Well, I am flying back from a glorious conference in Puerto Rico. This is just a quick note from the President’s desk, I feel quite new, inexperienced, and excited to be here. Mostly though I want to say how much we have appreciated having Jane Couchman at the helm for the last year. She has been a wonderful leader and SSEMW is the better for her year of service. As she noted in our formal business meeting she has put to bed a number of projects that Allyson Poska set in place, including online voting, new processes of selection for our graduate representatives, and realigning term duties. It is all too easy in the chaos of our busy lives to lose track of our many obligations. Jane has not only made sure that we now have a current and up to date record of our membership (Allyson also helped institute this), but she also has provided us with a detailed list of the procedures, to help later officers as they transition into their new posts. Finally Jane also did a lovely job in selecting this year’s joint speakers, Allyson Poska and Susan Amussen who gave an amazing and truly collaborative talk, “Shifting the Frame: Trans-imperial approaches to Gender in the Atlantic World,” a particular timely intervention in light of this year’s conference site, San Juan.
So, we will be thinking in the next few months about the fact that we are coming up on our twentieth year as an organization, and that we will do something special to make that two-decade birthday celebration something truly note worthy—something deserving of our founding mothers.