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Executive Committee of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

July 16, 1948

Present: George R. Harrison (Chairman), E. U. Condon, Paul E. Klopsteg, George B. Pegram, Wallace Waterfall

Special Adviser: R. C. Gibbs

AIP Staff: Henry A. Barton, Cleveland Norcross, Theodore Vorburger, David A. Katcher, Betty Hofstadter

The Executive Committee met at 11:15 a.m. on July 16, 1948 in the office of the Institute at 57 East 55th Street, New York.

1. Minutes:

On motion made, seconded, and unanimously carried, the minutes of the meeting of May 15, 1948 were approved as circulated.

2. Institute Organization:

Mr. Barton presented a plan for reorganizing the staff of the Institute on a basis which would better take care of expanding activities of the Institute. The proposed plan would place Mr. Norcross in the position of Manager of the Institute in charge of the internal and general business activities and would permit the Director to spend practically full time on activities of broad interest to physicists. The Executive Committee was in general agreement with the plan and the following motion was made, seconded, and unanimously carried with the understanding that the reorganization plan would be put into effect immediately.

MOVED that the general reorganization of the AIP staff be approved and the Director requested to submit a perfected organization chart for formal approval at the next meeting of the Executive Committee.

3. Reassignment of Building Space:

Mr. Barton explained a plan for reassigning office space in the Institute building so as to use more effectively the space available. One reason for the changes suggested is to make more of the activities of the Institute visible to visitors. Specifically, it was proposed that the Director move his office to the south end of the third floor and that the large north room on the second floor be used for the Manager, his immediate assistants, the advertising staff, and the assistant to the Secretary of the Institute, a total of six or seven people. It was also suggested that a large plate glass window be placed in the north wall of the entrance lobby which wall now separates the entrance lobby from the subscription department. It is understood that these suggested changes involve certain moves and expenses for construction, auxiliary lighting, etc., necessitating the following motion, which was made, seconded, and unanimously carried:

MOVED that the Director be authorized to proceed with the above proposed reassignment of office space and that an expenditure of not more than $1,000.00 be authorized for the changes required.


Mr. Katcher reported the reactions – most of which have been favorable – he has been receiving to the new journal. There has been some falling off of contributed articles but he believes the situation is well in hand, that he is over the hump, and that adequate material will be available for future issues.

The Chairman reported that discussion with Committee members and others had given him the opinion that although the editorial material was quite satisfactory, the general appearance of the journal was somewhat anemic. Further discussion indicated that the Committee would like to have the Editor consider various ways of putting more punch into the journal’s appearance, perhaps by the use of color, more illustrations, etc. It was realized that this may involve additional costs which the Committee indicated its willingness to consider.

The Director indicated that the present financial picture of PHYSICS TODAY is less favorable than the approved budget predicted. In view of the limited time for discussion of this, it was suggested that it be brought up for more detailed consideration at the next meeting of the Committee.

5. Instrument Society Exhibit:

Mr. Norcross explained that the plans for the Exhibit in Philadelphia in September are well formulated. These involve a few minor Institute expenditures but the Institute will receive some revenue from registration (probably about $400) which will offset any expenses involved.

6. Contract with Richard Rimbach Associates:

In accordance with the decision at the last meeting, the appointed committee met with Mr. Rimbach and drew up a proposed contract providing that Richard Rimbach Associates be authorized to serve as advertising agents for the three Institute journals carrying advertising. A draft of the proposed contract was submitted to Committee members prior to the meeting.

There was considerable discussion of the terms of the contract. The contract provides that Richard Rimbach Associates is to bear all expenses of soliciting advertising and is to receive therefore 25% commission on total net annual advertising receipts after advertising agency discounts collected on or after August 1, 1948, provided that the amount of such net receipts retained by the Institute after payment of commission to Richard Rimbach Associates shall be not less than $65,000.00 per contract year. Advertising rates are not covered in the contract but are to be raised substantially in accordance with suggestions made by Rimbach. It is understood that an arrangement of this kind must be based largely on confidence between the Institute and Rimbach and mutual satisfaction of each with the performance of the other. For this purpose the contract carries a clause providing for cancellation by either party on 90 days’ notice.

After discussion, the following motion was made, seconded, and unanimously carried:

MOVED that the proposed contract dated August 1, 1948 between the American Institute of Physics and Richard Rimbach Associates and carrying the provisions as indicated above be approved and that the appropriate officers of the Institute be authorized to sign it.

7. Publications Committee:

Mr. Barton reported that in connection with the report of the Publications Committee submitted at the last meeting, the staff had certain recommendations to propose regarding an increase in subscription rates to RSI, JAP, and JCP. These rates were discussed and the following motion made, seconded, and unanimously carried:

MOVED that the following changes in subscription rates be approved and put into effect as soon as possible.

