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Spring 2006 - Governor's Column

The MAA continues to improve its financial situation. Membership continues to rise and 2004 was the best year on record for book sales. The latter is critical for the financial well-being of the organization since publications subsidize our memberships. The auditors found that our accounting was in excellent shape over the past year. These efforts, together with careful expenditures, resulted in a $600,000 operating surplus for 2004. At least part of this surplus will be invested in additional staff positions at the national office.

The MAA continues it push to move more of its activity online. On example of this is a new online journal that you have probably already heard of: Convergence. It is an online resource for those wishing to "to use mathematical history to engage and motivate their students and help them better understand mathematical ideas." In addition to Convergence and JOMA, the MAA will be bringing is collection of Classroom Capsules and Telegraphic Reviews online as well. The MathDL project continues to move forward and is being complemented by a new project called Math Gateway that will serve as a general portway for both MAA members and the general public to a wealth of resources, not all of which will be created by the MAA. The MAA is also continuing to develop its website for use as a bookstore, a meeting registration tool, and other tasks.

The Classroom Resources series has the fastest growing sales of our publications, growing by 38% in 2004. Because of its popularity, the MAA is working to expand the series. In the meanwhile, seventeen new books were displayed at Mathfest. There is also a backlog of publications in preparation.

The Board of Governors approved a motion that allows the meetings committee to do its work more effectively. Rather than approving a specific site after all negotiations are done, the Board will approve a collection of sites before negotiations begin, from which the meeting location must be selected. Prior to this motion however, the Board approved holding the 2012 JMM in Boston, and the 2013 JMM in San Diego. The full listing of sites from now til then are on the MAA website, but in the immediate future we have

2006 JMM San Antonio Jan 12-15
Mathfest Knoxville Aug 10-12
2007 JMM New Orleans Jan 4-7
Mathfest San Jose Aug 3-5
2008 JMM San Diego Jan 6-9
Mathfest Madison Jul31-Aug2

Attendance at Mathfest continues to grow, with nearly 1100 people attending the meeting in Albuquerque. This was also the first Mathfest meeting that the MAA staff organized and managed completely in-house. With the exception of several minor glitches, they did an excellent job.

The SIGMAA project has completed its fifth year. There are now 9 SIGMAAs, each of which is growing in membership and are beginning to stabilize their activities. Efforts are now underway to standardize their bylaws as much as possible, to increase the general memberships understanding of the functions of a SIGMAA, and to work out their relationship to the MAA committee structure. This last is a critical issue since several of the SIGMAAs duplicate or have absorbed some of the activities of standing subcommittees. This implies that the SIGMAAs may or may not have a policy-making role in the organization.

Finally, I should report that actual work on the Carriage House conference center is about to begin. The architectural drawings of the facility a quite attractive and indicate that we will soon have a facility that we are very proud of.

Rick Gillman
Governor Indiana Section of the MAA

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