RMRT Annual Meeting Roundup, ft. @rlayel!

Hi all,

With SAA’s annual meeting a bit more than a week away, we here at The Schedule thought the time was ripe to post some of the things you’ll want to know about if you’re going to be attending the RMRT meeting in New Orleans.

First of all, if you haven’t yet checked out the new SAA Scheduler app, you really should– the interface is much more intuitive and fluid than it has been in the past, and you can create your personalized conference schedule by “starring” events you’ll be attending. You can also see who else is going to be at a given session, which is nice if you’re looking to meet up with people. The link to the RMRT meeting on Friday, August 16 is here.

Now. Having said that? The information about the presentation at that link is not quite right, due to a few communication errors. Luckily, we have an updated blurb for you all straight from Ron Layel, who will be talking about his work all over the federal government. Better yet, unlike the SAA program template, he has more than 50 words in which to describe it! Take it away, Ron:

This presentation summarizes current thinking and future prospects for the programs and practices of archiving electronic records by federal government agencies. It discusses and seeks to clarify the meaning of “archiving”, as used by government Records/Information Management (RIM) professionals, and as distinguished from how the term is used by IT managers and practitioners. Also discussed and analyzed are the overarching goals of the November, 2011 Presidential Memorandum and last year’s new NARA/OMB Directive, “Managing Federal Records”, as it relates to significant reforms being made in how federal agency RIM programs will update policies and practices for proper capture and life-cycle management of all government electronic records. Focus will be on how these reformed RIM programs will enhance openness/accountability of government by making records more easily accessible to the public, and on how federal records having long-term/permanent historical value will be digitally “archived” to ensure preservation and accessibility for future generations.

Responses to the Presidential Memorandum, the NARA directive stemming from it, government transparency, and digital archives? Sounds good to me! Particularly if you were at last year’s joint session with the Government Records Section on the Presidential Records Memorandum, this should be a good opportunity to hear about how some agencies are working to put it into practice.

Also at the meeting, we will be voting to confirm (or confirm the nomination) of some potential new steering committee members. As noted in my email last week, we’re recruiting some additional nominees to round out the Steering Committee, and hopefully to add some breadth to the types and sizes of the covered institutions. Here, I’m going to quote myself from an email I answered about the time and nature of the commitment:

Generally, your time commitment is no more than about 2-4 hours a month. We have one 45-60 minute teleconference each month with the whole steering committee, and then similar time commitments working with the various subcommittees (Education, ARMA Outreach, Student Outreach, Resources, etc.) that each SC member is responsible for. There’ll be bursts of activity– for example, we’re putting together a webinar for SAA, which takes a lot of time to write outlines, powerpoints, etc.– but mostly the committment is pretty minimal.

The biggest thing about the RMRT Steering Committee is that we are traditionally very democratic– there are a few projects we try to set in motion at the beginning of the term, but other than that we’re very open to suggestions about new directions in which we can take the activities of the roundtable. The downside to this, of course, is that it’s very easy for us to run in place without guidance on some of these initiatives. So if you’re interested in the Steering Committee, it is a big help if you come in with some idea of what it is you want to focus on for RMRT– we can then work within the committee to see if we can make that idea a reality.

Joining the steering committee is a great, low-impact way to get involved with SAA leadership– we have a number of steering committee alumni who have gone on to chair other sections, roundtables, and other SAA component groups– and to help promote the records management field within the SAA framework. If you’re interested, or if you just want more info, please send me an email. we’ll be taking self-nominations up to August 15, so there’s still lots of time to decide.

Last, but not least, the RMRT will be holding a short happy hour get-together for its members the evening of Thursday, August 15, after the last session but before the alumni mixer. We don’t have a place in mind yet, but we’ll be looking for someplace with food so if people want to eat dinner or get a pre-mixer snack, the option is there. Watch this space for the official announcement of venue. Suggestions are both welcome and appreciated.

We look forward to seeing you in New Orleans!

 

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