Committees

About NYSVMS Committees

Volunteer Committees are the heart of NYSVMS. All the activities of NYSVMS are delegated to committees, and so their work is critical to the success of the association.

Reports and Committee Members

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Volunteering for a Committee

We love to hear from members who would like to join one of our committees. Just contact Tim Atkinson, Executive Director to get involved.

Most committees meet by email, phone or videoconference. You can find more about the time commitment for each committee by selecting a committee from our committee list, and looking at the detailed description. You will also be able to see details of how the committee meets, and read about their goals and progress.

Each December we update our committee roster and will contact you to see if you are still willing to serve on the committees you joined.

For Committee Chairs

These notes are provided to help you be an effective committee chair.

Working or Advisory
There are two types of committees, and depending on which type you Chair they will need a different approach:

  • Working committees are focused on achieving specific goals. The President's Council has asked that all working committees maintain a record of their goals and report at each meeting on progress toward those objectives. They should meet regularly to work toward those goals.
  • Advisory committees do not meet regularly or focus on goals. They are available to advise NYSVMS when specific issues come up in their field of focus.

Reporting for Working Committees
At the Dec 2019 Executive Board, the President reported a request from the President's Council that working committees establish goals, and report on progress prior to each board meeting. The record of the goals is maintained on the committee website and can be updated there, or by email to the Executive Director. When you make your reports at the board meeting, please also refer to these goals, so we can all get a sense of how we are moving forward, or what challenges we are facing.



If you are logged in - you will see at the top of the page the latest reports and lists of committee members.

Chairing a Committee Meeting

Whether your meeting is by phone, video or in person your role is critical to the experience of everyone. One of your key goals as Chair is to make sure the committee members feel engaged with the work of the committee, understand the goals and are committed to achieving them.

You don't need to run your committee by formal rules, but sometimes Roberts Rules may be needed if you want the committee to vote on a formal motion. Governance committees like finance and management relations will follow these rules to approve budgets, new contracts etc;

However here are some notes that will help you run effective meetings:

1. Decide ahead of time why you are meeting, and why it is going to be worthwhile for your committee members to attend. Maybe note down a couple of objectives for the meeting that you can include in the meeting invitation along with the agenda, or just make sure the agenda makes it clear what the meeting is for.

2. At the beginning of the meeting, check who is on the call, and make sure they say hello so that other members know who is on the call. If there are new members, introduce them, and have committee members introduce themselves.

3. The President's Council is asking committee chairs to maintain a record of goals, and to report against those goals. (See separate note). So share these goals with your committee at each meeting.

4. Keep notes of the decisions taken at each meeting. It doesn't need to be full minutes, but a short email summarizing the conclusion is important. Review that note at the start of the next meeting.

5. NYSVMS staff are available to help with support for notes, setting up the meeting, sending out agendas etc. So if you can't find time yourself, please ask the staff member supporting your committee to help.