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The American Schools of Oriental Research
Board of Trustees Meeting
November 17, 2001 - Broomfield, CO
Minutes

 

PRESENT: Jeff Blakely, Oded Borowski, John Camp, Doug Clark, Sidnie White Crawford, David Detrich, William Dever, Nan Frederick, Ed Gilbert, Tim Harrison, Norma Kershaw, P.E. MacAllister (Chairman), Jodi Magness, Kyle McCarter, David McCreery, Robert Miller, Austin Ritterspach, James F. Ross, B.W. Ruffner, Tom Schaub (Vice-President), Brian Schmidt, Tammi Schneider, Joe D. Seger, President, Lydie Shufro, John Spencer, Jim Strange (Secretary), Stewart Swiny, Gerald Vincent, Billie Jean Collins (Publications), Holly Andrews (Assistant Director), Rudy Dornemann (Executive Director),
ABSENT: Walter Aufrecht, Mark Chavalas, Sten LaBianca, Albert Leonard (COP), Eric Meyers, Martha Risser, Bruce Routledge, Richard J. Scheuer (Life Trustee), Randy Younker,
VISITORS: Larry Geraty, Larry Herr, Sy Gitin (AIAR), Lee Seeman, Ingrid Wood, Bill Hook, Paul Gherman

1.            CTO 8:30 AM—P.E. MacAllister

2.            Approval of Minutes of April 29, 2001 Trustees Meeting

RESOLVED, that the minutes be approved with the correction that the Strategic Initiatives Retreat took place in September, not November as stated in the President’s report.

3.            Report from the Chairman—None

4.            Report from AIAR—Sidnie White Crawford

The Albright has raised $2 million of endowment.  The applications for fellowships have been up, perhaps because of wide advertising.  The program is going on as usual, though the Fellows maintain low profiles.  The building is in the need of some maintenance.  Publicly thanks Director and Staff.

5.                  Report from ACOR—Larry Geraty

ACOR salutes the Petra Church volume by Patricia Bikai.  The endowment is up to $5 million.  The plan is to distribute earnings to fellowships, ACOR archaeology projects, and other plans.  There has been a shortfall in the budget of about $51,000 due to the political situation.  The overhead from a new project in Aqaba may cover that.  ACOR has received another grant for a second floor. ACOR staff has turned back a 5% salary increase.  A new fellowship has been established in memory of Jim Sauer. The Trustee Class of 2002 became the class of 2005.  Larry Geraty resigned from the board.  Library is quite flush in funds, which is unusual.  Nancy Lapp was added to the Fellowship committee.  None of the Fellows dropped out due to the events of Sept 11, 2001.  The ACOR Trustees commend Pierre Bikai for all his successes.

6.                  Report from CAARI—David Detrich

David Detrich is the new President. Andrew Oliver has been of great help, as have the Director and Trustees.  The June Annual Summer Workshop had students from SUNY with an overview of the current archaeological situation in Cyprus.  Undergraduate students are introduced to a specific site and encouraged in archaeology.  The Helena Wilde and Stuart Swiny fellowship is now fully funded. Other fellowships are aimed at doctoral students.  There is some progress to the library cataloging program. The Trustees encourage Eric Cline to include Cypriote archaeology in the program.  Joe Seger has brought up the relation of ASOR with the overseas centers.  He hopes for improved communication.  Trustees hope that ASOR publications are critical.

7.      Report from President—Joe D. Seger

Memorial Moments for the following:

E.J. Vardaman—Mississippi State U.
William L. Moran—Harvard U.
Rebecca MacAllister—Indianapolis, IN
Cyrus Gordon, Brookline, MA
Sean Dever, Los Angeles, CA
Constance Gordon—Brookline, MA
John Hartz, AIAR
Inna Pommerantz, Jerusalem
Charles U. Harris, Delaplane, VA
Ludmila Elkin, Jerusalem

      Joe points out that gifts for relief of the current budget shortfall are coming, but more are needed.  He encouraged the Trustees who may not yet have given to do so.

      The Centennial Volume is complete and will be of interest to Trustees. The income from the volume goes to allay costs of the Centennial Celebration.

      Joe referred to the Summary Report of the Strategic Initiatives Retreat and suggested that all Trustees read and absorb the comments in the report, some of which are specious, but many of which reflect serious thought and insight. He noted that occasionally he was astonished by the level of ignorance of certain fundamentals of the structure and administration of ASOR.  One area emerged which needs some attention from the Task Force.

BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board establish a task force on Leadership and Management to be convened immediately.  Moved by Joe D. Seger; seconded by Jodi Magness.  PASSED unanimously.

      Membership is an area that requires attention. There has been a fairly aggressive attack on the problem of institutions in arrears with noticeable success.  Total membership is not in decline, though it has not increased significantly either.  Membership stays around 1250. This number is tied to subscriptions.  We have had about six additions in recent years in institutional memberships.  Three are in the pipeline.  Our income base, however, is subscriptions and membership.  Joe thanked everyone.  He appreciates his election as institutional Trustee.

