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MINUTES of the Genetics Society Annual General Meeting 2004

Tuesday 16th March 2004, University of Warwick, Arts Centre Theatre, 1245


Present: President, Vice-President (Corporate Affairs), Honorary Treasurer, Honorary Secretary, Scientific Meetings Secretary, and 40 other members.

1. Minutes

The minutes of the previous General Meeting (27th March 2003) were approved by the meeting and signed by the President. There were no matters arising

2. President's Report

President Jonathan Hodgkin wished to raise no matters which were not also covered in other parts of the meeting.

3. Vice-Presidents' Reports

(1) External Relations
No relevant matters were raised in the absence of the Vice-President for External Relations, David Cove.

(2) Corporate Affairs
The Vice-President for Corporate Affairs, Helen Sang, drew the meeting?s attention to the current financial importance to the Society of revenue from its journals, Heredity and Genes and Development. Current moves towards ?open-access? journals may have important consequences for the financial health of the Society, and members were encouraged to participate in the debate on the Society?s best strategy for its journals (see also item 8, Newsletter Editor, below).
The Vice-President also suggested that fuller use would be made in the future of the opportunities offered by the Society?s web site.

(3) Public Understanding of Genetics
In the absence of the Vice-President for Public Understanding of Genetics, Mark Macnair, the President informed the meeting that results were being analysed from the questionnaire (on their attitudes to involvement in public understanding) sent out to Society members, and these results would soon be available.

4. Honorary Treasurer's Report

The Honorary Treasurer Justin Goodrich reported that the Society?s finances were in a very healthy state, and that despite extensive expenditure on meetings, travel grants and other appropriate causes, the Society still had accumulated funds during 2002. The Honorary Treasurer therefore highlighted the importance of advertising - especially to student members - the opportunities for members to receive financial support from the Society. The Society?s accounts for 2003 were being audited, and were expected to be available on the Society?s web site by June.

5. Executive Officer's Report and Business for Transaction

Applications for new membership: these applications were held over to be dealt with under item 6.

The Executive Officer Jayne Richards highlighted the inconvenience and expense to the Society of administering membership renewals, for which repeated reminders had to be sent despite enclosing business reply envelopes. Payment by direct debit is much more convenient for all concerned. Having the facility to renew via the web using visa/mastercard or switchcard would soon be available.

6. Honorary Secretary's Report and Business for Transaction

Balfour Lecturer 2005 and Genetics Society Medal 2005 The Honorary Secretary John Armour reminded the meeting that Mario de Bono had been elected to be the Balfour Lecturer for 2005, and that Phil Ingham had been chosen as the recipient of the 2005 Genetics Society Medal.

Applications for new membership A list of members who had applied for membership since the last General Meeting was circulated. The Honorary Secretary then formally proposed these candidates for membership of the Society. The meeting unanimously accepted all these candidates into membership.

Election of new committee members On the Society?s behalf, the Honorary Secretary thanked outgoing committee members Rachel Fallon (committee, area ?F?), Matthew Freeman (committee, co-opted) and David Cove (Vice-President, External Relations) for their valuable service to the Society. The following unopposed nominations were unanimously elected by the meeting to serve on the committee from May 1st 2004:

Vice-President for External Relations: Bill Hill
Scientific Meetings Secretary: Darren Monckton
Ordinary committee members to represent:
area B (genomics): Steve Russell
area E (evolution and population genetics): Austin Burt
area F (corporate genetics): Andy Greenland

7. Scientific Meetings Secretary's Report

The Scientific Meetings Secretary Darren Monckton drew the meeting?s attention to the new format of meetings proposed for 2005: instead of a multi-day Spring Meeting there would be two one-day meetings in addition to the usual (one-day) November meeting. The three one-day meetings planned for 2005 were to be held in January in Edinburgh (on behavioural genetics), in May in Newcastle (on the genetics of developmental signalling), and in November in London (on fish genetics).

8. Newsletter Editor's Report

In the absence of the Newsletter Editor, Tracey Chapman, the President encouraged members to contribute to the planned debate in the Newsletter?s pages on open-access journals.

9. AOB

No matters of other business were raised.