Friday, October 26, 2012 If you will be in New Orleans, you are the CBMR's Hospitality Reception Friday, Nov. 2, 5-7 PM, Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel

CBMR Hospitality Reception and Status Update

Dear CBMR Friends and Supporters,

Many of you will attend the joint annual meetings of AMS, SMT, and SEM next week in New Orleans. If you plan to attend, we invite and urge you to drop by the CBMR’s Hospitality Reception, which will be held on Friday, November 2, 5–7 p.m., in the Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel, Grand Ballroom C.

As you know, the past months have been very difficult for the CBMR. During the college’s recent prioritization process, many programs and budgets were reduced and in some cases eliminated entirely. It was initially recommended that the CBMR be among those units that should be permanently closed, but the letters of support that many of you sent to the college’s administration helped to reverse that plan. That development was heartening, but the CBMR’s budget has been slashed by 75% over the past three years and during the past year, five positions have been eliminated, including Director of Research, Associate Director of Research, Head Librarian and Archivist, Publications Manager, and Administrative Assistant. The CBMR remains open, but its activities have been drastically cut and its future is far from certain.

Sadly, much damage has already been done nationally and internationally to the CBMR’s reputation and credibility, thus adversely affecting memberships and material and monetary donations. We have had to withdraw several funding proposals, since we could not demonstrate adequate sustaining support from our host institution, and a major capacity-building grant from a local foundation was tabled by our program officer. This is long-term damage that will require years to rectify.

We hear reports that some think that the CBMR has already closed or that its closure is imminent. We have even heard that an organization/publisher is circulating that the CBMR is in fact closed. Some contributors of archival and research collections that form the nucleus of the CBMR Library and Archives are understandably fearful for the safety and security of their materials and for the continued intellectual access to those materials. Please note that all archival collections are and will continue to be completely safe and professionally maintained and that the CBMR will continue to provide and foster public accessibility.

Now, more than ever, the Center needs the support of an engaged extended constituency. I encourage you to come express your continuing support of the CBMR’s mission by dropping by our reception and by urging your colleagues and students to do the same. Please spread the word.

We look forward to greeting you, to renewing and strengthening existing relationships, and to developing new constituents and supporters.

CBMR Hospitality Reception
Friday, November 2, 5–7 p.m.
Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel, Grand Ballroom C
739 Canal Street (at Bourbon)
New Orleans

If you will not be attending the conference, you can still help re-invigorate and sustain the CBMR by beginning or renewing an associate membership, by subscribing to Black Music Research Journal, and by making material or financial contributions. Please visit to take any of these actions and to get more details about the CBMR’s status.

We look forward to greeting you in New Orleans.

Monica Hairston O’Connell
Executive Director

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