Preamble: The descriptions for these positions assume a new ACL administrative structure, as envisaged for Don Walker's retirement, with a Secretary-Treasurer (ST) and an Office Manager (OM): they are intended for use in making the new appointments that are necessary, as was originally envisaged as applying from 1 January 1995, when Don would have retired. It is clear that explicit job descriptions are needed, for three reasons: first, for the Secretary-Treasurer, because Don's dedication to and interpretation of the role was unique and could not be assumed for a successor; second, for the Office Manager, because a base for an explicit contract of employment is required; and third to make clear the relationship between the two positions. The current presumption is that the proposed arrangment will come fully on stream from 1 January 1995: we hope that ad hoc arrangements will hold ACL together during 1994, with the beginning of the transition to the new state taking place during the latter part of the year. Under the proposed eventual structure the ST will have overall responsibility but not too great a workload, and the OM will do the major part of the administration, supported as necessary by office staff: the latter is assumed not to be large, say one part timer. For convenience below, except where the distinction is specifically relevant, I shall refer to the OM's work regardless of whether it is actually executed by the OM personally or is done by others under the OM's supervision. (The ST/OM division, compared with that which applied till recently, is that some of the more straightforwardly administrative work done by Don as ST will be done by the OM, and that all of what was done by Betty (except handling back publications which are to be removed from the office altogether), will be done by the OM.) I shall refer to the combined operation of ST and OM as the ACL Office, distinguishing the specific OM's office where required. The presumption is that the general formal structure of the ACL, as laid down in the constitution, determining the formal duties and relations of the ST, Executive, etc, remains the same. There is no need to change the constitution to have an OM. The essential point is that the OM will be paid by the ACL (though whether as an employee or through a contract with someone who is self-employed remains to be decided: I shall refer to the OM as an employee for convenience), whereas in accordance with the legal status of the ACL as a not-for-profit entity registered in New Jersey, the ST is not paid. The position of Associate ST, currently covered by the constitution, can remain, even if the position is not filled. The purposes of this document are (a) to provide the job information needed in discussions with possible STs and OMs, and (b) to provide the basic specification for the OM's position, to be worked up into the actual employment contract that is required. The ACL Office's operations have essentially just grown over time without any formal specification, under an extremely broad constitutional characterisation of the ST's duties. There is thus no existing documentary basis for the job descriptions that are now required. A clearly important point to bear in mind, however, is that the ST is currently the only ACL Officer with a long term of office, and thus the only person within the executive able to maintain continuity of knowledge and action; it is clearly desirable from both the ACL's and the OM's points of view that any contract between the two should be for a period of several years. Under the ACL Constitution, the ACL is formally administered by the Executive Committee, chaired by the President. The Executive Committee's duties include e.g. fixing meetings, selecting editors, levying dues etc. There are three Officers: the President, Vice-President, and Secretary-Treasurer. The Secretary-Treasurer holds office for not more than two periods of five years, with a preliminary year as Associate Secretary- Treasurer. The Secretary-Treasurer has the formally-specified duty to mail notices of nominations to the membership, and is formally empowered to deposit and disburse funds and to enter into contracts as appropriate to conduct the business of the ACL. However as the Officers' and Executive members' terms of duty are of not more than two years, the ST is in practice the linch pin of the entire organisation and is responsible both for executing most of the ACL's business and for ensuring that the Officers and Executive discharge their duties. The job descriptions, giving a detailed itemisation of the duties and work of the ST and OM that follow thus fill out what running the ACL's business actually involves. NOTE however that particularly with respect to the ST's responsibilities, there is a distinction between formal duties and their operational delegation. Thus while the description of the ST's formal responsibilities, which is the natural starting point for the two job lists, may appear somewhat daunting, virtually all of the work could in practice be delegated to the OM, and the intention is that this delegation should be made. This point is considered again, after the itemisation, in a more detailed comment on the actual allocation of operational responsibility and work between ST and OM. It is nevertheless essential to emphasise, NOW, that the job specification for the ST position that this document as a whole provides is a much `lighter-duty' one than that which has applied hitherto. But it is nevertheless, because the ST is the prime long-term official of the ACL, the main international organisation in the field, a prestige position with visible public status and the interests and benefits that go with this. ************************************************************************* * Thus the two job descriptions detailed below can be summarised as * * * * SECRETARY TREASURER : low workload, high public profile in a position * * in the very centre of the field, varied * * professional opportunities and contacts * * * * OFFICE MANAGER : serious workload, responsible and varied tasks * * with considerable autonomy and visibility as * * an effective manager * * * *************************************************************************
