NCA Holds Annual Leadership Retreat

Headshots of NCA officers
March 8, 2022

On February 24, The NCA Executive Committee (EC), IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access) Council, Publications Council, Research Council, and Teaching & Learning Council gathered in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, for the annual Leadership Retreat. 

While much of the retreat involved individual Council meetings, with the Finance Committee, the IDEA Council, the Publications Council, the Research Council, and the Teaching & Learning Council holding discussions regarding new and ongoing initiatives to support NCA’s evolving agenda, retreat participants also met as a group to discuss ideas and plans for crafting a new NCA Strategic Plan. The energetic, sometimes passionate discussion focused on what the association is doing well, and where change is needed. The discussion ended with the group's charge to the EC to act on important issues of the day, with stronger support for members confronting professional challenges; a broader focus on inclusion, diversity, equity and access; greater outreach; and increased advocacy efforts regarding policies and legislation that affect the Communication discipline emerging as themes for incorporating into the strategic plan.

Finance Committee Directors and Council Chairs

At its February 25 meeting, the NCA EC addressed a jam-packed agenda that included decision making around the upcoming 108th Annual Convention, including cementing the same COVID-19 vaccination and testing requirements as were in place for the 2021 convention. The EC also approved the four journal editors-elect recommended by the Publications Council, which will be voted on for endorsement by the Legislative Assembly in April. Finally, the EC held a lengthy and spirited conversation regarding the IDEA Strategic Plan developed by the IDEA Task Force that President Roseann Mandziuk formed last year. As part of its work in this area, the EC adopted the following five goals of the IDEA Strategic Plan:

  • Goal 1: Assess and improve NCA’s climate for historically disenfranchised members at all levels of the organization.
  • Goal 2: Create a long-standing IDEA accountability structure throughout NCA that fosters transparency and responds to measurable data.
  • Goal 3: Equip all NCA members to carry out IDEA policy and initiatives within and beyond NCA.
  • Goal 4: Expand NCA members’ access to facilitate full participation in the discipline across the dimensions of space, borders and boundaries, language, and material resources.
  • Goal 5: Evaluate and restructure the power dynamics of the organization to render NCA a more inclusive diverse, equitable, and accessible organization.

These goals will be incorporated into NCA’s overall strategic plan.

On Saturday, February 26, the EC engaged in lively and intensive discussions about the development of the association’s strategic plan. Facilitated by expert consultant Lowell Aplebaum, the EC and senior staff split up into small groups to craft vision and mission statements, which were then shared with the full EC. These ideas will be consolidated into new draft overarching vision and mission statements for the association. The group then split into small groups again to discuss goal-specific objectives and desired outcomes for the association's future agenda. The next steps call for engaging members in the planning process; members' voices are the most important voices in this process! More information will be shared in the weeks and months ahead.