History: Established 2017.
Members: The Chairs of each AAS Diversity Committee (currently CSMA, CSWA, SGMA, and WGAD) and the AAS President each appoint one person to the Oversight Committee, subject to approval by the Board of Trustees. The Committee may appoint two additional members who are experts in protocols and procedures relevant for climate site visits, also subject to Board approval.
Term: Three years, June business meeting to June business meeting.
Chair: Elected by committee, subject to approval by the Board of Trustees; three-year term, from the June business meeting to June business meeting.
Charge: The Oversight Committee for Astronomy Department Climate Site Visits develops protocols appropriate for climate site visits and ensures proper training for the Site-Visit Team. Site-Visits are initiated by invitation from a department chair to the AAS President or any member of the Oversight Committee. When an invitation is received, the Oversight Committee will select members of a Climate Site-Visit team and appoint a chair for the team. The charge to the Site-Visit team is to evaluate the climate for marginalized groups within the department and to offer suggestions for improvement in the climate. The Site-Visit team will use a survey of departmental members, information provided to the team by the department, and meetings between the team and department members. The team will write a confidential report to the department chair and the chair of the Oversight Committee detailing the findings of the visit and offering practical suggestions for improving the climate for marginalized groups. More detailed information is available here:
Effective Practices for Optimal Climate in Astronomy Departments – AAS Board approved 02 June 2018
AAS Climate Site Visit Manual – AAS Board approved 11 September 2018
In order to make ongoing improvements to the site visit program, the AAS Site Visit Oversight Committee would greatly appreciate feedback from the astronomy community. All published SVOC documents are perpetual works in progress as the community grows and changes. Therefore, the SVOC will edit our documentation considering all feedback. Please provide feedback via this Google form.
Committee Member – Climate Survey Specialist
Adam Christensen (Jan 2018- Jun 2021); Note: Elected by committee Director of Student Affairs Research and Assessment Penn State University
Board of Trustee Liaison
Marcel A. Agüeros
Term: Jun 2020 – Jun 2021