Board Roles

The Steering Committee, or Board, might be a small group of people with specific actions or responsibilities. A monthly conference call or other communication to support and encourage each other, etc.

Steering Committee/Board Chair/Co-chair

(a/k/a Leader, Advocate, Quarterback, Cheerleader)

  • The face of the LGBTQAA
  • Work with the Alumnae Association (AASC) and its Affinity & Special Interest Group Committee (ASIC) to forward the interests of the LGBTQAA
  • Initiate and oversee the development and implementation by the SC of a strategic plan (organizational and programmatic) for the forthcoming year, including completion of the affinity group process.
  • Establish a regularized communication system for the SC.

Membership Coordinator

  • Maintain membership records
  • Monitor website and Yahoo listserv for new member requests
  • Send Welcome letters to new members
  • Recruit new members, utilizing and expanding current limited sources  (website, Smith E-news, Reunion sign-ups)

Listserv Moderator

  • Routine:  Add new members to listserv
  • Stimulate discussions through regular Moderator postings
  • Utilize some of the advanced features of Yahoo
  • Decide whether to transition the listserv from Yahoo to the AASC Online Discussion Group site (same tasks)
  • Working with the Website Team, decide whether to expand communication tools:  Facebook et al; online Newsletter, etc.

Website Team

  • Develop, update and write material for the website to assure that it is “fresh”/periodically has new material
  • Aid the Webmistress in advancing the technical aspects of the site (use of photos, videos, etc.)
  • Working with Listserv Moderator, decide whether to expand communications tools, e.g., online Newsletter


  • Take minutes and/or keep records of all official communications of the Steering Committee
  • Maintain LGBTQAA official records (in consultation with the Archivist)
  • With Chair and Treasurer, prepare the annual report for AASC


This will be an important function/office when we reach affinity group status and begin collecting dues/financial contributions from AASC.  Until then:
  • Liaison with AASC where an account has been established for repository of our funds
  • Maintain records of group’s funds (currently, residue of collection for Book Donation Project)
  • Coordinate collection of any additional funds for special projects

Reunion Program Coordinator

Since 2008, we have established an LGBTQAA presence at Reunion weekends – an AASC-hosted reception and a faculty-moderated panel of students. These events have not only served to advance our status as an official part of alumnae activities but have added to our membership (50+ new members as a result of Reunion 2009).


Pre-Reunion (October-May)
  • Set up the panel:  Establish contact with a faculty member to lead the panel and determine the subject matter and participants
  • Contact members in reunion classes re attendance/help with events/write-up & photos of events for post-reunion website article
  • Contact Reunion Chairs/Officers of Reunion Classes to request pre-reunion publicity of our reunion events
  • Work with AASC and College officials re time/place of events/use of student Resource Center for Sexuality & Gender
  • Prepare flyers and have them distributed to Faculty and Students (pre-Reunion) and Reunion Class headquarters (at start of weekends)
Reunion Weekends (end of May)
  • Be present for, or organize other members to be present for, events: introductions, distribution of LGBTQAA “propaganda” and sign-up sheets, staffing of “Drop-In” center at student Resource Center for Sexuality & Gender


  • Responsible for identifying and preserving records in all formats/media that document the activities of the organization
  • Maintains relationship with Smith College Archives, regarding the organization’s records
  • Assists board and group members with research questions regarding the group’s history and activities

Organizational Development (achieving Affinity Group status)

This is a good task for attorneys.

  • Consult with AASC and current affinity groups (BASC & ALAS) to determine required steps
  • With SC, determine organizational structure
  • Review draft of LGBTQAA by-laws and other by-laws (BASC; AASC boilerplate)
  • Prepare final by-laws and other required documents for review by chair and SC and for submission to AASC
See also: for sample bylaws, forms, etc. for groups.


Regional program (co)-director

Two regions, NYC and Boston, have launched regional programs. There are other regions with enough concentration of membership where such programs have potential: northern and southern California; Atlanta region; D.C/MD/VA region.

  • Review membership lists for regional concentrations
  • Identify members in those regions to undertake development of local programs
  • Aid local programs in making contact with the AASC/College if, for example, they want a faculty speaker for an event

Special Projects/Special Interests Coordinator

We have completed one such successful project – the Book Donation to the Student Resource Center for Sexuality & Gender (2008). And one is in the works [update?], a series of Chats on Gender Identity.
  • Develop and/or reach out to members to initiate projects of interest to them
  • Work with project group to bring the effort to completion

Student/Resource Center Liaison

  • Establish relationships with student LGBTQ organizations and with Resource Center director
  • Develop programs/projects that LGBTQAA can undertake in accordance with our mission to “offer support to LGBTQ students and prospective students”

Note for the future: A relationship with the AASC Admissions Committee should be established to determine what role LGBTQAA can play with prospective students.    

Thanks to Brooke for putting these job descriptions together July 15, 2009.