ARCHIVES 2008: Archival R/Evolution & Identities

72nd Annual Meeting
Pre-conference Programs: August 24–27, 2008
Conference Dates: August 26–30, 2008
2008 Exposition Dates: August 28–29, 2008
Hilton San Francisco
333 O'Farrell Street

Mark A. Greene

President's Welcome


For those who come to San Francisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair.

Dear Colleagues:

Even those of us with too little hair in which to wear flowers. even those of us who are a little too young to have participated in the Summer of Love. know that San Francisco is a special place. From revolutionary counterculture movements to ever-evolving political and demographic identities, it's a city that inspires questions of who we are, where we are, and where we're going. It's a good place for a little soul searching about our profession..

At ARCHIVES 2008: Archival R/Evolution & Identities, I hope to explore with you whether the archives profession is at a transformative (revolutionary) crossroad or a more natural (evolutionary) state of maturation. What is technology's true impact on our work, and are we fully embracing its opportunities? How can our profession and the record of society more accurately mirror the changing makeup of America? Where are the solutions for ensuring greater public appreciation and stakeholder support for the archival mission? Underlying all is an even deeper question about the core identity of the profession: Have we defined the fundamental boundaries of our profession?

The 2008 Program Committee has selected 70 sessions that will stimulate us to talk about these issues - at the same time that we gain practical knowledge and expand our professional network. At ARCHIVES 2008 you'll have a chance to experience America's "City by the Bay" along with more than 1,500 of your colleagues from across the country (and beyond) who share your interests, your concerns, your on-the-job challenges. It's the perfect opportunity to benefit from our diversity of ideas, methods, and experience - and it's our chance to learn from you!

If you've attended SAA Annual Meetings before, you know the excitement that comes from hearing about innovative approaches to archival activities, from exploring new ideas, and from meeting colleagues and renewing friendships. (ARCHIVES 2008 will be my 22nd SAA Annual Meeting - and I'm just as eager to attend this one as my very first!) If you've never attended an Annual Meeting - or haven't joined us in recent years - you'll find a broad array of opportunities to learn, explore, collaborate, and celebrate the world of archives, including:

  • In-depth pre-conference programs and provocative plenary sessions that give you direct access to experts in the field and voices from beyond our professional circles;
  • Section and roundtable meetings that put you in touch with colleagues who share your specific interests and concerns;
  • A special track devoted to practical solutions to common problems - and a special session on "Archival Ethics and Social Justice" featuring Verne Harris (Nelson Mandela Foundation) and David Wallace (University of Michigan);
  • An open forum to discuss the "Protocols for Native American Archival Materials," a document that challenges many aspects of traditional archival practice and has vast implications for archival interaction with other "under-documented" communities; and
  • The Exhibit Hall, which provides an unparalleled opportunity to talk with our industry partners, to express your ideas and opinions, and to learn about what's new in the field.

And because we don't believe in "all work and no play," the Host Committee has lined up a wonderful itinerary of repository tours and open houses, and the all-attendee reception will introduce you to one of San Francisco's most spectacular venues.

Whether you're an experienced archives professional, a newcomer to the field, or somewhere in between, you're sure to find ARCHIVES 2008 to be a rewarding and intellectually stimulating experience. Come to San Francisco in August: Sit on the dock of the Bay, beat your feet up and down Market Street, and be sure to wear some flowers in your hair..!


Mark A. Greene
SAA President, 2007-2008