr. Spence declared the meeting adjourned at 6:35 p.m.

Recorded by Sharon K. Tune, assistant director for administration, and convention director.