Dear Members of ASALH,
In violation of our Constitution and By-Laws and Roberts Rules of Order, the ASALH Executive Council signed the contract with the University of Chicago to end our century of self-publishing. At the Business Session at the 101 Annual Meeting, a motion was on the floor, properly seconded and under debate, to continue self-publishing and to quit all negotiations. We have that power through our by-laws, and if the president did not know it then, she had more than six months to read our fundamental laws and bring the issue back to the body. The Chicago contract has already proven a bad deal. Because Chicago, our new publisher, collects subscriptions and controls the funds, we had to go and solicit an advance from the press to stay afloat or eat up our meager reserves. Moreover, we will make $35,000 a year less than what we currently make on the Journal of African American History. Finally, the University of Chicago informed the board what we have said all along–the $100,000 is revenue not profit. We were indeed lied to by the leadership, especially Gilbert A. Smith, our Treasurer, who as a CPA is trained to know that revenues are not profits.
Come to the Business Meeting today at 4:00 p.m. at the Netherland Hilton Hotel. We meet, appropriately so, in the Hall of Mirrors, and there will be smoke. I am proposing the following motion to that we can govern the board as we should. If I am not recognized, and you agree with the following motion, please feel free to take the floor and make it. Speak in the language of Roberts Rules by saying, “I move…”