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NASW board election instructions, Sept. 15

All NASW Members: We invite you to a special Member Meeting on Thursday, September 15 at 2 PM ET on Zoom (access link). This virtual gathering will be a chance for everyone to meet our board candidates and toast our retiring board members — as well as an opportunity for networking and catching up with one another. We hope to see you there!

NASW Professional Members: Voting is open only to current NASW members with Professional membership. Use the personalized email received from eBallot.com to make your choices anytime between the week of August 22 and September 16.

Read on for complete details about our candidates, voting instructions, virtual meeting information, and our retiring board members.

Who's running?

We are fortunate to have 17 committed volunteers running for the 15 board slots. Several candidates are running for an additional term of service. Many are running for the first time — but are decidedly not new to volunteering on behalf of science writers and science writing!

Candidate statements are listed here on our website and also within the online selection form for those voting. You can also learn more about the candidates in the current issue of ScienceWriters magazine, which will hit mailboxes in early September. During the September 15 meeting, candidates will offer short introductions and comments and be available for questions or informal chats.

Thank you to all our candidates, and thank you to our NASW Nominating Committee for recruiting a stellar group of volunteers. The Nominating Committee was chaired by Siri Carpenter (immediate past president), with members ill Adams (president), Pakinam Amer, Jeff Grabmeier, Laura Helmuth (past president), Berly McCoy, Ashley Smart, Emily Sohn, and Arvind Suresh.

How do I make my choices?

With a virtual election meeting, there will be no paper ballots. Everyone will make their choices online via eBallot. If you have made your NASW election choices online in the past, this year's process is very similar.

On August 23, all professional members of NASW received a personalized link via email to the online proxy system. The email was sent via eBallot.com with the subject line: Make your choices in the 2022 NASW Elections by September 16. On September 12, a reminder was sent to those who had not yet voted.

Each contains a link unique to you and will expire after your choices are submitted. The system will ask you to enter a username and password provided in the email invitation. The process should take you fewer than 10 minutes. Once you have submitted your choices, the system will give you a confirmation number. This number is proof to you that your vote has been successfully transmitted to eBallot’s secure database. The online form can be accessed from any smartphone or device that has full browser capabilities. Once submitted, your choices may not be altered.

Periodic reminders will be sent via email until your ballot has been cast. If you want to wait until September 15 to hear from the candidates first, simply save the eBallot email (or future reminders) and complete the form later. Voting closes at 3PM ET on Friday, September 16. As long as you submit the form before this deadline, it will be counted.

How do I attend the member meeting / online social?

The virtual meeting scheduled for Thursday, September 15 at 2PM ET will be held on Zoom, and all NASW members are invited to attend. The meeting will start at 2PM ET with a welcome and presentations from candidates. After the presentations, attendees will be able to move among breakout rooms, choosing specific candidates to chat with, or joining rooms devoted to general groups or special topics.

Instructions and link for joining the Zoom meeting are at https://www.nasw.org/article/zoom-info-sciwricoffee (we will be using the same existing Zoom link as our past SciWriCoffee events).

Thank you to our retiring board members

With elections, we welcome incoming volunteers and offer gratitude to those current board members who are "retiring." Each board member brings different perspectives and views to the role based on their experiences. This makes us extraordinarily fortunate, especially so when we consider that what board members have in common is the ability to bring these perspectives to the fore — and address the needs and gaps for NASW and our broader science writing community. Our board members are available at a moment's notice: they talk about hard issues; they become versed in the intricacies of nonprofit governance; they plan ahead while ensuring the present moment serves members. And they do it all on top of already demanding jobs, their own personal lives, and an ongoing pandemic.

So, here's a big thank you to our outgoing NASW board members:

  • Jill Adams: First elected in 2012, Jill's presidency has been highlighted by capably steering NASW through the ongoing pandemic from the helm of a virtual ship. Her calm, focus, and ability to listen have served us well.

  • Jenny Cutraro: First elected in 2018, Jenny, who previously coordinated the annual Internship Fair as part of the Education Committee, focused on issues of inclusion. She served on several subcommittees charged with making our conference and membership more inclusive, which resulted in the 2021 vote to offer the Affiliate membership category.

  • Kendall Powell: First elected in 2016, Kendall, our outgoing secretary, drew on her experience as Freelance Committee chair to keep many, many balls in the air. In addition to serving as our liaison with the Authors Coalition, Kendall is responsible for bringing grievance services to NASW members via a cooperative agreement with the National Writers Union.

  • Erin Ross: First elected in 2020, in the throes of lockdowns and global uncertainties, Erin immediately began focusing on issues of mental health for science writers. She helped organized our first conference session on the topic and worked with volunteers to develop the initial #SciWriThrive peer support groups.

  • Jill Sakai: First elected in 2014, Jill, who started her NASW volunteering as a student conference helper back in 2006, served as the chair of the PIO Committee, coordinated efforts to establish the Excellence in Institutional Writing Award and helps manage this award program, which is now in its fifth year.

  • Sarah Zielinski: First elected in 2018, Sarah chaired the Membership Committee and organized multiple annual virtual and in-person events, including SciWri2021's most viewed session on product thinking. She can also be counted on to bring real kittens to virtual meetings.

    — Tinsley Davis, Executive Director

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