March 13, 1953

Executive Committee of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

Present: Gaylord P. Harnwell, George B. Pegram, J. C. Steinberg, Mark W. Zemansky

Absent: George R. Harrison

AIP Staff: Henry A. Barton, Wallace Waterfall, Betty H. Goodfriend

The Executive Committee met at 9:30 a.m. on March 13, 1953.

In Chairman Harrison’s absence, George B. Pegram was elected chairman pro tempore.

1. Minutes:

On motion made, seconded, and carried, the minutes of the meeting of December 11, 1952 were approved as circulated.

2. Financial Report for 1952:

The Secretary distributed a statement of the operations of the Institute for 1952 showing a net income of $54,078.26 and explained the reasons why the actual performance was better than had been budgeted. The outstanding difference was due to the operations of the Institute journals and advertising income.

3. Reserve Fund for Building:

The Secretary presented figures showing that Institute services to Member Societies and the size of staff necessary to perform them had doubled between 1945 and 1952. Continuing growth in the number of physicists and in the work the Institute is requested to perform appears inevitable. Our office space is now overcrowded and some departments and aging plumbing and lighting facilities require improvement. It was pointed out that we have a Future Housing Committee for long range planning (10 to 20 years) but some changes are necessary this year. Minor modifications will provide temporary relief. These and construction of a two story addition in the courtyard would insure enough space for about five years. After some discussion of the various possibilities, the following motions were passed:

MOVED that $7500 be transferred from surplus to the reserve fund for building repairs and improvements for use in connection with such improvements as are necessary now and that a similar sum be appropriated each year and included in the annual operating budget.

MOVED that the Executive Committee recommend to the Governing Board that an additional sum of $20,000 be appropriated for an addition to the Institute Building if in the opinion of the Executive Committee and the Committee on Future Housing such expenditure appears desirable.

4. Agreement with the American Physical Society:

The Secretary reported that the American Physical Society had indicated a desire to have the Institute take over various clerical and accounting activities. These are now under discussion and a plan is being worked out for handling these services on an equitable cost basis. The Executive Committee approved and the following motion was made and carried with the understanding that whatever agreement is signed should be made subject to a periodic review of costs:

MOVED that the proper officers of the Institute be authorized to sign an agreement with the American Physical Society for the performance of various clerical and accounting services.

5. National Science Foundation Proposal:

The Director reported that the National Science Foundation is assuming the responsibility for keeping up to date records on the scientific manpower of the country. They have asked the AIP to cooperate with them in the field of physics. There was some discussion about the magnitude of this job and it was the consensus of the Committee that this is something which the AIP should certainly undertake if proper compensation is available. The staff was authorized to explore the matter further.

6. Procedure for Election of a Board Chairman:

The Director reported that the Chairman of the Nominating Committee had suggested that the Institute consider the possibility of electing a Chairman of the Board who is not necessarily a member of the Board. This action would require an amendment to the Constitution. It was the consensus of the Committee that this would be desirable and should be presented to the Board.

7. Ballot for Member-at-Large:

The Secretary stated that since PHYSICS TODAY is now being sent to all members of the Institute, the ballot and return envelope for election of a member-at-large could be inserted in an issue of PHYSICS TODAY at a saving in postage of about $100. The Executive Committee agreed that this would be worth trying. The issue of PHYSICS TODAY in which the ballot is inserted will carry a news story about the election as well as a notice on the cover that the ballot is enclosed.

8. Handling Advertising for Other Organizations:

The Secretary reported that conversations with officers of the Institute of Geology had indicated that the Institute, because of its experience in handling advertising, might be asked to help with advertising for other organizations related to physics. The Executive Committee was asked for its opinion and it was the consensus that if this is a service to physics and, if costs are covered, the AIP should cooperate.

9. Use of Meeting Room:

The Director reported that outside groups have requested the use of our Board Room for meetings from time to time and asked whether the Executive Committee felt this was a service which we should provide to groups which have some connection with physics. On Saturdays there is a small cost for attendant and lighting. It was the consensus of the Committee that this is a worthwhile service and should be rendered without charge, subject to later review.

10. Affiliation with American Association for the Advancement of Science:

The Director reported that he had been asked whether the AIP would like to become affiliated with the AAAS. It was the feeling of the Executive Committee that since the Member Societies of the AIP are affiliated with the AAAS, affiliation of the AIP would be needless duplication.

11. Placement:

The Secretary distributed a sheet listing complimentary excerpts from letters received as a result of the Placement Register held by the Institute at the Cambridge APS meeting in January. Our Placement activities evidently are very effective in building good will for the Institute among young physicists, academic and industrial organizations.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:15 p.m.