Society of Southwest Archivists


  • 26 Apr 2018 12:14 PM | Jaimi Parker (Administrator)

    What’s new?

    • The look and feel of the new site is based on the design elements of SSA logo and graphic design concept that was commissioned in 2009.
    • The site is fully responsive. Pages will resize automatically to your screen size including tablets and smart phones.
    • The menus were redesigned and expanded.
    • Side menus were incorporated onto pages with related information such as the Annual Meeting schedule, the About section, and the Committees pages.
    • Content restricted to active SSA members is denoted by a small lock symbol . Members can log in at any time via the login button at the top-right of the screen or on the page with restricted content.
    • The website is ADA-compliant, meaning that we have followed guidelines intended to help website designers build compliant websites. These changes include meeting a text contrast threshold, filling in the alt-text field for all images, removing all animation and autoplay carousels, providing close-captioning for audiovisual content, making keyboard-only navigation possible, as well as a slew of elements that fall under the banner of “common sense” and “good website design.”
    • Members with access can find the Wild Apricot admin link at the bottom of each page.
    • We hope to feature many more images of SSA member activities on the website going forward and include photos with blog posts and other content types. To this end, we will need member photo submissions! We set up a simple upload form on this page where members can simply and securely submit photos to SSA. All images will be credited and used for the sole purpose of further promoting SSA.

    graphic design piece showing the SSA logo, fonts, and colors  screenshot of side menu from the annual meeting page schedule  screenshot of the membership directory login area

    SSA Color Logos Side Menu Login Button

    screenshot of the website footer

    Footer Links

    Wild Apricot Integration

    Wild Apricot has created a plugin that allows members-only content (denoted by the symbol in the menu) to be integrated into the new website. These content features include:

    • Membership Directory
    • Membership Profile
    • Discussion Forums (Job Board, Professional Development, Let’s Talk Archives General Discussion Forum)
    • Workshop and Annual Meeting Registration

    Why was the website redesigned?

    Short answer: Aesthetics, sustainability, and mobile-friendly responsiveness.

    Last year, the Ad Hoc Committee on Internet Resources was created and tasked with improving the SSA website. After a slow and methodical six months and after user studies and some experimentation, the committee came to the conclusion that a modern website would be best created by re-designing the site from scratch. The committee came to this conclusion for the following reasons:

    • There was no way to re-design the Wild Apricot (WA) site without disrupting service. Changes would be made in real time meaning that pages would temporarily disappear and reappear from day to day.
    • Wild Apricot’s website templates, while more responsive and colorful than the old website, were not responsive or modern enough. We didn’t want to put a lot of work into something that would only be a half measure.
    • The WA user interface makes hosting photo and video content more difficult than it should be.
    • Customizing the WA website is difficult. Font and style choices are limited. The learning curve is steep.

    Once we decided to start over, we next chose to use the WordPress platform primarily because of the aforementioned plugin. Wordpress also has a much larger user base; you can google your way out of any problem, and the platform is much more flexible. Along the way we were fortunate to discover that the new website doesn’t cost the Society an additional funds. Our website hosting service, DreamHost, offers free hosting to non-profits.

    Questions or Comments can be sent to or by clicking on the (temporary) appeal at the top of each page.

  • 20 Mar 2018 6:01 PM | Melissa Gottwald

    Voting is underway for the 2018 SSA Elections!

    Cast your votes for Vice President/President Elect, Secretary, Executive Board members, and for Nominating and Scholarship Committee representatives.

    We are using Election Buddy, an online election system, to tabulate votes. Please use the unique link in the email you received from Election Buddy to access the ballot and read the candidate statements. If you did not receive an email with the link to the voting system, if you prefer to receive a paper ballot, or if you have any other questions, please contact Nominating Committee Chair Vince Lee at

    Voting ends Thursday April 5 at 11:45 pm Central Time.

  • 21 Feb 2018 11:34 AM | Melissa Gottwald

    The Society of Southwest Archivists invites graduate and undergraduate students to submit an abstract for a poster presentation at the 2018 Annual Meeting in San Antonio, Texas, May 23-26, 2018.

    Posters may describe applied or theoretical research that is completed or underway; discuss interesting archival collections with which students have worked; or report on archives and records projects in which students have participated (e.g., development of finding aids, public outreach, database construction, etc.). Submissions should focus on research or activity conducted within the previous academic year (Fall 2017 - Spring 2018). Poster dimensions: 32 inches by 40 inches (may read vertically or horizontally).

    Abstracts will be accepted by email until March 30, 2018

    Include the following in your 1- page abstract:
    Purpose of project/research
    Description of project/research
    Conclusions/findings of project/research

    Submit your abstract to with “SSA Poster” as your subject line.

    Students will have the opportunity to discuss their poster with attendees for 30 minutes on Friday May 25 at 3:00 pm in the conference hotel. Easels will be provided. Student poster presenters must register and secure institutional or personal funding to attend the Annual Meeting.

  • 28 Nov 2017 11:58 AM | Melissa Gottwald

    As we head into the holiday season, please take a brief moment to think of someone that  you would like to nominate for the upcoming positions in SSA for 2018. We know that there are folks out their whose work, leadership, and service you all admire. Self-nominations are also welcomed.


