From the Executive Director
Walter Bacak, CAE
The American Translators Association’s Board of Directors met in Chicago, Illinois, August 6-7, 2022. The meeting was preceded by the Board’s Annual Strategy Day. Strategy Day allows the Board to discuss in-depth aspects of the Association and the translation and interpreting professions. The event is coordinated and led by ATA’s president-elect, who, by office, is the chair of the Governance and Communications Committee. This year, President-Elect Veronika Demichelis guided the Board through discussions about membership, the future of the conference, and trends in translation and interpreting and how to act on them. Strategy Day discussions don’t necessarily lead to concrete action plans, but they do serve as the foundation for working through the Board’s activities for the year. Here are some highlights from the Board meeting.
Budget: The Board approved the July 1, 2022–June 30, 2023 final budget and the 2023-24 draft budget. The budget is $3.1 million. No dues increase is planned for 2023.
Ethics: The Board approved the Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility. This revised and updated code incorporates revisions and clarifications that became apparent with deliberations over various ethics cases during the past few years. The Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility takes effect January 1, 2023.
Special Interest Groups: The Board approved establishing a pilot program for Special Interest Groups (SIGs). These SIGs are envisioned as a way for groups of members with similar languages, areas of specialization, or services to meet. They may serve as a professional home for members who don’t have the number of signatures required to start a division. A SIG could also serve as an incubator for groups that are working toward establishing a division. The pilot program runs from ATA63 through 2023. Director Robert Sette was approved as chair of the Ad Hoc Special Interest Groups Oversight Committee.
Membership: The Board reviewed a proposed membership survey to be sent to all members. In addition, the Board continued its discussion of restructuring membership. Proposed revisions will be shared with the membership for feedback.
Outgoing Board Members: President Madalena Sánchez Zampaulo recognized and thanked outgoing Directors Jamie Hartz and Cristina Helmerichs for their service.
The Board meeting summary is posted online. The minutes will be posted once they are approved at the next Board meeting. Past meeting summaries and minutes are also posted online. The next Board meeting is set for October 15-16, 2022, in Los Angeles, California. As always, the meeting is open to all members, and members are encouraged to attend.
Thanks and See You Down the Road
After 28 years, I’ve decided to step down. It has been a great ride.
I’ve had the fortune to work with so many dedicated volunteers starting with Past Presidents Edith Losa, Peter Krawutschke, Muriel Jérôme-O’Keeffe, Ann G. Macfarlane, Tom West, Scott Brennan, Marian S. Greenfield, Jiri Stejskal, Nick Hartmann, Dorothee Racette, Caitilin Walsh, David Rumsey, Corinne McKay, Ted Wozniak, and current President Madalena Sánchez Zampaulo. I continue to be in awe of the time and energy ATA’s volunteers give back to the Association.
Of course, I wouldn’t have lasted as long as I did without our incredibly dedicated, hardworking staff: Roshan Pokharel, Mary David, Caron Bailey, Trish Boward, Teresa Kelly, Jamie Padula, Jeff Sanfacon, Cathy Taguding, and Adrian Aleckna. I would be remiss if I didn’t also mention former employees Terry Hanlen, Maggie Rowe, Loan Dang, and Kirk Lawson.
While I would have loved to have been surrounded by “yes” people, always agreeing with me, all was made better by their challenges, ideas, and input. ATA has greatly benefitted from their work.
Together, we—the volunteers and staff—have accomplished so much over the years. And, there’s plenty more to do. As we make the transition to the next executive director, the journey continues. Good luck with all your great work, thanks for letting me be a part of it, and see you down the road.