August 3-4, 2013

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board,
August 3-4, 2013
Minneapolis, MN

Members Present
Scott Collins               President
Steward Pickett          Past-President
Jill Baron                    President-Elect
Leslie Real                 VP for Finance
Sharon Collinge         VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg     VP for Science
Julie Reynolds            VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham        Secretary
Mimi Lam                   Member-at-Large
Stephen Jackson       Member-at-Large
Michelle Mack            Member at Large 

Staff Present
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director
Elizabeth Biggs           Chief Financial Officer
Nadine Lymn              Director, Public Affairs
Cliff Duke                   Director, Science
Michelle Horton          Director, Administration and Meetings
Teresa Mourad           Director, Education and Diversity
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Sue Silver                   Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers
David Gooding           Asst. Managing Editor

Guests – Saturday, August 3
Joey Bernhardt            Chair, Student Section                  
Valerie Eviner             VP-Elect for Science
Carmen Cid                 Member-at-Large Elect                                              

Guests – Sunday, August 4
Valerie Eviner             VP-Elect for Science
Carmen Cid                Member-at-Large Elect                                          
David Inouye              Incoming President-Elect
Don Strong                 Editor-in-Chief, Ecology
Aaron Ellison              Editor-in-Chief, Ecological Monographs
Brian Inouye               Associate Editor-in-Chief, Ecological Applications
Debra Peters              Meeting Program Chair, and Editor-in-Chief, Ecosphere
David Schimel             Editor-in-Chief, Ecological Applications
Edward Johnson         Editor –in –Chief, ESA Bulletin
Nancy Huntly             Centennial Committee

9:05 am, August 3, 2013:  meeting called to order by President Scott Collins 

I. Roll Call and Agenda

 A. Adopt Agenda

Deborah Goldberg moved and Stephen Jackson seconded adopting the agenda.  All aye.

B. Ratification of Votes taken since May Meeting 

1. Minutes, May

            Stephen Jackson moved and Sharon Collinge seconded ratification of the e-mail vote to approve the minutes of the May 2013 meeting.   All aye.

II. Reports

A. Report of the President

            President Collins summarized the fine-tuning of the functioning of the Society in the past year by staff and the Governing Board, including adopting recommendations from the Committee for a New Generation, and keeping the society responsive to members.  He also reviewed the status of a number of larger issues, including open access for journals and the structure of the annual meeting.  Centennial planning proceeds apace.  Other major activities in the past year include initiation of the ESA Fellows program, and expansion of the Professional Certification program.

B. Report of the Executive Director and Staff

            Executive Director Katherine McCarter summarized the report from the staff.  She provided an update on the status of the formation of the joint ESA/ESC journal, including the search for a managing editor. 

Nadine Lymn reported on press coverage of the annual meeting.  There will be a celebration Monday, Aug. 5, of 30 years of the Public Affairs program.  There will be an inaugural science café at this year’s annual meeting.  Teresa Mourad reminded members of the diversity program celebration Wednesday Aug. 7. 

Michelle Horton summarized the status of the meeting.  There were approximately 3000 registrants, and another 200-300 walk-in registrants are expected.  These numbers are in line with expectations and the budget for the meeting. 

Cliff Duke reviewed activities in the science program, including the ongoing and energetic efforts of the Vegetation Classification panel.   A number of volumes in the Issues in Ecology series will be released soon, including one on citizen science and one on threatened and endangered species management.  Both of these are supported by workshops funded by the U.S. Forest Service. 

David Baldwin summarized opportunities for future changes in production of the subscription journals.  Ecosphere is now 3 years old, but there is still no formal word from Thompson-Reuters on when it will be indexed.  The Bulletin is gearing up for the Centennial celebration (and its own centennial). 

Sue Silver highlighted activities at Frontiers, including the relatively unsuccessful launch of a digital edition.  This fall will see the first online-only special feature, on prescribed burning in fire-prone landscapes.  They will publicize the issue vigorously.  The August issue contains the first installment of the eco-literacy section. 

Liz Biggs gave a brief history of ESA finances since both she and Katherine arrived in 1997, when it had a negative net asset balance of ~ $800,000.  In the past 15 years, in part because of gradual increases in subscription rates, the Society has gone to a positive net asset balance of $2.6M.  She feels that era of asset growth is ending, in large part because of constraints on subscription revenue.  We should expect that budgets going forward will be much tighter.

C. Financial Update

1. Fourth Quarter Financials

Katherine McCarter and Liz Biggs summarized the fourth quarter financial report.  For the year, revenue exceeded expenses by $52,493 in a budget of $6.5M.  While this is positive, this is a smaller balance than in previous years, and is only this large because of a very successful annual meeting in Portland in 2012.  Membership dues were close to (but slightly under) budget, but again this was buoyed by Portland.  Subscription revenue came in $162,779 under budget, offset partly by a reduction in printing expenses of $98,959.  Individual subscriptions represent a very small faction of total subscription revenue, and continue to decline as expected.  Manuscript charges were also under budget, in part because of lower than expected revenue from Ecosphere.  There was extensive discussion of the challenges of maintaining revenue and minimizing expenses associated with the publications.  There was also discussion of the need to maintain excitement about the meetings, including the need to accommodate evolution in modes of communication.                  

2. Investments

VP for Finance Les Real commended Liz and Katherine for their management of the Society’s finances.  The Society’s two investment accounts are doing well at ~ 5-7% annual return in conservatively invested portfolios. 

III. Discussion/Action Items

A. FY 2013-2014 ESA Budget

1. Approve Budget for Council Meeting

            A draft budget was discussed and approved at the May 2013 Governing Board meeting.  Sharon Collinge moved and Mimi Lam seconded recommending the adoption of the budget by the Council at their annual meeting on Aug. 4, 2013.

2. New Membership Category

            New membership categories were discussed at the May 2013 Governing Board meeting.  In response to that discussion, staff were asked to propose new membership categories at the upper income levels.   Deborah Goldberg moved and Julie Reynolds seconded recommending that the Council adopt the new membership categories.  All aye.

3. Board Strategic Initiatives

            Board members discussed a number of suggestions for use of Board strategic initiative funds.  The main proposals were to add three additional Graduate Student Policy Awards ($1000 each) and to provide funding for the SEEDS leadership program.  There was discussion of whether either of these really met the definition of “strategic initiatives”.  Additional support for the Graduate Student Policy Awards is expected to be available from the previous monies raised for AAAS Congressional Fellows, so the proposal to use board strategic initiative funds for that purpose was withdrawn. 

            No decision to allocate funds was made.  Julie Reynolds would like to develop a proposal for future consideration in the area of the sustainability of SEEDS funding.

4. Long Range Planning Grant Subcommittee

            Members-at-Large have traditionally reviewed applications from sections, chapters, and committees for Long Range Planning Grants.   The board agreed that this practice should continue.

5. Discussion of Council Presentation

            The board discussed the importance of updating the Council on the long-term challenges in Society finances, particularly the issues of declining library subscriptions and new, more cost-effective models for publications.

B. Impacts of Open Access Mandates

            ESA’s subscription journals are already “green” open access (and have been for many years), and Ecosphere is “gold” open access.  There is still uncertainty about what sort of federal mandates might be coming, and what impact these would have on institutional subscriptions and society finances.  Even a 10% decline in subscriptions would have a dramatic impact on the Society’s budget.

C. Yearly Policy Priorities Recommendations

            Each year the Public Affairs office reviews public policy priorities for the coming year, and asks the Governing Board to formally adopt those priorities.  Priority areas for the coming year are (1) energy and climate, (2) water quality and quantity, (3) disasters affecting ecosystems, (4) STEM education, (5) endangered species, (6) urban ecosystems, and (7) federal investment in research agencies. 

D. Fundraising

There was lots of enthusiasm for the plan outlined by Charles Canham to involve the Governing Board in building the donor base for the Society through personal contact.   Further discussion included suggestions for matching funds specifically for student donations.  Teresa Mourad volunteered to be staff liason for SEEDS donations.

E. Earth Stewardship Application Ecological Action Plan: Designed Ecological Transect

            Jill Baron reviewed a proposal for a series of activities to incorporate ecological science into landscape and urban design, using earth stewardship as a framework, in concert with the 2014 ESA meetings in Sacramento and Baltimore.  Alex Felson at Yale University is the lead on the proposal with Jill Baron, assisted by an advisory committee of Steward Pickett, Sharon Collinge, Mary Cadenasso, Joe Brown, and Fritz Steiner. 

F. Awards – Distinguished Service Award

            The bylaws establishing the Distinguished Service Citation do not specify whether the recipient must be an ESA member, although the citation with the first award in 1975 mentions that the award is to honor “members”.  There was discussion of whether the award committee should be given explicit guidance on whether the recipient should be an ESA member.  The Governing Board recommends establishing a separate committee charged with making recommendations for this award (rather than combined with the Eminent Ecologist award), and that the committee should have a preference for nominations of ESA members.

G. Congressional Fellow/Policy Fellows

            In past years there has been an option for donations as a part of membership dues to support a AAAS Congressional Fellow.  The option raises relatively little money, and the costs of a AAAS Congressional Fellow are very high.  There is a proposal to change the donations to support Graduate Student Policy Fellowships (~ $1000, versus $100,000 per AAAS Fellow).  Deborah Goldberg moved and Sharon Collinge seconded changing the donation option to support Graduate Student Policy Fellowships.  All aye.  Prior donors will be notified of this change and will be able to request a refund if they desire.

H. Developing Country Awards and Shreve Award

            Jessica Gurevitch, chair of the Grants and Fellowships Committee, has recommended changes to the use of funds collected from the “Support for Developing Countries” option on the membership form.  Specifically, the committee recommends that the Grants for Membership include a free year of membership, a subscription to one journal, and travel funds.  The committee provided several alternate suggestions regarding the Grants for Libraries, and has requested feedback from the Governing Board. 

            Funds have been accumulating in these accounts for a number of years, with very low rates of annual contributions, and few if any applications for use of the funds.  The goals of this program overlap very closely with the Whittaker travel awards, and there was a proposal to merge the funds raised for “grants for membership” with the Whittaker travel awards, while ensuring that funds from the developing country membership pool used for awards under the Whittaker program go to an applicant from a developing country. The corpus of the funds for developing country libraries will remain intact, while interest from the corpus will be used to support Whittaker travel awards.  Deborah Goldberg suggested that the funds be viewed as an award rather than as research support, given the very small amount of funds involved. 

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Steve Jackson seconded a proposal to remove the developing country check-off donations from the membership form.  All aye. 

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Les Real seconded the recommendation from the committee to award the Shreve Award to Anny Chung from the University of New Mexico.  All aye.

I. Update on Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education

            Teresa Mourad provided an update on ESA activities related to the Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education Summit organized by NSF and AAAS in 2009.  Later this month she will be attending a conference organized to review progress toward the goals of the original summit.   There was discussion of the role of professional science societies in changes in undergraduate general biology education.

J. Long Range Planning Grant – review Guidelines

            At the May 2013 meeting, a request was made to review the guidelines used in awarding Long Range Planning Grants.  Katherine McCarter contacted former Members-at-Large for their opinions on these guidelines.  There was discussion of whether travel grants really fall within the purview of either “long range” or “planning” grants.  But these funds are the primary source of monies used by sections and chapters for building capacity.  The current cap of $2500 on proposals may be limiting the ambitiousness of the activities.  Julie Reynolds proposed that we revise the guidelines to emphasize strategic activities and raise the cap on the maximum amount of the proposal.  Steve Jackson will work with the other members-at-large to revise the current guidelines.

K. Ecology for a New Generation

            Teresa Mourad reminded the board that the final report of the Ecology for a New Generation Committee was presented at the May 2012 meeting.  The board encourages ESA staff, sections, and chairs to review the report and implement the recommendations as appropriate.

L. Earth Stewardship Business Communications

            Jill Baron gave an update on recent efforts to train ecologists in effective communication with business leaders on the topic of sustainability. She specifically noted a “trial” training that will take place in London (for selected ESA members attending INTECOL2013) and will be hosted by PriceWaterhouseCoopers London.

M. Bulletin Request

            Bulletin Editor-in-Chief Ed Johnson has requested input from the Governing Board on names of individuals who should be solicited for contributions on papers which have had particular influence on their ideas and approaches to ecology.  Members are asked to send names to Scott Collins who will collate the names and forward them to Ed Johnson

N. Executive Session (Governing Board Members only)

            The Governing Board met in Executive Session at 5:25, and adjourned at 6:00 pm.

Meeting called to order at 9:00, Sunday, August 04, 2013

III. Discussion/Action Items

N. 2013 Annual Meeting

            Debra Peters gave an update on the 2013 Annual Meeting.  New features include the Ignite sessions.  More Ignite sessions than expected were proposed.  There was extensive discussion of use of Internet access, social media and Twitter use during the meeting.

O. Centennial

            Nancy Huntly gave an update on efforts of the Centennial Implementation Committee.  They will be meeting this week, and are looking for input on the theme and logo for the meeting (in coordination with the meeting committee).  They are also interested in suggestions for symposia and special sessions.  2015 will be the year of the MacArthur Award plenary.  They think an additional science plenary should be planned.  The Committee hopes to have most of the Past Presidents attend the meeting, and there was a request that the Governing Board consider ways to encourage their attendance.  Les Real and Charlie Canham will explore fundraising opportunities to support their attendance, particularly for retired past presidents. 

P. Publications Meetings  

1. Ecology                                         

            Editor-in-Chief Don Strong summarized his report.  Current acceptance rate is running approximately 21%.   The editorial board is quite large (~125 members), with a relatively low turnover rate.   The work load varies enormously among the editorial board.

2. Ecological Monographs

            Editor-in-Chief Aaron Ellison gave an update on Ecological Monographs.  Submissions in the past year ran ~136, and published 26 articles.  Roughly half of submissions are not sent out for review, and overall acceptance rate is approximately 20%.

3. Ecological Applications

            Editor-in-Chief Dave Schimel reported on the year in Ecological Applications.  Submissions are up slightly this year.  There have been no major changes in procedures and processes in the past year.  A social scientist has been appointed as an assigning editor.  Many of the papers handled by that editor examine economic and ecological tradeoffs in conservation.  A number of papers have been commissioned as part of the Centennial celebration.  The editorial board also spent time discussing the issue of data availability and requirements for publicly posting data.  Data availability is seen as increasingly important for papers with policy and decision-making implications. 

4. Ecosphere

            Debra Peters, Editor-in-Chief of Ecosphere reported on the status of that journal.  The editorial board has reached 50, with a goal of 70-80.   There have been close to 400 submissions during the past year, with 144 papers published in the past year.  Time to first decision from initial submission is roughly 50 days.  Weekly content alerts are now being generated by Allen Press.  Two virtual special feature issues have been generated (published separately and linked by keywords).  They are pursuing a set of 6-10 papers as part of the Centennial celebration.

5. Frontiers

            Sue Silver, Editor-in-Chief summarized the year in Frontiers.  The submission rate continues to increase, although as many of 70% are returned without review because they do not fit the goals and format of the journal. 

6. Bulletin

            Ed Johnson, Editor-in-Chief of the Bulletin summarized activities at the Bulletin, which is the Society’s oldest journal.  There are a number of efforts related to the Cenntennial celebration, including collating all of the Society’s Resolution of Respect.

Meeting adjourned at 12:00 pm, August 4, 2013

May 2013

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board,
May 20-21, 2013
Washington, DC

Members Present:
Scott Collins               President
Steward Pickett          Past-President
Jill Baron                     President-Elect
Sharon Collinge          VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg      VP for Science
Julie Reynolds             VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham          Secretary
Michelle Mack            Member at Large
Mimi Lam                   Member-at-Large
Stephen Jackson          Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director
Elizabeth Biggs           Chief Financial Officer
Nadine Lymn              Director, Public Affairs
Cliff Duke                   Director, Science
Michelle Horton          Director, Administration and Meetings
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers

Members Absent:  
Leslie Real                  VP for Finance

Guests:
Josh Scholl                  Representative, Student Section                    

                                               

9:00 am, meeting called to order by President Scott Collins

I. Roll Call and Agenda

A. Adopt Agenda

Jill Baron moved and Deborah Goldberg seconded a motion to approve the agenda.  All aye.

B. Ratification of Votes

Stephen Jackson moved and Steward Pickett seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the December 2012 Governing Board meeting and the e-mail vote to approve Ellen Anderson for the Regional Policy Award.  All aye.

II.  Reports

A.  Report of the President

Scott Collins reported on his activities since the December board meeting, including efforts to increase coordination among the REU programs at LTER sites to improve minority recruiting to the field.

B. Report of the Executive Director and Staff

Katherine McCarter summarized her report, and noted that publication issues have been a priority.   Michelle Horton gave an update on planning for the 2013 meeting.  Membership numbers and institutional subscribers are both down this year.   Elizabeth Biggs summarized work of the Finance office.  The budget will be discussed in detail later in the meeting.  Teresa Mourad reported that her program received a 1-year NSF grant to support the SEEDS program, and to survey SEEDS alumni.  The EcoEd Digital Library will merge with other programs to form a new resource called LifeEd Digital Library.  She is looking for new funding for this effort.  Cliff Duke summarized work in the Science Office.  The Vegetation Classification Panel met recently in Chapel Hill, NC.  He reported on progress on a number of new volumes in the Issues in Ecology series.  Nadine Lymn distributed copies of the ESA 2012 Annual Report, and then summarized events related to federal science funding, budgets, and proposed legislation.  Sue Silver reported on the status of Frontiers, with 4 special issues currently in the pipeline.  David Baldwin reported on two new hires in the Publications Office.  The May issue of Monographs will be posted shortly.  The requirement that Monographs authors upload their data has required effort by staff to enforce.  Advertising has been instituted on the issue alerts.  There remain problems with generating issue alerts and RSS feeds for Ecosphere.

C. Financial Update

Third quarter financial reports were distributed and summarized by Katherine McCarter and Elizabeth Biggs. Revenues are running ahead of YTD budget, and expenses below YTD budget, with a strong positive balance of revenue over expenses that is expected to carry over but at a lower level to the end of the budget year.  Much of this can be traced to the success of the 2012 meeting in Portland.  There has been a significant drop in membership year to date, but staff are working hard to raise membership by year’s end.  Liz Biggs gave an update on our investment accounts.  Thanks to a strong market, the investment accounts are up 5-12% since the beginning of the year. 

