How to Start an ATA Division
ATA's 16 divisions — or professional-interest groups — play an important role in the association. By providing specialty-specific information and networking, divisions allow members to focus on meeting the practical needs of their business. Divisions publish quarterly electronic newsletters, offer specialty information by website and email, and assist in the organization of the ATA Annual Conference.
Divisions are Begun by Association Volunteers
Beginning an ATA division requires a committed group of volunteers who have the time to work on organizing the group. It has happened where an ATA division was begun only to collapse because there were not enough volunteers. This is disappointing for everyone – ATA members, the Board of Directors, and Headquarters staff. So we encourage new divisions with only one caveat: you must have enough interested members to make this work and keep it going. And that is often the hardest part of establishing an ATA division.
What are the Steps to Establishing a Division
- Present a formal petition requesting division status to the ATA Board of Directors. The petition must be signed by 20 ATA members with voting membership status. Voting members have either passed the certification exam or been approved as Active or Corresponding members through the ATA peer review process.
- Present the name of an ATA member with voting status (Active or Corresponding) who is willing to serve as the new division's administrator. A term of office for a division administrator is 2 years.
- Present the name of an ATA member who is willing to be a newsletter or blog editor for the division. The division must publish at least 2 newsletters a year, or a blog with about forty pages of entries per year, and double that is preferred. Newsletters are strictly electronic.
When these conditions are met, the ATA Board of Directors will review the petition and the bylaws before voting to establish the division as a part of ATA.
Why Start a Division?
This may be the first question you will find yourself answering as you look for people to join you in establishing a division. There are any number of answers, and you may come up with some of your own as you meet colleagues. Here are a few to start with:
- Provides education specific to a language combination or specialty.
- Offers a "home" for members with a common goal within the larger association.
- Increases visibility for a language or specialty within the association.
- Keeps members informed of news and events within a particular segment of the industry.
- Assists the ATA Conference Organizer in recruiting speakers relevant to professional interests.
- Organizes Annual Conference events for targeted networking among division members.
ATA Division Membership
Division membership is included in the association's annual dues. ATA members can join any number of divisions throughout the year without paying any additional fees. To see how this works, click Join an ATA Division.
Questions? Need More Info?
For questions and additional information, please email Jamie Padula, ATA Chapter and Division Relations Manager, or call (703) 683-6100, extension 3017.