It is my great pleasure to announce the presidential appointment of a dream leadership team for the newly created Members’ Programmatic, Advisory and Advocacy Committee (M-PAAC). Tricia Redeker Hepner (University of Tennessee-Knoxville) will serve as the first M-PAAC Chair, with Ramona Perez (San Diego State University) and Keri Brondo (University of Memphis) serving respectively as Chairs of M-PAAC’s two subcommittees, one that is public-oriented and one that is member-oriented, in their activities and programs. M-PAAC will be AAA’s go-to committee responsible for implementing the Association’s education, advocacy and advisory program.
I can think of no better team to lead this important new endeavor than Trish, Ramona and Keri. Their intimate knowledge of AAA’s programs and the shifting landscape of scholarly engagement, their experience and expertise as leaders in various AAA capacities, and their extensive scholarly range, as well as the respect for their work across disciplines and subfields combine to ensure that M-PAAC will respond to AAA member needs and interests with energy, insight, sensitivity and grace.
AAA has taken a momentous step in establishing M-PAAC, the members’ committee designed to address the eight key areas of ethics, human rights, labor and workforce, public policy, racialized minorities, gender equity, the practicing-applied-public sector, and world anthropologies as these areas relate to anthropology, anthropologists, and the Association. In creating M-PAAC, AAA expects to remain at the forefront in responding to these critical areas of scholarly interest and public engagement previously addressed through eight separate committees.
Several years ago, the Association’s Executive Board (EB) came to realize serious problems with the committee system. In 2013, the EB’s Operations Committee (AOC) began studying and working to address those issues. We believe we will see greater productivity, efficacy, and personal satisfaction among volunteer members with M-PAAC, a new infrastructure developed over a three-year period in consultation with representatives from each of the eight programmatic committees.
The leadership team in place, we now ask members to step up to the plate and nominate yourself and/or those AAA members you believe should be among the first cohort of members on M-PAAC. This is your opportunity to shape the direction and vitality of these important programs in anthropology and a great time to ensure the work that needs to be accomplished gets done with the issues/topics we care about remaining front and center. I call on you to do your part by nominating or self-nominating awesome candidates to join Trish, Ramona and Keri on AAA’s brand new, enormously promising and what I know will prove to be an absolutely fabulous, dream team.
Alisse Waterston, AAA President
John Jay College, CUNY