BE IT RESOLVED, that Joe D. Seger be commended by this body. MOVED by Austin Ritterspach.  Seconded. P.E. MacAllister called on all who vote yes to stand and applaud.  The commendation is in effect.

      Joe introduced Paul Gherman, University Librarian of Vanderbilt University, to speak to the ETANA project (Electronic Tools and Ancient Near Eastern Archives).  Their aim is to create an online database of scholarly studies.  Paul explained that their goal is to put on line volumes now in the public domain so that people can access the data either cost-free or for a nominal fee.  ETANA desires to partner with ASOR for this end.  SBL is a partner, as are Case Western Reserve and Israel Finkelstein at Tel Aviv U.  Mellon is underwriting the project.  A question was raised  whether Cyprus would be included.  The answer was that anything can be included. This is referred to the Executive Committee. A Straw Vote indicated unanimous interest.

BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Trustees recommends that the Executive Committee consider this association with ETANA.  Moved by Tammi Schneider. Seconded.  PASSED unanimously.

8.      Financial Reports—R. Dornemann. 

      Rudy reported that we have been transferring our accounting system into a proper form for auditing not-for-profits.  There were delays in getting some information from Academic Services, which delayed the audit. Ingrid Wood and Gerald Vincent worked hard with Rudy and staff to get the information for audit. The Draft Audit (distributed) was discussed by Gerald Vincent.  Jerry referred the Board to Page 2 entitled “Statements of Financial Position, June 30, 2001 and 2000.”  This is a snapshot of our position.  “Accounts Receivable” includes pledges, which are to be so considered under the new guidelines for non-profits.  Generally accepted accounting procedures require that some discount be applied to pledges. “Memberships” includes billings that have gone out but have not been paid. “Book sales” is a timing situation in which books have been sold, but there is a delay in receiving those funds.  “Subscriptions” means billings that have not been received.  The total receivables came to $506,524.  This figure is high, given total assets of about $1.7 million.  “Deferred Income” is mainly publications in process for which we have not yet realized income.  Total Liabilities come to $451,215. Non-profits classify their assets into Non-Restricted (for salaries, rent, etc.), Temporarily Restricted (a restriction put on the funds by the donor or granting agency), and Restricted (the Principal part of Endowment). 

      Jerry called the Board’s attention to the change in unrestricted funds from 2000’s column of $461,705 (corrected to $16,372) to the 2001 total of ($63,813), and explained that this is due to putting funds in the incorrect categories in 2000. Internal borrowing of funds has allowed payment of current bills.  Jerry called attention to page 3 “Statement of Activities and Changes in Net Assets, Year Ended June 30, 2001.”  This page explains the change in net assets of $49,666 for the year. Page 6 entitled “Statements of Cash Flows, Years Ended June 30, 2001 and 2000” shows that the Total Cash and cash equivalents, end of year was $197,348. Approximately $50,000 of this represents remaining costs of the Centennial Celebration. The bulk of the remainder was publications. 

    Jerry explains that what this means is that the endowment has grown, “temporarily restricted” has grown, but “unrestricted funds” are in a negative balance.  This causes a cash flow problem, especially if total Receivables stay large. Annual meeting, publications, and Centennial Celebration have cost us $188,000 in three years. There are two things that influence Unrestricted funds, cutting expenses or increasing Unrestricted Revenues.  ASOR must reduce its budget and try to increase its income. Considerable discussion ensued with clarifications offered by Rudy Dornemann, Joe D. Seger, Gerald Vincent, and others.

    Ingrid Wood commented on the Investment Summary (distributed as “Select Consolidation Summary”) to inform the Board that the total endowment lost value in September, but increased in October slightly. Ingrid reported that she moved our investments into mutual funds last quarter and thereby limited out losses. Equities represent 10% of our holdings.

    Rudy Dornemann reported on our cash situation in a distributed report entitled “Fiscal Year 2002 Approved and Proposed Revised Budgets vs. Actual 7/1/01 through 9/30/01.” Rudy suggests that we adjust revenues to $935,000 and expenses to $895,000, that this would be a reasonable, draft budget.  This can be revisited in January. Discussion ensued.

BE IT RESOLVED, that we not accept this budget but instruct that a revised budget be prepared with about a $50,000 surplus on the baseline $914,676.  MOVED by Austin Ritterspach.  Seconded. PASSED unanimously.  

BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Trustees instructs Rudy Dornemann to proceed to secure quotes on Liability Insurance without exclusions for the Board of Trustees.  David Detrich moved, Tammi Schenider seconded.  PASSED unanimously.

      Rudy added we have dealt with the due diligence process in order to see what other obligations have been placed on ASOR by sponsored projects.  The auditor and counsel agree that the Miqne project is the responsibility of AIAR, so ASOR cannot show it on its books. John Spencer and Sidnie Crawford object that the AIAR is not responsible for Tell Miqne accounts until AIAR issues its not-for-proft number to Tell Miqne.

9.                  Nominations Committee—R. Younker mentioned the need to consider others for the board with talents in the financial arena. He mentions personal experience in contacting lay people who may have an interest in serving.

