AATSEEL Executive Meeting minutes 2004


Joan Chevalier, Bill Comer, Kathleen Dillon, Sibelan Forrester (Dec.


only), Steven Franks, Todd Golding, Jane Hacking, Jerry Janecek, Emily Johnson,
Catharine Nepomnyaschy, Mary Nicholas, Sarah Pratt, Ben Rifkin, Carol Ueland



1.         Welcome
and Introductions

2.         Approval
of the Agenda

3.         Review of
actions taken in accordance with minutes approved from

2003 (action
agenda from



It was agreed that Jane and
Kathleen will look into place to solicit donations to AATSEEL on website in next
three months.  It was suggested that they look at the Hoover Institution

It was decided to abolish the
Technology Committee.  The Publications Committee should consider taking over
the best website award.  If they say yes, they’ll come up with a jury.  If not,
the prize will be abolished.

Reminder that we will be voting on
constitutional amendment at business meeting. 

The awards process should be done
in spring/earlier next year.  The process would go more quickly if handled by
one person.

Roll over othering of less
commonly taught languages to next year.  Also Curt Weldon.

The letter to grad students will
go out by email sent to departmental administrators.  Follow up on this in
January with Cathy as signatory. 

President’s report

A committee is hereby created to look into the status of
life memberships, sustaining memberships, and donations and how they relate to
the endowment.  We need to come up with an idea for creating an endowment.  
Jane, Ben, Cathy and Mary will serve as the Endowment Committee. 

IREX policy update.  IREX has lost NEH money, turned away
from the humanities.  Ben Rifkin wrote a letter to Mark Pomar from AATSEEL. 
Mark answered Tony Anemone, cc’ing Ben and Cathy.  It was pointed out that
Slavists can go to ACTR Excels rather than IREX.  We need to inform the
membership of this.

The Executive Council approved stopping the pattern of
paying to send an AATSEEL member as a delegate to the ACTFL Delegate Assembly. 
We will get an AATSEEL member who lives in the city where the conference happens
to represent AATSEEL as the AATSEEL delegate to the ACTFL delegate assembly
(saving on airfare, hotel, per diem, etc.).  We will do the same for AAASS and
NCOLCTL.  Jane Hacking will represent AATSEEL at AAASS and Ben Rifkin will
represent AATSEEL at NCOLCTL in
2005.  (Each of them is
local to the respective conference.)

We decided to eliminate the requirement of publishing the
by-laws in SEEJ every year and instead publish them on the web.  This will have
to be approved at the business meeting as a constitutional amendment.

We should get nominations for new officers in by February

We should get decisions on AATSEEL awards done by July
1 so that award winners make it
to the conference.

It is resolved that AATSEEL proclaim that
2005 is the year of
languages.  People at South Carolina Public Radio have put together
52 weekly segments to be read
during the year.  Ben will send the contact by email.

No decision will be made about new approaches to
cooperation with AAASS at this time.  Small matters of cooperation can be
decided by the Executive Council; larger issues of cooperation will have to be
put to a vote of the AATSEEL membership.

5.         Executive
Director’s Report

Kathleen proposes we go from a cash to an accrual
accounting system.  The EC unanimously approved this change that will take place
when the Executive Director’s position is sub-divided and an accountant is hired
to handle all billing, deposits, etc. (see below).

Discussion of increased costs to AATSEEL:  decline in
membership, conference registration, decline in subscriptions, the subscription
agency that defaulted, rising costs (audio-visual) at annual conference,
increased printing and postage to pay for
5 issues per year of SEEJ while
we catch up from the period in which we did not publish
4 issues per year (immediately
following Steve Baehr's death).

The EC agreed that AATSEEL needs to raise income and
decrease spending.  It was decided to deliver the AATSEEL Newsletter only
electronically (no more print version, saving print and postage costs) and, in
lieu of printing an annual Membership Directory. to put the membership data base
online, accessible only to members.  It was decided to raise the SEEJ
subscription rate for libraries and other institutions (not for individual
members) by $20 to cover the
increase in postage costs.

Newsletter Advertising:  The EC created an ad-hoc committee
on website and newsletter advertising to be chaired by Steven Franks, with Todd
Armstrong, Marta Deyrup, and Betty Lou Leaver as members.

Re:  JNCL (lobby on Capitol Hill on languages) annual
contribution from AATSEEL.  They would like us to increase our contribution.  It
is delegated to Ben to go into negotiations with Dave Edwards on
this matter.  Ben will propose by email, and the EC will be asked to approve by

It was decided to increase membership by $10
with a $10 discount for
joining online.