The ST is responsible to the ACL, through the Executive Committee (Exec), for the general management and conduct of the ACL's business. This specifically covers 1. Finance The ST is empowered to conduct, and hence is responsible for, the financial affairs of the ACL. The ST's financial duties include keeping the ACL's accounts, providing financial reports to the Exec and membership (and specifically publishing the ACL's accounts annually), filing with the IRS, preparing of ACL budgets, collection of membership dues, supervision of ACL operations and contracts with major financial elements e.g. conferences, journal, and general oversight of the actual handling of moneys in the Office. In the future financial duties will probably also include arranging for auditing of the ACL's accounts. 2. Formal ACL government matters The ST is responsible for ensuring that the constitutional and similar formal requirements of the ACL as an organisation are met, including those for the nomination and election of Officers (though the responsibility for making nominations lies with the Nominations Committee), holding of annual business meetings of the ACL, publication of annual reports, holding of annual meetings of the Executive, also that eligibility conditions e.g. for SIG officers, and guidelines e.g. for workshops or SIGs, are met. 3. Membership matters The ST is responsible for the 'keeping' of the membership, i.e. for gathering dues, maintaining an uptodate and proper record of the membership, monitoring eligibility, and ensuring that the membership files are held, and information about the membership is published, in a manner meeting any legal requirements on organisations about data privacy etc. 4. Subsidiary organisations: Chapters, SIGs etc The ST is responsible for ensuring that the formal conditions under which any subsidiary organisations within the ACL are satisfied including those specifying the subsidiary's purpose and structure and those specifting the reporting and accounting relations from the subsidiary to the parent body. The ST is also generally responsible for monitoring the operations of the subsidiary organisations, though others may have specific duties, for instance the Vice-President be responsible for SIGs. 5. Formal documents The ST is responsible for the preparation, negotiation, keeping and where necessary publication of any formal documents relating to the ACL, including those concerning the ACL itself, e.g. the constitution, and those to which ACL is a party including e.g. contracts with publishers, with conference sites, with organisations such as those managing data archives and with any body undertaking specific tasks on behalf of the ACL. (This includes safeguarding ACL copyright.) The ST is also responsible for the preparation and application of ACL's internal 'guideline' documents e.g. for programme committees, workshops etc. 6. Conferences and meetings While the Executive is responsible for the choice of Conference Chairs and Programme Committees for ACL's conferences, the ST is responsible for ensuring that these are properly instituted and for generally monitoring their operation, that conferences are publicised, and that conference proceedings are appropriately prepared and published. The ST is similarly responsible for ensuring that Local Arrangements for ACL conferences are satisfactory. In both cases this covers approval and oversight of relevant financial matters including provision and approval of conference budgets. 7. Publications The ST is generally responsible for ensuring that the ACL's publications are appropriately produced. However the details vary considerably, by category of publication. For the journal, `Computational Linguistics', the prime responsibility is with the Editor, and the ST's role is to support the Editor in dealing with contractual matters, and for monitoring the financial side. For the newsletter, `The Finite String', the prime responsibility is again with the Editor, but the ST's duty is to provide formal and official announcements e.g. about elections; reports e.g. annually about the state of the association; etc, in a timely way, and again to monitor financial aspects. For conferences, the ST's role is to ensure that Proceedings are prepared to the relevant standard, published in a timely way, and are publicised and accessible to members. The same applies for e.g. workshops, tutorials etc held in conjunction with the ACL's conferences. For occasional publications, e.g. course survey, sponsored workshops etc, the ST's duty is to ensure standards, acknowledgement, availabliity etc, and and to maintain financial controls. 8. External liaison The ST has a general responsibility for ensuring that the ACL's role as the main international organisation in its field is suitably maintained and enhanced by such means as providing representation to other bodies, submitting information and documents to inquiries, programmes, initiatives etc, supplying material to data resources, insofar as this is practicable within the scale of the ACL's operations. 9. Support for the Executive Committee The ST has a general responsibility to support the Officers and Exec in their duties by providing background information about ACL's practices, by maintaining a task calendar and stimulating individual officers to action eg. to choose a Programme Committee chair; the ST has also to respond to requests for action from the Officers and Exec falling within the scope of the ST's generic remit to sustain the ACL. 10. Generic remit Thus the generic remit of the ST is to sustain the ongoing life of the ACL, and to advertise it wherever and whenever appropriate. In addition, when there is an OM, 11. The ST is responsible for the OM. These are the ST's formal, and substantive practical, duties. As noted, the intention is that much of their detailed implementation will be devolved to the OM: thus the OM's job description consists primarily of items embodying more detailed operational versions of the ST's tasks. It must thus be emphasised that the OM's job entails serious responsibilities and implies considerable managerial independence and scope for initiative in relation to the conduct of the ACL's business. The OM also has their own specific responsibility of managing any support office staff. It must however be emphasised that the ST is vested with formal financial duties which cannot, either legally or in the interests of sound financial operations, be entirely devolved: that is, the buck for anything to do with the ACL's money stops at the ST. The OM's job description can therefore be indicated as follows.
