SAM Handbook

Society for American Music Handbook

Policies and procedures of the Society are described in detail in the Society's Handbook. For more information concerning the responsibilities of the various officers and committees, follow the links below.


Important Society dates and deadlines


General Information

Information on specific offices:









1. Qualifications

All appointees shall be members in good standing in the Society.

2. Appointment and terms

Committee chairs and committee members are appointed by the President. The terms vary according to committee, however, no committee chair or member is to serve for more than four consecutive years on the same committee. Appointments should be made on a rotating basis to ensure continuity of membership, and with a consideration of developing the leadership and visibility of the Society's diverse members.

3. Budgets

Budget requests for committee activities must be submitted to the Finance Committee for inclusion in the budget preparation and circulated to the Board.

4. Reports

In a timely fashion, all committee chairs must submit a written report to the Secretary for circulation to the Board before its Spring and Fall meetings. The President may request reports at other times as well. At the President's discretion, committee chairs may report orally to the members at the annual business meeting.

5. Attendance at meetings

Committee chairs may be invited to attend those Board meetings at which deliberations of direct import to their committee business are being held. If such deliberations require attendance at interim Board meetings, the President may approve reimbursement for half of the travel expenses, upon request.

The Standing Committees of the Society are organized into councils. Each council reports to a specific member of the Board.

Governance Council

Committee on Committee Governance

Executive Committee

Long-Range Planning Committee

Finance Committee

Development Committee

Nominating Committee

Conference Site Selection Committee

Committee on the Conference (see also: Conference Management and Planning Handbook)


Outreach Council

Membership Committee

Public Relations Committee

Committee for Diversity and Inclusion

Education Committee

Student Forum

Forum for Early Career Professionals

Interest Groups Council


Honors, Awards, and Subventions Council

Service and Achievement Awards Committee

Honorary Membership Committee (ad-hoc)

Lowens Book Award Committee

Lowens Article Award Committee

Housewright Dissertation Award Committee

Block Fellowship Committee

Charosh Fellowship Committee

Cone Fellowship Committee

Crawford Fellowship Committee

Graziano Fellowship Committee

Hamm Fellowship Committee

Hampsong Education Fellowship Committee

Margery Lowens Fellowship Committee

McCulloh Fellowship Committee

McLucas Fellowship Committee

Southern Fellowship Committee

Thomson Fellowship Committee

Tick Fellowship Committee

Walser McClary Fellowship Committee

Mark Tucker Award Committee

Cambridge University Press Award Committee

Book Publications Subvention Committee

Sight and Sound Subvention Committee


Publications Council

Journal of the Society for American Music

Society for American Music Bulletin

Membership Directory



Currently active committees:

Program committee for the annual conference (see also: Conference Management and Planning Handbook)

Local arrangement committee for the annual conference




Conference Manager

Executive Director

Representative to the Committee on the Publication of American Music

Representative to US-RILM

Representative to ACLS

Board Liaison to Student Forum





Guidelines for Transferring Records to the Archives

Guidelines for Weeding Records

Records Retention Schedule



Changes and additions to the Handbook shall be made by the Executive Director as necessary due to Board actions and will be reviewed annually. The Handbook should be checked for consistency and accuracy every five years by a committee of the Board designated by the President. A dated copy of the Handbook is saved annually as a PDF and kept on file. Once the Board has accepted a revision, this version of the Handbook is dated. Once the revised version of the SAM Handbook has been uploaded to the website, that shall be considered to be the authoritative version.