This article is published in the February 2023 issue.

CRA Update: Keeping you in the know

The CRA Board election is on-going: academic candidates (8 openings) and non-academic candidates (1 opening). CRA has sent a ballot link to CRA members who are eligible to vote. Reminder: voting will close February 22nd at 11:59pm ET.

CRA hosts two key events every February: (1) the annual Leadership Summit (LS) of CEOs, presidents, executive directors, and other senior leadership to discuss issues of common concern for the computing research community and (2) the CRA February Board meeting.  The purpose of this CRA Update is to share the plans for these two meetings, and to offer you the opportunity to provide any thoughts/comments/questions on the Leadership Summit meeting agenda and/or the CRA Board meeting agenda (as requested at the CRA Conference in Snowbird last July).

The Leadership Summit this year will be Thursday, Feb. 23rd (1-4pm). Topics on the LS agenda this year are:

  • Society Roundtable, where each professional society in attendance will share 2-3 things that are “top of mind” for them this year;
  • Research Security, with guest speaker: Rebecca Keiser, Chief of Research Security Strategy and Policy, NSF;
  • Research Integrity, with an update from a CRA-led committee on this topic (the committee membership is large, to ensure voices are heard across the computing research community);
  • Boards and Diversity, with guest speaker: Khanh Vu, CEO and Executive Director of the Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers; and
  • Computing Research Globally, to discuss/brainstorm how organizations like CRA might collaborate around the globe.

Leadership Summit attendees also have an optional opportunity for (1) lunch on Thursday with attendees at the co-located CRA-I/CCC/CRA-WP Accessible Technology for All Workshop and (2) to attend the February CRA Board meeting. Since leaders of CRA’s Affiliated Professional Societies (AAAI, ACM, CS-Can/Info-Can, IEEE-CS, SIAM, and USENIX) often stay for CRA’s Board dinner after the LS, CRA’s Executive Committee sets relevant/interesting Board meeting agenda topics that evening.

At 5pm (on Thursday, Feb. 23rd), the February CRA Board meeting will begin (and will end Friday, Feb. 24th, at 3pm). The CRA Board Chair (Nancy Amato, UIUC) will “Call” the Board meeting “to Order” and then introduce Margaret Martonosi, NSF’s Assistant Director for CISE, who will present “The View from NSF”. After Q&A with Dr. Martonosi, the Board and LS attendees in attendance will have a networking dinner.

At 7:30pm, the CRA Board meeting will reconvene with introductions, including introductions of new Board members (Alan Edelman, MIT [SIAM rep], Raquel Hill, Spelman College, Eunice Santos, UIUC [Deans Group rep], Amanda Stent, Colby College [CRA-WP rep], and Dezhen Song, Texas A&M) and new CRA staff members (Lauren Lashlee [CRA-WP], Eniola Korede Idowu [CERP], Cali Jacobs [CERP], and Ama Nyame-Mensah [CERP]) since the last CRA Board meeting. The CRA Board Chair (Nancy Amato) and CRA Executive Director (Tracy Camp) will then provide appropriate remarks/updates that are relevant to CRA Board members.

Three different groups will then “tee up” topics for a longer Board meeting discussion the next day, which gives the Board members the opportunity to think about the topic and provide valuable input. For the February Board meeting, the following three topics will be discussed at the Board meeting:

  • CRA-I Update / Discussion: This topic will be led by CRA Board Member Ben Zorn (Microsoft), Co-Chair of CRA-I, and will include discussion on where CRA-I should focus in the near term and plans to be self-sustaining.
  • Engaging MSIs: This topic will be led by Board members Raquel Hill (Spelman College) and Nancy Amato (UIUC) and will include discussion on how CRA can be more inclusive, in a way that is both mutually beneficial and respectful.
  • Communications: This topic will be led by CRA’s Communications Working Group, and will include discussion on how Board members use communications in their organization and how CRA can/should work with partner organizations.

The last Board agenda item scheduled on Thursday, Feb. 23rd, is an update by Government Affairs, which will be provided by Brian Mosley (Senior Policy Analyst at CRA). CRA Board Chair (Nancy Amato) and CRA Executive Director (Tracy Camp) will then host an orientation for new CRA Board members.

On Friday, Feb. 24th, the CRA Board meeting will be called to order at 8:15am. The CRA Board Secretary (Ran Libeskind-Hadas, Claremont-McKenna) will request approval of the July 2022 Board Meeting Minutes, and then the CRA Executive Director (Tracy Camp) will present proposed changes to the CRA staff’s leadership team. The Board members will then be divided into three groups and will rotate every 30 minutes among the three breakout sessions (on the three topics described previously).

The Board members will then return for a discussion on Government Affairs, led by Stephanie Forrest (Arizona State) who is a CRA Board member and Chair of the Government Affairs Committee. The Board meeting will also hear short updates, plans, and timeline from several of CRA committees/working groups; select recipients of two CRA awards (A. Nico Habermann and Distinguished Service); consider whether to move forward on updating/creating new CRA documents; and hear thoughts from retiring CRA Board members.

Other CRA business to occur at the CRA Board meeting includes the following. First, the CRA Board Treasurer (James Allan, UMass) will present an update on CRA’s financial picture and propose a budget for fiscal year 2024 that the Board members will discuss/approve. Second, the CRA Board Officers (Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer, and Secretary), who serve 2-year terms, will be elected.

We hope this CRA Update provides you with the type of CRA Board meeting details requested at the CRA Conference last July. If you have any questions/comments about the agenda topics for the February 2023 meeting, please submit them.  There is also a box on the form for you to suggest agenda topics that the CRA Board might consider for the July 2023 meeting. We look forward to hearing from you!




CRA Update: Keeping you in the know