III. Discussion/Action Items

A. Report of the Audit Committee

Sharon Collinge moved that the Audit Committee report be approved.  Steve Jackson seconded.  All aye.

B. Proposed FY 2013-2014 ESA Budget

1. Budget and Assumptions

Katherine McCarter began the discussion of the FY 2013-2014 budget with a summary of the assumptions behind the budget.  Elizabeth Biggs stressed the continuing problem of declining subscription revenue and rising expenses.  These are long-term trends, but have been masked in recent years by better than expected revenue from meetings.  Pressure from open access puts additional uncertainty on budget projections. There was discussion of strategies to recruit and retain new members.  Teresa Mourad raised the issue of the desired scope of Society membership, and the continuing challenge of recruiting members outside of traditional academic careers.  Nadine Lymn mentioned the challenges of meeting needs of members in policy and NGO positions.

Deborah Goldberg suggested a new membership category above Level 3 at a higher income level.  She moved and Steve Jackson seconded creating a Level 4 at $100,000 annual income and a Level 5 at $150,000 annual income.  All aye.  New membership rates associated with these levels will be proposed by staff.

Deborah Goldberg, Josh Scholl, Jill Baron, Michelle Mack, and Mimi Lam volunteered to serve on an ad hoc committee to explore recruitment and retention of new members.

Steward Pickett encouraged the board to establish a strategic process for planning the Society’s response to long-term budget challenges.

Jill Baron moved and Steward Pickett seconded a motion to approve the draft budget.  All aye.

2. Board Strategic Initiative

Ideas for use of Board strategic initiative funds included (1) board fund-raising efforts, (2) increase the number of Graduate Student Policy Awards, (3) funds to support further work on contingent faculty initiatives, and (4) SEEDS program funding. 

C. Report of the Ad hoc Publications Visioning Committee

Scott Collins opened up a discussion of the report from the ad hoc Publications Visioning Committee.  The Committee consisted of Ted C. Bergstrom (University of California, Santa Barbara), Aimee T. Classen (University of Tennessee), Scott L. Collins, Chair (University of New Mexico), Mark Schildhauer (National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis), Diane C. Schmidt (University of Illinois), Don R. Strong (University of California, Davis), and Crispin Taylor (American Society of Plant Biologists), and 4 members of the ESA staff: Katherine S. McCarter, Executive Director, J. David Baldwin, Managing Editor, ESA Journals, Sue Silver, Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, and Liz Biggs, Chief Financial Officer, ESA.

The report contained recommendations in the areas of (1) data accessibility, (2) development of Frontiers, (3) youthful exuberance, (4) pricing (5) Ecosphere, and (6) open access.

Manuscripts published by Monographs are currently required to post data.  The Board recommended changes to the process of ensuring that authors adhere to this requirement, to reduce the work-load on ESA staff.  Phasing the requirement in on other ESA journals will wait until further data have been collected on costs.

Efforts to create an App for Frontiers have been challenging, and experience suggests that it is very expensive to do well.  A digital version of the journal is currently being tested and evaluated.

A subcommittee developed recommendations for a variety of future directions for ESA publications in an evolving technology landscape.  One recommendation focused on methods for preprint distribution.

The section of the report on journal pricing recommended establishment of a pricing structure that accommodated smaller libraries and institutions.  Staff seconded this idea and are pursuing it.

There was extensive discussion of a proposal to facilitate transfer of papers rejected by other ESA journals for consideration by Ecosphere with quality control to be provided by the other journal’s EiCs.  No concrete recommendation was adopted, but it was suggested that once Ecosphere has an impact factor, to move towards a PlosOne model and to accept papers reviewed and rejected by the other journals and sent to Ecosphere by the EiCs.

Analysis of access to online versions of ESA journals suggests that the vast majority of full-text views happen within the first 12 months of publication, however the number of views remains high over the long term.  This suggests that open access to the journals after 12-18 months might not result in significant loss of subscription revenue.  Increases in page charges could replace some of revenue lost from subscriptions, but it would be difficult to have page charges cover any substantial portion of the full cost of publication in the current print journals.

We tabled the recommendation to make all ESA journals open-access until further data on the potential impact of lost subscription revenue is developed and presented to the Board.

D. Contingent Faculty Results/Recommendations

Mimi Lam summarized the results of a survey of the needs of “contingent faculty” members of ESA.   The survey received 536 responses.  The respondents appear to represent a broad range of stages and types of employment.  Based on the survey results the subcommittee recommended a number of actions the Society could take to support contingent faculty, including various forms of reduced fees, recruitment services, and professional development workshops.  Governing board members suggested a number of other possible efforts, including mentoring and networking opportunities.  The Committee on Diversity and Educatin will continue the discussion of Contingent Faculty and will report back by the Fall meeting of the Governing Board.

E. ESA Award Recommendations 

The Awards Committee, chaired by Alan Hastings, has provided its recommendations for the ESA-wide awards to be presented during the Scientific Plenary during the 2013 Minneapolis Annual Meeting.  Alan is setting up a subcommittee of the Awards Committee to work on increasing the diversity of nominees for Society awards.   The chair of the subcommittee for the new Fellows program noted that the overall number and quality of nominees was not quite as high as expected or hoped for (additional nominees were generated partly by the subcommittee itself).   The committee recommends that we explore ways to publicize this program more, especially since it is a way to increase diversity of awardees.

Steve Jackson moved and Charlie Canham seconded that the Governing Board approve the recommendations of the Awards Committee with the exception of the Senior Fellows who were on the board at the time of the approval of the policy.  All aye.

F. Update on New Generation Committee Implementation  

Teresa Mourad provided an update of activities and pointed out four areas of recommendations that staff are currently working on, based on the report of the New Generation Committee.  There will be a full report on activities during the August meeting.

Adjourned, 5:00 pm, May 21, 2013

May 22, 2013

Governing Board Executive Session, 8:00 – 9:00 am

Meeting called to order at 9:00 am, May 22, 2013

G. Public Affairs Midterm Review 

Sharon Collinge and Nadine Lymn presented the midterm review of the Public Affairs program.

H. Emerging Issues Conference

Cliff Duke summarized planning for ESA‘s third Emerging Issues Conference, Integrated Landscape Science for Agriculture, Biodiversity Conservation, and Poverty Alleviation.  Funding for the conference has been challenging, and conference organizers are exploring options for modifying the goals and products of the effort.

I. Centennial Implementation Update

Scott Collins led a discussion of the implementation of the recommendations of the Centennial Committee.

J. Earth Stewardship Application Ecological Action Plan: Designed Ecological Transect

Jill Baron reported on a proposed collaboration between ecologists, landscape architects, and urban planners focused on the themes of earth stewardship and sustainability.   The initiative, coordinated by Alex Felson and Jill Baron, would focus on efforts centered on the annual ESA meetings in 2014 and2015.  Jill also described efforts to train ecologists in communicating with the business community on issues of sustainability.   Activities planned for the annual meetings will require coordination with staff over issues of allocating space, etc.  Sharon Collinge volunteered to assist Jill Baron in providing feedback on the project.

K. Nominations

The Nominations Committee is chaired by Past President Steward Pickett. Members of the Nominations Committee include Members At Large Mimi Lam, Michelle Mack, and Stephen Jackson. Additional members appointed by Past President Pickett are Jessica Hellmann, University of Notre Dame, Bob R. Pohlad, Ferrum College, and Silvia Alvarez-Clare, University of Montana.  A slate of candidates was presented for approval by the Governing Board.   Charles Canham moved and Jill Baron seconded a motion to approve the slate of candidates proposed by the Nominations Committee.  All aye.

There was discussion of the nominating process, including the issues of pairing of candidates for individual slots, and ensuring diversity within the Board.  Steward Pickett addressed the role of the Nominations Committee in leadership development within the Society, and was encouraged to summarize ideas from the committee in an informal document that can be distributed to future Nominations Committees.

L. ESA Code of Ethics

Patricia Flebbe, chair of the Professional Ethics and Appeals Committee (PEAC), presented a proposed addition to the ESA Code of Ethics.  The addition would insert after Item 6 in The “General” Section (and renumber successive items):

“7. Ecologists will, to the extent practicable, engage meaningfully with the communities in which they practice to promote teaching, learning and an understanding of their study; broaden the participation of underrepresented groups; enhance local infrastructure for research and education; and disseminate results broadly to benefit the local community.”

Deborah Goldberg moved and Sharon Collinge seconded a motion to approve the proposed addition to the ESA Code of Ethics.  All aye.

M. Annual Meeting Issues

1. Environmental Offsets

Sharon Collinge moved and Julie Reynolds seconded approving Great River Greening for use of Environmental Offset funds from the Annual Meeting.  All aye.

2. 2014 Annual Meeting theme

Program Chair Hal Balbach has submitted a recommendation for the theme of the 2014 Annual Meeting in Sacramento, CA. He is recommending “From Microbes to Mountains: It‘s All Ecology”.  There was discussion of the need for a scope that ranged from local to global, using opportunities provided by the specific meeting location to illustrate meeting themes.  Scott Collins will discuss ideas for revising the theme with the Program Chair.

3. Local Host 2015

Steve Jackson moved and Jill Baron seconded a motion to approve Chris Swan as 2015 Local Host.  All aye.

4. Local Host 2016

Deborah Goldberg moved and Steve Jackson seconded a motion to approve Frank Mazzotti as the 2016 Local Host.  All aye.

5. 2017-2018 Annual Meeting Sites

The Program Committee, through its chair Kiyoko Miyanishi, is recommending Portland OR for the 2017 meeting and Louisville KY for the 2018 meeting.  Charles Canham moved and Julie Reynolds seconded a motion to approve the recommendations.  All aye. 

N. ESA/ESC Joint Journal Update

Katherine McCarter reported on the status of the development of a joint ESA/ESC journal.  An agreement has been signed covering the functioning of the new journal.  Applications are being received for the position of Editor-in-Chief.   Candidates are being screened by a search committee with members from both Societies.

Meeting adjourned at 12:00 pm, May 22, 2013

 

December 2012

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board,
December 18-19, 2012
Washington, DC

Members Present:
Scott Collins               President
Steward Pickett          Past-President
Sharon Collinge          VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg      VP for Science
Julie Reynolds            VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham        Secretary
Michelle Mack             Member at Large 

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter     Executive Director
Elizabeth Biggs           Chief Financial Officer
Nadine Lymn               Director, Public Affairs
Cliff Duke                     Director, Science
Michelle Horton            Director, Administration
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity
David Baldwin              Managing Editor
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers

Members Absent:     
Mimi Lam                      Member-at-Large
Stephen Jackson          Member-at-Large
Leslie Real                   VP for Finance (present via Skype for a portion of the meeting)
Jill Baron                      President-Elect                                                              

9:00 am, meeting called to order by President Scott Collins  

I. Roll Call and Agenda

A. Adopt Agenda

Sharon Collinge moved and Steward Pickett seconded adoption of the agenda.  All aye.

B. Ratification of Votes taken since August meeting

            1. Minutes, August 2012

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Sharon Collinge seconded approval of the minutes of the August 2012 meeting.  All aye.

            2. EiC for Issues in Ecology

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Sharon Collinge seconded approval of Serita Frey as Editor-in-Chief for Issues in Ecology.  All aye.

II. Reports

A. Report of the President

            Scott Collins reported on his activities as President since the August meeting, including efforts to maintain momentum on the Earth Stewardship Initiative.  He is particularly interested in reaching out to the arts community during annual meetings.  He is also interested in maintaining the outreach to the faith community. 

            He also reported on activities related to ESA publications, including issues related to open access.  Recommendations from an ad-hoc committee on the future of publications will be presented to the Governing Board at the May 2013 meeting.  He also summarized a meeting with representatives from NSF concerning the proposal submission process.

B. Report of the Executive Director and Staff

            Katherine McCarter summarized her report on staff activities, noting that the ESA Fellows program is up and running.  Cliff Duke reported on two new publications in the Issues in Ecology series, and several more in the pipeline.  Planning has begun for the next Emerging Issues conference. Nadine Lymn described activities of the Public Affairs program.  Sue Silver reported on Frontiers, including a planned special issue on the national climate assessment.  The 100th issue of Frontiers was just published.   Elizabeth Biggs noted that the Portland meeting resulted in membership exceeding 10,000.  David Baldwin summarized activities in the Publication Office, including a new automated system for handling Ecological Archives.  Teresa Mourad gave a brief review of the Education and Diversity program.  A full program review will be presented later in the meeting.  Michelle Horton reported on efforts to migrate the website to new software to make it easier for staff to update materials of the website, and provided an update on planning for the 2013 meeting. 

C. Financial Updates

                        1. First Quarter Financials

                        Katherine McCarter and Elizabeth Biggs reported on first quarter financials.  There was extensive discussion of the financial issues involved in selection of sites for the annual meetings.        

                        2. Investment Updates

                        Elizabeth Biggs summarized the Society’s investment accounts. 

III. Discussion/Action Items

A. Program Review – Education and Diversity Programs

            Teresa Mourad and VP Julie Reynolds presented the formal periodic review of the Education and Diversity Program.  There are 3 core programs: SEEDS, the EcoEd digital library, and the Macroscale Ecology Education initiative.  There is a new regional structure for the SEEDS chapters.  There is also a new social networking site for SEEDS.  The EcoEd Digital Library is a relatively new effort that offers resources designed to raise data literacy, build core concepts, and strengthen communities of practice.  The Macroscale Ecology Education program has been funded primarily by NSF, and is a partnership with NCEAS and NEON.

            The Committee on Diversity and Education held a retreat this fall and has produced an action plan for the coming year.  Julie Reynolds discussed the importance of addressing diversity in all aspects of the Society’s activities, and highlighted elements of the action plan.  This included making the Education Scholars program more visible, and making the Diversity Award a standing award from the Society.

B. Code of Ethics Revision 

            The Ecology for the New Generation Committee has proposed changes to the ESA Code of Ethics.  The proposals have been referred to the Professional Ethics and Appeals Committee, chaired by Patricia Flebbe.  That committee will consider the proposals and report to the Governing Board at the May 2013 meeting.

C. Editor-in-Chief Review

            Editors are appointed for 3 year terms, and go through a formal evaluation at the end of each term.  The Publications Committee, chaired by Josh Schimel, submitted their review of Editor-in-Chief Don Strong, who has served 4 terms.  The committee fully endorsed his re-appointment for another 3-year term, and the board enthusiastically agreed.  Steward Pickett moved and Sharon Collinge seconded a motion to appoint Don Strong for another 3-year term as Editor-in-Chief of Ecology.  All aye.

D. SEEDS Sustainability Report

            Joe Gilmer of CCS presented a summary of their report on development strategies for support of the SEEDS project.

E. SEEDS Sustainability Discussion

            Staff and board members engaged in a spirited discussion of the report by CCS, and opportunities for philanthropic support of SEEDS and other ESA initiatives.  There was consensus of the need to expand the base of financial support (among members and more broadly) for both SEEDS and the Society at large.   

F. Centennial Committee Final Report

            The Centennial Committee, chaired by Alan Covich, submitted a final report containing a list of recommendations for activities and expenditures related to the ESA Centennial.  Included in the report is a proposal to fund a short video tracing the history of the Society.  Sharon Collinge moved and Julie Reynolds seconded a motion to approve the allocation of $38,350 for the production of the video.  All aye. 

            The Historical Records Committee presented a detailed request for $18,980 to support their activities.  The 2015 Past Presidents Committee requests $2650 for their activities related to the Centennial.  Deborah Goldberg moved and Steward Pickett seconded a motion to approve both requests.   All aye. 

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Julie Reynolds seconded a motion to approve $2000 to support the production of a history of the Society, for publication in the Bulletin, by Frank Egerton.  All aye.

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Julie Reynolds seconded a motion to approve $10,000 to support other activities planned by sections, chapters and committees, and recommended by the ESA Council.  All aye.  The monies will be allocated and approved by a centennial implementation committee established by the Board.

            There was also a proposal to collect an online series of “classic” papers with introductions.  The effort will be coordinated by David Baldwin, and no funds are requested.  The Board supported this proposal.  A proposal to commission a set of centennial papers for the journals was tabled pending further details from the editors-in-chief.

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Julie Reynolds seconded a motion to approve $10,000 to support student-initiated activities related to the Centennial, with encouragement to include participation by SEEDS students.  All aye.

G. Commitment to Human Diversity in Ecology Award

            Julie Reynolds presented a proposal to make the Diversity Award one of the standing awards of the Society.  Deborah Goldberg moved and Steward Pickett seconded a motion that the award, named the Commitment to Human Diversity in Ecology Award, becomes a formal ESA award, with recommendation from a standing subcommittee of the Awards Committee.  All aye. 

H. ESA/ESC Joint Journal

            Katherine McCarter provided an update on the development of the ESA/ESC joint journal.  There has been agreement on the division of responsibilities and the budget for the new journal.  Thomas Liu, from the editorial staff of Acta Ecologica Sinica, is spending time at ESA Headquarters to work on development of the journal.

I. Mid-term Program Review - Finances

            Elizabeth Biggs presented the mid-term review of the Society financial program.  Institutional subscriptions continue to provide the largest single source of unrestricted funds, but the numbers of institutional subscriptions continue to decline.  Membership has held roughly steady in the past 5 years, with minor fluctuations tied to attendance at the annual meetings.  The Society’s reserves have steadily increased over the past 10 years.

J. Ad Hoc Working Group on ESA Publications Update

            Scott Collins summarized work of the ad hoc working group charged with considering the impact of open access on ESA publications.  The committee met in early December, and will present recommendations at the May 2013 Governing Board meeting.  There was an extensive discussion of open-access issues.

K. Editor-in-Chief Stipends

            Deborah Goldberg presented a report from the Publications Committee on Editor-in-Chief stipends.  Sharon Collinge moved and Steward Pickett seconded a motion to approve the the following recommendations:

            A. Stipends will remain the same for Ecology and Ecological Applications.

            B.  The stipend for the Editor-In-Chief of Ecological Monographs will increase to $10,000/yr, effective January 1, 2013.

            C.  In the budget year when submissions to Ecosphere are expected to exceed 500, the stipend for Ecosphere will be increased by $7,500.