The OM's responsibilities and duties can be itemised to match those of the ST. Thus under the general rubric `as delegated by and under the general authority of the ST, to whom the OM is formally responsible, and recognising that the Exec has the primary responsibility for all substantive matters relating to the ACL', the OM has the tasks: 1. Finance To conduct the ordinary financial business of the ACL. 2. Government To support the routine government operations of the ACL. 3. Membership To maintain the ACL membership, including collection of dues and keeping records. 4. Subsidiary organisations To maintain operational liaison with Chapters, SIGs etc. 5. Formal documents Draft formal documents and monitor that they are adhered to. 6. Conferences Managing conferences including supporting local organisers, ensuring publicity etc. 7. Publications Managing production of the ACL'S publications where this is not the duty of specified editors, and also supporting these. 8. Liaison Providing materials as needed for liaison purposes, and monitoring external relations. 9. Executive Committee Providing general `in-service' support for the Officers and Exec, e.g. documents, past practice facts, name lists. 10. General remit To carry out or manage all routine operations required by a professional organisation of the kind and size represented by the ACL. The detailed amplification of the summary OM task list is provided by the ST itemisation. The OM also has a specific responsibility of their own: 11. Office management The OM is responsible for the management of any subsidiary office staff, under conditions of pay and employment agreed by the ST.
In general, the aim is to delegate all of the normal work of the ST to the OM so, as mentioned earlier, the OM's role is one of material responsibility and initiative, and is by no means merely a hack job. Under this arrangement, the OM is primarily responsible, as a function of the effective carrying out of all the ACL Offive busines, for the general wellbeing of the ACL. However while the ST's task description essentially becomes that for the OM, the ST retains certain specific roles, as follows. a) Final, formal responsibility for the ACL's moneys remains with the ST; the ST has to ensure the soundness of the ACL's books. b) The ST, as the visible, long-term officer of the ACL, has a particular duty to maintain and enhance the public status of the ACL. c) The ST is the primary officer supporting the Exec in its conduct of the ACL's business. d) The ST is formally resonsible for the proper conduct of the ACL Office and for the OM's work therein, including the OM's money-handling operations. e) The ST has to be present at the Annual Meeting of the ACL; at the annual meeting of the Exec; and at the Annual Conference of the ACL. TIME REQUIRED It is envisaged that the OM position will be an approximately half-time job. The ST's job, once the new arrangement is intituted and operational, can be estimated at a halfday per week on average. A specific employment contract for the OM, and `Letter of agreement' for the ST, will be provided based on the job analyses made in this document. It is assumed that while these analyses allow for considerable variation in the details of both jobs, substantive changes can only be made by formal agreement.
Specific Responsibilities: 1) Giving the after-dinner speech at the conference! 2) "Watching over" the conference for the next year. This includes selecting a program chair (voted on by the ACL exec). The president is responsible for inviting the program chair and making sure the program chair has the necessary information (e.g., past history, information from previous program chair). Generally this should be done in time to announce the program chair at this year's meeting (the conference is a good place for a meeting of past, current, and next program chair). Working with the program chair and the local arrangements people for the conference next year. 3) Making/moving forward any policy changes in the ACL. 4) Running the acl-executive committee meeting held at the conference (and ensuring, in consultation with the secretary-treasurer, that necessary people are invited), presiding over the executive committee dinner and the business meeting.
Specific Responsibilities: 1) being the Exec's guardian of SIGs - e.g., if someone wants to have a SIG the VP checks it out and facilitates the sig formation - there are guidelines available on ACL listserv: this also means harassing the Sigs to produce their annual reports. The vice-president might also initiate any policy changes with respect to the sigs. 2) being in charge of choosing the site for the next year but one's conference, e.g., in 99 the site should be chosen for 2001; however some special constraints as to the location may have been worked out by the exec in advance. The site is generally announced at the conference two years in advance. Note: there needs to be very careful liaison with the ACL Secretary-Treasurer to check out some financial aspects *before* any decision is made. (Attached to the bottom are the site-selection guidelines that Don used.) In the past the VP concentrated on applying guidelines to do with whether there was a willing CL community to do Local Arrangements etc, asking potential LA Chairs etc, and did not investigate anything to do with such matters as up-front financial deposits, whether the LA Chair would intend to use a Conference Service etc. In earlier years there was a sort of cosy academic style assumed, but one or two straws in the wind in recent years suggest more care is needed not to get inadvertently into untoward financial commitments. 3) doing the "thank-yous" at the ACL annual business meeting.