 Elections Results Announcement—Randy Younker

ASOR Board of Trustees:

Institutional Slate:     Individual Slate:
Bruce Routledge    Stuart Swiny
Timothy Harrison Beth Nakhai
Joe Seger Eric Cline

Nominations Committee:

Institutional Slate:  Kyle McCarter
Individual Slate: Sten LaBianca

Agenda Committee:

Institutional Slate:  Michael Hasel
Individual Slate: Jimmy Hardin

Chair of the Committee on Publications:

Larry Herr

Walter Rast gave the report on the Search for officers. The names were presented to the Board of Trustees: 

Chairman of the Board, P.E. MacAllister
MOVED, seconded, PASSED unanimously

Secretary James F. Strange
MOVED, seconded, PASSED unanimously

Vice-President there is no candidate in favor of input from the Presidential candidate. 

President, Larry Geraty
MOVED, seconded, PASSED unanimously

The Committee suggested that we wait on a candidate for the Vice President pending election of the president.  PE suggested that we have a candidate for the Spring meeting.  Joe suggested that Larry Geraty be added to the search committee.

10.              Development Committee—Austin Ritterspach.  So far in this fiscal year we have garnered another $74,100 in donations to our Annual Appeal and $113,285 towards the Torch Campaign.  Austin urged the Board of Trustees to sign a pledge card and approach a friend to pledge also. There will be a “cultivation event” in Denver to introduce them to ASOR. There will be a cultivation event this spring in Atlanta at the Fernbank Museum, thanks to B.W. Ruffner.  Austin suggested that the Trustees think of having a cultivation event in their home town. Austin has suggested that the Institutional members be listed on the web site.

BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board direct Publications to list all institutional members at least once a year in all relevant publications. MOVED by Austin Ritterspach.  Seconded.  Discussion ensued. PASSED unanimously.

      In the meeting about Institutional Memberships there was discussion whether digs should be institutional members, and we should offer individual membership to the students. Norma Kershaw pointed out that we need to offer credit card pledge opportunities  to people on the pledge card.  She also suggests that we take in-kind and non-cash contributions.

11.              Publications—B.J. Collins.  At the COP meeting Jim Weinstein was elected as editor of BASOR for another year.  Nancy Lapp and Gloria London were also extended one year.  BASOR has increased page counts to accommodate increased contributions of manuscripts.  Next issue of JCS should be ready in the new year.  NEA is still behind.  The next issue is a double issue now in proof. The plan is to turn out an issue every two months until caught up. There is enough material on hand to publish an issue until September of 2002.  COP ratified for the Editorial Board of NEA:  Jodi Magness, Wayne Pitard, Jack Sasson, and Amnon Ben-Tor. At this meeting we have had better than $2,000 in sales so far. David Brown and Oxbow books have increased our sales also. We have a strong queue of books.  The EC approved a motion to use the “Publications Fund” to help pay for production of books. This will help relieve the cash flow problem.  The money used is replaced during the fiscal year to replenish the fund.  John Spencer congratulated COP for putting JCS on the web. There was a question about informing authors before placing their book or article on the ASOR web site.  BJ says the contracts will be carefully checked to deal with that.

12.       CAP—David McCreery.  COP does require an Annual Report from each dig.  The list of affiliated projects will change as projects finish or achieve their goals.  There are about 65 affiliated projects. David will write their administrators about the affiliation.  The application process is fully electronic, which cuts down committee discussion time for projects dramatically. There will be no CAP tour until the budgetary situation improves.

13.       CAMP—Doug Clark.  Doug reported that overall he is very pleased with the Annual Meeting.  He notes that attendance is about 450.  Participation is about 250.  We exceeded our contract for room-nights.  The Program Committee meets twice during the Annual Meeting. Outreach sessions appear not to have as high a participation as hoped. Thee will be some changes in subcommittees.  The new Lecture Committee chaired by Ann Killebrew met yesterday and has positive plans.  Hershel Shanks has offered to share mailing labels for areas for the lecture series.  Probably next fall some will visit San Antonio to inspect the venue there. There is still a question whether we shall stay associated with SBL for the Annual Meeting. We will need to decide about 2004.

BE IT RESOLVED that this body issue a motion of congratulations to Omni Interlocken Resorts for attending to the needs of the annual Meeting with grace, professionalism, and verve.  Moved by Norma Kershaw.  Seconded.  PASSED unanimously.

14.              Executive Director—Rudy Dornemann.  Rudy mentioned that Boston would be the venue of the next Board meeting.  He asked Nan Frederick to speak of the Policy Manual.  Nan urged the Trustees to read the manual.

BE IT RESOLVED, that the Policy and Personnel Manual be temporarily accepted.  Moved by Nan Frederick.  Seconded. PASSED unanimously.

      Rudy asks that John Spencer’s Institutional Membership Committee take a good look at how to increase Institutional Members. Rudy attended the ACLS meeting, which is good for ASOR in terms of networking and working on common issues.  P.E. has volunteered to be our representative.

15.              There being no Old Business or New Business, the meeting stood adjourned at 12:40 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

James F. Strange, Secretary