News

AASRO Executive Committee Meets in January 2015

The Executive Committee held its January meeting by conference call on January 21st at 2 pm Eastern Time. Key actions and items of note from the January meeting were:

- Danna Moore, Chair of the Nominations Committee, reported on nominations for four positions on the Executive Committee this year. They are: President Elect, Secretary/Membership Coordinator, Communications Coordinator, and Treasurer Elect (if this new position is approved by the membership). Members should be receiving their ballot for this year’s election shortly and the outcome of the elections will be announced at the Annual Meeting. The Executive Committee voted to allow members to serve consecutive terms on the Executive Committee but the terms must be for different positions. The Committee stressed the importance and value of having new members serving on the Executive Committee each year.

- Shirley Huck, Chair of the Awards Committee, reported on her committee’s recommendations for the John M. Kennedy Achievement Award and the John Tarnai Memorial Scholarship. With approval from the Executive Committee, her committee is moving forward with notifying the winners and developing the press releases for the award recipients. The award recipients will be announced and honored at the Annual Meeting in March. Thank you to Shirley and her committee for all of their excellent work!

- Orin Puniello who was attending on behalf of Marc Weiner, Program Chair, reported that preparations are continuing for the Annual Meeting. Registration was opened on January 27th.

- Bistra Anatchkova, Treasurer, reviewed AASRO’s financial status and AASRO remains in solid financial shape.

- The Executive Committee was approached by an AASRO member who was concerned about the possibility of academic centers losing bids to larger non-academic organizations and wanted to see what support AASRO may be able to provide. The Committee will be working on some text that members can use to describe AASRO and the unique value of academic survey research centers as research partners. If any AASRO members have suggestions for language highlighting the benefits of working with an academic center, please contact Susan Willis (suwillis@vt.edu).

- The Executive Committee discussed plans for this year’s AAPOR luncheon. It was decided that the luncheon would start with introductions followed by an open floor discussion on challenges that centers are facing. There will then be time for informal discussion at tables. We encourage you to think about topics that you might like to discuss and to provide them to an Executive Committee member before the conference or at the luncheon.

 

AASRO Executive Committee Meets in December 2014

The Executive Committee held its December meeting by conference call on December 17th at 2 pm Eastern Time. Key actions and items of note from the December meeting were:

- Danna Moore, Chair of the Nominations Committee, is soliciting nominations for four positions on the Executive Committee this year. They are: President Elect, Secretary/Membership Coordinator, Communications Coordinator, and Treasurer Elect (if this new position is approved by the membership). The Executive Committee proposes a change to the AASRO Bylaws to create a treasurer elect position to serve one year prior to becoming the new treasurer in order to allow time to learn the position and transfer account authorizations. This proposed bylaw change will be on the upcoming ballot.

- Shirley Huck, Chair of the Awards Committee, reported on the nominations that have been received for the Kennedy Award and Tarnai Scholarship. The Awards Committee will meet in early January to prepare their recommendations for the two awards and will bring their recommendations forward to the Executive Committee at the January meeting.

- Tim MacKinnon who was attending on behalf of Marc Weiner, Program Chair, reported that preparations are continuing for the Annual Meeting. A hotel registration portal will be released in mid-January. We look forward to a strong showing of AASRO members at this year’s meeting (March 5-7, 2015 in New Brunswick, NJ)!

- Jolene Smyth, Secretary/Membership Coordinator, will be following up with 2014 AASRO members who have not yet renewed for 2015. For those who would like to renew and have not had a chance to do so, please visit our online membership registration site: register.aasro.org.

- Bistra Anatchkova, Treasurer, reviewed AASRO’s financial status and the 2015 budget that had been revised following the previous Executive Committee meeting. The 2015 budget was voted on and approved by the Executive Committee.

- Some members have expressed interest in having time for discussion and informal networking at the AASRO Luncheon that is held each year at the AAPOR Conference. The Executive Committee decided that we will not invite a speaker to this year’s luncheon (as has been done in past years) and will rather use the luncheon time for updates from AASRO committee activities and an open floor discussion on what is happening at member centers.

AASRO Executive Committee Meets in November 2014

The Executive Committee held its November meeting by conference call on November 19th at 2 pm Eastern Time. Key actions and items of note from the November meeting were:

- Marc Weiner, Program Chair, reported the great news that Scott Keeter from the Pew Research Center has agreed to be the keynote speaker for this year’s AASRO Annual Meeting. Marc will be sending out information on hotel reservations shortly and encourages members to reserve early. Marc received a strong response to his Pre-Annual Meeting Survey. Marc is using this information to plan the panels and entertainment options. Please stay tuned for more information soon. Patty Maher from the University of Michigan is also beginning planning for AASRO’s 10th Anniversary Annual Meeting to be held in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 2016.

