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Council I-A Minutes

June 21, 2003 (2:00)

Philadelphia, PA

Council Members in Attendance:Wm. Slikker, President; R. Tyl, Vice President; K. Jones, Vice President-elect; J. Friedman, Past President; J. Rogers, Treasurer; G. Dearlove, Secretary; C. Chambers, Chair of Public Affairs Committee; B. Abbott, Chair of Publication Committee;J. Graham (3:30 arrival), M. Tassinari and P. Wier, Council members; T. Masson, Executive Director

Minutes from Interim Council Meeting held in Baltimore, Maryland on October 28, 2002 were reviewed and approved as drafted.

President's Report:Wm Slikker presented an update on Society progress in complying with the goals set forth in the 2002 Strategic Planning Session.

1.†††† Improvement of the Annual Meeting is an ongoing process.There have been "press releases" from the Public Affairs Committee to increase attendance of interested groups.These appear to have been well received.The Society has appointed Ron Jensh to be Teratology Historian.Ron has prepared a booth containing memorabilia and photos for the exhibit hall this year to facilitate membership recognition and request additional materials to be donated.The Society has scheduled a function to include family members this year (trip to the Mutter Museum) and the Philadelphia Convention Bureau has been requested to provide an information booth in the registration area for membership benefit.We also invited former Presidents to attend the Awards Luncheon to increase student participation with the Past Presidents.

2. ††† Society outreach has been focused on two major areas.There was a Behavioral Test Methods Workshop organized by members of TS/NBTS/BTS held immediately prior to our annual meeting (drew 76 attendees) and the Public Affairs Committee has scheduled a full day workshop on "Communicating Risks for Pregnancy Exposures…" in conjunction with OTIS and NBTS.

3. ††† The Society web site continues to improve and the membership directory will be online before the end of the month.The site for a host server has been moved to UCSD to facilitate changes being implemented by R. Felix.

4. ††† The revised Journal is surpassing all expectations.The contract with the publisher has been signed and the Publication Committee is expanded and operational.

5. ††† The educational activities of the Society continue to support the continuing education course and the mini-course with excellent registration for both.

6. ††† Efforts are underway to enhance the Society's impact.We have established an Ad Hoc committee on Bioinformatics and are soliciting letters from the past presidents to enumerate major accomplishments that occurred during their respective terms in office.

Vice President/Program Committee:R. Tyl reported that the Continuing Education course registration was down slightly from previous years.Discussion followed to indicate that the previous year may have been abnormally high; the registration this year is about normal.However, the number of Graduate Student and Postdoctoral registrations for the meeting are low, as are the number of abstracts submitted.Discussion followed regarding ways the Society could encourage more student participation.Increased travel awards were suggested and Council approved the following motion:

motion: " Every student and /or postdoctoral trainee submitting an abstract form with the box checked requesting consideration for a travel award will receive a minimum of $500 to cover expenses to attend the Annual Meeting if that abstract is accepted for presentation."

Additional discussion followed on how to continue to offer both workshops and continuing education courses without being competitive at the annual meeting.K. Jones and T. Masson will look into the meeting site for next year to determine if we have facility space to add a workshop prior to the meeting.

Secretary's Report:G. Dearlove presented the membership figures comparing 2001, 2002 and 2003 membership dues payments.In 2001, we had 85% of the members listed on the records as paid in full, in 2002, we had 82% of the members listed on the records as paid in full and this year we have 79% of the members listed as paid in full.Council was again asked to review the list of unpaid members with the intent of personally questioning their intent to remain active or to withdraw from the Society.This practice resulted in the recovery of 29 unpaid members from the previous year.The definition of Emeritus status was reviewed and potential changes to the constitution and by laws were deemed necessary.The Constitution Committee will be notified that review and revision of this section are required to bring it into compliance with the rest of the recent revisions.G. Dearlove reported that the number of Society members who volunteered to stand in the Society booth at the SOT meeting this year was quite high (possibly related to the request for assistance that was e-mailed through our office at AIM).

Executive Director's Report:T. Masson presented the current data for site selection for the 2005 meeting.Discussion followed concerning the location being a City or a Resort.The point was made that exhibitors and industry representatives have requested the inclusion of resort locations for the annual meeting while academic and government representatives prefer the apparent lower costs of meetings being held in cities.The five locations researched by AIM for the 2005 meeting included two resort locations and three cities.†† A motion was made for Council to determine if Cincinnati or St. Pete Beach will be the site for the 2005 meeting.To facilitate this selection, AIM was to e-mail materials to Council regarding final offers from the two locations.The selection of the 2006 site will be delayed until the October Council meeting when the site selection committee will provide two choices for Council to select between.

