Minutes of the Annual Business Meeting, 2002



Wednesday, November 20, 2002


Sheraton New Orleans, New Orleans, Louisiana The meeting was called to order by President David Hingstman (University of Iowa) at 4:10 PM with Val Renegar (San Diego State) serving as Secretary.

The agenda was distributed and APPROVED without objection.

Vice President Gordon Mitchell (University of Pittsburgh) was appointed Parliamentarian.

The minutes of the previous business annual business meeting were distributed and APPROVED without objection.

Reports of Officers and National Council Members

Jerry Sanders announced that the AFA Archive at the University of Utah is now open. Currently it holds a number of primary records from the executive secretary, but is actively seeking new material and ideas about what should be included. Contact gsanders@one.net with ideas or comments. A grand opening event is anticipated for the future, perhaps to coincide with an Alta Conference on Argumentation in Utah in order to increase both the visibility of the AFA participation in the conference and the AFA archive.

Charlie Willard is the new planner for the next Alta conference and has put out the call for papers. More information is forthcoming, but this a good time to begin thinking about attending and encouraging submissions by colleagues and students. The deadline for submissions is sometime in March. The AFA website will post information as it becomes available.

President- Dave Hingstman reported on his projects for the next two years. He indicated that in his endeavor to increase the professional development and support of forensics professionals he has instituted the following initiatives: 1. A call for Directors of Individual Events, and Directors of Forensics, professionals from research 2 schools, programs active in public debate, etc. to aid in the creation of a document that can be presented to retention, promotion, and tenure committees to justify and explain the role of forensics in teaching, research, and service. 2. Expand contact between forensics professionals and publication venues and to aid forensics professionals in translating the skills and experiences of competitive forensics into academic discourse. 3. To increase mentoring relationships between active coaches and new faculty with faculty who are more established and perhaps no longer actively involved in coaching. 4. Increase information sharing with high school directors of forensics about college program information, mentoring, and materials for new coaches. Karla Leeper (Baylor University) and Vicki Fellers (Wichita High School East) will be heading up this project.

He also announced that the Quail Roost document, which outlines tenure recommendations for forensics professionals with an emphasis on debate, is now available on the AFA website. He also announced that a special AFA session honoring Jim Pratt would be held on Saturday afternoon.

Vice President- Gordon Mitchell announced that participation was up for the 2002 convention, but that fewer panels discussed forensics activities specifically. Increasing this type of scholarship is his goal for the 2003 convention and it is hoped that this focus would carry over to our journals and thus aid in our institutional memory. He announced that the call for papers for the 2003 NCA convention in Miami would be coming out in Spectra and on the website and that he hoped that many of the current issues being discussed on listservs and at tournaments would be translated into papers.

Vice President for High School Affairs- Vicki Fellers announced that she would be working with Karla Leeper on a project that utilized that National Talent Report to focus on students who need extra help navigating through college admissions and contact with college forensics programs. They are seeking ideas about how to improve relationships between high schools and colleges in terms of forensics.

Executive Secretary- Jim Pratt indicated that the finances of the organization are good and that the report is on file with the national office.

Dave Hingstman announced that Val Renegar is the new Secretary and that Stefan Bauschard (Boston College) is the Newsletter Editor. Neither had reports to give. Jim Klumpp (University of Maryland), our Webmaster, was also recognized.

Immediate Past President- Karla Leeper thanked the membership for their support during her presidency and for agreeing to serve on AFA committees.

Reports of Committees

National Individual Events Tournament- Cindy Carver (Concordia College) thanked Bradley University for hosting the 2002 NIET and announced that this year's tournament would occur at the University of Mississippi. California State University- Long Beach has been selected as the 2004 host, and the committee is now accepting bids for 2005. She also announced the creation of the NIET scholar series which has been funded at $2500 annually by an anonymous donor to encourage forensics scholarship.

National Debate Tournament- Cate Palczewski (University of Northern Iowa) thanked Southwest Missouri State University for hosting the 2002 NDT and announced that the 2003 tournament will be at Emory University. Plans for hosts for the 2004 and 2005 tournaments are being solidified.

Finance Committee- The budget was PASSED unanimously, which includes an increase to Argumentation and Advocacy to support the increased length of the journal.

Professional Development and Support Committee- Valerie Renegar called for Larry Schnoor to present the 2002 AFA Distinguished Service Award to Guy Yates (West Texas A&M University) who had been selected for this award by the committee following a published call for nominations. She then announced that the committee was working with the President on creating a tenure and promotion document for those whose needs are not addressed by the Quail Roost document and on increasing visibility and avenues for publication for forensics professionals. The committee is also working on an idea for a short course for young professionals seeking tenure.

Publications Committee- Dale Herbeck (Boston College), the editor of Argumentation and Advocacy, indicated that the journal is on schedule, has a new appearance, longer length, and is of superior quality. Chuck Morris was commended for his role as Book Review Editor. Stefan Bauschard, editor of the newsletter, has improved the format of the letter and is looking for ideas about worthwhile items to include in the newsletter. Robin Rowland (University of Kansas) indicated that the committee is working on generating a list of websites for promotional material for debate that would include an email contact list of schools that adhere to the AFA code and materials helpful to new directors and coaches.

Research Committee- Lisa Perry (Minnesota State University, Mankato) presented the 2001 Daniel Rohrer Research Award to Catherine Palczewski for her article "Contesting Pornography: Terministic Catharsis and Definitional Argument" in the Summer 2001 edition of Argumentation and Advocacy. There was no dissertation or thesis award, but the committee encourages nomination. Leah White (University of Northern Iowa) will be the new chair of the committee.

Educational Development and Practices Committee- Barb Pickering (University of Nebraska, Omaha) reported that the committee has been working on the AFA Code of Ethics. Three changes will be brought for vote in 2003 and members are asked to read the changes on the AFA website and provide feedback to the committee. These changes involve: 1. Student eligibility, 2. Transfer students, and 3. Hired researchers. She then MOVED that "We believe that all tournaments should exist in an environment free of any behavior (whether verbal or nonverbal) which results in the harassment f any participant (whether student, coach, or judge)" be added to the preamble of the Code. This was SECONDED by Frank Harrison and PASSED by a majority. Dave Hingstman and Gordon Mitchell are investigating if the Code can be amended at a meeting or if it must be treated like the Constitution and sent out to a vote of the membership.

Website- Jim Klumpp reminded committee members that there is a section of the website where the reports of each committee can be posted and encouraged all committee chairs to submit their minutes or reports. He also welcomed any advice on the site.

Old Business


New Business

Several job announcements were made including: Arizona State, Concordia College, John Carroll University.

Kelly McDonald (Arizona State University) announced that the Western Forensics tournament would be held in conjunction with the Western State Communication Association conference in Salt Lake City, February 13-16, 2003.

Dale Herbeck announced that the nominating committee would be gathering a slate of officers next year. They will be looking for individuals interested in serving as Vice President/President/Immediate Past President, Secretary, Vice President for High School Affairs, and as members of the nominating committee.

Karla Leeper MOVED and it was CARRIED by acclamation that the American Forensics Association express its appreciating for its retiring officers, that the AFA recognize and pay tribute to the late Michael Calvin McGee for his contributions to forensics and forensics research, and that the AFA pay tribute to the late Ron Reed for his contributions to the history of AFA and the creation of its archive.

The AFA reception in the Armstrong Ballroom was announced and members were encouraged to attend.


The meeting was adjourned, by unanimous consent, at 5:25 PM.

Respectfully submitted, Valerie Renegar, Recording Secretary.