- Jolene Smyth, Secretary/Membership Coordinator, continues to receive membership renewals. We encourage centers who have not renewed to do so in order to not lose access to AASRO’s wide range of wonderful membership benefits! If you did not receive membership information and/or know of a center director who might be interested in AASRO membership, please contact Jolene (jsmyth2@unl.edu) and she will be happy to mail a copy of the materials.

- Bistra Anatchkova, Treasurer, reviewed AASRO’s financial status and the proposed 2015 budget. After Bistra makes a few requested changes, the budget will be approved at the next Executive Committee meeting.

- As has been previously discussed, AASRO members can obtain a price reduction for a VOXCO (an online and CATI software) license. Information about this software discount can now be found on the AASRO website at: aasro.org/vendor-discounts.

We also invite you to nominate a colleague for the John M. Kennedy Achievement Award or the John Tarnai Memorial Scholarship. The deadline for both nominations is December 15, 2014 and more information can be found at aasro.org/news.

AASRO Executive Committee Meets in October 2014

The Executive Committee held its October meeting by conference call on October 15th at 2 pm Eastern Time. Key actions and items of note from the October meeting were:

- Marc Weiner, Program Chair, has sent AASRO members a pre-Annual Meeting Qualtrics survey to obtain information on their likely attendance and interest in a number of program ideas for this year’s meeting. Marc thanks the many centers that have already responded and encourages those who have not had a chance to do so to please provide their feedback. Your input is very valuable as Marc works to finalize plans for an exciting Annual Meeting! If you did not receive the survey and are interested in attending this year’s meeting, please email Marc (mdw@ejb.rutgers.edu).

- Jolene Smyth, Secretary/Membership Coordinator, has mailed AASRO membership renewal and recruitment materials for 2015. We thank our members for renewing their membership and are excited to welcome new centers to our association! If you did not receive membership information and/or know of a center director who might be interested in AASRO membership, please contact Jolene (jsmyth2@unl.edu) and she will be happy to mail a copy of the materials. 

- Ron Langley, Chair of AASRO’s Human Subjects and Research Compliance Committee, will be attending the Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research (PRIM&R) Conference this December with support from AASRO. Ron will share information from this year’s PRIM&R Conference in a session at the Annual Meeting.

- As noted at our last meeting, thanks to an initiative led by Cindy Bennett (University of Arkansas-Little Rock), AASRO members can obtain a price reduction for a VOXCO (an online and CATI software) license. We want to clarify that this discount applies to both new and existing users of VOXCO. Please find more information about VOXCO here: www.voxco.com/en/market/social-research.php.

We also invite you to please consider nominating a colleague for the John M. Kennedy Achievement Award or the John Tarnai Memorial Scholarship.  The deadline for both nominations is December 15, 2014 and more information can be found at aasro.org/news

John Tarnai Memorial Scholarship

The JOHN TARNAI MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP will be awarded annually to selected staff members of academic survey organizations to cover expenses associated with attending the annual meetings of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) or the International Field Directors and Technologies Conference (IFD&TC) or both.

Nominations for the award will be made by directors of academic survey organizations. The nominee should be early in their career, be pursuing a long-term career in survey work, and demonstrate one or more of the following criteria:

  • commitment to producing quality survey data and related work products;
  • commitment to learning and implementing best research practices;
  • commitment to advancing knowledge about best research practices;
  • commitment to sharing and disseminating knowledge within and/or outside the survey organization; or
  • commitment to advancing the goals, mission, stability, and longevity of the survey organization.

Each year, the AASRO Awards Committee will solicit nominations for the JOHN TARNAI MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP in writing. Members of the committee will not be eligible for nomination or receipt of the scholarship while serving on the committee. Once nominations are received the Awards Committee will determine the winner or winner(s) considering the above criteria. The number and amount of scholarships to be awarded in a given year will be determined by the Awards Committee in consultation with the Executive Committee based on the availability of funds.

The recipient(s) of the scholarship will be informed in late winter or early spring to allow time for the winner to plan for attendance at AAPOR or the IFD&TC accordingly. An announcement of the winners will also be placed on the AASRO website.