The PROGRAM COMMITTEE CHAIR is responsible for: (1) Selecting a program committee; it should be balanced for subject matter and, to the extent possible, geography and sex; it should not include people recently on an ACL program committee (list of previous committee members provided). The proposed members should have their dues paid for the current year (as well as the year of the conference), and they should regularly attend ACL meetings. However, it is possible to include "outsiders" if new areas emerging within computational linguistics justify it. The list should be submitted for review by the Executive Committee before contacting prospective members -- or at least before confirming them, particularly so some of these parameters can be checked. (2) Working out a timetable for relevant events (negotiable proposed timetable provided). (3) Selecting a Tutorial Chair (list of previous chairs provided). (4) Generating a Call for Papers, which should go out late August or early September (copy of previous one provided). (5) Distibuting papers to committee members and collecting reviews (copy of review form provided). (6) Convening program committee meeting and deciding on papers (list identifying submissions and acceptances at previous conferences provided), invited speakers, panels, and other features. (7) Writing acceptance and rejection letters (copy of model acceptance letter provided). Format guidelines and copyright release forms should be included with acceptances. (8) Preparing program timetable with sequences of papers, break and lunch times, invited speaker and panel sessions, and other features. GENERAL GUIDELINES: Here are the general guidelines for the ACL PC Chair: 1. Selecting the program committee Program committee should be finalized by 9/15 latest in time for the Call For Papers 1. Exec approves Area Chairs proposed by PC chairs/GC 2. PC chairs and General Chair approve PC members (not including the AC's) after getting input from the Exec. 3. PC to have a hierarchical structure, with ACs and PC to meet, discuss, and reach consensus about the papers. 4. GC to ensure that this happens. July 31st: (should be complete by end of July/mid-August) Reviewers are contacted. Any negative responses will generate need for new names. Again, keep Exec August 31st informed. Other selections to be made: tutorial chair. Again, August 31st propose suggestion to Exec and get feedback. Interact with Student Session Chairs to make sure they are on track. Draft for Call For Papers formulated. Circulated at least to Secretary/Treasurer. Can be circulated to Sept. 15 Exec for feedback if there any new points Call for papers should include: List of PC reviewers Information and call for student session Tutorial chair Local arrangments contact Sept. 30th Call goes to Priscilla Rasmussen who emails it out. Email version gets mailed once at end of Sept. and again at end of Nov. Have discussion with PC Committee on invited speakers before they begin reviewing. Decide on invited speakers early, contact them and get Jan. 8th a yes or no response. The following dates are flexible and can change from year to year. Some discussion should occur between PC Chair and Secretary Tresurer on reasonable dates. These will be dependent on amount of time needed for reviewing, date the Conference Announcement should go out, how much time is needed for the publication process, etc. This year is slightly complicated since we don't yet know who the publisher will be. I've put last year's dates here with comments. Jan. 8th Submissions due Really nice to give a week between New Year's and due date so academics don't have to work over the Christmas break. Mar. 1st Tutorial program finalised. Tutorial Chairs provides announcement in latex format. PC Chair should nudge the Tutorial Chair to be on time. Latex template and example is provided to TC. Mar. 1st Electronic reviews due Mar. 15th PC Committee meets Mar. 15th Student Session Chairs provide complete program to Sec./Treasurer. Mar. 31st Program finalized and final file is sent to Secretary/Treasurer This entails setting times and dates for each paper, determining sessions, and breaks. You will be provided with a latex template to fill out, along with .html. We provided versions in .ps .html and ascii this year since everything goes out via email only. THis year it took the PC 3 weeks after the meeting to provide me with the program. This was too long. Problem was multiple submissions. PLAN TO SPEND AN INTENSIVE WEEK ON THIS. The longer we wait, the worse it is for publicity. Mar. 31st Authors are notified. Again, there was a delay this year. Due to multiple submissions. Apr. 7th Conference announcement goes out May 1st Final camera ready copy due. Papers are sent to PC CHairs who asemble the volume, prepare teh front matter (latex templates and examples are provided). This is then sent to Sec/Treas for proofing. May 20th Final proceedings due at OmniPress (will depend on who we use for overseas printing. This was for a June 23rd conference start. Coming up will be July 7th start but problems wiht overseas mailings, etc. mean that more leeway should be added.