It was decided to raise life membership to $1,000
and to raise sustaining membership to $200.

2005 – We have the JW
Marriott in Washington, DC for the conference.  The Conference Recruiting
Committee will be Bill, Emily, and Sibelan.This committee is charged with
recruiting more members to participate in the conference in Washington, DC,
encouraging, especially, senior scholars to chair panels, participate in
roundtables, give papers, etc.

Proposed restructuring of the Executive Director’s
position.  The Executive Council agreed to restructure the Executive Director's
position upon the conclusion of Kathleen Dillon's term as follows:

Hire accountant to manage books, accounts,  invoice, etc on a monthly
basis.  Estimated
hours @$60.00 per hour.
High-end projected cost of $2,000
per years. Would facilitate annual compilation,
3-year audit,  filing of
1099s, and preparation of
IRS filing. Would professionalize accounting system and records and ensure
accuracy. No AATSEEL Executive Director has ever had any accounting expertise or
experience. The accountant would be hired by and would report to the Executive

Establish a Conference/Event Manager position. This person would select
the conference hotel and negotiate contract; negotiate contract with audio
visual company; run the annual conference including registration, conference
book, badges, catering, etc. In addition to the customary travel expenses, this
person could receive an annual stipend of $5,000
- $7,000
depending on qualifications. This person would be appointed by the Steering
Committee of the Executive Council and would report to the Executive Director.

The Executive Director would interface with SEEJ and Newsletter editors
and staff to generate an increase in Advertisers/Exhibitors/Subscribers 
revenue. This person would also maintain monthly interaction with the conference
manager and the accountant, would receive and respond to all AATSEEL email,
would file annual reports to the U.S. Postal Service; would interact on
consistent basis with the Steering Committee, and perform all miscellaneous
functions of the Executive Director save those outlined in a) and b). This
person would receive an annual stipend of $10,000.
The AATSEEL headquarters would reside with this position.

Based on the annual Executive Director’s stipend of $20,000
beginning with July
2005, voted by the Executive
Council in
2003, the proposed
restructuring would result in a savings to AATSEEL of at least $3,000
per year. Most importantly, it would make the “part-time” nature of the position

Bill, Sibelan and Kathleen will be the interview committee
for the conference manager; the search committee will also include Cathy and
Ben.  The salary paid to the Executive Director will be reduced to $10,000
as noted above in point c.

6.         Editors'

6.1       SEEJ

The Executive Council agreed that SEEJ should have a
50th anniversary
issue as a retrospective. 

The Executive Council confirmed that it will not increase
dues to offset increased costs for a new cover of SEEJ.

6.2       AATSEEL Newsletter

Betty was not at the meeting. The newsletter now will go
completely electronic.  Kathleen points out that advertisers may not want to
place one-page ads because they can be passed over by readers.
Betty will have to notify advertisers.  We will not start until fall.

7.         Committee

7.1       Ben suggests that
committees be chaired by members of the Executive Council.  The Publications
Committee is exempted to avoid conflict of interest.  This will take effect by
attrition and the terms will become coterminous.  This proposal was approved

7.2       Nominations for
awards and offices; nominations process last year was unwieldy.  We will
streamline this year.

7.3       Awards policy
review:  the Executive Council confirmed its previous policy ruling that awards
can only be given to AATSEEL members.  The Publications Committee will not
consider books written by individuals who are not members of AATSEEL. 
Co-authored books for which one of the authors is a member of AATSEEL are
eligible.  Books worthy of note written by individuals who are not AATSEEL
members can be given honorary mention. 

7.4       The Publications
Committee may decide to give an award for the best website.

7.5       The Publications
Committee will consider convening a new jury to give an award for the best
article in SEEJ for a given year. 

8.  Ad Hoc Committee

8.1 The CCPCR website has
good information on teachers of pre-college Russian.  Todd came up with a
directory.  It can also be found on the AATSEEL website.  Get word to your area
HS teachers.  Sibelan suggests a one-on-one pairing of HS teachers with college
teachers.  Cathy and Todd will talk about putting Todd in touch with John
Micgiel and Toni Sethi at the Harriman Institute.  Todd is willing to work on
expanding the directory to include teachers of non-Russian Slavic languages. 
Ben raises the question of what sort of outreach AATSEEL can do beyond the
conference.  It was suggested that there be one focus center per year in
different parts of the country.  Ben suggests that we put Title VI centers up on
the website and Todd will write an article for the newsletter about Title VI
centers.  [Kansas and Wisonsin have outreach directors.]  There are
12 Title VI centers around the
country.  Ben would like to see more cooperation between AATSEEL and SEELRC.
Todd should talk to Steven, Ben, Bill, and Cathy about Title VI Center
outreach.  We should reach out to ethnic communities.  We could try to bring a
group to AATSEEL meetings every year (eg. balalaika orchestra).  We should do
this on a regional basis so we don’t have to worry about travel fees.  We should
bring in FLEX students.

