Updates to the Society Org Chart

At the April meeting of the Board of Directors, following a good deal of members feedback, a proposal was ratified to promote the office of the Chatelaine from a deputy to a full Society officer, and to add a new Society officer for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB).

As part of this update, the previous Corporate office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging office was named the Office of Inclusive Programs.

I assume the Society’s Governing Documents will be updated soon to reflect these changes.

I’ve updated my org chart to reflect these developments, as well as two corrections to the version I assembled in December:

  • Although some documents show the Communications and Social Media offices as distinct, for the last year they have been combined and held by a single individual, as part of an ongoing reorganization of that office.
  • Although some older documents show the Information Technology office reporting directly to the Board, this practice appears to have changed a few years ago, perhaps at the same time the office’s title changed from “Vice President” to “Manager,” circa 2018.

[Update, April 24:] A few people asked about sharing this document, which folks are welcome to do — I’ve updated the chart to add a Creative Commons notice to help make this clear.

While I was at it, I shifted a couple of things around for greater clarity and added a row of boxes for local branch offices. The chart still doesn’t include all kingdom or branch offices, but these vary widely from region to region so it seems impossible to show all of the possibilities.

[Update, April 26:] Email from the SCA President suggests this chart is “damned accurate.” Correspondence attached below.

Click to enlarge.

From: Mathghamhain Ua Ruadháin
To: SCA President, SCA Executive Assistant, SCA Communications Office
Date: 26 April 2024

In the absence of an up-to-date Society-provided org chart, some people are sharing the unofficial one I created.

I tried to accurately incorporate the information you provided last year, as well as the changes made in this month’s Board meeting, but if I’ve misunderstood anything or left out any important details I would love to hear about it to ensure I’m not misleading anyone.

And John — thank you for your many years of service, and best of luck in your future endeavors.

— Mathghamhain

From: John Fulton - SCA President
To: Mathghamhain Ua Ruadháin
Cc: SCA President Elect, SCA Executive Assistant, SCA Communications Office
Date: 26 April 2024

Hi Mathghamhain,

We are using your org chart and the passed org chart from 2019 along with the EA going through the Minutes since 2019 to get a new one ready to be passed.

I think your chart seems damned accurate.

It has been a pleasure to hear from you and as I head into retirement perhaps we can touch base in the future on some stuff.

Bao will do a great job.



An Early Edition of the Society’s Governing Documents

The Society for Creative Anachronism is governed by a collection of documents known as the Organizational Handbook, which includes both the bylaws of the modern-day not-for-profit corporation (SCA, Inc.) and the policies that govern the “in-game” historical re-creation activities and the volunteer bureaucracy that supports it (“Corpora”).

These documents emerged incrementally over the first decade of the Society, as the initial leadership established a structure for the organization. Bylaws were established in 1969 and supplemented over the following years by a body of decisions made by the Board referred to as Corpora. By 1979 the framework had taken on a recognizable form organized along similar lines to the rules we use today.

Continue reading “An Early Edition of the Society’s Governing Documents”

Society Membership Trends

During a recent discussion of levels of Society participation, I was asked about long-term trends in overall membership numbers.

As it happens, I had previously extracted some of the relevant figures from other sources — some of which showed up in a post about kingdom-level breakdowns — but hadn’t gotten around to publishing the older numbers here, because the data is incomplete and would benefit from additional review and cleanup.

That said, even if the specific numbers are taken with a grain of salt, the overall pattern shown here is likely of interest to others, so I might as well share this as a work-in-progress.

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In Support of the East Kingdom Rapier Crown Variance

Earlier this month, the East Kingdom’s royals submitted a request for a variance that would allow the Spring 2024 crown tournament to be determined via a rapier contest rather than rattan armored combat as has been the practice for the last five decades.

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Corporate and Society Inclusion Offices

The Board is soliciting feedback on a change to the governing documents that would affect DEIB efforts.

It looks like they are both creating a DEIB Society Officer (who would coordinate in-game kingdom and local DEIB offices), and separating that office from the Corporate Office of Inclusive Programs (which would be focused on corporate and Board support).

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Lowering the Bar for Confirmation of New Board Members

At the July quarterly Board meeting, a proposal was made to reduce the requirement of unanimous support for new directors to unanimous-minus-one, and the membership was asked for feedback on the idea.

This seems like a small step in the right direction — for many years that there has been a concern that the Board was too insular and insufficiently responsive to new ideas from the populace, and allowing any sitting member to unilaterally veto a candidate makes change extremely difficult.

I think more sweeping changes are needed, but we shouldn’t let a quest for revolutionary utopia throw up hurdles to incremental improvement, so I’ve written to the Board in support of the proposal.

Continue reading “Lowering the Bar for Confirmation of New Board Members”

An SCA Governance Org Chart

While working up some feedback on a draft Society policy document, I noticed a reference to the SCA’s “Corporate Officers” and was reminded of the fact that I didn’t have a clear understanding of the distinction between Corporate Officers, Society Officers, and other members of the organization’s central leadership team — categories that I would like to be able to explain to folks here in my local branch.

I posted in the SCA’s “unofficial” Facebook group and soon had useful pointers from Cormac Mór and John the Bearkiller.

As I should have guessed, the answers can be found in a careful reading of the Society’s Governing Documents. The SCA, Inc corporate officers are listed in the Corporate Bylaws paragraph VII.A.1, while the Society officers are listed in Corpora section VI.

Continue reading “An SCA Governance Org Chart”

Three Black Directors Resigned from the SCA’s Board In Six Months

During a period of half a year, three members of the Society’s Board of Directors resigned in succession. Resignations from the Board are not unknown, but they are uncommon; I believe the last one before these three was around a decade ago.

The reasons in each case were different, and I am not aware of any overall narrative that ties them all together, but it is notable (and unfortunate) that in a Society that is overwhelmingly white but struggling to be more inclusive, all three of the directors who resigned were Black.

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Ansteorran Prince Removed After Problematic Overture

On the last weekend of August, the Crown Prince of Ansteorra (the SCA kingdom that covers Oklahoma and most of Texas) attended the coronation of the new prince and princess of the kingdom of Álendia. The Ansteorran Prince was there as an invited guest, honored as a visiting royal, and made a short speech to “extend an olive branch” to their populace.

Society royals visit other kingdoms all the time, but Álendia isn’t part of the SCA — it’s the sole kingdom of SMA, the Society of the Middle Ages, a splinter group formed in 2021 by folks who felt the SCA was “too woke.” While there are some interesting elements in their organization, the primary difference is one of modern politics: SMA is a haven for MAGA folks, including anti-maskers, Euro-centrists, and those whose racism, misogyny, homophobic, or anti-trans bias leaves them out of synch with the SCA’s efforts to be more inclusive. Notably, among its earliest members are a number of people who were sanctioned or kicked out of the SCA via an R&D (Revocation of Membership and Denial of Participation), as well as their sympathizers.

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From the Archives: A Prejudiced History of the SCA’s Board, 1969–1981

The attached document, written in 1985, reflects the impressions and opinion of Duke Siegfried von Höflichskeit, an influential co-founder of the SCA. (Although labeled as covering the period from 1969 to 1985, the narrative in this draft ends in 1981, and the author has confirmed he never completed or revised it.)

It’s archived on the West’s history site, but in an awkward format, as a scanned stack of typewritten pages; I’ve converted it to plain text below for ease of reading.

Continue reading “From the Archives: A Prejudiced History of the SCA’s Board, 1969–1981”