The nomination form for the AASRO John Tarnai Memorial Scholarship can be found here:
AASRO John Tarnai Memorial Scholarship Nomination Form 2014-2015

John M. Kennedy Achievement Award

The JOHN M. KENNEDY ACHIEVEMENT AWARD will be awarded not more than once each year to academic survey researchers (individuals, groups, or organizations) that have demonstrated one or more of the following criteria:

  • meritorious service or help to AASRO or to its member organizations;
  • accomplished leadership in public opinion research that promotes the value of survey research, enhances public understanding of survey research, fosters advances in survey research methods as a science, improves delivery of survey services, or otherwise promotes quality in survey and public opinion data collection;
  • advancement or innovation in developing or improving the capabilities of an academic survey research organization (for example, improving client interactions, respondent experience, project management, staff training, quality of survey data collection, fiscal or personnel management); or
  • promoting or improving the understanding, within their own institutions, of survey research conducted by academic survey research organizations.

To encourage a broad range of candidates, there are no constraints on the educational attainment, profession, specific discipline, or tenure status of individuals who are or have been affiliated with an academic survey research organization. The JOHN M. KENNEDY ACHIEVEMENT AWARD may honor AASRO member directors, leaders, field leaders, AASRO advocates, academic survey organization professionals, innovators, translational social behavioral scientists, or any other individuals, groups or organizations with distinguished accomplishments that meet the award criteria.

Each year, a five-person selection committee appointed by the AASRO President, with advice of the Executive Committee, considers the above criteria when determining the winner of the JOHN M. KENNEDY ACHIEVEMENT AWARD. The committee will solicit nominations and self-nominations in writing. Members of the nominating committee will not be eligible for nomination or receipt of the award while serving on the committee. The committee may decide in any given year not to make an award. As a recipient of the award, the winner or one person from the winning organization will serve on the selection committee as a voting member the subsequent year. Committee members (other than the prior-year recipient) will serve staggered two-year terms.

The official presentation of the award will normally be timed to coincide with the annual AASRO Directors Meeting.

The nomination form for the John M. Kennedy Achievement Award can be found here:
AASRO Achievement Award Nomination Form 2014-2015

AASRO Executive Committee Meets in September 2014

The AASRO Executive Committee hopes that the start of fall finds you well. The Executive Committee held its September meeting by conference call on September 17th at 2 pm Eastern Time. Key actions and items of note from the September meeting were:

- Jolene Smyth, Secretary/Membership Coordinator, is finalizing membership renewal and recruitment materials for the approaching membership renewal season. If you know of anyone who might be interested in AASRO membership, please contact Jolene (jsmyth2@unl.edu) and she would be happy to mail a copy of the recruitment materials. Ed Freeland, Chair of the Education and Advocacy Committee, finalized the AASRO brochure (first-ever!) that will be included with the recruitment materials. AASRO members can access an electronic copy of it under the View Files option on the website in the AASRO_Promotional_Materials folder. 

- Treasurer Bistra Anatchkova provided her monthly financial report. The Executive Committee voted to raise annual membership dues to $145 (from the current rate of $140) for those who are not paying online and to $150 for those who are paying online in order to cover the 3.1% processing fee that Stripe charges for registration payments made through AASRO’s online registration site. AASRO remains in sound financial shape.

- Susan Willis, President, reported that Tom Guterbock (University of Virginia) will chair the History and Archives Committee for the remainder of this year. Thank you, Tom! The list of committee chairs and members has been updated on the AASRO website to reflect the most current information that has been provided to the Executive Committee. If you notice information that is incorrect or out-of-date, please email Ashley Bowers (afbowers@indiana.edu).

- Danna Moore, Past President and Chair of the Nominations Committee, will be moving forward soon with preparations for AASRO nominations for Executive Council positions. Please consider serving AASRO in this important capacity!

- Marc Weiner, Program Chair, submitted program ideas for the 2015 AASRO Annual Meeting to be hosted by Rutgers University’s Bloustein Center for Survey Research. Once input from the Executive Committee has been reviewed and incorporated, Marc will solicit the membership for feedback and current intentions to attend the meeting. For budgeting purposes, we'll need to know, as early as possible, your center's intention to attend, and how many participants from your center will either definitely or likely attend. We realize it's early, but to keep costs down, it would be really helpful to know the likely attendance count.

- The Executive Committee voted on and approved two initiatives. One was to continue AASRO’s relationship with the Survey Research Newsletter published by the University of Illinois at Chicago. All AASRO members will continue to receive a free copy of the newsletter. The second was an initiative led by Cindy Bennett (University of Arkansas-Little Rock) to obtain a price reduction for a VOXCO (an online and CATI software) license for AASRO members. Please find more information about VOXCO here: http://www.voxco.com/en/market/social-research.php. The Executive Committee reviewed the pricing agreement and agreed to the terms that VOXCO laid out which were for AASRO to provide a list of AASRO members (this is already publicly available on the website), to announce the license to membership, and to include information about VOXCO on the AASRO website (which will be included in the vendor discount section shortly). Thank you to Cindy for making this discount for AASRO members possible!

