Council Meeting I-A
Ventana Canyon Resort
June 24, 2006
– Council I-A was attended by M. Tassinari, President; K.
Jones, Past President; E. Faustman, Vice President; T. Knudsen,
Vice President-Elect; G. Dearlove, Secretary; I. Washington, Treasurer;
E. Carney, K. Filkins and R. Parker, Councilors and T. Masson,
M. Tassinari called the meeting to order at 8:35 and announced
a rescheduled Agenda in order to accommodate the delayed arrival
of B. Hales, Chair of Publications Committee.
Conference Call Minutes from June 9, 2006 were
reviewed, revised, clarified and approved following amending.
Revisions on page 2 as follows: MDA was defined
as Muscular Dystrophy Association; paragraph 5 revised to reflect
that ACOG felt there was not too much industrial support for our
annual meeting, rather there was too much recognition of industrial
Last line, change “be populated by” to “include”
Clarification on page 2, paragraph 5. a statement
indicating that the final program and abstracts should be available
at least 4 months before the meeting for ACOG review was added.
Clarification on page 3, paragraph 1. The paragraph
was revised to convey the need for a person with successful experience
in NIH grant writing, not that the individual be required to currently
hold an NIEHS grant.
PRESIDENT’S REPORT – M. TASSINARI
M. Tassinari noted that job descriptions for Secretary, Treasurer
and Councilor needed to be written or revised. This will be a
function of Council in the coming year.
The priorities list (attachment 01) was reviewed. Items of discussion
included how to open communications with the membership in the
future. Associating with another Scientific Society was again
discussed. More outreach is needed to follow up on this item.
Some issues of concern discussed were that larger societies meet
in cities that have larger convention facilities and are also
more expensive. President to appoint a subcommittee with representation
from OTIS and NBTS to see if there is any interest in trying to
run the meeting as one meeting in the future (i.e. one registration
R. Parker proposed that we approach this problem with a committee
that would have a schedule with defined deliverables.
Year 1 = set up small committee to identify groups with whom we
Year 2 = go to those groups to sell the idea of a joint meeting
Year 3 = coordinate meeting planning for a meeting of both Societies.
E.g. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome group meets one day prior to Alcohol
meeting. If we were to coordinate with their city and meeting
time, we might pick up 150 attendees who would rather come to
our meeting if it were in the same time and place as the alcohol
G. Dearlove moved to create an Ad Hoc committee to look into other
groups who may have synergistic scientific interests and to look
at models to see how we may implement these possibilities (including
the analysis of pros and cons) to present to attendees of the
next strategic planning meeting in 2007. Passed unanimously. The
members are to be appointed by the close of Council II.
T. Knudsen questioned our interaction with NBTS and OTIS and how
they might view this proposal. Council felt that OTIS would look
favorably upon the idea as long as they were included and NBTS
would probably want to have greater input into the decision.
VICE PRESIDENT’S REPORT – ELAINE FAUSTMAN
E. Faustman indicated that the meeting attendance this year was
good. The attendance of 17 people from OTIS in the education course
required that they alter their normal program. This permitted
more joint symposium sessions this year.
Registration discounts for both meetings were again discussed.
R. Parker indicated that Charles River Laboratories would like
to move the Charles River Lecturer (now an annual event at the
BTS meeting) to an annual event at Teratology Society meeting
also. E. Faustman to follow up with R. Parker to facilitate creation
of this sponsorship.
VICE PRESIDENT-ELECT/SITE SELECTION – TOM KNUDSEN
Site selection discussions for future meetings were put off to
T. Knudsen reported that the program committee is getting a good
start on next year. An e-mail was sent out and many suggestions
have been received (some were full proposals) Some of the suggested
topics for next year include:
• Bioinformatics – computational biology
• Epigenomics and epigenetic programming
• F.A.S. spectrum disorder
• Genetic and Environmental risk factors for major birth
• Personalized medicine in pregnant women and children
• Prenatal drug abuse and adolescent developmental trajectories
• Reproductive and developmental toxicity studies in the
(These possibilities do not include the Wiley-Liss or March of
OTIS is interested in the FAS symposium.
The committee is discussing possible ways to more closely tie
the symposium topics in with the poster sessions in order to get
more participation from other individuals in the laboratories
of the presenters.
