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Rhetoric Society of America – RSA Membership Officer Search – Application Deadline June 1st

RSA seeks applicants for a Membership Officer to oversee and coordinate RSA’s responsiveness and relationship to its membership, striving to enhance communication, services, and opportunities to benefit members and potential members of the association.  Skill at and enthusiasm for active recruitment of new members in the context of RSA’s social media, website, and face-to face interactions at Society events are desired attributes of the successful candidate.  Applicants should hold a Ph.D. in an appropriate discipline, hold an academic appointment, and be a member of RSA.

Specific duties include:

  • collect, analyze, and present information about RSA’s membership;
  • identify significant trends and changes in membership and raise concerns or make recommendations to the RSA officers and board based on such patterns;
  • represent the needs of members when consulting with other officers, during board deliberations, and while serving on RSA committees;
  • research trends in membership services in other professional associations and, when appropriate, make recommendations to RSA officers and board regarding proposed changes in RSA services;
  • communicate directly with members by responding to individual queries, concerns, and suggestions;
  • review primary media for communication with membership (website, emails, promotional materials) and make recommendations regarding content and methods of communication that may benefit members;
  • analyze membership fees and schedules and make recommendations to enhance inclusion, equity, growth, and diversity in RSA’s membership;
  • observe and anticipate emerging needs and concerns of members and propose initiatives or changes that will help RSA to be more responsive to them;
  • supplement collective visions of RSA’s future with close attention to recent and potential members by highlighting the needs and hopes of student and junior scholars during board and committee deliberations;
  • develop recruitment and retention strategies for RSA membership; and
  • other duties related to RSA membership needs, as assigned.

The MO, as a member of RSA’s administrative staff, will work directly with the RSA staff and officers—principally the Executive Director and RSA staff Administrator for Member Services, as well as with the Electronic Communications Officer and Public Outreach Officer—in fulfilling these responsibilities. 

The MO is an ex officio member of the RSA Board of Directors and is expected to attend and report at RSA Board meetings. Proposals for significant changes in member research, communication, or services will be presented to the RSA Board for approval. 

The MO position is a four-year renewable appointment.  It is considered to be similar in function to the Electronic Communications Officer and Public Outreach Officer and will be eligible for reimbursement for travel to Board meetings, as specified in the RSA Board Travel Policy. A modest budget to support the Membership Officer’s activities will be provided.  The appointment to a four-year term may begin July 1, 2019.

Nominations/applications for the position should include: a statement accepting the nomination (or a statement of self-nomination); a 2-3 page statement about plans and projections for RSA’s membership needs; a current curriculum vita; names and addresses of at least two references qualified to assess the candidate's ability to carry out the position; if available, a letter from the responsible administrator confirming that institutional support (released time, administrative support, travel, etc.) will be provided.  Nominations and supporting materials should be sent to Gerard A. Hauser at by June 1, 2019.  The search committee (Gerard Hauser, RSA Executive Director, chair, Jessica Enoch, RSA Board member, and Jennifer Malkowski, RSA Public Outreach Officer). will begin consideration of completed applications on a rolling basis, beginning on the posted deadline of June 1, until the position is filled.   

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