Journal of Applied Physics
No change in the present group rate to members ($6.00)
Increase of $1.00 in regular rate to members (from $6.00 to $7.00)
Increase of $1.00 in rate to non members (from $8.00 to $9.00)
Review of Scientific Instruments
Increase of $1.00 in rate to both members and non members (from $4.00 to $5.00 for members and from $6.00 to $7.00 for non members)
Journal of Chemical Physics
No increase for members
Increase of $2.00 in rate to non members (from $10 to $12)

It is understood that foreign subscription rates will be adapted in accordance with the above.

At the last meeting of the Committee Mr. Klopsteg reported that the Publications Committee believed that some increase in the publication charge was desirable. Mr. Barton indicated that the staff had considered this but did not feel that an increase of the charge would meet with general acceptance until there is more widespread understanding of the urgent need for such an increase. It was agreed that this should be brought up for more detailed discussion at the next meeting of the Executive Committee.


The Director reported that by the end of the third quarter the Editor of JCP will have used a little more than his 1000 page budget for the entire year. Continued publication at the current rate would result in a substantial deficit instead of the surplus budgeted. There was considerable discussion by the Committee about the policy of limiting editors to a fixed number of pages annually. It was the consensus that whereas it is the desire of the Institute to support the editors in publishing all worthy material available, there are financial considerations, particularly at the present time, which make this impossible.

Institute operations and publications must be considered as a whole and when a limitation is placed on any journal it is done reluctantly and only after careful consideration of the overall financial picture of the Institute. It was agreed that the Institute cannot financially afford to permit JCP to continue publishing through the present calendar year at its present rate. The Director was instructed to work out with the Editor some compromise between his current rate of publication and the budgeted rate which would not result in a deficit for the Journal for the current year.

According to the reorganization plan previously submitted by the Director and approved by the Committee, the Editors of Institute journals are to report to the Director. The Committee suggested that the Director keep in close touch with the rate of publication in various journals so that the budgetary needs of the journals can be better known by the Executive Committee. It was suggested that the Director give a quarterly report on this point.

A table showing the circulation figures for Institute owned Journals over a number of years was presented during the foregoing discussion and at the request of the Committee a copy is attached to these minutes.

9. Titles on Stencil List:

Mr. Vorburger reported that one of the Societies had indicated a desire that AIP stencils carry exact academic titles of members as provided by the Society. It was indicated that this would involve a great deal of difficulty and the Committee saw no good reason why it was necessary. Accordingly, the following motion was made, seconded, and unanimously carried:

MOVED that all titles on mailing lists be discontinued and that the stencils carry only the first names or initials of members.

10. Summer Office Schedule:

Mr. Norcross reported that keeping the office open on Saturdays with a skeleton staff resulted in no real benefit to the Institute or its members and presented data to prove his point. He further indicated that a 5 ½ day week was out of line with New York City practice and presented difficulties in obtaining personnel. Accordingly, the following motion was made, seconded, and unanimously carried:

MOVED that the office be closed on Saturday mornings until the September 16th meeting at which time the subject will be brought up for further discussion.

11. Terms of Office:

At the last meeting of the Committee the Secretary was instructed to determine what action should be taken regarding the terms of officers and appointees other than those of the Chairman and Secretary which are fixed by the By-Laws. Upon advice of legal counsel, the following motion was made, seconded, and unanimously carried:

MOVED that the terms of office of all officers and appointees not covered by the By-Laws or by action of the Governing Board at the time of the appointment shall be at the pleasure of the Governing Board.

12. Liaison with Department of Army:

Mr. Barton presented a request from Mr. David Delo for the Department of the Army that the Institute appoint a committee to cooperate with the Army on matters of mutual interest. It is understood that Mr. Delo has certain specific proposals to make and it was suggested that these be distributed to the members of the Executive Committee and that Mr. Delo be invited to meet with the Executive Committee at its next meeting in Philadelphia for further discussion.

13. Authorization to sign checks:

Mr. Norcross explained that occasions arise when both the Director and the Assistant Treasurer are absent and under such circumstances there is no one authorized to sign checks. In view of this situation the following motion was made, seconded, and unanimously carried:

MOVED that Mr. Cleveland Norcross be authorized to sign checks for the Institute and that the Secretary be authorized to provide the bank with such statements as are necessary to provide for this.

14. Next Meeting:

It was agreed that the next meeting of the Executive Committee be held in Philadelphia at 9:30 on September 16, 1948. The meeting place will be announced later.

15. Adjournment:

The meeting was adjourned at 4:15 p.m.