            All aye.

L. IRB reviews of ESA surveys

            Julie Reynolds moved and Sharon Collinge seconded a motion to approve the proposed policy on IRB approvals.  All aye.

The new policy states:

“The Ecological Society of America is occasionally asked to assist or cooperate with researchers who seek to survey all or part of the ESA membership (e.g., as a representative set of professional ecologists). Such surveys may involve sensitive or personal information. In order to provide legal, ethical, and other protections for the Society and for the survey participants, all researchers seeking to use Society membership rolls, mailing lists and other resources must have prior approval for their project from the Institutional Review Boards (IRB) of their respective institutions. Such approval must be documented before the Society will provide membership lists or other resources.

Routine membership surveys and inventories conducted on behalf of the Society for internal needs of the Society (e.g., demographic profiles, member-satisfaction or need surveys) are ordinarily exempt from IRB review. Alternatively, if an ESA-sponsored research project is intended for dissemination beyond ESA officers, councilors, or general membership, it should be reviewed by an IRB of an outside organization (e.g., a university in the greater Washington, DC area).”

M. Community of Practitioners

            Mimi Lam has submitted a proposal that seeks to offer reduced registration fees to increase attendance at the annual meetings for specific targeted groups.  The board supported the general goals of the proposal, and tabled the proposal pending more detail on definition of the targeted groups, financial implications, and methods for implementation.   Vice President for Education and Human Resources Julie Reynolds was asked to work with Mimi Lam to refine the proposal.     

L. New Business

            Deborah Goldberg described a joint initiative of the science, education, and public affairs programs to encourage and provide information and mentoring for a wider range of career paths in ecology.  Specific proposals include establishing a network of mentors and a webpage with supporting materials.   The development of the initiative has been supported with an initial long-range planning grant.  She requested a $5,000 allocation from the Opportunity Fund to support an intern to work with the HQ office on establishing the website.  Deborah Goldberg moved and Julie Reynolds seconded a motion to approve allocation of $5,000 from the Opportunity Fund to support the Career Pathways in Ecology program.

 

Adjourned at 11:55 pm

August 2012

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board,
August 4-5, 2012
Portland, OR

Members Present:
Steward Pickett President
Scott Collins President-Elect
Terry Chapin Past-President
Sharon Collinge VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg VP for Science
Leslie Real VP for Finance
Julie Reynolds VP for Education and Human Resources, Elect
Charles Canham Secretary
Mimi Lam Member-at-Large
Sonia Ortega Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter Executive Director
Elizabeth Biggs Chief Financial Officer
Nadine Lymn Director, Public Affairs
Cliff Duke Director, Science
Michelle Horton Director, Administration
Teresa Mourad Director, Education and Diversity
David Baldwin Managing Editor
Sue Silver Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers

Visitors:
Jorge Ramos Student Representative

Members Absent: Margaret Lowman, VP for Education and Human Resources
Andrea Lloyd, Member-at-Large

Saturday, August 04, 2012, 9:02 - Meeting called to order by President Steward Pickett

I. ROLL CALL AND AGENDA

A. Adopt Agenda
Deborah Goldberg moved and Scott Collins seconded adopting the minutes. All aye.

B. Ratification of Votes taken since May meeting

1. Minutes, May Meeting
Sharon Collinge moved and Terry Chapin seconded ratification of the e-mail vote to approve the minutes of the May 2012 Governing Board meeting. All aye.

II. Reports

A. Report of the President
Steward Pickett opened his report by expressing his pleasure working with ESA staff over the past year, and his satisfaction in being able to carry on the Earth Stewardship Initiative following the work of past presidents Mary Power and Terry Chapin. He outlined a number of new initiatives that will be presented during this meeting, and recognized the work of the Ecology for a New Generation Committee, under the leadership of Sonia Ortega. There was discussion of ways to increase representation from student members within the Governing Board. The Nominating Committee has the opportunity to consider this in selection of candidates for office, particularly for the Member-at-Large positions.

B. Report of the Executive Director and Staff
Katherine McCarter welcomed the Board to Portland, and reported that preregistrations for the meeting exceeded 4200. Written annual reports were provided to the Board, and will be presented to the Council, so she focused her comments on updates. She described work by the staff to explore scenarios for the future of Society publications under open access. She recommends that we consider using Board Strategic Initiative funds to convene a larger group to work on this issue.
Michelle Horton, Director of Administration and meeting coordinator, provided updates on the meeting. She expects that total attendance will come close to 5,000.
Elizabeth Biggs, Chief Financial Officer, reported that the Society expects to end the past fiscal year with a slightly higher than expected surplus. Since the Portland meeting is in the current fiscal year, she expects similarly strong performance this fiscal year.
David Baldwin, Managing Editor, reported that submissions are healthy, impact factors are good, and the journals are becoming increasingly international, with more than 50% of corresponding authors from outside the U.S. Ecosphere is thriving, and Ecological Archives has had over 300 submissions this year. Les Real raised the issue of encouraging PubMed to include ESA journals in its search engine.
Cliff Duke, Science Director, reminded the Board of the Sustainable Biosphere Initiative anniversary reception on Monday, Aug. 6, 2012. The Vegetation Classification Panel remains very active. Work continues on the follow-on to the Earth Stewardship Initiative workshop.
Sue Silver, Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers, provided an update on Frontiers. Submissions are up over 20% from last year. Rejection rates remain very high (over 80%), in part because of limits on numbers of pages published each year. She noted the financial need to have at least 2 special issues a year with outside funding.
Nadine Lymn, Director of Public Affairs, focused her comments on press coverage of the meeting. She noted that 25 people have registered as members of the press. Staff will be using Facebook, Twitter, and blogging to report on the meeting.

C. Financial Update

  1. 1. Fourth Quarter Financials
  2. Elizabeth Biggs distributed and she and Katherine McCarter reviewed fourth quarter (unaudited) financial statements. The Society ended the fiscal year with a surplus of approximately $136,000, which will be allocated to reserves. Revenues were below budget by approximately $150,000, primarily because of reductions in subscription revenues. Much of this is attributed to switches to online only subscriptions, which also result in corresponding reductions in printing costs. Printing remains the largest expense item after salaries, and printing costs were lower during the past fiscal year because of the overall reductions in subscriptions and the move from print subscriptions to online only.
  3. 2. Investments

Les Real, VP for Finance, reviewed Society investments.

III. Discussion/Action Items

A. Investments Policy/Socially Responsible Funds (p 3)
Representatives from Towneley Capital Management reviewed a report they prepared for the board on issues related to socially responsible (SR) investment policies. Three areas of focus emerged from their review. First, not all SR funds are equally SR. Second, because SR fund managers consider a variety of factors that relate to a suite of socially responsible concerns, information is not specific enough to serve investors with a commitment to a single socially responsible factor, such as environmental concerns. Finally, as a group, SR funds underperform their peers.

Current language in the Investment Policy is:
The Society prefers to invest a portion of its portfolio in socially responsible companies or funds. In making investment decisions, the Society will consider environmental sensitivity as a criterion along with such factors as yield, appreciation potential and risk. The Society will seek to avoid investing in companies whose activities demonstrate a callous disregard for the environment, such that investing in them would be embarrassing for the Society. Socially responsible company or fund exposure shall constitute between 5% and 15% of the total portfolio at cost, with the specific target percentage to be determined by the Governing Board.

New language for the final sentence of this paragraph is proposed: “Goals for socially responsible investing will be determined by the Governing Board in consultation with the Society’s investment managers.” Moved by Deborah Goldberg, seconded by Sharon Collinge, all aye.

Deborah Goldberg moved and Sharon Collinge seconded that the Governing Board request that Towneley Capital Management increase the proportion of our portfolio in socially responsible (SR) investments to 20% over the current fiscal year. Motion carried.

B. FY 2012-2013 Budget

  1. 1. EiC Stipends
  2. Katherine McCarter opened a discussion of the issue of adjusting stipends for editors-in-chief of the Society journals to better reflect their relative workloads. Deborah Goldberg will work with the Publications Committee to come up with specific recommendations to be considered at the Fall 2012 Board meeting, for implementation in January 2013.
  3. 2. Approve Budget
  4. Sharon Collinge moved and Deborah Goldberg seconded the approval of the budget presented to the Board at the May 2012 meeting. All aye.
  5. 3. Long-Range Planning Grants
  6. The Members-at-Large were appointed as a committee to review requests for long-range planning grants.
  7. 4. Board Strategic Initiatives
  8. Katherine McCarter reiterated her proposal that funds be allocated to support work by a committee to explore implications of open access for Society publications and finances. Deborah Goldberg summarized efforts related to getting ESA involvement in an NCEAS working group on open access publishing in ecology. It was recommended that the committee expand its focus to include communication and outreach to present the Society’s vision for open access and publication in ecology. Sharon Collinge moved and Les Real seconded a motion that $5000 be allocated to fund a working group to examine publication and financial implications of open access. All aye.
  9. Terry Chapin initiated a discussion of ways that the Board could use these funds to support diversity outreach initiatives.
  10. Steward Pickett moved that $5000 be allocated from Board Strategic Initiative funds to the Earth Stewardship Initiative, for activities recommended by the past, current and future presidents. Seconded by Sharon Collinge. All aye.
  11. 5. Discussion of Council Presentation
  12. The Board discussed topics to be presented at the Council meeting on Aug. 5, 2012.


C. ESA Fellows Program
Deborah Goldberg summarized a proposal from Awards Committee Chair Alan Hastings, VP for Science Deborah Goldberg, President Steward Pickett, and Executive Director Katherine McCarter to create an ESA Fellows Program and an Early Career Fellows Program. The positions are honorific. Fellows are conferred for life and Early Career Fellows conferred for 5 years. The proposals contain detailed goals, nomination procedures, eligibility criteria, and selection procedures for each program.

Deborah Goldberg moved and Sonia Ortega seconded the creation of both the ESA Fellows Program and the ESA Early Career Fellows Program. All aye.

D. Frontiers Budget Plan
Katherine McCarter presented the current year budget for Frontiers, identifying revenue sources and anticipated expenses. Direct expenses are expected to exceed income by approximately $160,000 this fiscal year. Since its inception, core Society funds have supported Frontiers, as they do for other ESA programs.

E. Centennial Committee Recommendations
Mimi Lam, as the Governing Board liason to the Centennial Committee, summarized a report outlining the Centennial activities proposed by the Committee. The proposal contained a rough budget, requesting a total allocation of $100,000 for Centennial celebration activities. Most discussion concerned significant budget allocations for production of short videos. There was also a detailed proposal for Centennial events organized by the Historical Records Committee, with a proposed budget of $16,430, although some of this may be covered in the allocation to the Centennial Committee.

F. Policy Priorities
Sharon Collinge summarized a set of ESA policy priorities developed by Nadine Lymn and the Public Affairs Committee. Many of the issues represent long-standing concerns for the Society, including areas of energy and climate, water quality and quantity, urban ecosystems, and science education.

Deborah Goldberg moved and Terry Chapin seconded the approval of the policy priorities. All aye.

G. “Ecologist in Training” Certification Category
The Board of Professional Certification (BPC) is proposing a new certification category, “Ecologist in Training”, to be created for graduating students who have met the education requirements for ESA certification, but still need the required professional experience. This new category will help young people who have met the educational requirements pre-qualify for regular certification. Andrew Burton, chair of the BPC, reviewed the objectives and justification for the new certification category, and fielded questions from the Governing Board.

The Governing Board expressed strong support for the proposal, with the recommendation that the BPC proceed, and that they consider the best language for the designation of the new category.

H. Annual Meeting Issues

  1. 1. Environmental offsets
  2. ESA contributes $5.00 for each registrant at its annual meeting. In the past, the Board decided that the full amount from this contribution should be given to local projects recommended by the Local Hosts of the meeting. The Society expects roughly $20,000 to be available this year.
  3. Portland Local Hosts Mitch Cruzan and Todd Rosenstiel have provided recommendations for ESA’s contribution and details about each group. Deborah Goldberg moved and Sonia Ortega seconded a motion to divide the funds evenly between the Columbia Land Trust and the Friends of Trees. All aye.
  4. 2. Local Host 2014
  5. The Meetings Committee has identified a Local Host Chair for the 2014 annual meeting in Sacramento, CA. It is Dr. Susan L. Ustin, Professor of Environmental Resource Science, Department of Land, Air and Water Resources, Director, Center for Spatial Technologies and Remote Sensing (CSTARS), 139 Veihmeyer Hall/One Shields Avenue, University of California, Davis.
  6. Deborah Goldberg moved and Scott Collins seconded appointment of Dr. Ustin as the Local Host Chair for the 2014 Annual Meeting. Motion carried with one abstention.

I. Third Emerging Issues Conference
At the May 2012 Board meeting, President Pickett named a Review Committee for ESA’s third Emerging Issues Conference. Members of the Review Committee are Deborah Goldberg (Chair), Jeramie Strickland, Sarah Dooling, Brian Wee, and Katherine Suding.
The task of the committee was to review the submitted proposals and make a recommendation to the Governing Board for the topic of the conference to be held in late 2013 or early 2014.
The Review Committee met by conference call, and Deborah Goldberg summarized their recommendation to support a proposal from Fabrice DeClerk, Jeffrey Milder, and Celia Harvey for a 4-day conference in the first half of 2013, on the topic of “Science and Knowledge Systems to Support Integrated Landscape Initiatives for Agriculture, Biodiversity Conservation and Poverty Alleviation”.
Sharon Collinge moved and Les Real seconded approval of the selection of the proposal as the topic for the third ESA Emerging Issues Conference. All aye.
Either Deborah Goldberg or Steward Pickett will serve as the Governing Board member of the Organizing Committee.

J. Joint ESA/ESC Journal
A committee was formed at the May 2012 Governing Board meeting to guide ESA in its discussions with the Ecological Society of China on possibilities for establishing a joint journal. The members of the committee are: Josh Schimel, Chair; Deborah Goldberg; Jack Liu; Katherine McCarter; and Jianguo Wu. Members of the committee present in Portland plan to meet to begin discussions. In addition, Dr. Thomas Liu from the editorial office of the Ecological Society of China will be spending time with ESA this year and may have a chance to meet with the committee in Portland.

Executive Session (Governing Board Members only)

 

 

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board,
August 5, 2012
Portland, OR

 

Members Present:
Steward Pickett President
Scott Collins President-Elect
Terry Chapin Past-President
Sharon Collinge VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg VP for Science
Leslie Real VP for Finance
Julie Reynolds VP for Education and Human Resources, Elect
Charles Canham Secretary
Mimi Lam Member-at-Large
Sonia Ortega Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter Executive Director
Elizabeth Biggs Chief Financial Officer
Nadine Lymn Director, Public Affairs
Cliff Duke Director, Science
Michelle Horton Director, Administration
Teresa Mourad Director, Education and Diversity
David Baldwin Managing Editor
Sue Silver Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers

Members Absent: Margaret Lowman, VP for Education and Human Resources
Andrea Lloyd, Member-at-Large

Guests Present: Jorge Ramos (Student Representative), Brian McCarthy, Don Strong, Aaron Ellison, Dave Schimel, Jill Baron, Deb Peters, Brian Inouye, Steve Jackson

Meeting called to order at 9:00 am by President Steward Pickett

III. Discussion/Action Items (continued)

K. 2012 Annual Meeting (Brian McCarthy, Program Chair)
Brian McCarthy, Program Chair, and Michelle Horton, ESA Director of Administration and Meetings, briefed the Governing Board on the Portland Meeting. 3,841 abstracts were submitted, and the numbers of both oral presentations and posters were roughly 25-30% higher relative to past 2-3 years, with posters representing close to 25% of presentations. Brian complimented Jennifer Riem on her superb support in organizing the program. There was a recap of a perennial discussion of the length of the meeting, particularly the schedule for the final day, and how to respond to complaints from presenters assigned to time slots at the end of the meeting.

L. Publications Meetings
1. Publications Committee
Josh Schimel, Chair, summarized the work of the Publications Committee during the past year. Highlights include efforts to establish a joint journal with the Ecological Society of China. There have also been discussions of the compensation for editors-in-chief and associate editors. Don Strong noted that the Society is distinctive in the very traditional structure of largely volunteer staffing of the journals (and the low cost to authors of publishing in our journals). Authors currently pay only roughly 25% of the cost of publication.

2. ESA Bulletin
Ed Johnson, Editor-in-Chief of the Bulletin, noted that he is searching for two editors: one for Ecology 101 and one for a broadened Field Stations section. He will be notifying section and chapter chairs asking them to begin preparing histories of their groups. He is also considering ways to use the bulletin to highlight the meeting.

3. Ecology
Don Strong, Editor-in-Chief, summarized efforts to strengthen procedures for documentation of statistical methods and software, under Brian Inouye’s direction, as a required part of publication in Ecology.

4. Ecological Monographs
Aaron Ellison, Editor-in-Chief, reported that submissions and impact factors are up this year, time to publication is down, and there is no backlog in publication. Monographs has begun the process of requiring authors to submit their data as a condition of publication. This has resulted in delays in publication in a few cases, but is otherwise working well. A new associate editor-in-chief has been added.

5. Ecological Applications
Dave Schimel, Editor-in-Chief, reiterated comments from Don Strong and Aaron Ellison. This has been a good year for all of the publications. International submissions represent over half of the manuscripts. The partnership with Ecosphere is working well. He noted that lessons from the years of high rates of “reject without review” led to evolution to a process of “reject with editorial review”. He expects to appoint two new assigning editors, one in the area of social science.

6. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment
Sue Silver, Editor-in-Chief, reviewed the status of the journal over the past year, including the importance of special issues.

7. Issues in Ecology
Jill Baron, Editor-in-Chief, reviewed progress on the Issues in Ecology series. She noted that finding funding has not been a major problem, but that each issue takes a long time to produce. She acknowledged the critical support from Jennifer Riem on the ESA staff. As a result of discussions in the past year about future directions for the Issues, there is a suggestion to develop other formats, including shorter formats.

