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XXVII.1 January - February 2020
Page: 92
Digital Citation

The changing face(s) of the SIGCHI executive committee


Authors:
Helena Mentis

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In just the past year, the SIGCHI Executive Committee (EC) has said goodbye to five members and welcomed seven new ones. That means by the time you read this, three-quarters of the EC will have been active only since January 2019. That’s an entirely new EC! And we hope that the new perspective really shows. This group has significantly enriched our approach, adding a welcome diversity to our work. We are excited to introduce you to our new members!

It may surprise some of you to learn that SIGCHI is not a static entity. It is constantly changing, morphing, growing, and that applies to its leadership as well—the SIGCHI EC is constantly in flux. There is the natural ebb and flow of position terms (like the adjunct chair for CHI), but volunteers also regularly move off of the EC to take on other opportunities (for instance, chairing CHI 2020). To fill these positions in an open and inclusive manner, we established a process for open calls in which anyone can apply or nominate someone for an open position. We have steadily been iterating on a selection method. Most recently, our former president, whose position historically manages the EC elections, has outlined a step-by-step process for interview and selection.


SIGCHI is not a static entity. It is constantly changing, morphing, growing, and that applies to its leadership as well—the SIGCHI EC is constantly in flux.


The outcome of this careful, concerted recruitment effort is an amazingly diverse EC along several dimensions. For instance, more than 50 percent of the EC are women; and two members of the EC are from and currently working in areas of the world outside Europe and North America. As a whole, we represent different ethnicities and races, genders and sexual orientations, abilities (including mental health challenges), geographies, sectors (industry and academia), and career stages (junior, mid, and senior), among other factors that may be more or less visible. Most important, this diversity naturally arose from the open call process. I believe this represents how SIGCHI has been a welcoming and nurturing community for those interested in the impacts of computing on people and society. I only hope to continue to lead the organization to continue its inclusive mission.

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So, please join me in welcoming our new SIGCHI EC members! I hope you will take the time to wish them luck in their new roles and reach out to them to share your thoughts on the future of SIGCHI.

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Pejman Mirza -Babaei, interim vice president for membership and communication (began January 2019): Having served on the SIGCHI Communications Committee before stepping into this role, Pejman has brought in an all-new committee of junior volunteers, and they have completely revamped the SIGCHI social media and communications strategy.

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David Ayman Shamma, vice president for operations (began January 2019): David has had several program and steering-committee roles within SIGCHI, including general co-chair of Creativity and Cognition 2017. He stepped in to lead our systems infrastructure and manage our suite of vendors/developers and recently introduced our Progressive Web Application for conference programs. David continues work on tools to help all SIGCHI conferences, including QOALA (our conference-program management tool) and PCS 2.0.

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Mark Perry, adjunct chair for volunteer development (began April 2019): After serving as CHI 2018 technical program chair, Mark had special insight on the difficulty in matching volunteers to needs in a way that balances diversity and mentorship with experience. His efforts are focused on making the volunteering process open, inclusive, and fulfilling!

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Neha Kumar, VP-at-large (began July 2019): After serving on the ACM Future of Computing Academy (FCA) for two years and now chairing that committee, Neha has seen her research interests in HCI and global development (HCI4D), and commitment to HCI Across Borders, motivate her goals to expand SIGCHI’s various support funds and international outreach.

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Shaowen Bardzell, VP at large (began July 2019): After chairing DIS 2019 and serving on the DIS Steering Committee since 2018, Shaowen has taken on the role of VP at large. Shaowen’s research in feminist theory and social justice has translated to her commitment to making SIGCHI more diverse and inclusive.

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Regan Mandryk, adjunct chair for CHI (began July 2019): After chairing CHI 2018 and serving on the CHI Steering Committee since its inception three years ago, Regan has taken on the role of AC for CHI with a mandate to work on scalable processes and procedures that ensure the future success of every CHI chair, sustainably manage ongoing growth of the CHI conference, and maintain its quality over the long term.

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Andrew Kun, interim vice president for conferences (began December 2019): After serving on the SIGCHI Conferences Board since January 2018, as well as SIGCHI’s Council of Steering Committee Chairs as the AutoUI steering committee co-chair, Andrew will be spearheading the new Global Community Development for Conferences (GCDC) policy in his new role.

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Helena Mentis, ACM SIGCHI President, mentis@umbc.edu

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The Digital Library is published by the Association for Computing Machinery. Copyright © 2020 ACM, Inc.

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