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Strategic Planning for 2010–15

posted by CAA — Dec 19, 2008

Strategic planning may sound bureaucratic, but it’s an essential step in making CAA the organization that meets your needs in the future. There is no more appropriate time to take stock and set goals for our future than the present, with a dramatically changing economy, a new presidential administration, and the prospect of the next hundred years of CAA beginning in 2011.

On October 25, 2008, the Board of Directors, the Strategic Planning Steering Committee, and senior CAA staff held a Strategic Planning Retreat to set goals for 2010–15. Members of the Planning Steering Committee are: Michael Ann Holly, Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute; Paul Jaskot, DePaul University and CAA President and CEO; Ken Gonzales-Day, Scripps College and CAA board; Jay Coogan, Rhode Island School of Design and CAA board; Anne Collins Goodyear, National Portrait Gallery and CAA Vice President for External Affairs; Mary-Ann Milford-Lutzker, Mills College and CAA Vice President for Committees; Barbara Nesin, Spelman College and CAA Secretary; and Linda Downs, CAA Executive Director.

James McNamara and Paul Melton, planning consultants from LaPlaca Cohen, a cultural arts marketing firm, have assisted CAA through the planning process, which will be completed with a final document at year-end 2009. Before the retreat, McNamara and Melton conducted interviews with board members, senior staff, and a selection of academic and association leaders outside the CAA membership to determine the key issues and implications that we must address in preparing for our future. Questions addressed the components of a mission, vision, and values statement, the future of CAA’s service to its members, and the visual-arts field.

In September 2008, over eight hundred members responded to an email survey on their most pressing professional concerns. The results also helped inform the planning process.

The planning retreat began with a presentation on digital publishing by Raym Crow, managing partner at the Chain Bridge Group. He presented the essential points of investigation needed to plan for digital publications. CAA staff presented current statistical information on programs and publications and presented comparative information for other national academic member associations. McNamara and Melton then presented the results of the interviews and members’ survey as a basis for the discussion of identifying goals for the future of CAA.

All CAA committees, including the Professional Interests, Practices and Standards Committees, the Publications Committee, the three journals’ editorial boards, and our affiliated societies, were requested to present their interests and concerns for CAA’s future. Their responses will be incorporated into the planning process.

I encourage you to attend an open forum for all members to discuss planning issues during the Annual Members’ Business Meeting at the Annual Conference in Los Angeles on Friday, February 27, 2009, at 5:00 PM in the West Hall Meeting Room, 502A Level 2, Los Angeles Convention Center. We would like to have your thoughts and ideas in order to make CAA responsive to all members’ needs. If you cannot attend the forum, please send your comments to I look forward to hearing from you.

—Linda Downs, CAA executive director

Filed under: Board of Directors, Governance