8. Ecosphere (Deb Peters, EiC)
Deb Peters, Editor-in-Chief, distributed a report on Ecosphere’s second year. Submission rates continue to climb, and publication times have declined. 306 manuscripts were received between July 1, 2011 and June 30, 2012. The total number of manuscripts handled was a roughly 30% increase over the previous 12-month period. She is always looking for suggestions of new subject matter editors. There was a discussion of editorial policy and the relationship of Ecosphere to other ESA journals.

President Steward Pickett expressed his appreciation for the superb job that the Editors-in-Chief do on behalf of the Society and our discipline.

9. 2013 Annual Meeting format
The Ecology for a New Generation Committee recommended that future program committees consider opportunities for new forms of presentations (such as PREZI) at the annual meeting. Deb Peters was present as 2013 Program chair. The new formats offer opportunities for far more diverse and engaging communication. There was a great deal of enthusiasm for exploring these alternatives.

 

The meeting was adjourned at 12:00 pm.

 

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board,
August 10, 2012
Portland, OR

Members Present:
Scott Collins President
Steward Pickett Past President
Jill Baron President Elect
Sharon Collinge VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg VP for Science
Julie Reynolds VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham Secretary
Mimi Lam Member-at-Large
Stephen Jackson Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter Executive Director
Nadine Lymn Director, Public Affairs
Cliff Duke Director, Science
Michelle Horton Director, Administration
Teresa Mourad Director, Education and Diversity
David Baldwin Managing Editor
Sue Silver Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers

Visitors:
Joey Bernhardt (Chair, Student Section), Ned Fetcher

Members Absent:
Leslie Real VP for Finance
Michelle Mack Member-at-Large

Friday, August 10, 2012, 8:30 - Meeting called to order by President Scott Collins

I. Information
A. 2012-2013 Governing Board

  1. President Collins welcomed visitors and new members of the Governing Board. He then reviewed scheduling for the coming year.

II. Current Issues

  1. 1. Earth Stewardship
  2. Scott Collins summarized efforts during the meeting related to the Earth Stewardship Initiative, and affirmed his commitment to the theme for the coming year. He described efforts to develop ties with the arts community to further explore the theme.

2. Centennial Celebration
There was discussion of plans for the Centennial, and of coordination between the board, the Centennial Committee and the Historical Records Committee.

  1. 3. ESA/ESC joint journal
  2. Deborah Goldberg reported on a meeting of the committee appointed to explore the development of a joint journal with the Ecological Society of China. They have begun work on a detailed report to submit to both Societies.
  3. 4. Publications
  4. Deborah Goldberg reported on efforts to find a new Editor-in-Chief for Issues in Ecology. Scott Collins will be naming the committee to explore scenarios for the future of the publications.
  5. 5. Format of Annual Meeting
  6. There was a continuation of previous discussions on new meeting formats.

III. Discussion/Action
A. Contingent Faculty Survey
Mimi Lam distributed an updated version of the proposed Contingent Faculty Survey.
Deborah Goldberg moved and Charles Canham seconded that we accept the language of the survey, with suggestions for minor changes that the survey organizers should consider. All aye.

B. Other Business
Scott Collins noted that there have been requests to develop a survey to query the opinions of ESA members about recent changes in proposal submission at NSF.

There have also been requests for consideration of changes in the Code of Professional Ethic which have been referred to the Professional Ethics and Appeals Committee

 

Meeting adjourned at 9:50

May 2012

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board,
May 24, 2012
Washington, DC

 

Members Present:
Steward Pickett President
Scott Collins President-Elect
Terry Chapin Past-President
Sharon Collinge VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg VP for Science
Leslie Real VP for Finance
Margaret Lowman VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham Secretary
Mimi Lam Member-at-Large
Andrea Lloyd Member-at-Large (via Skype)
Sonia Ortega Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter Executive Director
Elizabeth Biggs Chief Financial Officer
Nadine Lymn Director, Public Affairs
Cliff Duke Director, Science
Michelle Horton Director, Administration and Meetings
Teresa Mourad Director, Education and Diversity
David Baldwin Managing Editor
Sue Silver Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers

 

Thursday, May 24, 2012, 9:00 - Meeting called to order by President Steward Pickett

I. ROLL CALL AND AGENDA

A. Adopt Agenda
The agenda was adopted after reordering several items to accommodate schedules.

B. Ratification of Votes – Minutes, November 2011
Deborah Goldberg moved and Terry Chapin seconded a motion to ratify the vote to approve the minutes. All aye.

II. REPORTS

A. Report of the President
President Steward Pickett presented his report. He summarized efforts of the Ecology for a New Generation Committee. He also discussed the need for the Society to be adaptive, and in particular encourages the society to use the work of the Ecology for a New Generation Committee to help the Society adapt to a rapidly changing world. He reported on continuing efforts on the Earth Stewardship Initiative begun under Mary Power’s tenure as President, including an upcoming workshop. Past-President Terry Chapin described a recent Sustainability Summit with themes that are very similar to those of the Earth Stewardship Initiative, particularly with respect to cross-disciplinary partnerships.

B. Report of the Executive Director and Staff
Executive Director Katherine McCarter noted that detailed reports from staff are contained in the Board Book. She introduced Michelle Horton, a long-time staff member, who has been appointed Director of Administration and Meetings.

Nadine Lymn mentioned a number of recent activities, including a recent meeting of the Coalition for National Science Funding. She noted that the Society will participate in a coalition to try to head off possible cuts in discretionary federal spending in January 2013. She also noted that social media efforts are accelerating, including use of Facebook and Twitter.

Managing Editor David Baldwin summarized highlights from the Publication Office. Issues are increasing in size, but appearing with some minor delays.

Sue Silver described a new initiative to produce online-only special issues (in addition to the normal 10 issues a year). Five papers from the recent Emerging Issues conference will appear in consecutive issues next year (rather than collected as a separate Special Issue).

Michelle Horton reported that the Portland meeting is on track to be record-setting.

Cliff Duke described efforts on the Emerging Issues conference series. Proposals for the next conference are due June 1, 2012. He briefly touched on continuing efforts on sustainability of research infrastructure.

Liz Biggs noted the results of the Audit. There was also an NSF review of procedures. It is likely that this will result in expanded written policies and procedures.

Teresa Mourad summarized highlights from SEEDS, including winding up a large grant from NSF to support field trips and meetings. She has met with NSF program officers to discuss new funding opportunities. Finding sustainable funding for the program remains a major challenge. She reported on work with partners to develop a digital library for ecological education.

C. Financial Update
Katherine McCarter distributed the third quarter financial statement. Third quarter actuals overall are running well above budget. Subscription income has been lower than budgeted, reflecting long-term trends. Manuscript charges have also been below budget reflecting an overly optimistic projection for Ecosphere’s publication fees. But printing costs have also been below budget (as more subscriptions are online only). Subscriptions represent 40% of budgeted revenue, and staff are always considering ways to sustain this source of revenue, and to offset expected long-term declines in institutional subscriptions. Expenses have been running ~ 2% below budget.

III. DISCUSSION/ACTION ITEMS
A. Report of the Audit Committee
Audit Committee chair Charles Canham summarized the Audit Committee report. The auditors issued a clean, unqualified audit of both the Society’s finances and administration of federal awards. Sharon Collinge moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded approving the report of the audit committee. All aye.

B. Proposed FY 2012-2013 ESA Budget

1. Budget and Assumptions

Katherine McCarter summarized the process for developing the budget, and distributed the draft budget and budget narrative for fiscal year 2012-2013. The budget is presented to the Council for approval at each year’s annual meeting. Liz Biggs presented details of the budget. Budget highlights include anticipated strong revenue from the Portland meeting, and continued declines in member subscriptions, in part because of online availability of our journals in many institutions. As a result of a Council vote in 2007 that instituted periodic increases, membership dues are proposed to increase slightly next year. Subscription prices are also budgeted to increase slightly.
There was extensive discussion of the stipends provided to journal editors, including requests from two editors for an increase in the level of support. The Publications Committee will be asked to consider this issue in time to consider changes to the current budget proposal.

2. Proposed Board Strategic Initiative

The proposed budget includes $10,000 for board strategic initiatives. Discussion of possible uses for the funds included activities proposed by the Ecology for a New Generation Committee. Other proposals included activities related to diversity, the recent Sustainability Summit, and the Earth Stewardship Initiative.

 

C. Investment Policy Revision
Les Real summarized an effort to revise the existing (May 2000) guidelines for investment of restricted funds. The guidelines have been thoroughly revised and updated, providing benchmarks for performance. The new Investment Policy Statement was presented in the Board Book. There was discussion of the issue of the degree to which the investment guidelines should focus on socially responsible companies or funds. The Board will setup a conference call with the fund managers to discuss this issue at the August 2012 meeting.

D. Publications Issues
1. Publications Program Review
David Baldwin and Sue Silver presented the 3-year review for the publications program. David reviewed the mission of the publications, and the history of the journals. The flagship journal Ecology dates to 1920 as a quarterly publication, with Monographs following in 1931. Sixty years later Ecological Applications was launched (also first as a quarterly publication). David summarized the current status of the journals, noting that the backlog for publication of Ecology has been eliminated. There has been a significant increase in the total number of pages published by the journals in the past 20 years, although the number has been relatively stable since 2005. Perhaps the most significant accomplishment of the past 3 years has been the successful launch of Ecosphere.

Sue Silver summarized the history of Frontiers, launched in 2003 with significant financial support from the Mellon and Packard Foundations. The launch coincided with a significant increase in Society membership through 2007, at which time total membership peaked. More than half of the authors of recent manuscripts are from countries other than the U.S. Surveys suggest that over 75% of readers still view the journal in print form rather than online. Submission rates have increased steadily since the launch, and since the number of pages published has remained fairly stable, acceptance rates have declined accordingly. The impact factor for the journal has increased steadily, and ranks very high within the environmental science and ecology categories. Institutional subscriptions have lagged well below expectations when the journal was launched. Classified advertising revenue has plunged since 2008, with much of the drop attributed to placement of job ads in Ecolog.

There was discussion of issues related to open access. Steward Pickett proposed that we create a statement summarizing the Society’s position on open access for dissemination to members.

2. Joint Journal ESA/ESC (Goldberg/McCarter) pg.43
Katherine McCarter provided background on a proposal from the Ecological Society of China to launch a new online-only, open-access journal jointly with ESA. Deborah Goldberg presented a draft of a proposal from ESA that would establish a steering committee to work with ESC to work out details for the new journal.

Meg Lowman moved and Les Real seconded a motion to establish a steering committee to develop a formal plan for the journal. The plan would then be submitted to the Governing Board for approval. There was discussion about areas of potential overlap with existing ESA journals, and the opportunity to use this project to build stronger ties with ecologists in China. All aye.

E. Science Mid-Term Program Review
Cliff Duke summarized the mid-term review for the Science program. Details were provided in the Board Book. The program is now 20 years old, and originated as the office of the Sustainable Biosphere Initiative. He described projects in three general program areas: (1) “Advancing Ecological Science”, (2) “Ecology for Community”, and (3) “Solutions for Sustainability”.

F. Contingent Faculty Survey
In 2011, the ESA began a discussion about how to support contingent faculty and help them achieve their professional goals. At the Annual Meeting in Austin, a subcommittee of the Education and Human Resources Committee was charged with formulating a survey to determine the needs of past, current, and potential members of the ESA who hold contingent positions. The subcommittee consisted of Ned Fetcher, Mimi Lam, and Carmen Cid.

Mimi Lam presented the proposed survey. Board members suggested a number of changes to specific questions. The issue was referred back to the committee for further revision.

G. Annual Meeting Issues

1. 2014 Program Chair

Scott Collins moved and Terry Chapin seconded the appointment of Hal Balbach as 2014 Program Chair. All aye.

2. 2013 Annual Meeting Theme

Deborah Goldberg moved and Sharon Collinge seconded the designation of “Sustainable trajectories: learning from the past and shaping the future” as the theme for the 2013 annual meeting, with the suggestion to Debra Peters that she consider changing the word “trajectories” to “pathways”. All aye.

H. Development Committee Report
Les Real summarized the report from a meeting (via conference call) of the Development Committee. Committee members Les Real (chair), Carol Brewer, Norm Christensen, Kay Gross, Jim MacMahon, Anne Pringle, and Dov Sax participated in the meeting, and were joined by Katherine McCarter from the staff. The committee considered a recent proposal to initiate a major campaign to raise approximately $1 million. A survey of member giving at other scientific societies revealed that this is rarely a significant source of funding, and the committee concluded that a campaign of that magnitude was not feasible for ESA at this time. The committee considered a number of proposals to design fundraising efforts in association with the Centennial in 2015. The Board recommended that the Development Committee should use the Centennial as a focus to raise monies for the Fund for the Future and suggested that the Development Committee might need to coordinate with the Centennial Committee.

The meeting was adjourned for the day at 5 pm

 

 

 

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board,
May 25, 2012
Washington, DC

Members Present:
Steward Pickett President
Terry Chapin Past-President
Scott Collins President-Elect
Sharon Collinge VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg VP for Science
Charles Canham Secretary
Mimi Lam Member-at-Large
Sonia Ortega Member-at-Large
Andrea Lloyd Member-at-Large (via speakerphone)

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter Executive Director
Elizabeth Biggs Director, Finance
Cliff Duke Director, Science
Michelle Horton Director, Administration and Meetings
Nadine Lymn Director, Public Affairs
Teresa Mourad Director, Education and Diversity
David Baldwin Managing Editor
Sue Silver Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers

Members Absent: Margaret Lowman, Leslie Real,

Friday, May 25, 2012

The board met in executive session from 8:00 – 9:00 am

III. Discussion/Action Items (continued)

I. Report of Ecology for a New Generation Committee
Sonia Ortega presented the report from the Ecology for a New Generation Committee. The committee consists of Krista Capp, Samir Doshi, Erica Fernandez, Peter Jorgesen, Kellen Marshall-Gillespie, Jorge Ramos, Colibri San Fiorenzo, Naupaka Zimmerman, and Sonia Ortega (chair), with Teresa Mourad as ESA staff liason. Sonia thanked Teresa Mourad for her efforts in support of the committee’s work, and Meg Lowman for hosting a meeting of the committee last fall. The committee provided a comprehensive list of proposals for engaging a new generation of ecologists. Recommendations covered (1) increasing new membership and retention of existing members, (2) mentoring, (3) integrating existing Society efforts to promote K-12 outreach and education, (4) multimedia engagement, (5) promoting new skills and career paths, (6) new efforts related to translational ecology and environmental justice issues, and (7) enhancements of international networks. The report also contained a detailed list of activities that could be implemented for the 2012 Annual Meeting in Portland, OR.

Michelle Horton summarized activities related to the Committee recommendations that will be implemented at the Portland meeting, particularly with respect to the Student Section. Discussion included the topic of exploring new formats for presentations at the annual meetings.
The Council meeting during the Annual Meeting might provide a forum in which to advance some of the Committee’s proposals, particularly with respect to encouraging new activities within Sections. Deborah Goldberg recommended that the report be distributed to Section officials for discussion at the Council meeting this August in Portland. In addition, the Committee’s request to review the ESA code of ethics as it relates to integrating research with the people and places where research is being conducted has been passed along to the Professional Ethics and Appeals Committee for their consideration.

J. Update from Centennial Committee
The ESA Governing Board appointed members to the ESA Centennial Committee in 2011 to suggest activities and to begin coordinating plans for ESA‘s centennial celebration in 2015. Three ESA staff members (Cliff Duke, Nadine Lymn, and Teresa Mourad) from the Washington Office serve as ex officio members of the Committee to help in developing plans among the Science, Education and Diversity, and Public Affairs Offices. Mimi Lam was appointed as the liaison for the Governing Board on the Centennial Committee.

Alan Covich (chair) joined the meeting by phone to provide an update on the committee’s activities. This includes coordinating its efforts with a number of other Society committees, including the Program Committee, Historical Records Committee, Public Affairs Committee, and the Education and Diversity Committee. There will be a challenge in balancing activities related to the Centennial with the normal priorities and activities of an annual meeting. There is a plan to produce a video focused on the Centennial, and there was discussion of costs, audience, and format.

K. 2012 Regional Policy Award
The Regional Policy Award has been given since 2008. The Public Affairs Committee (PAC) selects the potential award winner from a list of candidates nominated by the Annual Meeting local host committee, regional ESA chapters, and Student or other ESA Sections.

Charles Canham moved and Terry Chapin seconded a motion to approve the recommendation from the Public Affairs Committee that the 2012 Regional Policy Award be presented to Ken Bierly of the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board. All aye.

L. Recommendations from the Nominations Committee (Chapin)
The Nominations Committee is chaired by Past President Terry Chapin. Members of the committee are Members-at-Large Mimi Lam, Andrea Lloyd, and Sonia Ortega. The additional members appointed by Past President Chapin are Elena Bennett, and Kathleen Weathers. Terry Chapin summarized the nominating process, emphasizing efforts to make it more transparent, and presented the slate of candidates for 2012 elections. This includes the positions of President-Elect, Vice President for Science, Secretary, Member-at-Large, and Board of Professional Certification (2 slots).

Scott Collins moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded a motion to approve the slate of candidates proposed by the Nominating Committee. All aye.

M. Recommendations from the Awards Committee
The Awards Committee, chaired by Alan Hastings, has provided its recommendations for the ESA-wide awards to be presented during the Scientific Plenary during the 2012 Portland Annual Meeting.

Deborah Goldberg moved and Sharon Collinge seconded a motion to approve the slate with the exception of the Mercer and Honorary Member awards, with the request to the Awards Committee to recommend a single honoree for each of those two awards. All aye.

Katherine McCarter initiated a discussion of the nomination process, and efforts to reduce implicit bias in selection of nominees. Ideas include establishment of a “canvassing” committee” to expand the list of names considered for the awards.

The meeting was adjourned at noon.

November 2011

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board, 
November 17, 2011
Washington, DC

Members Present
Steward Pickett          President
Scott Collins               President-Elect
Sharon Collinge          VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg      VP for Science
Leslie Real                  VP for Finance
Margaret Lowman      VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham          Secretary
Mimi Lam                   Member-at-Large
Sonia Ortega               Member-at-Large
Andrea Lloyd             Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director 
Elizabeth Biggs           Director, Finance
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers
Nadine Lymn              Director, Public Affairs
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity

Members Absent:  Terry Chapin (joined via speakerphone for 1 hour)

Thursday, November 17, 2011, 9:00 - Meeting called to order by President Steward Pickett

I. Roll Call and Agenda

A. Adopt Agenda 
            Deborah Goldberg moved and Meg Lowman seconded a motion to approve the agenda.  All aye.

B. Ratification of Votes taken since August meeting

            1. Minutes, August 6-7, 2011 and August 12, 2011 
            Andrea Lloyd moved and Meg Lowman seconded a motion to ratify the vote to approve the minutes.  All aye.