Council suggested that OTIS and NBTS representatives may want to attend Council as a prelude to determining if the respective organizations would like to consider becoming a part of the Teratology Society.

Review of the numbers indicates that Corporate contributions are still up, as are exhibitors.One new exhibitor wanted a number of free registrations, but this request was denied.Further discussions (after exhibitor input from the meeting) will be placed on the October agenda.The Behavioral Test Methods Workshop was expected to break even (combination of corporate contribution and registration fees).This workshop was organized in conjunction with BTS and NBTS.The Teratology Society provided staff support for managing the logistics, registration to facilitate holding the Workshop at the meeting hotel.The related costs were incorporated into the Workshop budget.

Treasurer's Report:J. Rogers presented the fiscal year 2002 financial numbers.The approved budget was $357,103 estimated revenues and $394,981 expense.Actual totals were $358,888 for revenues and $344,105 for expenses.As of year end 2002, Teratology total assets were $499,377 (2001 year end total was $487,488).The year-end audit from Huey and Associate (CPAs) was provided for Council review.Discussion followed on what to do with some of the funds accumulated (those in excess of expected operating expenses).The relationship between funds available and Society invited speaker reimbursement policy was discussed.Council was to review the current guidelines and discuss via e-mail prior to the October meeting to determine if changes are necessary.Additional funds will be invested with Legg-Mason after the totals are in for the Annual Meeting revenue and expenses.

Review of Management Contract:The current contract expires on December 30, 2003 and AIM has reviewed the contract and suggested changes to bring it into line with more recent contracts and to incorporate the new business address for AIM.Main change is to go from a two year to a three year length in the contract and to add an indemnification section to the contract.These changes are suggested and are to be voted on at the October Council meeting.

Publication Committee Report:B. Abbott provided Council with summaries of the progress made by the three component parts of the Journal as viewed by the three respective Editors.(G. Daston was present to answer any questions regarding Part B of the Journal).

B. Abbott indicated that all members will have electronic access to all three parts of the Journal for the first year to facilitate their selection of Part A or Part B as their choice.To date, only Part A is easily visible.††

Some discussion followed regarding the use of two issues of the Journal (one in Part A and one in Part B) for the program.No resolution to this issue was achieved.

Listing of all three parts of the Journal need to be corrected with PubMed and other listing services as does the Impact Factor indicator.

Public Affairs Committee:T. Chambers reported on the PR activities undertaken by the PAC this year (3-4 press releases on topical issues and 2 press releases on general concern topics).We have had indication for two press individuals that they will attend the PAC workshop.

The PAC workshop has good sponsorship this year.The goal is to bring in people from outside the Teratology Society or OTIS.A summary of the workshop will be put on the FDA website and submitted for publication.

The position paper on tobacco is still in final revision status.The WHO recommendations to text changes are being reviewed and will be added if appropriate.WHO co-sponsorship will enhance the visibility of the document.

The Fetal Alcohol Syndrome statement is back at the task force for minor modifications.The intent is to make the revisions so the document can be co-endorsed by Teratology and the CDC in addition to March of Dimes and ACOG.The publication should be placed in one of the most widely read journals.

Old Business:

Meeting with other related Societies was discussed by T. Chambers.SPER could not work us into the meeting in Toronto in 2005, but they may consider 2006 or 2007 if we are still interested.This is a one and one-half day meeting that has about 100 attendees.We should approach about joint symposium first.Council suggested that this possibility be brought up at the issues forum for the membership to offer input.

Primer Status was reported by J. Friedman.The papers already provided are now six years out of date and the authors would have to revise them.M. Tassinari will draft a proposal for consideration at the October Council meeting regarding getting the document moving again if B. Hales is in agreement.

Use of e-mail for job placement notices was discussed.The suggestion was to put them on the web site and to send a blanket e-mail to the membership.

New Business:

Fundraising Assistance for the President was discussed.There are many grants and companies that should be approached and we are currently not capturing the institutional memory necessary to facilitate completion of the grant applications in a timely manner.The assistance could also be utilized to search for new sources of funding.This would have to be a funded AIM position.To determine cost and potential, a committee should be formed to research the history of our funding efforts so we know what has been done, when various granting agency deadlines are, who should be applying, etc.T. Masson will research potential costs for such an individual if AIM were to do the grant writing for the Society.

Postdoctoral Fellowships were discussed.An example of a ASPET-Merck flyer was reviewed.This is an industry approach, the CDC also has a program that is fully funded.The potential for adding training in Developmental Biology is great.Wm. Slikker to form Ad Hoc committee to prepare a concept paper/proposal for review at the October meeting.

Meeting adjourned

 

 

 

 

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