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Minutes of the World History Association Business Meeting

AHA Philadelphia January 6, 2006
Rm 302 Marriott

Meeting commenced at 5:05 pm; 17 people attending.
 

 
   
Michele Forman opened the meeting as new president of the WHA.

"I find myself equal parts excited and terrified as I open this business meeting of the WHA. I'm excited because I found a home here and mentors to aid me develop as a world historian. Terrified because I want to do a good job and this is such an exciting and awesome responsibility. However, I know that I am among friends and that you are willing to help me as we work together to sustain the efforts of the WHA and its membership."

Michele's first public action was to thank the members who were leaving the executive council: Steve Gosch, Deb Johnston and Bob Bain "we all appreciate your work and commitment;" and welcome the new council members: Jenn Linden, Adam McKeown, Laura O'Connell and Jonathan Reynolds.

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President's Report 2
One of the big agenda items passed by the executive council this session was proposal to offer funding for the WHC or World History Connected. This support will extend over the next three years, consists of $6,500 for a course release for one co-editor ($6000) and an annual membership fee for WHC to join the History Cooperative ($500). In exchange, the WHA will obtain higher visibility and connection to a larger potential membership and a chance to work out a written contract to support this effort. Presently, this is an agreement in principle; we will need to be more attentive to all the details over the next few months. A written report of these activities will come to the executive board in June. 3
The program deadline for the WHA annual conference at CSU –- Long Beach in Southern California will be flexible as we put together the final panels. The focus for annual conference in Long Beach is America in the world, and teaching world history. Thomas Bender will be one of the keynote speakers and this will continue the conversation begun at the OAH about America in world history.  
   
Report of Executive Director 4
  • Accomplishments over the past six months include better communication, improving the web site, the Moroccan conference and holding the WHA elections.
  • The Conference in Morocco netted $14,500 in revenue. 127 participants registered, and 86 joined in the conference tours.
  • The web site is now under the full control of the WHA; the next step is to decide how the web site could be more useful to the organization and to create a new profile. Headquarters will work with a new committee consisting of Jacky Swansinger and Jonathan Reynolds to develop a plan, establish a cost structure and obtain proposals.
  • Database membership is growing, but we are still working on making the information in that database more user-friendly.
  • Our finances are in good order, but we need to become more transparent in our reporting to the membership.
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Areas of Focus: Kristy Ringor resigned in November, the office needs an administrative assistant and that will be the first issue upon Robert White's return to Hawaii. Membership remains an area of need. This past year some good efforts were made to encourage membership at the AP reading and at conferences, we need to work harder and more efficiently to repeat this effort in 2006. WHA also needs to be more connected with the affiliates and develop better communication between the organizations. Our present membership, December 2005, is 1240; this breaks down into 110 students, 160 new professionals and 1017 members. New professionals are new to the field of world history, defined as less than 5 years in their present field. We have 16 life memberships.  
Discussion arose regarding the decision to fund the WHC when the World History Bulletin remains under funded. The editor of the WHB pointed out that equity did not appear to exist based on this decision. Response from officers and proponents indicated that the WHC had 90 million searches from 120 countries and 175,000 individuals made eight or more choices on line. This audience indicated that the WHA could not deny such a large audience. Marc Gilbert pointed out that the WHB presented for members who were already in the WHA, while the WHC was for outsiders who still did not know about the WHA and its work.  
   
Report on Conferences 7
The 2006 conference will be at CSU Long Beach this June. In 2007, the WHA will hold its annual conference at University of Wisconsin Milwaukee; the details are in the final stages and the contract should be signed in February. In 2008, the WHA expects to be in London at Queen Mary's College for its annual conference. Al Andrea has concluded a great deal of work with these three sites and the WHA thanks him for his gargantuan efforts.
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Financial Committee 11
There will be a change in the nature of WHA financial reporting. The new end of year will occur on September 30. This will enable the executive director, the treasurer and the financial committee to pull together the end of year reports for sharing at the AHA meeting. There is a need for greater transparency and consistency in the manner of reporting. This new date should facilitate that process. Outgoing president David Northrup has formulated some reporting forms that might be used to ease the reporting process and answer the most frequently asked questions of members. 12
   
Fund Raising Committee 15
It has been a little slow, but intends to kick back into high gear beginning this February. Al Andrea chairs this committee, and members who understand fund raising have joined him. Three large efforts include the Kresge foundation, and an outreach initiative to bring in Chinese scholars. Suggestions from the audience included: Henry Luce Foundation, Center for Global Foundation, the Gates Foundation, the Chinese Government and the McCormick Foundation.
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Prize Essay 17
There were only three submissions. However due to conversations between Al Andrea and Charles Cavaliere (senior history editor for Pearson Prentice Hall) the prize money will be doubled. We need to publicize this prize much more thoroughly and encourage students to apply. 18
   
Addendum to President's Report 19
Two proposals were accepted by the executive council yesterday afternoon. One was a $400 payment to digitize the WHB and enable it to be on the WHA web site. The second was an agreement to recognize the World History Network as an affiliate of the WHA. 20
   
Old Business/New Business 23
Deadline for WHB spring issue is February 1.

The journal of Church History has decided to open its articles to other churches beyond Christianity. World Historians should look for a call for papers.

Motion to adjourn. Passed unanimously. 6:00 pm

23 people dismissed at the end of the meeting.

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