Publication Date

April 1, 1994

Perspectives Section

AHA Activities

On February 7, Samuel R. Gammon communicated to the Council his intention to retire as executive director of the American Historical Association. In his letter, Dr. Gammon, who had just recently celebrated his seventieth birthday, noted that he had been privileged to serve the AHA and its members for more than twelve years, during which time he had been instrumental in helping to eliminate its budget deficit and expand its membership. In accepting his retirement, the Council commended Dr. Gammon for those achievements and for his many years of devoted service. The Council has appointed James B. Gardner, formerly the deputy executive director, to serve as acting executive director until a search for Gammon’s successor is completed.

Dr. Gammon was appointed executive director in June 1981, following a distinguished career in the Foreign Service, from which he retired with ambassadorial rank. His diplomatic career included service as vice-consul in Italy, consul-general in Ethiopia, counselor for political affairs in Rome, deputy assistant director of the USIA for Western Europe, deputy executive secretary for the State Department, minister-counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Paris, and American Ambassador to Mauritius. Gammon was educated at Texas A & M University (B.A.), at Princeton University (M.A. and Ph.D.), and at the University of London, where he was a Rotary Fellow. Although most of his career was spent in nonacademic pursuits, Gammon taught briefly at Emory and published in 1973 a book, Statesman and Schemer, on Henry VIII’s last foreign minister. We all wish him well in his retirement.


Applications Accepted for Director’s Position

The American Historical Association invites applications for the post of executive director, the chief staff position of the Association. Applicants must have a Ph.D. in history or a related field and provide evidence of the administrative skills necessary to lead a complex organization. As its principal operating officer, the executive director is responsible for preparing and administering the Association’s budget, directing its staff and programs, securing external funding and grants, maintaining liaison with other organizations and agencies, and otherwise representing the Association and its elected officers to members, other professional associations, and the public at large. The executive director also supervises the work of all AHA committees, assists in the formulation of policies and projects for submission to the Council, and executes other duties and instructions as the Council may direct. Appointment will be made for a five-year renewable term, commencing November 1, 1994, or shortly thereafter. Salary is negotiable, consistent with experience and qualifications. The incumbent will receive TIAA/CREF, health and life insurance, and annual and sabbatical leave benefits. Applications should be submitted before June 1, 1994, and addressed to John Coatsworth, Chair of the Director’s Search Committee, American Historical Association, 400 A Street, SE, Washington, DC 20003. The AHA is an equal opportunity employer.