In accordance with Article VIII, Section 2, of the Amended and Restated Bylaws of the Association for Jewish Studies, Inc., as revised on July 28, 2020, the Board of Directors resolves to establish the following Committees of the Corporation and committee-related guidelines:
The AJS seeks diverse participation in its committees. The make-up of these committees should reflect the overall diversity of the association’s membership. Whenever possible, the AJS should post open calls to the membership for nominations or self-nominations to committee membership.
The AJS strongly encourages involving as many members as possible in its committees. Unless there are extenuating circumstances, no member should serve in more than two capacities simultaneously. Unless otherwise determined by resolution of the board due to specific circumstances, the maximum length for a term of service on a committee is two years and service on the same committee is limited to two consecutive terms.
The AJS bylaws govern the function, appointment process, membership, and terms of the nominating committee. This committee is also subject to the general guidelines of this resolution.
The Governance Committee’s primary task is to review AJS policies and procedures. The President appoints the committee chair, who then selects committee members in consultation with the President. The President serves as the board’s liaison to this committee.
The Committee on Sexual Misconduct constitutes an accessible and trained body that answers inquiries, facilitates the resolution of informal complaints, and hears formal complaints of sexual misconduct fairly and expeditiously in accordance with the AJS Sexual Misconduct Procedures. The committee consists of a chair; a secretary; a team of up to 6 ombuds team members, and a group of up to 12 core members. The President appoints the chair and the secretary and also appoints a current member of the Board to serve as liaison to this committee. Due to the unique nature of service on this committee and the training required for carrying out the AJS Sexual Misconduct Procedures, the term of service for the chair and secretary is three years, with the possibility renewal for a second consecutive term. To ensure sufficient numbers and training of ombuds and core members, the chair will appoint ombuds and committee members for a minimum of two years, with the possibility of annual renewal, in accordance with the AJS Sexual Misconduct Procedures.
The Committee on Contingent Faculty works to enhance the visibility and status of contingent faculty as valued members of the AJS and the profession, and to advocate for just working conditions for scholars working in part-time or temporary roles. Toward this end, the committee works with AJS staff and members to encourage self-advocacy among contingent faculty, to create opportunities for professional participation and development, and to provide guidance regarding best practices in hiring and employment. The Vice President for Membership will appoint one or two chairs of this committee and serves as the board’s liaison to it. The chair(s) will appoint committee members in consultation with that Vice President. AJS members who are themselves contingent faculty should play prominent roles in this committee.
Selection Committees determine the winners of AJS prizes and grants (e.g., the Jordan Schnitzer Book Prize). The Vice President for Membership appoints the chairs and members of these committees and serves as the board’s liaison to these committees. Because the specific focus of these committees sometimes varies on an annual basis, the term of service on selection committees is a single year. Service on the same selection committee is limited to four consecutive one-year terms.
The Program Committee oversees the call for papers and the paper selection process in an equitable and consistent fashion that reflects AJS goals and values. The Program Committee meets at least twice a year and in consultation as necessary. The Vice President for Program chairs the Program Committee and selects its members; roughly half of the committee’s membership should be appointed each year.
Division chairs organize scholarly sub-divisions within the organization and oversee the selection process for proposals submitted in their respective divisions. Division chairs meet collectively as the Divisional Leadership Committee once a year and communicate regularly with the Vice President for Program, especially during the call for papers and paper selection process. The Vice President for Program chairs the Divisional Leadership Committee and selects one or two chairs for each division in consultation with outgoing division chairs. Divisional leadership appointments should be staggered so that roughly half of the chairs are appointed each year.
As stated in the bylaws, the Vice President for Publications nominates the editors of AJS Review and AJS Perspectives, to be approved by the Board. Each publication should have two main editors, selected in tandem. Each publication may also have one or more section editors (e.g., book review editors) whose appointment by the Vice President for Publications is not subject to Board approval and whose terms will generally not coincide with those of the main editors. Due to the nature of editorial work, both main and section editors serve for four-year terms. Editors may not serve two consecutive terms in the same role; in the event of a failed search for a successor, however, the Vice President for Publications may extend the current editor’s term on an annual basis. The Vice President for Publications appoints incoming editors in consultation with continuing and outgoing editors. Selection criteria should include diversity and vision as well as pertinent skills and experience. When possible, incoming editors should be selected several months before assuming their responsibilities so that they can shadow the outgoing editors.
The main editors of AJS Review serve as the co-chairs of the AJS Review Committee, and section editors of AJS Review serve as members of that committee. The main editors of AJS Perspectives serve as the co-chairs of the AJS Perspectives Committee, and section editors of AJS Perspectives serve as members of that committee. The co-chairs of each committee will also select additional committee members, known as editorial board members, in consultation with the Vice President for Publications. Due to the nature of editorial work, editorial board members serve three-year terms; roughly a third of the editorial board members should be appointed each year. Editorial board members may not serve more than two consecutive terms in that role, but current editorial board members may become main or section editors and outgoing editors may become editorial board members.