FASEB Representation discussions – T. Knudsen led the discussion
of what the FASEB does, how they interact with congress to push
scientific agenda forward and why the Teratology Society should
actively participate in these activities. Much time was spent
on grant coverage and how R-21 and R-01 grants are being pushed
by FASEB. Congress currently is pushing to have the funds spent
for managed research (i.e. to cure diseases) rather than for research.
These grants can be computer mined in the future and will not
benefit innovator applicants.
To address the question of “are we getting our monies worth
out of FASEB” requires that we first address the question
“what do we want from FASEB?” Much of the discussion
revolved around communications (to and from the membership; to
and from FASEB). All agreed that the Society needs to identify
and train people to be study section leaders and to write grants
as well as communicate with the membership. To do this, Teratology
needs to have an active group of representatives within the framework
of the FASEB.
Council proposed a task force to meet for a limited time with
limited, defined goals to determine if we are to retain our membership
in FASEB for the benefit of the Society. The task force will be
given authority to act without direct Council daily direction.
The past President will be one of the members of the Task Force.
This could generate a group that will have new trainees each year
interacting with those who already have experience in dealing
with the FASEB. Council to recruit four people for the first year
of task force activity (plus M. Tassinari and T. Knudsen). They
will be recruited at the Annual Meeting.
The written reports from Bill Scott and John Rogers were reviewed.
TREASURER’S REPORT – I. WASHINGTON
I. Washington reported that Jason Harris, the individual at Legg
Mason who was our investment broker, had been replaced by SmithBarney
after they purchased LeggMason. The Society was not given an option
to select a broker. Jason Harris and Ida Washington had previously
worked together to establish an investment strategy through which
the Society would be able to increase our reserves to one and
one-half times the annual operating budget. Ida Washington did
not have a feeling of comfort with the newly assigned representative.
Council voted unanimously to authorize the Treasurer to begin
searching for a new financial management company to assist us
in managing our funds. Ida Washington will seek bids from various
fund management companies to present to Council at the October
meeting. At that time, the CDs that mature in November of 2005
and 2006 will be invested in accordance with a new plan, if appropriate.
The current plan is based on an annual operating budget of approximately
$400,000, and a cash account that requires up to $100,000 to pay
expenses when they come in. Council previously determined that
investment of 65% of Society funds in fixed assets was acceptable,
with approximately 25% of the funds invested in growth funds.
The remaining 10% of the funds would remain available as money
market cash accounts to pay the bills.
Actual numbers for this year were presented and some questions
about the Annual Meeting Budget were addressed. M. Tassinari to
present at Business Meeting
Membership & fees $221,636
Contributions & grants $ 93,916
Royalty (Wiley-Liss) $119,675
Investment income $ 8,045
Annual Meeting $229,747
Membership services $ 51,952
Council Expenses $ 12,501
Mgmt. Expenses $124,796
Net + $75,548
are dual track as follows:
American Balanced Fund $50,851
Federated Total Return $73,082
Royce Fund $38,645
Grand Total $294,115
Assets as of 12/31/05
Cash & equivalents $355,841
Interest Due $ 1,109
Prepaid expenses $ 18,939
TOTAL ASSETS $793,151
The funding of the upcoming Strategic Planning Session was discussed
in conjunction with the annual Royalty from Wiley-Liss. Some of
these funds are currently earmarked for student travel support,
and a portion of the remainder could be relegated to investments.
Council discussed options of uses some of the funds this year
for trainee travel and special projects (e.g. Strategic Planning
Session in 2007). Final decisions will be made at Council II or
the interim Council meeting. The membership will be informed of
these decisions, especially now that the NIH funding for travel
has been reduced. Council must account to the membership that
we are investing the Journal Royalties in future members (students)
and Society Outreach and not just paying for the Annual Meeting
Budget with these funds.
Ways in which Council and the Society could increase corporate
contributions were discussed. The Society needs to change its
approach to corporate funding. The various contributors need to
see what they will gain from an increased contribution. This will
require input from the PAC and the Outreach Committee. Council
to discuss possible changes prior to next year’s annual
Council I-A was Recessed so Council members could attend the Continuing
Education Course. Council I-B will reconvene at 5:30 pm with a
Minutes Approved August 4, 2006.
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