II. Reports

A. Report of the President 
            President Steward Pickett reported that his highest priority for the year is to continue the Earth Stewardship Initiative, with a focus this year on science, particularly in reaching out to disciplines of urban design, urban planning and civil engineers.  He reported on efforts to secure funding from NSF for a workshop to advance these ideas.  Terry Chapin, Cliff Duke and Steward are taking the lead on that effort. 

            Steward also described his efforts to initiate a Presidential Conversation on Diversity, to emphasize the importance of this issue throughout Society activities.   This included developing linkages to the Earth Stewardship Initiative.  He also mentioned early efforts to address the topic of the role of ecology in interdisciplinary studies, and the degree to which such studies are constrained by institutional structures.

B. Report of the Executive Director and Staff

            The Governing Board book contains detailed reports from Executive Director Katherine McCarter and ESA staff.  Katherine highlighted progress on discussions with the Ecological Society of China about professional certification programs. The ESC has approached ESA about jointly supporting a new scientific publication.

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded a motion to appoint Les Real, Vice President for Finance, an official signer on our investment accounts and to give him the ability to make decisions on the reserve funds.  All Aye.

            Teresa Mourad gave an update on SEEDS.   The Packard Foundation has asked ESA to further develop a proposal for long-term sustainability of funding for SEEDS.   She mentioned an effort to secure funding for an NSF Research Coordination Network (RCN) focused on ecology education.

            Sue Silver highlighted new features planned for 2012 in Frontiers.  This includes a new series on ecological literacy.  There is a Citizen Science special issue planned for August 2012.  Frontiers was approached by the Dept. of Energy about a potential special feature based on material that DoE is developing for the National Climate Assessment.

            David Baldwin summarized the status of the journals.  Ecosphere continues to thrive, and submission rates have been high.  Submissions to the other journals have been at traditional levels.   The data mandate for Ecological Monographs appears to be working well.

            Liz Biggs reported that the annual audit has been completed.  The audit committee will have a phone meeting to review the audit once we receive it.  Our 2011 membership was up for the year.

            Nadine Lymn reviewed efforts of the Public Affairs program, including a recent congressional briefing on flood management.  ESA joined with AIBS to mobilize their members to write letters in support of restoring funding to NSF.

C. Financial Updates

  1. 1. First Quarter Financials

 

            Katherine McCarter reviewed revenue and expenses to date.  Revenue is running well above expenses, in part because annual meeting revenue occurs during the first quarter.

  1. 2. Investment Updates

 

            VP for Finance Les Real provided a first quarter investment summary.  Market fluctuations have affected the accounts, but not unexpectedly.

III. Discussion/Action Items

A. ESA Centennial Plans 
            
            1. Centennial Committee Update

            Katherine summarized the report from the Centennial Committee chaired by Alan Covich.  The committee held its first meeting in Austin, TX in August, 2011.  The committee has requested an extension of the deadline for presenting a final plan (currently May, 2012).  Sharon Collinge suggested that the Public Affairs program committee and staff should be involved in the planning, particularly to identify and reach audiences outside the Society membership.  It was suggested that Cliff Duke, Nadine Lymn and Teresa Mourad be added as ex-officio members of the Committee.

            Meg Lowman moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded a motion to extend the deadline for a formal report to the Governing Board to the time of the annual meeting in 2012, but request a progress report by the time of the May 2012 Governing Board meeting.  All aye.
            
            2. Funds for the Centennial

            Staff have proposed that funds be set aside to support activities associated with the Centennial.  One source would be from the Society’s annual allocation to the unrestricted reserve fund.  Andrea Lloyd moved that we create a Centennial Strategic Fund using allocations to the unreserved funds during the next two fiscal years to support strategic activities related to the centennial.  Les Real seconded.  All aye.
            
            3. EHRC Centennial Suggestions

            Meg Lowman summarized a meeting of the Education and Human Resources Committee focused on planning for the Centennial.  Their meeting focused on reaching out to diverse stakeholders, particularly in Washington.  The EHRC report will be provided to the Centennial Committee who will be developing proposals and priorities for activities related to the Centennial.

            4. Centennial Planning – D.C. Event

            Katherine McCarter summarized ideas generated by staff for events that could be held in Washington during the Centennial.  There was extensive discussion of how best to engage in policy debates, both in Washington and elsewhere.  Katherine McCarter noted that pursuing some of these ideas will require staff support. Staff were asked to see how a D.C. event could build on the Centennial.

            5. Fund for the Future – Centennial Plan

            Sonia Ortega and Katherine McCarter presented ideas to use the Centennial to leverage fundraising for the Fund for the Future.  They proposed a goal of raising $1 million by 2015, and summarized a formal development plan to meet the goal.   An expanded Development Committee would need to be involved in this effort, so the proposals will be forwarded to Development Committee Chair Les Real.  

B. EiC Review – Aaron Ellison

            The Publications Committee submitted their review of Ecological Monographs Editor-in-Chief Aaron Ellison, with a strong recommendation that he be reappointed for another 3-year term.   Andrea Lloyd moved and Sharon Collinge seconded a motion to reappoint Aaron Ellison to a new 3-year term (January 2012-December 2014) as Editor-in-Chief of Ecological Monographs.  All aye.  

            The Board would like to thank Aaron Ellison for his excellent work with the journal, and thank the Publication Committee for their thorough review.

C. Diversity Issues

            1. Diversity Recommendations from the Education and Human Resources Committee (EHRC)

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded a motion to recommend the change in the bylaws as proposed by the EHRC.  The intent of the amendment is to insure that Chairs of ESA Sections, Chapters, and Committees and the general membership will be solicited for nominations as part of the yearly nomination process. After discussion Deborah Goldberg moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded a motion to alter the proposal to modify the language of the second sentence in the proposal to eliminate the words “form this list”.  The amended motion was unanimously approved.  The recommendation will be forwarded to the Council for consideration at the next annual meeting.

            The EHRC also forwarded a proposal to allocate funding for a graduate student to examine historical trends in diversity within membership and meeting attendance.  There was discussion about limitations of current data available to the Society.  The proposal was tabled and EHRC was asked to develop a proposed diversity action plan for the Board’s consideration.

            2. Presidential Conversation on Diversity

            Steward Pickett provided an update of his efforts to initiate a Presidential Conversation on Diversity, as a means of highlighting the Society’s commitment to all of the dimensions of diversity. 

D. ESA and Technology 
Thet Oo, Associate Director for Information Technology, joined the meeting for a conversation on available technology and needs of Society activities.

E. Board of Professional Certification Recommendations

            Niki Nicholas, Chair of the Board of Professional Certification joined the meeting by speaker phone to discuss proposed changes in certification procedures.

            There were two proposals – to institute a minimum grade requirement for courses used to establish eligibility, and to require membership in ESA during the year that they become certified.

            Sharon Collinge moved and Les Real seconded the proposal that all courses used to meet certification must have a minimum grade of B minus.

            Deborah Goldberg moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded the proposal that newly certified or re-certified ecologists who are not members of the society be granted a free 1-year membership to start in January of the year following the date of certification or re-certification.  All aye.

F. Bylaws – EHRC Name Change

            Meg Lowman summarized a proposal to change the name of the Education and Human Resources Committee to the Committee on Diversity and Education.  There would be no change in the formal charge to the committee.  Andrea Lloyd moved and Charles Canham seconded the motion to recommend to the Council a change in the Bylaws to rename the EHRC “The Committee on Diversity and Education”.  All aye.  

G. SEEDS Leadership Certificate Program

            Teresa Mourad presented ideas for a system of coordinated partnerships that will support and reinforce a progression of career development opportunities from high school through professional employment, through a series of levels of certificate programs.  The overall program would significantly expand the reach and scope of SEEDS by encouraging other organizations to adopt SEEDS activities and approaches.   

H. EEB Chairs

            Deborah Goldberg gave an update on her initiative to organize a network of chairs of departments of ecology and evolutionary biology.  They distributed an initial questionnaire to chairpersons and got an enthusiastic response.  There was a similar response from the Governing Board.  There was discussion of how inclusive to be in the network for departments that are not readily classified as ecology and evolutionary biology.

Adjourned for the day at 5:00 pm

 

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board, 
November 18, 2011
Washington, DC

Members Present
Steward Pickett          President
Terry Chapin               Past-President (via speakerphone)
Scott Collins               President-Elect
Sharon Collinge          VP for Public Affairs
Deborah Goldberg      VP for Science
Leslie Real                  VP for Finance
Charles Canham          Secretary
Mimi Lam                   Member-at-Large
Sonia Ortega               Member-at-Large
Andrea Lloyd             Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director 
Cliff  Duke                  Director, Science 
Elizabeth Biggs           Director, Finance
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers
Nadine Lymn              Director, Public Affairs
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity

            Members Absent:      Margaret Lowman

Friday, November 18, 2011

The board met in executive session from 8:30 – 9:00 am

III. Discussion/Action Items

I. Program Review – Public Affairs

            Nadine Lymn and Sharon Collinge led the three-year review of the multi-faceted Public Affairs program.   

J. Emerging Issues Conference – Brainstorming

            Cliff Duke led a discussion to the current structure of the Emerging Issues Conferences, with several suggestions for ways to modify the program, including expanding the program to accommodate smaller workshops and projects focused on specific outcomes such as publications or educational materials.   

K. SBI 20th Anniversary Celebration

            Deborah Goldberg initiated a conversation on plans for a celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Sustainable Biosphere Initiative during the 2012 Annual Meeting in Portland.  Ideas include a special session and a reception.

L. Ecology for a New Generation Committee

            Sonia Ortega gave an update on the work of the committee, including a detailed set of recommendations for activities to implement at the 2012 Annual Meeting in Portland.  There was broad support for the recommendations, and the staff is enthusiastic about implementing the ideas.  The Committee will have additional recommendations for the May Governing Board Meeting.

M. New Business

 

Meeting  adjourned at 11:30.  

ADJOURNMENT

August 2011

ESA Governing Board, 
August 6, 2011
Austin, TX

Members Present
Terry Chapin               President
Steward Pickett          President-Elect
Mary Power                Past President
Laura Huenneke          VP for Public Affairs
Rob Jackson                VP for Science
Bill Parton                   VP for Finance
Margaret Lowman      VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham          Secretary
Josh Schimel               Member-at-Large
Sonia Ortega               Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director 
Cliff Duke                   Director, Science 
Elizabeth Biggs           Director, Finance
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers
Nadine Lymn              Director, Public Affairs
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity

Members Absent:  Andrea Lloyd

Guests Present:  Scott Collins, Les Real, Naupaka Zimmerman, Margaret Palmer (via speakerphone)

Saturday, August 6, 2011, 9:00 am.  Meeting called to order by President Terry Chapin.

I. Roll Call and Agenda (President Terry Chapin, Presiding)
 
A.  Ratification of Votes taken since May meeting
1. Minutes, May Meeting
Charles Canham moved and Mary Power seconded ratification of the vote taken by e-mail to approve the minutes of the May, 2011 meeting. All aye.

II.        Reports

A.  Report of the President 
President Terry Chapin summarized activities related to the Earth Stewardship Initiative, particularly with reference to events that will take place during the meetings in Austin.  He also reported on interactions with AGU on issues related to challenges in communicating about climate change.  Meetings earlier this year with religious groups led to a session to form a speakers bureau that could provide information to the religious community on environmental issues. An email was sent to all ESA members to solicit input on these initiatives.  Terry noted that in order to make the initiative successful it will be necessary to engage members outside of the Governing Board, particularly through the Sections.  He has written to all Section and Chapter chairs to ask about their willingness to get engaged on the initiative. 

B.  Report of the Executive Director and Staff 
Katherine McCarter encouraged all GB members to attend a meeting Tuesday morning from 7-8 am of grad students and ESA Leadership.  She noted that it was just 1 year ago that Ecosphere was launched, and that the first year has been very successful, with the publication meeting all expectations for quality, rapid publication, member acceptance and finances.  ESA journal impact factors have all improved in the past year.  ESA journals are all in the top 10% of all ISI journals, according to a recent analysis. 

Cliff Duke reported on activities of the Science Program, with updates on activities taking place during the meetings this week.  He summarized the status of the Emerging Issues conferences, and of the Issues in Ecology publication series. 

Nadine Lymn distributed the newly published “Ecologist’s Guidebook to Policy Engagement”.  VP for Public Affairs Laura Huenneke discussed the genesis of the publication.  It was motivated in part by requests from the Student Section for more guidance on how to engage effectively on policy issues, and the recognition that there is interest in policy engagement in many different arenas.   Nadine recognized Zoe Cardon’s efforts to get local Austin media interested in the meetings.

Elizabeth Biggs gave highlights on the financial status of the Society.  We ended the year in the black, and membership is up this year.  Details will be presented in the Financial Update later in the meeting.  Attendance at the Austin meeting is expected to be ~ 3500 – 3600.   

Sue Silver reported on a survey sent to ESA members about Frontiers.  There were lots of suggestions, but she feels there is a mandate to continue the general direction of the journal.  She is currently working on a Citizen Science special issue, highlighting ~ 10 citizen science projects to illustrate lessons learned.  She noted that she is now receiving unsolicited submissions for the Trails and Tribulations series, and feels that it is becoming a popular venue for describing insights into the life of field scientists.

Teresa Mourad summarized initiatives from the Education and Diversity Program, and activities planned during the meeting in Austin.  The SEEDS program continues to do well.   She reported on efforts to establish the EcoEd digital library of teaching materials.  

David Baldwin previewed details of the report of the publications program.  The publication backlog has been eliminated in all journals.  There are a number of special features planned.  The staff continues to make improvements and changes to the online tools for Ecosphere, including means of creating virtual “special features” based on keywords.  They are now sending out issue alerts for Ecosphere.  There is some concern that the number of submissions in the first half of 2011 may be slightly lower after an initial pulse at the end of 2010.  Efforts will be made to encourage additional submissions. David attended an initial meeting of Dryad in July in Vancouver.  Ecological Monographs requires that new manuscripts participate in the archive, and details have now been finalized to automate reminders sent to authors to deposit data.  He expects that we will want to revisit the issue of whether other ESA journals should participate.

C.  Financial Update

  1. Fourth Quarter Financials

Liz Biggs distributed an unaudited fourth quarter financial report, and Katherine McCarter gave an overview of the report.  Revenue has been above budget, and expenses were below budget, leading to a positive balance that will be allocated to reserves.  She noted that subscription revenue is down by ~ 2.5% for the year, a trend that has been noted in previous meetings.  This has been buffered to some degree by overseas subscriptions, particularly in Brazil and China.

  1. Investments

Bill Parton summarized the status of ESA investments.  The current investment strategy for the unrestricted net assets was adopted at a previous Governing Board meeting, and uses a conservative balance of bonds and equities.  The reserve funds use an even more conservative mix.  

D.  Earth Stewardship 
Terry Chapin led a discussion of the Earth Stewardship Initiative.  Mary Power focused during 2009-2010 on connections with other natural science organizations.  Terry Chapin has focused this past year on interactions with faith-based groups and social sciences, and Steward Pickett will concentrate on linkages to practitioners in the coming year.  He noted that we still have not identified a mechanism that can advance this initiative within the Society over time.  He suggested that Sections could be particularly important.  He noted a workshop at Duke University last year to define Earth Stewardship.  The new NSF synthesis center at the University of Maryland may provide a venue for future activities of the initiative.  Steward Pickett emphasized the benefits of continuity in the focus on the initiative among past, current, and future society leaders.  There were two meetings related to the initiative in May 2011 at ESA offices with officials from federal agencies and with representatives from design, architectural, and engineering disciplines.  A proposal was submitted recently to NSF to hold a small, 2-3 day workshop in DC, sometime in late winter 2012.  This would lead up to a series of events at the 2012 Annual Meeting in Portland focused on Earth Stewardship in practice.  There was extensive discussion of the utility of the concepts of sustainability and stewardship, and ways to best advance the goals of the initiative.    

III.        Discussion/Action Items

A. Member Survey Follow-up  

  1. Staff Reports 

Katherine McCarter led a discussion of ideas generated by staff in response to the member survey conducted in February 2011.  The board packet contains a summary of their ideas.  One general conclusion is that many members are unaware of many of the opportunities to be involved in society activities, and the opportunities for networking.  There is also interest in training in peer-review for early-career scientists.

  1. Ecology for a New Generation Committee

Steward Pickett reported on activities of the ad hoc committee to provide recommendations on messaging to early career ecologists.  This issue emerged as a priority from the recent member survey.  The charge to the committee is to address the question:  “What kinds of activities and strategies for messaging might the Society employ to best attract and serve a membership that reflects the world of the 21st century?”

  Sonia Ortega has agreed to chair the committee.  She and Steward Pickett are working to finalize the membership of the committee.  The committee will have access to the result of the member survey, and will prepare recommendations to be presented at the 2012 meeting in Portland.    

B. FY 2011-2012 ESA Budget

  1. Approve Budget 

The board reviewed the budget approved at the May meeting.  It will be presented to the Council on Aug. 7, 2011 for adoption.  A summary of the budget outlining assumptions was distributed. No changes were proposed.

  1. Long Range Planning Grants  

Members at Large are traditionally asked to review proposals for Long Range Planning Grants.  Josh Schimel suggested that proposals for LRPGs be asked to provide a summary of results of prior grants.  

  1. Board Strategic Initiatives 

Steward Pickett moved and Laura Huenneke seconded a motion to allocate $5,600 of the Strategic Initiatives funds to support activities of the Ecology for a New Generation Committee.  All aye.

Mary Power suggested designating funds to support outside speakers for the Portland meeting, designated by the President and Program Chair.  Mary moved to give the President and Program Chair authority to use the balance of the Strategic Initiatives funds ($4,400) to support travel and meeting expenses by outside (non-member) speakers at the Annual Meeting in Portland, 2012.  Seconded by Rob Jackson.  All aye. 