    The SSA Nominating Committee is seeking candidates for the following positions in 2018:


           Vice-President/President Elect (three year term-one as VP, one as President, and one as Immediate Past President)

           Executive Board (3 positions, two-year term)

           Nominating Committee ( 1 position, two-year term)

           Scholarship Committee ( 1 position, three-year term)

           Secretary (two-year term)


    The responsibilities of each position are outlined in the SSA Officer & Committee Procedures Manual, available online at:


    If you would like to serve, or know an ideal candidate, please contact a member of the Nominating Committee:


    Vince Lee, Chair,

    Rebecca Elder,

    Adam Heien,


    The deadline for submitted nominations is January 1, 2018
  • 14 Nov 2017 4:17 PM | Melissa Gottwald

    The Society of American Archivists’ Awards Committee is seeking nominations for the Sister M. Claude Lane, O.P., Memorial Award. This award recognizes individuals who have made a significant contribution to the field of religious archives. Criteria for nomination include:

    • Involvement and work in the Archivists of Religious Collections Section (ARCS) of the Society of American  Archivists.
    •  Contributions to archival literature that relates to religious archives.
    • Participation and leadership in religious archives organizations.
    • Evidence of leadership in specific religious archives.

    Only individual archivists are eligible for nomination. The award is sponsored by the Society of Southwest Archivists, in conjunction with Society of American Archivists. It is named in honor of Sister M. Claude Lane, the first professionally trained archivist at the Catholic Archives of Texas in Austin, who served there from 1960 until her death in 1974. The award finalist is recognized with a certificate from SAA and a $300 cash prize provided by the Society of Southwest Archivists at the annual Society of American Archivists meeting.

    For more information on the Lane Award, including past winners, see: <>

    To nominate an archivist for the Lane Award please follow the guidelines provided in the Nomination Form via the link on that page.

    All nominations shall be submitted to the Awards Committee by February 28, 2018. If you have any questions, please contact:


    Jillian Ewalt Metadata Archivist

    Special Collections and University Archives California State University, Sacramento

    Sister M. Claude Lane

    Theresa Angela (Sister M. Claude) Lane (1915-1974) was a teacher, librarian, and archivist primarily associated with the Catholic Archives of Texas. A pioneer and supporter of religious special collections in Texas libraries, she has served as a model for archivists nationwide. The Society of American Archivists presents an annual award in her name to recognize significant contributions in the field of religious archives.

  • 24 Aug 2017 4:23 PM | Melissa Gottwald

    The Program Committee invites submissions for 60 or 90-minute sessions for SSA’s next Annual Meeting in San Antonio, Texas May 23-26, 2018, at Hilton Palacio del Rio Hotel. See the Call for Proposals for more information and how to submit.

  • 16 Aug 2017 10:55 AM | Jennifer Green

    The Society of American Archivists Council has issued a statement regarding the racist acts committed in Virginia on August 12, 2017. You can read their statement on the SAA website. SAA Council Statement

    The SSA Board and Diversity Committee support the work of the SAA Council working group and will continue to ensure that the SSA mission to promote sound principles and standards for preserving and administering records in our region is fulfilled. 

  • 04 Aug 2017 10:21 AM | Jennifer Green

    The Society of American Archivists (SAA) Regional Archives Association Consortium, (RAAC) has initiated a sustaining membership in the National Coalition for History,(NCH) gaining a seat on the Policy Board in order to represent archival interests at NCH. As a member of RAAC, SSA made a contribution to the cost of this membership and therefore can connect our members to the NCH. 

    The attached report was issued at the SAA annual meeting and details federal funding approved for granting and records agencies for FY18. 


  • 01 Aug 2017 1:51 PM | Melissa Gottwald

    As many of you are aware, the Texas State Legislature has called a special summer session and is considering a bill that would compel some people to use public restrooms that do not correspond to their gender identity. If the bill currently being discussed passes through the Texas legislature, it will prevent municipalities from passing anti-discrimination ordinances designed to protect transgender people. The SSA Board believes that this bill is discriminatory and contrary to the SSA Statement on Diversity and Inclusion (

    The SSA board issued an official response that is being sent to the governor, lieutenant governor, and speaker of the house stating the organization’s opposition to this piece of legislation. The response also states that should the bill become law, SSA will seriously reconsider holding future annual meetings in Texas. A copy of this letter is available on the SSA website and social media channels, and Texas members of SSA are welcome to use any or all the language contained in the response should they choose to contact their individual representatives.

    We also wanted to assure membership that we are taking steps to make sure that the next annual meeting, scheduled to be held in San Antonio, TX in May 2018, will be as open, inclusive, and welcoming as possible, regardless of the fate of this legislation. We know that other organizations, such as the Society of American Archivists, are investigating moving future meetings out of the state. It is not possible for SSA to cancel or move the San Antonio meeting at this point. If SSA pulled out of the contract today, it would cost the organization $50,770.40, which is more than double SSA’s entire annual budget. In light of this, SSA will honor the contract and have the meeting as scheduled. Also, with more than half of the SSA membership comprised of archivists in Texas, it is not the intent or desire of SSA to abandon that part of the membership because of the ill-conceived legislation being considered in the Texas Legislature.


    The Local Arrangements Committee, in cooperation with the Diversity Committee, is already planning alternative arrangements for those SSA members who may be negatively impacted by this legislation. They are also investigating different ideas to foster discussions about how we as individuals and as an organization can respond to discriminatory legislation that may arise in our region in the future.


    If you have any additional questions or concerns, please feel free to contact the SSA Board through the “Contact” page on the SSA Website.





    Jennifer Day

    President, Society of Southwest Archivists

  • 12 Jul 2017 9:52 AM | Kristy Sorensen (Administrator)

    The 2018 SSA Annual Meeting will take place May 23-26, 2018 in San Antonio, Texas at the Hilton Palacio del Rio. The hotel rate will be extended through the 27th for anyone wanting to make it a long weekend. See you in San Antonio!

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