Note from the Chair

By Venetia June Pedraza

Since the 2017 conference, the NACCS Board has been working through important issues affecting our organization. This year’s board has diligently worked to make the organization remain sustainable. Our task is to insure that the membership has a continuous place and space to come together each year share in all the diversities that come with teaching and learning Chicana and Chicana Studies.

The Board had a difficult task and decision to make about the composition of the Board. First, Alexandro Jose Gradilla resigned the Board as an At-Large Representative. Second, as many of you know, Jose Angel Hernandez was removed from the board after the NACCS 2017 conference. Truly, it has been trying time on the NACCS board. However, despite the loss of some of our Board member, I want to thank this year’s remaining board members because they have worked through the difficulties and moved forward to ensure that the NACCS 2018 conference happens. Although we have experienced “bumps in the road,” this summer, the NACCS board came together and made it possible to continue with the work of NACCS, and I am happy to say that all the Call for Awards is out, the 2018 Conference site has been chosen, and the Call for Papers has just been released.

During this time of transition,  the NACCS Board revisited the Treasurer’s term. Historically, it the has been a two-year, elected position. The Treasurer oversees the financial work and health of the Association with primary account signatory, and assures that budgets and financial reports are made to the National Board and the membership in collaboration with the Executive Director. During 2015-17, NACCS Treasurer, Chalane Lechuga, began this work and with the progress that has been steadily made by prior Treasurers, NACCS has been able to provide comprehensive and detailed analyses of NACCS financials, as well as conveying critical financial information to NACCS Focos and Caucuses and the NACCS membership. In the process of completing this work, the Board recognized that it takes time to learn the work of the Treasurer and has proposed a three year-term.  In the interim, as NACCS works toward updating bylaws in order to comply with California State regulations and to ensure the financial work and health of the organization, the Board voted to suspend the bylaws to “allow Chalane Lechuga to remain as Treasurer and to integrate Cecilia Aragon as Treasurer-Elect for 2017-18 with all rights of Board membership for 2017-18.”

As the continuing NACCS Chair, I am very excited about this year’s conference theme, “The Queer Turn.” This year’s theme will help us critically explore and examine, not only the “polymorphous meanings of the term ‘queer’,” but it will also help us explore new moments of unpredicted change during this tumultuous time. As Aureliano DeSoto, NACCS Chair-Elect, states, “Academia is undergoing a radical metamorphosis. The social and political order of the United States is fractured in ways that are at once old as well as new. Resurgent racism, misogyny, political and state violence, and rising hate crimes belie the myth of a post-racial state with equality under the law. The very identity category of Chicana/o/x is transforming before our very eyes. Our challenge is to understand the Queer Turn as a productive allegory for successfully surviving and thriving in a historic moment of chaos, mutation, and perhaps transfiguration.” Hence, I invite all members of the NACCS community to submit to this year’s NACCS conference. I encourage the membership to invite others from outside the organization to submit paper proposals and panels as well.

Finally, I want to thank the NACCS membership. Without you, the membership, there would be no space where we could engage in critical dialogues that really makes our to conferences special each and every year. And I am so proud that the NACCS membership continues to show up year after year with new themes, contexts, dialogues, ways of teaching, modes of learning, and numerous perspectives – and I look forward to seeing you all in Minneapolis in 2018.

Fall 2017, Volume 42 No. 1


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