8.2 News of ACTR:  Bryn Mawr
summer is training HS Russian teachers who will be teaching the AP courses. 

8.3 Committee on Statistics
on the Field.  Mary and Carol went to US News and World Report for
statistics.  Steve suggests a newsletter article on someone who has turned
around a department.    Mary will chair a task force on anecdotal success
stories.  Get people around the country to give information about what our
students have gone on to do.  This should go on the website. 

4 We’ve already voted to
eliminate the Technology Committee.

8.5 Slavic Language Program
Directors – will focus on turn around stories.

ACTION:  we will suggest to Julie some people who might
make a good jury.  We will probably not want to open up the awards until
2006.  They can be announced
next December. 

.  Limit the prize to books written in English. 
Reaffirm that only AATSEEL members (even lapsed ones) may be considered for the
prize.  Works by non-Slavists can be listed “with honor.”  If someone does not
appear in the directory, check with Kathleen to see if they are just “lapsed.” 
The Publications Committee is responsible for searches for the SEEJ editorship
and the newsletter editorship. This may happen in the term of Julie’s successor.

8.6 and
8.7 Affiliate Journals and
Reciprocity.  Letter prepared by Emily will go out with Cathy’s signature next
year.  After we see the response, Emily will write something for the website
(working with Marta Deyrup).  We would rather get money out of journals than

8.8 It was resolved to
eliminate the volunteer coordinator's position.  Anyone who wants to volunteer
for AATSEEL should contact anyone on the EC.

8.9  Joan is willing to work
with Kathleen on conference exhibitors.  Emily asks if RBC  would come and do a

8.10 Emily will continue as
chair of Graduate Student Recruitment.

8.11 Marta will remain head
of the website.

MLA – Cathy will look into who is on the Executive
Committee of the Division on Slavic and EE Langs to come up with an AATSEEL

George will be told that there is a new representative to

SIGS were rejected last year.

We should do a pre-conference workshop next year on
interviewing, publishing in the field, grant writing.

9.         Conference

We want more pre-college participation, perhaps we should
schedule a half-day around pedagogy panels.  We should ask anyone if they would
find it helpful to use AATSEEL as a place to grant continuing education
units to pre-college teachers.

Bill will draft a statement for the webpage and to go to
anyone approved to give a paper about professional behavior at the conference. 
We do not read absentee papers. 

AV costs.  In order to reduce a/v costs, the AATSEEL
Executive Council agreed that participants wishing to use LCD projects at the
AATSEEL conference will have to pay $50
(fee must be paid by August
1), but it must be made clear
that a participant may bring his or her own or use a VCR for free.  Bill will be
responsible for a call for papers that stipulates that participants must pay to
rent LCD projectors.  Participants may use a screen for free, but must reserve
it by the August
1 deadline.

Cathy, Sibelan, and Steven will work on roundtables and

Steven, Cathy, and Emily will look into an alternative
system to the current abstract system for vetting participants and putting
together panels.

10.       For the
good of the order. 

Ben extends gratitude to Joan and Carol and Sally for
tremendous service to the field. 

Ben nominates Maria Lekich for the A. Ron Walton Award from
National Council of Organizations of Less Commonly Taught Languages and the
nomination is endorsed by the AATSEEL EC.

George Morris (ACTR) had a discussion with Kathleen about
his concern that there were only
25 members of pre-college
members of AATSEEL.  The idea was put forward to offer ACTR pre-college members
a package deal for ACTR-AATSEEL membership (for $15)
with no SEEJ, for $15 (plus $15)
to be a member of AATSEEL and ACTR. The idea was also put forth to do a workshop
integrating high school teachers and college teachers.  There would be no
registration charge for HS teachers for the day of the workshop.  This was
resolved, effective January
2005.  It was agreed that a
free one-day pass to the conference would be issued to high school teachers to
attend the workshop.

The EC approved a $25
increase in onsite registration (One vote against)