AASRO Executive Committee Meets in August 2014

The Executive Committee held its August meeting by conference call on August 20th at 2 pm Eastern Time. Key actions and items of note from the August meeting were:

- AASRO is pleased to welcome two new members: the Education and Employment Research Center (EERC) at Rutgers University, and the Sarah T. Hughes Field Politics Center at Goucher College. We are excited to have them as part of our organization!

- Marc Weiner, Program Chair, reported on preparations for the 2015 AASRO Annual Meeting to be hosted by Rutgers University’s Bloustein Center for Survey Research. Marc will submit a draft program to the Executive Committee for review in its September meeting and will then send the draft to the AASRO listserv for feedback in October. Marc will also query members about their plans to attend the conference so that additional hotel rooms can be secured as needed. Marc invites all AASRO members to attend Bloustein’s 10th Anniversary Thursday afternoon session and wine and cheese reception prior to the AASRO Annual Meeting which will begin on Thursday evening (March 5th) and end on Saturday (March 7th).

- Jolene Smyth, Secretary/Membership Coordinator, reported by email that she will be working with AASRO’s contract programmer and treasurer to add a feature to accept Canadian credit cards for AASRO membership renewal this upcoming year.

- Kurt Johnson, Chair of the Survey Committee, reported that AASRO will not be conducting a member survey this year as was decided following the Annual Meeting.

- Treasurer Bistra Anatchkova provided her monthly financial report. AASRO added two membership renewals. AASRO remains in sound financial shape.

- The Executive Committee (EC) is working with a few AASRO committees to fill leader and member positions. We ask committee chairs to please keep the EC informed of any committee members who are no longer active in AASRO or are unable to serve due to other commitments. Thank you to our members for volunteering their time and energy to serve AASRO!
 

AASRO Executive Committee Meets in July 2014

The Executive Committee held its July meeting by conference call on July 31st at 1 pm Eastern Time. Key actions and items of note from the July meeting were:

- Ed Freeland, Chair of the Education and Advocacy Committee, discussed the AASRO brochure that his committee developed and submitted to the Executive Committee for review. This brochure will be sent to top-level university administrators at AASRO member and non-member institutions to convey the value of academic survey research centers and AASRO. The Executive Committee liked the brochure and approved a print run of 1,000. Thank you to Ed and his committee for this great work!

- Tim MacKinnon (representing Marc Weiner, Program Chair) reported on preparations for the 2015 AASRO Annual Meeting to be hosted by Rutgers University’s Bloustein Center for Survey Research. The conference team has secured a group of 30 hotel rooms for $79/night with no tax and no parking fees. They will work on overflow accommodations. They are currently working on plans to have Cliff Zukin and Joe Lenski as part of the conference program.

- Treasurer Bistra Anatchkova provided her monthly financial report by email. AASRO continues to remain in sound financial shape.

- The EC is working with a few AASRO committees to fill leader and member positions for the year. Thank you to our members for serving the organization in these important committee roles!

We are also happy to provide the link (please see sanityandsocialjustice.net/audio/AlbertSchorschIII_GrowingasaResearchCenterLeaderManager_AASROtalk_030714.mp3) to one of the excellent talks at our 2014 Annual Meeting in Chicago. The talk was entitled “Growing as a University Research Center Leader and Manager” and was given by Albert Schorsch, Associate Dean of the University of Illinois at Chicago’s College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs.

AASRO Executive Committee Meets in June 2014

The Executive Committee held its June meeting by conference call on June 18, 2014 at 2 pm Eastern Time. Key actions and items of note from the June meeting were:

- Jolene Smyth, Secretary/Membership Coordinator, reported that AASRO membership is at 62. The Center for Public Opinion at the University of Massachusetts Lowell has joined as a new member. Welcome!

- Marc Weiner, Program Chair, will summarize ideas for the Annual Meeting program that he has received thus far and circulate those to the Executive Committee shortly. Later this summer, he will formally solicit ideas from the broader membership.

- Treasurer Bistra Anatchkova provided her monthly financial report. AASRO continues to remain in sound financial shape. Bistra reported that she has completed disbursement of $5 from each annual membership fee to the Kennedy Award Fund and $5 to the Tarnai Memorial Scholarship Fund.

- The Executive Committee approved the appointment of Christy Storey (Kennesaw State University) to the Awards Committee. Danna Moore, Past President, will chair the Nominations Committee this year. We thank them for their willingness to provide this valuable service to AASRO! 

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