August 8, 2008

ESA Governing Board 
August 8, 2008 
Milwaukee, WI

Members Present: 
Sunny Power (President), Norm Christensen (Past-President), Mary Power (President-Elect), Bill Parton (VP for Finance), David Inouye (Secretary), Laura Huenneke (VP for Public Affairs), Rob Jackson (VP for Science), Emily Stanley (Member at Large), Josh Schimel (Member at Large),

Staff Present:
Katherine McCarter (Executive Director), Cliff Duke (Director of Science), Elizabeth Biggs (Director of Finance), Sue Silver (Editor), Teresa Mourad (Director of Education), Nadine Lymn (Director of Public Affairs), Ramona Crawford (Director of Development), David Baldwin (Managing Editor)

I.  Roll Call, 8:45 AM

II. Information

  1. The Governing Board agreed to meet 17-19 November 2008 in Washington, D.C.; activities on the 17th will be the orientation for new Board members, and a late afternoon reception for all Board members and staff.

III. Discussion/ Action Items

    1. Audit Committee needs an additional member.  Rob Jackson and Ann Kinzig are current members of the Audit Committee, and Laura Huenneke agrees to join it. 
    2. Discussion of Data Registry and DRYAD
      David Baldwin handed out information, a list of action items, and a proposal generated during the previous few days from the Publications Committee. Concerns were raised about how to archive simulations and results from modeling studies (probably just the algorithm and not the results of runs of it), how permanent some archives might be (analogous to the closing of some herbaria, some data centers may not be long lived), and whether ESA needs to recommend particular archives or restrict the number of approved archives. The evolution journals are proceeding with the data registry/deposition policy and we will have an opportunity to see how well this works before we implement an ESA policy (or more broadly, a policy for all major ecological journals).

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board accepts the recommendation from the Publication Committee regarding data registration, archiving, and sharing, and approves the following statement:
“ESA strongly encourages data registration, archiving, and sharing. Data used in papers  published in ESA journals should be deposited in an 
appropriate public archive, such as Dryad, LTER, GenBank, TreeBase, EcoTrends, Ecological Archives, the NCEAS-based ESA Data Registry and 
Archive, or any other approved data archiving platform. The data should be given with sufficient metadata such that an interested researcher might 
re-create each result in the published paper.”.” 

    1. Ecological Monographs
      The Board discussed briefly the idea and implications of changing the name of the journal to Ecological Monographs and Reviews, adding a new Editor, and the possibility of raising the page limit on papers in it.  The Publications Committee is asked to continue consideration of these issues and provide a proposal for the Board to review during its November meeting.
    2. Carbon imprint and environmental impact of the Annual Meeting
      Past-President Norm Christensen has talked with the local host committee chair about the process used for selecting organizations for donations. 

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board approves the choice of organizations suggested by the local host committee to receive $10,000 (split equally) from the funds collected as part of the meeting registration fees: 

      1. A contribution toward installation of a wind turbine at Riveredge Nature Center;
      2. Support for forest and wetland restoration projects at the Mequon Nature Preserve;
      3. A contribution to the sustainability programming at the Urban Ecology Center.

The remaining funds collected for offsetting the environmental impact of the annual meeting will be contributed to the same organizations as last year – Sustainable Travel International and the Carbon Fund —  for carbon offsetting activities.

    1. Centennial celebration, and report from the Historical Records Committee
      The Historical Records Committee met this week, and invited Jean Black (Yale University Press).  She presented ideas about how some other professional groups have celebrated their significant anniversaries with publishing projects, and suggested that the ESA needs to decide what the goal would be for a publication related to the upcoming centennial; should it be just to inform the membership, to create a historical record, or be used for development purposes?  She also suggested names of some prominent environmental historians who might be contacted about a commission to write a history of the Society. 

      The HRC asks the Governing Board to appoint a Presidential Centennial Celebration Committee (PCCC) that would have the primary responsibility for planning the Centennial activities, and suggests that Alan Covich would be an excellent choice to chair the committee.  The HRC also requested that funding be provided for a meeting of the PCCC in October so that it could make a presentation to the November Governing Board meeting. It was pointed out that some members of the HRC are both well versed and very interested in ESA history and should be members of the PCCC.  Although the Board recognizes the need to proceed quickly on planning for the centennial, it would like to wait until the November meeting to proceed with appointment of the committee.  

      Bob Peet, who has handled much of the creation and updating of the ESA Web page with historical information would like ESA staff to take over the job of updating the information in the future (e.g., biographical information for Board members, names of Section award winners, etc.).

    2. Public Affairs Committee also met this week.  They will continue to coordinate with the Science Committee and the Program Committee in plans for the next annual meeting. The PAC has looked at the first draft of a statement about economic growth.
    3. Future meetings

Past-President Christensen has been seeking candidates for the Program Committee chair for 2010, and had some difficulty finding someone to agree. He solicited Frank Gilliam this week and he has agreed to do it, and was able to attend the Meetings Committee meeting this week. Norm is working on a candidate for 2011, and also pointed out that we should find someone for the Centennial year soon.  Local Host Committee chairs are already appointed for the meetings through 2011. 

A motion is moved, seconded, and approved unanimously: The Board approves appointing Frank Gilliam as Program Chair for the 2010 meeting.

  1. Current meeting
    Bill Parton raised the issue that the biogeochemistry community used to come to ESA Annual Meetings, but now go to AGU for their annual meeting instead (there are 2000 members of that AGU section).  The way AGU organizes their sessions is different from ESA: session titles are proposed and approved, and then the session organizers solicit people to speak in those sessions (somewhat similar to the process for our Organized Oral Sessions).  Having more organized oral sessions at the ESA meeting for this community might bring more of them to the ESA meeting, although there may be other reasons for the decline in attendance (e.g., a better context for them at the AGU meeting). President-Elect Mary Power suggested that co-hosting a meeting, or sessions, with USGS might a way to encourage collaboration and attendance. ESA  is becoming a better home for microbial ecology (for which there isn’t an alternative in the US at present).  

    The Education Committee would like to recommend archiving of data such as the results of surveys conducted by ESA committees.  E.g., the WAMIE survey. 

Meeting is adjourned at 10:22 AM.

Submitted by David Inouye, Secretary