  1. Discussion of Council Presentation  

The board reviewed issues to be presented to the Council at the meeting on Aug. 7, 2011

C. Board of Professional Certification Requests   
The Board of Professional Certification renewed its request from August 2010, for reconsideration of the proposed requirement that all individuals certified by ESA be members of the Society.  This was discussed at the 2010 meeting, at which time the Governing Board decided not to approve the request.  There was extensive discussion of the request again, but many of the same concerns were expressed about the appropriateness of requiring membership.  The board tabled the request and will ask the Chair of the Board of Professional Certification to join a discussion of this issue at the November board meeting.

The BPC also asked the Governing Board to consider a minimum grade requirement of B- for all courses listed on the application for certification.  There were concerns about consistency in application of this requirement.  The Governing Board tabled the request, and will ask the Chair of the Board of Professional Certification to join a discussion of this issue at the November board meeting.

D. Video Conferencing
Staff investigated hardware and software solutions for videoconferencing.  Dedicated systems are relatively expensive, and there appear to be web-based options like Skype that can be used effectively at much less cost.  There is clearly benefit to both the Board and the Board members to have face-to-face meetings, but there are also times when teleconferencing facilities would be beneficial.  There is a related need to explore ways to improve telecommunications bandwidth at the ESA offices in Washington, DC.  

E. Yearly Policy Priorities 
Nadine Lymn and VP Laura Huenneke reviewed public policy priorities for the coming year.  Priorities were presented in the areas of (1) Energy and Climate, (2) Water Quality and Quantity, (3) Infrastructure Impacts on Ecosystems, (4) Disasters Affecting Ecosystems, (5) Science Education, and (6) Endangered Species.  
Rob Jackson moved and Steward Pickett seconded a motion to approve the policy priorities.  All aye.

F. Program Chair 2015
Josh Schimel moved and Mary Power seconded a motion to approve appointment of Carol Brewer as Program Chair for the 2015 Annual Meeting in Baltimore. All aye.

G. Local Hosts 2012 
Rob Jackson moved and Laura Huenneke seconded a motion to approve appointment of Mitch Cruzan and Todd Rosenstiel to be Local Hosts for the 2012 Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon.  All aye.

H.  Environmental Offsets  
            Mary Power moved and Laura Huenneke seconded a motion to split the environmental offset funds between the City of Austin Carbon Offset Challenge Grants and Bat Conservation International.  All aye.

I.  New Business (Margaret Palmer, SESYNC – Guest)
            Margaret Palmer, the director of the new National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC), joined the meeting by conference call to lead a discussion of the new synthesis center.  She began the discussion by providing an overview of the Center’s goals and structure.  They have partnered with Resources for the Future to foster linkages between the academic community and policy.  There is a strong focus on developing new computational tools.  The center will be based in Annapolis, MD.    They envision 2-3 themes active at any one time, with a portfolio of projects under any given theme.  There will be a parallel funding program for individual projects that don’t fit within active themes, but it is expected that this would be limited to high-risk but potentially high-yield projects. 

Margaret mentioned a number of potential ways that the Center could contribute to ESA meetings and activities, including accepting proposals for workshops related to ESA initiatives.

J. Report from the Student Section.  
Naupaka Zimmerman gave updates on two activities coming out of the Student Section.  The Mycological Society is interested in co-sponsoring a symposium or sessions on fungi and ecosystem function, as part of a Research Coordination Network.  INNGE – International Network of a New Generation of Ecologists – has been exploring ways to interact with ecological societies worldwide to cooperate on efforts to facilitate networking and career development.

Executive Session
            The Governing Board went into Executive Session at 4:15 pm

Meeting adjourned at 5:00 pm

 

 

ESA Governing Board, 
August 7, 2011
Austin, TX

Members Present
Terry Chapin               President
Steward Pickett          President-Elect
Mary Power                Past President
Laura Huenneke          VP for Public Affairs
Rob Jackson                VP for Science
Bill Parton                   VP for Finance
Margaret Lowman      VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham          Secretary
Josh Schimel               Member-at-Large
Sonia Ortega               Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director 
Cliff Duke                   Director, Science 
Elizabeth Biggs           Director, Finance
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers
Nadine Lymn              Director, Public Affairs
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity

Members Absent:  Andrea Lloyd

Guests Present:  Scott Collins, Les Real, Deborah Goldberg, Naupaka Zimmerman, Ed Johnson, Don Strong, Aaron Ellison, Dave Schimel

Sunday, August 7, 2011, 9:00 am.  Meeting called to order by President Terry Chapin.

III. Discussion/Action Items (continued)    

 K. Publications Meetings  

1. Publications Committee (Scott Collins, Chair)
Scott Collins reported that the year has been relatively uneventful for the Publications Committee, after major activities in the past year (including the launching of Ecosphere).  Josh Schimel will become chair of the committee at the end of the Austin meetings.  Scott has structured the committee membership to staggered 3-year memberships to allow more predictable turnover on the committee.

2. ESA Bulletin (Ed Johnson, EiC)
There is a limit of 100 pages per issue, and there is now a backlog of material.  David Gooding and another staff member in Ithaca provide all of the layout and production support as part of their other duties.  There was discussion of whether there are ways to lessen this limitation.  Josh Schimel agreed to have the Publications Committee examine this issue.

3. Ecology (Don Strong, EiC)
Don Strong reported on activities at Ecology over the past year.  One year ago the journal faced a significant backlog. Analysis of the genesis of the backlog suggests that pre-review and reject without review is a highly subjective process.  In particular, acceptance rates of pre-reviewed papers were no different in the past year than previous acceptance rates of manuscripts not subjected to reject without review screening. After very high rejection rates in the past 2 years and the successful elimination of the backlog over the past year, acceptance rates are expected to rise. 
Don expressed his admiration for the success of Ecosphere over the past year. 

4. Ecological Monographs (Aaron Ellison, EiC)
Aaron Ellison gave an update on Ecological Monographs.  Submission rates increased in calendar year 2010 by 16%.  Roughly half of manuscripts are rejected without review.  Overall acceptance rate for the 2010 year was ~ 18%.  Median time for decisions was 5 days for manuscripts rejected without review and 69 days for manuscripts sent out for external review. The journal’s impact factor increased significantly over the past year (to 5.9 from 4.8).

5. Ecological Application (Dave Schimel, EiC)
Dave Schimel reviewed operations at Ecological Applications. There was a significant increase in impact for the journal over the past year.  The main criterion for reviewing papers has been whether there is a general advance in management of ecosystems, rather than simply local application of general knowledge.  Submission rates have been very high, so this criterion has been the most common justification for rejection without review.  Papers that simply present new metrics of ecosystem state are also often rejected without review.  Reject without review rates have been ~ 45% in recent years. 
They have implemented a new policy for invited features.  Many proposals are received, but most are problematic because they take so long.  They typically have lower citation rates than standard articles.  They are going to implement a virtual special feature format that will invite submissions on a theme, with the papers linked by common keywords.

6. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment (Sue Silver, EiC)
Sue Silver summarized activities with Frontiers over the past year.  The rejection rate hovers around 83%, of which three quarters are rejected without review, usually because the format of the paper does not fit within the journal.  There has been a trend for numbers of Research Communication submissions to increase, but the number of Reviews has been declining.  The backlog of several years ago is now gone.  There is an ongoing challenge with funding for the journal.  The business plan for the journal expects two externally-funded special issues per year, but finding these is a constant challenge.

 

7. Issues in Ecology (Jill Baron, EiC)
Jill Baron reported on Issues in Ecology.  The recent report on forest carbon represented the first new issue in 5 years, but is the first of many in the pipeline.  There is a lot of recent interest in new issues, including as an outgrowth of organized sessions at the annual meetings.  Issues typically cost $20,000.  She suggested planning for evaluation of who uses the publications.  Nadine Lymn commented that her sense is that they are most useful in an educational context, but that the format is not optimal for use in policy debates.  Jill suggested closer coordination with ESA policy and communications staff to increase the effectiveness of the series.

8. Term Limits for EiCs – Discussion 
The Governing Board asked the Editors-in-Chief present for their views on the proposed changes in the by-laws.  Don Strong encouraged the Governing Board, particularly the President Elect, President, and Past President, to be more closely involved in the 3-year reviews.  Dave Schimel, Don Strong, and Aaron Ellison all expressed agreement with the principle of term limits.  Aaron Ellison suggested thinking about mechanisms for mentoring and cultivation of future Editors-in-Chief.

L.  Enhancing Diversity within ESA
Sonia Ortega reviewed challenges in increasing diversity within ESA, and suggested a goal of raising funds to cover costs for attendance at annual meetings by minority students.  Aaron Ellison encouraged Sonia to attend the Centennial Committee meeting to present these ideas there.  There was extensive discussion of ideas to enhance diversity within the field.  Naupaka Zimmerman made the point that it is important to bring in not just the students, but also their role models.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:15 pm.

 

ESA Governing Board, 
August 12, 2011
Austin, TX

Members Present
Steward Pickett          President
Scott Collins               President-Elect
Terry Chapin               Past President
Deborah Goldberg      VP for Science
Charles Canham          Secretary
Mimi Lam                   Member-at-Large

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director 
Cliff Duke                   Director, Science 
Elizabeth Biggs           Director, Finance
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity

Members Absent:  Sonia Ortega, Andrea Lloyd, Sharon Collinge, Les Real, Margaret Lowman

Guests Present:  Jorge Ramos, Mary Power

 

Friday, August 12, 2011, 9:00 am. 

Meeting called to order by President Steward Pickett

I.  Information
A. Governing Board Organization for 2011-2012 
The November 2012 Governing Board meeting will be held at the Society offices in Washington, DC on Thursday – Friday, Nov. 17-18, with a half-day new board member orientation on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2012.

There have been a number of discussions during the week about diversity within the Society.  Steward Pickett recommended that he meet with a subset of the Board to come up with plans to better advance efforts to foster greater diversity in the field.   Mimi Lam mentioned the difficulties that members of tribal communities face in attending and participating in ESA annual meetings.  Terry Chapin recommended reaching out to groups like AISES (American Indian Science and Engineering Society).  Deborah Goldberg noted that there is a lot of activity at many different levels (individuals, departments, universities), and a lot of expertise in best practices that could be tapped.

 

II. Earth Stewardship Initiative
Steward Pickett gave an update on activities related to the Earth Stewardship Initiative during the Austin meetings.  A large fraction of the sessions at the meeting had at least some connection to the Initiative.  There was some healthy controversy about concepts of stewardship, and Steward noted that there appeared to have been progress in communicating issues related to the Initiative.  He is personally interested in how best to advance the Initiative within the Society.  He hopes to see events related to the Initiative on the program at next year’s meeting in Portland.   He has a particular interest in the notion of earth stewardship through practice (i.e. urban design, civil engineering).  Next year is the 20th anniversary of the Sustainable Biosphere Initiative, and events could be planned in connection with that event.

            Steward Pickett also reminded board members of the EcoSummit scheduled for 2012, and suggested that we explore submitting a symposium proposal related to the Stewardship Initiative.

III. Discussion/Action

A. Audit Committee
Deborah Goldberg and Mimi Lam were appointed to two-year terms on the Audit Committee.

B.  Feedback from Committee Meetings and Council Meeting
The Council meeting highlighted the benefits of greater communication between the Board and the Council.  The discussion of a proposed change in the by-laws to institute term limits on non-staff Editors-in-Chief was spirited and detailed.  The proposal was not adopted, and was sent back to the Publication Committee for further consideration.

Teresa Mourad mentioned that she had received questions from members about procedures for nominating Governing Board members.  Subsequent discussion focused on ways to increase input of names to the nomination process.

Liz Biggs reported on discussions of the Meetings Committee about whether there was sufficient distinction between symposia and organized oral sessions.  Some symposia had so many speakers that the time for talks was no greater than in standard oral sessions.

Mimi Lam mentioned a concern that the meetings are so large that there are few times for attendees to meet together (in plenary sessions).  Program committees are typically faced with the challenge of balancing the time for plenary sessions with sufficient time for oral sessions.

Steward Pickett thanked and congratulated staff on running a seamless and exciting annual meeting.  Jorge Ramos seconded Steward’s comments and noted the enthusiasm of the student section for the meetings.

Meeting was adjourned at 10:00 am.

November 4, 2010

ESA Governing Board
November 04, 2010
Washington, DC

Members Present
Terry Chapin               President
Steward Pickett          President-Elect
Laura Huenneke          VP for Public Affairs
Rob Jackson                VP for Science
Bill Parton                   VP for Finance
Meg Lowman              VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham          Secretary
Andrea Lloyd             Member-at-Large
Josh Schimel               Member-at-Large

Members Absent:  Lisa Graumlich (Member-at-Large), Mary Power (Past President)

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director 
Cliff  Duke                  Director, Science 
Elizabeth Biggs           Director, Finance
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers
Nadine Lymn              Director, Public Affairs
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity

Thursday, November 4, 2010.  9:00 meeting was called to order.

I. Agenda, Minutes, and Ratification of Votes
Josh Schimel moved and Laura Huenneke seconded a motion to ratify the vote for nominations for Vice President for Science.  The vote was ratified unanimously. 

Steward Pickett moved and Laura Huenneke seconded a motion to approve the minutes as amended.  The motion passed unanimously.

II. Reports

A.  Report of the President, Terry Chapin

Terry Chapin and Cliff Duke reviewed efforts to involve early career scientists in NEON.  Meg Lowman explained some of the history of ESA’s involvement in encouraging participation of small schools and underrepresented groups in NEON, and the potential need for additional ESA staff support for this effort.

Terry also reviewed efforts related to the Earth Stewardship initiative at next year’s annual meeting. Zoe Cardon is organizing a music event related to this theme, and the student section is planning another bioblitz. He also outlined activities of the Sections related to the initiative.  A large number of the Sections have been involved.  He summarized two meetings on Nov. 3, 2010 with members of social science groups and religious organizations.  The meetings were to inform the groups of the goals of the initiative, and to find out whether they have related efforts.  There was discussion of the formation of an informal coalition, with activities that might involve proposals to fund participation by outside speakers at meetings of the different groups.  One discovery was that the language of stewardship and sustainability can vary significantly, particularly among the religious groups.

Finally, he reviewed planned presentations on stewardship at upcoming meetings, including AGU.

B. Reports of the Executive Director and Staff

Katherine welcomed new members of the Board.  She requested that all board members sign and return conflict of interest forms and distributed board orientation books to all members.  Meg Lowman noted that the COI forms should be available for review by all board members.

Katherine noted that the Policy Section is now an official section, and announced that the Society launched its Planned Giving website in the past week.  The site contains much useful information related to planned giving in general.

David Baldwin summarized highlights from the Publication Office report.  Submission rates to Ecosphere have been high, and acceptance rates have been low.  Several new manuscripts (since the rollout in August) have already been published.  The print journals have been on schedule.  More detail will follow during the mid-term review this afternoon.

Cliff Duke reviewed Science Office activities.  He described an upcoming Emerging Issues conference on “Developing Ecologically-based Conservation Targets under Global Change.”   At the end of this month, the Office will be holding a workshop on the NSF-funded project on the sustainability of biological infrastructure (databases, field stations, etc.). 

Nadine Lymn’s report from the Public Affairs Office highlighted interest in the Society’s blog Ecotone, which offers fresh posts nearly daily.  Maintaining this has required a significant allocation of staff time.  A preprint of an Ecological Monographs paper on mountain pine beetle and fire risk attracted a great deal of public interest.  A Frontiers paper on bat mortality and wind turbines also attracted considerable media interest.  She also reported on an ESA-sponsored field trip to the Baltimore LTER study, and noted that work continues on the Policy Handbook. 

Teresa Mourad reviewed efforts related to the upcoming NEON education workshop. She also reported that the Packard Foundation has provided another grant of $150,000 for efforts in the western US.  

Elizabeth Biggs reviewed statistics on membership and subscriptions.  Both have continued to decline slightly, but these have been factored into budgets.  Institutional subscriptions to Ecology have been the most important source of revenue to the Society in the past, and this funding stream has been slowly declining.  This is a significant challenge going forward.  The decline has been happening over a number of years, not just since 2008.   David Baldwin noted that the decline has been relatively small, and Katherine noted that this is due, in part, to efforts to add new subscribers, particularly in other countries. 

Sue Silver gave a report on Frontiers. The publication backlog is gone, and publication times are on target. She noted that authors seem keen to use Frontiers as an outlet for research with clear policy implications. 

C. Financial Updates

Katherine reviewed the first quarter financial report.  There was discussion of the size of the membership and overall program.  Bill Parton reported on investments.  Recent gains in the stock market have helped the endowment, while the reserve funds (unrestricted net assets) are in revolving fixed-income instruments (primarily CDs).

III. Discussion/Action Items

A.  Earth Stewardship Updates

Steward Picket distributed an update on the Earth Stewardship initiative.  Current efforts have focused on outreach to social, economic and political sciences, with a goal to get them involved in participating in the 2011 annual meeting.  Steward’s efforts next year will focus on dialog, outreach and engagement with the planning and design professions.  The initiative will focus on the science of stewardship – including the social contexts that influence how that science is implemented.  There was an open discussion of how to make the initiative successful, including identifying important partners, and changing the academic culture to better support the development of science needed for effective stewardship.  There was also discussion of ways that current activities of the Society could be adapted to promote the initiative.

B. Education Issues

1.  Meg provided a report on the Women and Minorities in Ecology (WAMIE) survey of ESA members.  The response rate was reasonable (~ 15%), but the respondents were overwhelmingly female.  Additional analyses and/or additional survey efforts are being considered.

2.  Teresa reported on the Ecology Education Summit held last month.  Over 200 participants attended.  Action items that came out of the summit included (1) creating a foundation for common environmental literacy principles and concepts, (2) a comprehensive green schools program, (3) activities to harness technology for a green society, and (4) an inventory of environmental literacy standards in different states, and (5) developing new language and purpose including connecting to jobs, health, and security to ensure environmental literacy for all.

Teresa and Meg profusely thanked the Governing Board for their support of the Education Summit, because the event was truly ground-breaking and exceeded the expectations of the Society and the participants.

