At the end of February, I submitted my President’s Message for the Spring newsletter where I spent most of my time detailing the upcoming 2020 Western Archivists Meeting (WAM) that was scheduled to be held in San Francisco from April 22nd – 25th. Much has changed in the world since I wrote that letter due to the COVID-19 pandemic including the official cancellation of WAM 2020 on March 16th. This was a difficult, but necessary decision given the impact of this outbreak worldwide and within the state of California. The health and safety of our members always remained at the forefront of our decision making and behind the scenes work to either cancel or postpone the conference began well before this official announcement. As you can imagine, it takes time to work through a scenario like this when there are four organizations involved and a hotel contract in place to contend with. At no point were any of the organization’s leaders willing to put their memberships at risk, though, even in the face of catastrophic financial losses that would have jeopardized the existence of all four organizations. For this I would like to commend my fellow members of the SCA Board along with the leadership of the Conference of Inter-Mountain Archivists (CIMA), Northwest Archivists (NWA), and Society of Rocky Mountain Archivists (SRMA) on their thoughtful and informed approach to a situation that none of us anticipated or were prepared to deal with.
At this point, I don’t have any information on when the western regional archival associations will come together for another joint meeting. Information on this will be communicated when it is available. Additionally, per the SCA bylaws there is to be a Members Meeting held annually which was scheduled for during WAM. The SCA Board is currently looking into available technologies to host this meeting online later in the year, so stay tuned for more information on that in the coming months.
My time as SCA President is nearing its end and this will be my last President’s Message. I would just like to say that I am proud of the work completed this year, specifically with regards to the ethics and inclusion policies/procedures established for our organization, the streamlining of some committees, and the attention we’ve started to direct toward labor issues within the profession. The foundation we’ve set this year will help carry this work forward in the years ahead. These are uncertain times and we are headed into an uncertain future, but I am confident that some things will remain unchanged. One of those being, that SCA will continue to serve as an outlet for archivists throughout California to come together in support of one another, our communities, and our profession. Stay healthy and stay safe out their everyone!
Read more from the Spring 2020 SCA Newsletter
This is the last call to vote in the Society of California Archivists Officers Election 2020. The voting deadline is just four days away (April 6, 2020 at 11:45pm Pacific Time). The response has been great, but we still need your votes! Ballots were sent via email from email@example.com and candidate statements are still available through your personalized voting link and on the SCA website. Please take a moment to review the ballot and vote today! If you have election questions or feedback, please email Marlayna Christensen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SCA Election Committee: Marlayna Christensen, Alex Post, Peter Runge
We are excited to announce the publication of the Spring 2020 SCA Newsletter! It is now online at http://www.calarchivists.org/Publications/SCANewsletter. Thank you to all those who submitted articles and news items for this issue. Another issue will be coming out this winter, so please consider submitting an article or some news about your work. A call for submissions will go out shortly.
The 2020 Western Archivists Meeting (WAM) scheduled for April 22nd - 25th in San Francisco has been cancelled. Full refunds will be issued to all registrants within the next 2-3 weeks. At this time there are no plans for holding WAM later this year or transitioning the program into a virtual environment. A more complete statement on the cancellation will be circulated in the days ahead by the host organizations. We appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate our way through this.
In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, leadership from the Society of California Archivists (SCA), Conference of Inter-Mountain Archivists (CIMA), Northwest Archivists (NWA), and Society of Rocky Mountain Archivists (SRMA) met earlier this week to discuss the status of the upcoming 2020 Western Archivists Meeting (WAM) being held in San Francisco from April 22nd - 25th. At this point in time, WAM has not been cancelled. However, legal counsel is reviewing our hotel contract to determine if either cancellation or postponement are viable options. An update on this will be circulated by March 20th. The health and safety of our members is of the utmost importance, and we are following recommendations from scientific and health agencies to ensure the necessary precautions are in place for WAM. We have coordinated with the hotel on the need for enhanced food handling/service to reduce the risk of contamination and also on the availability of hand sanitizer stations/disinfectant wipes at the venue for attendees. WAM will also be a handshake/hug free conference where smiles, nods, and waves will be encouraged. Lastly, we are exploring the feasibility of providing options for remote presentations in the event a presenter is unable to attend the conference. Live streaming and recordings of the conference will not be made available, though, as the cost to do so is prohibitive. Given that WAM is still more than five weeks away, our WAM registration refund/cancellation policy remains in effect. Full refunds for cancellations are available until April 1st, with 50% refunds offered through April 14th. Unfortunately, given our contractual obligations with the hotel we are unable to offer full refunds for cancellations made on or after April 15th. In the event the conference is cancelled, full refunds will be issued to all registrants. The COVID-19 outbreak is a constantly changing and evolving public health situation that we’ll continue to closely monitor, including recommendations from government health agencies and recommendations/policies from western region agencies, colleges and universities. We appreciate your patience and understanding during these uncertain times, and we’ll be sure to provide status updates on WAM as new information becomes available. Please feel free to reach out to the Local Arrangements Committee, email@example.com, with any questions and/or concerns that you may have.
Eric Milenkiewicz (SCA President)
Erika Castaño (CIMA President)
Max Johnson (NWA President)
Heather Bowden (SRMA President)
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