C. Program Review – Science

Cliff Duke and Rob Jackson presented the mid-term review of the Science Office.  Cliff began by reviewing the history of the establishment of the office – dating to the Sustainable Biosphere Initiative in 1991.  In 1997 it was formally designated the Science Programs Office.  Its structure and mission are defined in the Society’s by-laws. 

Current projects fall into 3 categories: (1) advancing ecological science, (2) ecology for community (to link the ecological research and management communities), and (3) solutions for sustainability.

Projects focused on advancing ecological science include the new Emerging Issues conferences (formerly called the Millennium Conference).  The next conference will be in 2012, with the topic “Developing Ecologically-Based Conservation Targets Under Global Change”.  A special feature issue in Frontiers is being planned in conjunction with the conference.

The ESA Panel on Vegetation is a permanent standing committee that began work in 1995.  It has been very active in recent years in developing national vegetation classification standards and supporting databases like VegBank.

Cliff reviewed 3 projects under the “ecology for community” program area:
1. The 2008 biofuels conference and related activities.  A number of products from the conference are in progress.   
2. The Issues in Ecology publication series.  There have been 13 issues to date.  The most recent was “A Synthesis of the Science on Forests and Carbon for U.S. Forests”. 
3. A workshop on strategies for sustainability of biological infrastructure to be held this year.

There was discussion of reasons for the success of the Office in attracting external funding.  The credibility and reputation of the Society were considered significant factors.

Rob Jackson gave an overview of future directions for the Office.  First on his list of general goals was a focus on ESA-initiated, longer-term projects.  Sustainability has been a theme in the Society for decades, and finding opportunities for new support and activities in this area should be a priority.  Linkages between the Science Office and other programs within ESA (particularly Public Affairs) are also a priority.  Finally, Rob and Cliff would like to see the Science Office play a stronger role in international outreach.

Specific examples of new initiatives that address these priorities include the Emerging Issues conferences, a planned workshop on the science of vegetation change and classification, and a project under development to measure the contributions of ecoinformatics to environmental protection. 

Rob reviewed future activities related to the 2011 and 2012 annual meetings.  Josh Schimel suggested a focus on ecological dimensions of national security.  Rob and Cliff pointed out a number of current topics that are related to this (biofuels, warfare ecology, etc.)

The final section of the discussion focused on activities related to the 2015 Centennial and the Earth Stewardship initiative. Rob suggested starting with a retrospective analysis, beginning with an analysis of the Sustainable Biosphere Initiative of the early 1990’s.  Another opportunity would be to generate case studies of how ESA has influenced science and policy in its first 100 years.

Rob then presented a series of forward-looking activities.  He outlined several proposals, including:

  1. Crafting a document envisioning where ecological science should go in its second century,
  2. Hosting a small workshop to more clearly define the Earth Stewardship initiative
  3. Generate a set of future scenarios
    1. Based in part on IPCC stabilization scenarios
    2. Including different ecosystem services, and
    3. Influencing what a world with proper stewardship would look like in 2050 or 2100.
    4. Recognizing the importance of urbanization
  4. Developing new metrics for stewardship (status and trends in resources)
  5. Improving teaching of and academic support for stewardship science
  6. Identifying the funding opportunities for these activities

D. Mid-term Program Report of the Publications Office

Sue Silver reviewed trends in submissions and acceptance rates at Frontiers.  The fairly long backlog of recent years between acceptance and appearance in print has been resolved, partly as a result of a high rejection rate (including a very high rate of rejection without review).  This has been credited with slowing the rate of increase in submissions.  The timelag between acceptance and appearance in print is currently on target.  There is hope that the acceptance rate can be allowed to increase.

She reviewed new developments at the journal, including: (a) the introduction of page charges, and (b) a new back page columnist.  A number of special issues are being considered, and a large biogeochemistry special feature will be published in early 2011. 

Elizabeth Biggs summarized the long-term financial planning and budgets for Frontiers.  There has been a long-term plan for the ESA contribution to increase over time.  Institutional subscriptions remain the largest single source of revenue, and are increasing, although not as rapidly as hoped in long-term planning. The publication of two externally funded special issues a year would make them the second largest source of revenue.  The shortfall between revenue and expenses is currently covered by draws on the Publication Fund, but the shortfall has been falling over time, and there is hope to have revenue exceed expenses by FY 2013.

David Baldwin gave the report from the Publications Office.  He began with a list of recent innovations and accomplishments.  Issues are on schedule, and the publication backlog at Ecology has “nearly evaporated”.  There has been a strong growth in use of Ecological Archives.  Data papers have also become a consistent feature of Ecology.  There are a number of new features in the Bulletin.  David summarized statistics on submissions to EcologyEcological Applications, and Ecological Monographs (up ~ 5% from last year).  Acceptance rates have ranged from 16% at Ecology to ~ 25% at Applications and Monographs.  Rates of rejection without review remain high.  Impact factors have declined slightly.  149 papers have been submitted to Ecosphere since August, with an acceptance rate of 14%.

Plans for the coming year include implementation of data archiving (if approved by the Governing Board), and automation of keywords for manuscripts.

Concerns include (a) declines in impact factors, (b) declining subscriptions, (c) staffing needs for data archiving, and (d) confusion about the distinction between Ecosphere and the other journals. 

The bulk of the subsequent discussion focused on the distinctions between Ecosphere and the print journals.  David distributed a draft of a new table that will be posted on the website, describing the differences between the various ESA journals.

E. Awards Committee Requests

The Awards Committee has requested several changes to the awards process.  These include a conflict of interest provision, and issues related to funding for travel by award recipients.  Some of the awards have endowments that specify support for travel.

The Board approved the recommended process for avoiding potential conflicts of interest involving members of award subcommittees.

Josh Schimel moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded a motion to increase the travel support from $700 to $800.  The motion was passed unanimously.

Josh Schimel also moved and Rob Jackson seconded a motion that the travel support be offered, but recipients can choose to decline.  The motion passed unanimously.

Rob Jackson moved and Laura Huenneke seconded a motion that all members of the Awards subcommittees must be members of the ESA.  The motion passed unanimously.

There was discussion of the proposal to increase the frequency of the MacArthur award to annually (rather than biennially).  This has implications for the scheduling of keynote speakers at the annual meeting.  There was support for increasing the frequency of the award, but the issue was tabled to allow time for input from the Meetings Committee. 

The request for an increase in the number of honorary members was tabled, and returned to the Awards Committee with a request for further justification of the request to increase the maximum number of honorary members from 20 to 30.  It was noted that there is no endowment for this award, and that it is relatively expensive (all travel expenses, and a lifetime subscription to ESA journals), and that apparently, according to the ESA History Page, not all 20 slots are currently filled.

Meg Lowman moved and Josh Schimel seconded a motion that Section and Chapter awards be recognized during the Awards ceremony with a single slide listing all winners of Section and Chapter awards.  The motion passed unanimously.

F. Diversity Award

The Education and Human Resources Committee forwarded a request that the Diversity Award given by that Committee be acknowledged at the Society-wide awards ceremony.

Josh Schimel moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded that this award be recognized briefly (as with the Section awards) at the general Awards Ceremony, but that the presentation of the award continue to be done at the Diversity Luncheon.  The motion passed unanimously. 

G. Membership Survey

Katherine reported on the planned survey of ESA members.  

Meeting adjourned at 5:19 pm, Thursday, Nov. 4, 2010

Friday, November 05, 2010

Meeting Reconvened

8:30 am  Executive Session

Governing Board Members Present:
Terry Chapin, Josh Schimel, Steward Pickett, Charlie Canham, Rob Jackson, Bill Parton, Andrea Lloyd, and  Laura Huenneke (until 9:30 am)

9:00 AM
Staff joined the meeting:
Sue Silver, Nadine Lymn, David Baldwin, Katherine McCarter, Cliff Duke, Elizabeth Biggs

III. Discussion/Action Items (continued)

H. Dryad

David Baldwin summarized the discussion from the August Board meeting.  The technology and process for implementing a requirement for data deposition does not appear to be a significant hurdle, but there are concerns about both cost and whether the requirement will steer some authors away from Society journals.  Discussion focused on a proposal from the August Board meeting that participation in Dryad be tested for a year, and just in Ecological Monographs.  

Rob Jackson moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded that the Board approve participation in Dryad by Ecological Monographs for a year, under Cost Plan A, and ask Editor-in-Chief Aaron Ellison to report back to the full Board in one year.

The Board will also ask the Publications Committee to address the broader issue of criteria that would qualify as an acceptable data archive, and lists of approved existing data archives.  The issue of the relation between Dryad and Ecological Archives needs to be considered. 

I. 2012 Annual Meeting Theme

Brian McCarthy, program chair for the 2012 Annual Meeting, has recommended the theme “Life on Earth: Preserving, Utilizing, and Sustaining our Ecosystems”.  A description of the theme was included in the board book.   Andrea Lloyd moved and Steward Pickett seconded a motion to approve the meeting theme.  The motion passed unanimously.

J. Historical Records / Centennial Committee Requests

The Historical Records Committee (HRC) has requested a multi-year grant of funds for a series of activities related to the ESA Archives and the Centennial in 2015.   Part of the request is to fund a joint meeting of the HRC and Centennial Committee in Athens, GA to discuss the status and future of the ESA Archives maintained at the University of Georgia.  They are also requesting a significant amount of staff time to work on these projects.

Rob Jackson suggested exploring funding sources that might support the Centennial and analyses of the history of the Society.

The largest component of the request was for 10 small grants of $5000 each to support use of the archives by historians. The general goal of this request was viewed positively, but the amount was problematic.

Josh Schimel moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded that we approve funding for the meeting in Athens and the first year of supplies (a total of $4500).  The motion passed unanimously. 

The Board also encourages the Committees to work with ESA staff to develop proposals to fund the activities (including potentially the requested small-grant program). 

K.  Centennial Committee

Alan Covich, Chair of the Centennial Committee, submitted a report that outlines planning for ESA’s Centennial in 2015.   A key request was for input on the appointment of the full committee, and funding for a meeting of the committee during the current fiscal year.   There was discussion about the potential make-up of the committee, and the need to balance retrospective and forward-looking perspectives.

Terry Chapin solicited input from the Board on both the make-up of the committee and potential names.  He will confer with Alan Covich and appoint the members of the committee.  He will also confer with Katherine McCarter and Charles Canham on a draft of the charge for the committee. Once the committee is named, the Board encourages it to hold a conference call meeting to organize and to meet face to face at the annual meeting in 2011.

L. EiC Review – Dave Schimel

The Board received a very positive report from the committee appointed to review Ecological Applications Editor-in-Chief Dave Schimel.  The continued growth in the workload at all of the journals led to discussion of ways to share the editing duties, potentially making greater use of Associate Editors or Assigning Editors.  Rob Jackson moved and Terry Chapin seconded a motion to re-appoint Dave Schimel to a new 3-year term as Editor-in-Chief for the period from January 2011 to December 2013.

M. EiC Review – Ed Johnson

The Publications Committee was unable to complete reviews of all of the Editors-in-Chief in time for action by the Board.  Ed Johnson was re-appointed EiC of the Bulletin for a year to allow a formal review next year.  The Board recognized Ed’s strong commitment and contributions to the Bulletin.

N.  EiC Review – Jill Baron

The Board received a report from the Publications Committee that both reviewed Editor-in-Chief Jill Barron and summarized the history, current status, and recommendations for the Issues in Ecology series. There are a number of challenges, including securing funding for each issue.  There was an almost 6 year hiatus in the publication series, but a new Issue has just been published, 4 more are in development, and others are in discussion.

The Board is very pleased with Jill’s efforts and leadership with Issues. EiC Baron’s first 3-year term (January 2007 – December 2009) was extended last year for 1 year.  Rob Jackson moved and Andrea Lloyd seconded a motion to appoint Jill Baron Editor-in-Chief of Issues in Ecology for the remaining two years of the current 3-year term (January 2011 – December 2012).

The Board would also like to continue discussion about the niche for Issues (particularly vis a vis Frontiers) at the board meeting in May 2011.

Meeting Adjourned at 11:50 am, Nov. 5, 2010

November 2010

Minutes of the ESA Governing Board
November 17-18, 2009
Washington, DC

Members Present: Mary Power (President), Sunny Power (Past-President), Terry Chapin (Past-President-Elect), David Inouye (Secretary), Josh Schimel (Member-at-Large), Emily Stanley (Member-at-Large), Deb Peters (Member-at-Large), Rob Jackson (VP for Science). Meg Lowman (VP for Education) arrived 10:10 AM.

Staff Present:

Katherine McCarter (Executive Director), Cliff Duke (Director of Science), Elizabeth Biggs (Director of Finance), Sue Silver (Editor), Nadine Lymn (Director of Public Affairs), David Baldwin (Publications). Teresa Mourad (Education and Diversity) joined the meeting after lunch on Tuesday.

Tuesday 17 November 2009. 9:03 meeting is called to order.

I. Roll Call & Agenda

  • The Governing Board unanimously adopted the proposed agenda.
  • The minutes from 1, 2, and 7 August 2009 were unanimously adopted.

II. Reports

  • Report of President Power

Much of her activity has been working on initiating Terry Chapin’s idea of a focus for the Society on Planetary Stewardship, and educating herself about planetary stewardship initiatives that have been brought up by small groups of ESA members and other individuals, organizing at the community scale to develop, sustainable working ecosystems, including community based fisheries, forests (redwood regrowth), ranching (grazing), and agriculture. Power and Chapin are launching a forum in the April 2010 ESA Bulletin in which groups will report on their diverse efforts towards ecosystem or planetary stewardship, and “lessons learned” can be exchanged. Power, with Chapin and other colleagues, are proposing some sessions for the Pittsburgh ESA 2010 meeting to explore interactions between local resource-consumption systems and the long-distance (economic, political, ecological) networks that either undermine or support them.

Under the leadership of Chair Rob Salguero-Gomez, University of Pennsylvania, the ESA Graduate Student Section is contributing exciting ideas for student-oriented initiatives, including an EcoService initiative to engage ESA graduate students in local ecosystem stewardship.

  • Report of Executive Director McCarter and the Office Staff
  • Sue Silver – the last issue of the 7th volume of Frontiers is now completed. There is still a significant backlog of papers to be published, and the acceptance rate for manuscripts is now about 17% (engendering unhappy comments from authors).
  • David Baldwin – the journals are on schedule. The November Ecological Monographs has the first ever synthetic review paper, and a second is forthcoming. Page charges are going up to $70/page as of January. He is investigating facilitation of citing ESA publications in citeulike. Proposals from several vendors to print ESA’s publications and host them online are being evaluated.
  • Cliff Duke – the Millennium Conference was very successful (despite 3” of rain during the drought conference!). The venue was excellent (Georgia Center for Continuing Education). The Forest Service contract should arrive today for funding the next meeting of the Vegetation Classification Panel, which is now a standing committee of the ESA. A report should be available soon for the effort led by RTI International to conduct a peer review of USGS Biological Resources Discipline programs. A draft report has been completed for planning (with The Wildlife Society and the Meridian Institute) for the new USGS National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center.
  • Nadine Lymn – Public Affairs has been reaching out to social scientists around town, e.g., agricultural economists, psychologists, Resources for the Future. There is excitement about ecosystem services and markets, so this may be an area for collaboration in the future. Congressman Baird (Ph.D. in social science) introduced a bill requiring Dept. of Energy to devote some funding to studying human behavior related to energy use. ESA sent a letter of support to Baird , who is waiting for an opportune time to try to reintroduce his bill, which was misrepresented as “mind control” by some Science Committee members and had to be withdrawn.
  • An ESA position statement and fact sheet on climate change are near completion. Nadine and Katherine went to a joint Department of Interior (DOI) – White House conference related to the green economy; there will be a meeting next week with a DOI administration official to talk about joint interests. Christine Buckley (Communications Officer) will be leaving in December for a job at U CONN; she’s done an excellent job with the ESA blog, podcasts, etc.
  • Liz Biggs – dust is settling on the Albuquerque meeting, and it looks like finances are on target with the budget approved by the Board. There are only 37 fewer members in the Society at the end of the membership year 2009, compared to the previous year, which is much better than many professional societies are doing.
  • When Meg and Teresa arrive, we will have a report as part of the Education program review.
  • Report of Vice President for Finance 10:55 AM
    • First Quarter Financials (McCarter)

The budget is in good shape at present (this quarter reflects all the income from the annual meeting, and most of the subscription income for 2009), but there is a lot of uncertainty about how the current economic situation will affect the Society, in terms of membership, subscriptions, and attendance at the annual meeting.

Staff will monitor the revenue and expenses closely to detect any trends.

    • Investment Update (Biggs – Parton is in Australia)

Our investment portfolio with Townley Investment (Board restricted funds, award and prize money, etc.) has gained 6% from 30 September 2008 to 2009, following a 17% decline in the previous year.

III. Discussion / Action Items 10:35 AM

  • Long-Range Planning – update

1. Standing Committee priorities

EHRC (Meg Lowman): A WAMIE (women and minorities in ecology) study has been conducted twice since the early 1990s but data are no longer available. A proposal has been put in for support for another survey, with plans to make sure the data are preserved. Other ideas being pursued include how to promote the development and inclusion of ecology in curriculum, providing tools and resources for effective ecology education, and opportunities for mentoring students and young scientists.

The Ecology Summit idea has a large working group now, and a venue has been offered in D.C. October 14-16, 2010, for a few hundred attendees. Interaction between gaming and ecology education will be investigated, as well as curriculum ideas and other teaching technology.

Science (Rob Jackson): The committee proposes a focus on more ESA-originated long-term projects, additional opportunities in climate change and sustainability, and promotion of ecological science (e.g., data sharing initiative). Strengthening collaborations with other ESA offices makes sense, as many of these initiatives would cut across multiple ESA offices. Also, strengthening international outreach efforts (e.g., with Mexican Ecological Society). Geoengineering and Neo-environment – recent advances are increasingly cutting across science, ethics, and social interactions, and with increasing speed. Some past and ongoing activities of the Science office map well onto this list, such as the data sharing initiative, and DOE’s Biological and Environmental Research program. We should probably try not to overlap with efforts of NCEAS, the Heinz Center, etc.

Policy (Nadine Lymn): the Committee has not yet met to consider the priorities suggested by the Board but will be meeting in early April 2010. One idea is to add a day to the May Board meeting for training in public policy, followed by a visit to elected officials, focusing on a particular issue. OSTP Director John Holdren was suggested as a possible lunch speaker for the May Board meeting.

2. Report from the Training Priorities Subcommittee (Emily Stanley/Katherine McCarter): There are already many ongoing activities in this area, such as the ESA Graduate Student Policy Award, policy training workshops, communications training, online resources, training opportunities at the annual meeting, etc. Activities of ESA and some other scientific societies are described. The subcommittee will talk again to determine next steps.

3. Sustainable Business model (Josh Schimel): the subcommittee met via teleconference. How do we maintain the incentives for young ecologists to want to be ESA members? Social networking was probably a major reason in the past, but there are many other alternatives now for that kind of activity (Facebook groups, etc.). Why do students join, and why do they remain members or drop their memberships? Maybe a certificate program for workshops for students at the annual meetings would be attractive; e.g., a certificate for training in communications with policy makers or media. A survey of student members is planned.

  • Planetary Stewardship goals (Mary Power/Chapin)

This is a continuation of the sustainability issues ESA has focused on for many years, so it’s not a significant reorientation of Society activities. Rationale is that this is an urgent issue we can use to redirect the relationship between society and the biosphere, and an opportune time with the recent Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change, IPCC activities, change in US administration, etc. Informing and engaging ESA members to do something is one goal, but how can we also involve other societies, disciplines, and policy makers? What are the leverage points where ESA could make a difference? Power is working on an article for the Bulletin’s April issue. Program Chair for the 2011 Annual Meeting (in Austin) is enthusiastic about using Planetary Stewardship as a theme for the meeting, and Chair for the 2012 meeting (in Portland) is interested in suggestions for themes that would follow up on it. Some of the Sections have expressed interest in finding ways to integrate with the theme.

Is this a radical re-orientation of the Society’s directions, by putting an emphasis on people rather than just organisms and their environment? AESS (Association of Environmental Studies and Sciences) might be a good group for collaboration. Should we say anything explicitly about human population size/growth, which underlies most environmental problems? Can we make statements about consumption rather than human population size/growth explicitly? E.g., the footprint approach. There will be an editorial in the December issue of Frontiers related to this topic.

We would have to move toward the direction of environmental sciences – e.g., considering water use for various power production methods, rather than just the hydrological cycle. Why are solar panels on houses better than a large-scale solar project in the desert? Would there by pushback by the membership about such a change in emphasis?

  • INTECOL (Mary Power). ESA Past-President Alan Covich is currently President of INTECOL, and is enthusiastic about joint activities with ESA during his 3-year tenure. Their next annual meeting will be in London in 2013, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the British Ecological Society (Mary has joined their committee planning for the anniversary).

Lunch with the ESA staff

  • Education and Diversity Programs (Mourad)

1998 – education activities began within the Public Affairs Office with a ½ JSTOR and ½ education position. 
2001 – the Education Manager position was created within the PAO
2002 – the Department of Education was created.

Early education activities included a Careers in Ecology brochure, community outreach programs, workshops and symposia at ESA meetings, and participation in education and diversity events with organizations such as SACNAS.

1999 – EHRC was formed with the merger of the former Education Committee and the Gender and Minorities Committee as recommended by the 1993 Women and Minorities in Ecology (WAMIE) report.

WAMIE 1 – 1993. Stimulated creation of EHRC, first fulltime EHR staff, mentoring programs, K12 ecology education, and Focus on Ecologists.

WAMIE 2 – 2006: Encouraged diverse recruitment and retention in universities; excellent ecology instruction; community outreach and environmental justice; grad students, postdocs, and young professionals; leadership development, broad career horizons, changing the culture of ecology.
Current Education initiatives – SEEDS, EcoEd Digital Library, Continental-scale ecology education (NEON); K12 research and education day, Ecology and Education Summit.

SEEDS – now present on 57 campuses, almost doubled since 2006. Won awards in 2006 and 2008. New projects in progress include supplemental REU partnerships (replacing SEEDS fellowships); University of North Texas IRES (International Research Experience for Students) in Chile; Appalachian State University research with SEEDS chapters in NC; MOU with Society for Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS); SEEDSNet Website.

EcoEd Digital Library is attracting growing use (but relatively flat number of unique visitors over the past two years). 
Another new project is an NCEAS Distributed Seminar focusing on publication of a set of teaching resources illustrating the use of large public datasets for the undergraduate level.

Ecology Education Summit: What should Ecology Education look like in 2020?

  • What is our core/common understanding of ecological and environmental literacy?
  • What pedagogical and technological tools should be disseminated or developed to prepare all citizens for future-oriented ecological thinking, planetary stewardship and participation in a green economy?
  • In particular, how can we ensure that minority and underrepresented audiences will have access to ecology and environmental education?
  • What cross-sectoral, multi-institutional coordination and communication strategies are necessary to achieve a transformational ecology and environmental education for K-gray by 2020?
  • How can effective educational policies be put in place to achieve the 2020 vision for quality ecology and environmental education?

Collaborators on the Ecology and Education Summit (so far) include AAAS, National Education Association, NEA Foundation, NA Association for Environmental Education, National Environmental Education Foundation, National Institute for Food and Agriculture, LTER network, National Geographic Society, Smithsonian Institution, US Forest Service.

Planned products from the Summit include a pre-Summit ESA policy statement on ecology education; a dynamic visualization tool to facilitate information sharing and coordination; a pre-Summit survey of national organizations; an interactive online Resource Center with a one-stop shop for educational resources; a cohesive decadal plan. 

The Education Office has also been involved in K-12 education: attended the Ocean Science Education Coalition meeting; DC Science Alliance; White House STEM-Ed 21 initiative (national Lab Week, National STEM Week, Building Communities of Scientists and Teachers).

Partner programs include plantingscience.org, managed by the Botanical Society of America for grades 6-12, and EarthTrek’s global citizen science program (managed by Geological Society of America’s Education and Outreach group.

The next part of the presentation addresses the challenges and issues related to education. The department has actively sought information from a variety of channels to guide its programs.

(1) Has included meetings with education representatives from

  • American Society for Microbiology
  • American Geophysical Union
  • American Metereological Society
  • Botanical Society of America
  • Geological Society of America
  • LTER Education Committee
  • Organization of Biological Field Stations Human Diversity Committee

(2) Also surveys through SEEDS, TIEE, and the EcoEd Digital Library,

(3) Information gathering through workshops and conferences such as

  • NSF Conversations on Undergraduate Biology Education Reform
  • Ocean Science Education Workshop
  • SACNAS
  • LTER All Scientists Meeting
  • National Science Digital Library conference
  • Cyberlearning Tools for Climate Change Education

Challenges and Issues

What is ecological literacy? (ecological knowledge, evidence based, systems thinking, ecological-cultural interactions, temporal and spatial thinking, citizenship, values)

No child left inside (narrowing curriculum, nature deficit disorder, childhood obesity)

Quality labs (NRC, 2005, America’s Lab Report: Investigations in High School Science; labs emphasize procedures rather than science content, rarely incorporate discussion or reflection, and researchers and educators don’t agree on how to define high school science labs or on their purposes; facilities, equipment and supplies are inequitably distributed; providing a range of effective lab experiences for future teachers is critical)

Data and big ecology – challenges are generated by availability of biotic datasets, metada comparisons, statistical literacy, and causality and uncertainty.
Integration of disciplines – what does this really look like? How should SEEDS field trips be structured? Who gets the credit?

Workforce development and diversity – a concern of NSF. Committee on Equal Opportunities in Science and Engineering (CEOSE) published a biennial report this year. Diversity is increasing, but very slowly for some groups (e.g., American Indians and Alaska Natives). In 2006 minorities formed 21% of US population between ages of 25-64 with a Bachelor’s degree, but only 9% of the STEM workforce.

Stewardship and Outreach – SEEDS Education and Outreach Initiative is one example of ESA activity in this area, also engagement with K12 education, and bioblitz activities.

Funding – several NSF programs and some foundation support at present.

Opportunities include engaging the research community, developing partnerships, and avenues for revenue generation.

The Board spent some time brainstorming about possible sources of donations for sponsoring SEEDS students; maybe try approaching companies who exhibit at the annual meeting.

  • Proposal from the Publications Committee to launch a new author-pays, open access, rapid publication, online journal. Joined via conference call with Editors-in-Chief Don Strong and Aaron Ellison, and Publications Committee Chair Scott Collins.

Reasons for this proposal include the growing backload of papers waiting for publication in the ESA journals, and the growing number of submissions. Some editors are resigning because of the increased workload. Many of the papers being rejected without review are because the work is not novel, despite being solid science with valid techniques, etc. Submission rates suggest that authors want to publish in ESA journals, and many of these papers currently being rejected could be the primary content of a new journal. There have been 80 submissions to ESA journals in the past week.

Would we risk diluting the prestige of ESA journals if our acceptance rate does increase? Aaron Ellison is concerned about how one big hurdle now to publication is just getting your paper reviewed (not rejected without review), and suggests that it’s not quality of the work that is behind many decisions not to review. We are currently rejecting about 1,800 papers per year, and publishing about 600 (not including Frontiers).

Cost for publishing in the new journal is expected to be about $1,250 (which is $100 less than PLoS ONE). PLoS journals don’t publish many ecological papers. Length restriction would be approximately the average (about 14 pages) for current papers inEcology and Ecological Applications, with an extra fee for longer papers.

There is substantial support for the concept among the Board members. A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board approves the concept of a new online-only journal that will be open access, rapid publication, and author-pays. The Business office is asked to work on a business plan that investigates the implications of different numbers of papers per year (e.g., 100, vs. 250, vs. 500), and to confirm that the proposed $1,250 charge per paper is sufficient. The Publications Committee will be told that the Board can consider a revised proposal for a new electronic journal as soon as it is received (no need to wait until the May Board meeting). Don Strong will be asked to serve as Interim Editor until a new Editor-in-Chief is appointed by the Board. The Publications Committee will be asked to provide, as soon as feasible, suggestions for a title and suggest a set of candidates for Editor-in-Chief. Schimel and Jackson will generate a list of additional questions for the Publications Committee.

  • TIEE

The Education Section has proposed to produce Volume 7 of TIEE, limiting the content to Experiments, Data Sets, and Figure Sets.

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board appreciates and approves the proposal from the Education Section to produce Volume 7 of Teaching Issues and Experiments in Ecology (TIEE) as a volunteer effort. No commitment to future issues is assumed by the Board, as it is possible that the upcoming Ecology Summit may result in new ways to disseminate these educational articles at the national-international level.

  • Name change and new focus for the Millennium Fund (McCarter)

The Fund for the Future is proposed as a new name, with a focus on generating funds for student travel to the ESA Annual Meetings and for the SEEDS diversity program. The Development Committee and Past Presidents (at their luncheon at the last Annual Meeting) recommended these changes. It is suggested that we need to leave some flexibility in wording so that donations could be used for a variety of Society needs, some of which we can’t anticipate.

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board approves the renaming of the Millennium Fund to The Fund for the Future, with student travel to the ESA Annual Meetings and support for the SEEDS program as current priorities for funding.

  • Millennium Conference Series (Mary Power)

Past President Nancy Grimm, who initiated the idea for this conference series, was very pleased with the outcome of the first one, this fall. She has suggested a name change, and suggests that it should be primarily the responsibility of the proposers to find funding for the conferences (i.e., not ESA). A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board is enthusiastic about continuing the Millennium conference series as a grass-roots opportunity for the membership to propose conference topics and collaborate with the ESA staff and Board on planning, organizing, and funding. A call for new topics will be issued every other year.

Suggestions were made for a new name for the Millennium Conference (until a sponsor takes a naming opportunity), including Emerging Issues in Ecology, the Founders Conference Series (maybe named after a founder), the President’s Conference Series, Sustainable Biosphere Conference Series. Consensus is that Emerging Issues Conference Series is a good idea (Emerging Issues Conference on …..).

November 18, 2008 (Meg Lowman, Bill Parton, Laura Huenneke not present)

Executive Session 8:30 AM, followed by continuation of the normal meeting with staff present.

  • Review of Editor-in-Chief Don Strong

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board is enthusiastic about approving the Publications Committee recommendation to reappoint Don Strong for another term as Editor-in-Chief of Ecologyfrom 1 January 2010 to 31 December 2012.

  • Review of Editor-in-Chief Jill Baron

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board approves the postponement of the review of Jill Baron as Editor-in-Chief of Issues in Ecology for a year, with an extension of her appointment until 31 December 2010.

  • Opening Plenary Speaker for the 2010 Annual Meeting (VP for Public Affairs Laura Huenneke joined the discussion by speaker phone).

An invitation has already been extended to Energy Secretary Steven Chu, and the Board endorsed the idea of also inviting NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco. The Board felt that it would be impractical to invite President Obama given the logistical and financial implications (minimum cost of $100,000).

  • ESA Centennial – Standing Committee suggestions

Sunny Power contacted ESA Standing Committees in January 2009 to invite them to consider how they might be involved in the celebration of ESA’s 100th anniversary in 2015. The Public Affairs Committee, Publications Committee, Education and Human Resources Committee, and Science Committee all made suggestions. The Historical Records Committee is currently without a Chair, but contributed some suggestions from their meeting in Albuquerque.

  • ESA Centennial Committee/Point Person (Centennial Czar)

Jim Collins and Alan Covich are suggested as candidates for the position of Committee Chair; President Power will contact them. The Committee itself would not be appointed for a couple of years.

  • Program Chair Incentives

It has been difficult to find program chairs for upcoming ESA meetings. The Meetings Committee has sent recommendations about possible incentives that could be offered to candidates, beyond what is already provided (complimentary registration and room, airfare and miscellaneous expenses, a letter to their administrators, and ESA staff support). The Board affirmed that the current incentives were appropriate and also were supportive of the suggestions made by the Committee to enlist their help in recruiting new program chairs; President Power will convey this to the Committee Chairs Kyoko Miyanishi and Scott Franklin.

  • Proposed position statement “Ecosystem Management in a Changing Climate”

ESA does not have a position statement on climate change, but has recent experience in developing one on economic growth. Four Rapid Response Team members worked with the Public Affairs staff to draft a proposed statement. The Board reviewed the proposed statement carefully, and while generally supportive of it and greatly appreciative of the work that went into it, provided extensive feedback to the Public Affairs Office for preparation of a revision. The Committee will revise the statement and circulate it to the Board for comment and a vote.

  • Theme for the 2011 Annual Meeting in Austin

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board approves the proposal from Thomas Jurik, Program Chair for the 2011 Annual Meeting, for the theme “Planetary stewardship: Preserving and enhancing Earth’s life-support systems”.

  • Student Representation on the Governing Board

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board will invite the incoming and outgoing Chair of the Student Section to attend August meetings of the Board of Governors as non-voting participants.

  • Adjournment

Meeting is adjourned at 11:31 AM.

Submitted by David W. Inouye, Secretary

August 5, 2010

ESA Governing Board
August 5, 2010
Pittsburgh, PA

Members Present
Mary Power                Past-President
Terry Chapin               President
Steward Pickett          President-Elect
Bill Parton                   VP for Finance
Meg Lowman              VP for Education and Human Resources
Charles Canham          Secretary
Andrea Lloyd             Member-at-Large

Guest:
Andrea Kuchy                        Vice-Chair, Student Section

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter    Executive Director 
Cliff  Duke                  Director, Science Office
Sue Silver                    Editor-in-Chief, Frontiers 
Nadine Lymn              Director, Public Affairs Office
David Baldwin           Managing Editor
Teresa Mourad            Director, Education and Diversity Programs Office

Meeting called to order at 9:00 am by President Terry Chapin

I.  Information

            A.  2010-2011 Governing Board Meeting Dates 
Nov 4-5, 2010 new member orientation Friday afternoon
May 16-17, Washington DC

II. Planetary Stewardship Initiative

Terry Chapin reviewed discussions during the meeting on the Planetary Stewardship Initiative.  Those talks have focused on maintaining continuity during the 3 years of the terms of Mary Power, Terry Chapin, and Steward Pickett as President.  Another emphasis has been on engaging ESA Sections, and encouraging them to incorporate the Initiative in their own activities, with their particular expertise – specifically in their planning for symposia at the 2011 meetings.  There is a strong interest in engaging social scientists in the coming year, and then following with attention to the fields of design and other disciplines in the humanities. 

Terry proposed a series of organized oral sessions or symposia at the 2011 meeting bringing in environmental psychology and other social sciences to think about practicalities.  He also proposed encouraging similar symposia at other societies.   There was a suggestion to consider webcasts as a way to reach a wider/larger audience.

It was noted that the policy directions approved at the last board meeting for the Public Affairs programs dovetail nicely with the goals of Planetary Stewardship Initiative.

There was also discussion of how to link the goals of the Initiative with the ESA Centennial meeting in 2015.

Andrea Lloyd volunteered to serve as a Governing Board liason to the Centennial Committee to represent the Stewardship Initiative.

A number of potential products were considered: 

  • A high profile paper (or series of papers) ala sustainable biosphere initiative paper of 1991.
  • A list of groups/initiatives/efforts related to planetary stewardship – suggestion that this might be done by the student section, with help from the staff (and their many contacts at other organizations).
  • Mary Power is considering volunteering as Editor for a Planetary Stewardship Forum in the Bulletin (planning for forum pieces in 2 of the 4 issues a year).   She described a series of types of contributions she would like to see, including a photo novella.
  • Could Ecosphere play a role – through forum pieces, essays or contribution from other societies?
  • A publication in the Issues in Ecology series is another potential vehicle for communication.  The Human Ecology Section has been considering an Issue related to the Stewardship Initiative.

III. Discussion/Action

A.  Audit Committee

There are several members rotating off the committee.   Laura Huenneke is a continuing member, Charles Canham will serve, and Rob Jackson will be asked to serve.

B.  Feedback from Committee Meetings and Council

Registration was strong (and the music was good).  There was discussion of ways to encourage speakers to return to broader issues in the conclusions of their talks.

Meeting adjourned at 10:00

Minutes respectfully submitted,
Charles Canham, Secretary