Monday, October 30, 2023
From AEA President, Corrie Whitmore
Hello AEA Friends –
This is my final newsletter as 2023 AEA President. I want to take the opportunity to thank you for your participation in AEA through the conference, the AEA365 blog (reading or posting!), the Coffee Breaks, e-Studies, and Town Halls. AEA is a membership organization and it’s your involvement that keeps us strong.
More than 2,200 of us met in Indianapolis from October 9 – 14 for Evaluation 2023: The Power of Story. Since returning home, I have been thrilled to hear many participants had a great conference experience: presenting, learning, and being in a community with other evaluators. My favorite part may have been the StorySlam, hosted in partnership with local non-profit Storytelling Arts of Indiana. It was so popular that we’ve already started planning next year’s storytelling event, for the 2024 conference in Portland, Oregon.
If you are interested in becoming more involved in AEA governance, consider becoming involved in TIG or local affiliate leadership, volunteering for a Task Force or Working Group, or running for the board.
It’s been an honor to serve as AEA President this year, and I look forward to connecting with you in the future as a member.
By: Katie O’Toole, Consultant for Evaluation Policy Task Force
Evaluation for evidence-building included as R&D priority in FY2025
The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued a memorandum (M-23-20) to agency heads in August outlining the Administration’s multi-agency research and development (R&D) priorities to inform the development of agency budget requests for Fiscal Year (FY) 2025. The memo instructs agencies to address the identified priorities in their budget submissions – of note, OMB specifically highlighted the need for agencies to design and implement program evaluations to generate evidence.
In response, AEA sent a letter to agency heads, Chief Financial Officers, Chief Evaluation Officers, Chief Data Officers, and Statistical Officials applauding the inclusion of evaluation in the Administration's R&D priorities and calling on every agency to include new resources to support this priority in budget submissions to OMB. The wide range of recipients of the AEA letter demonstrates the critical, cross-agency function of evaluation in federal agencies, and emphasizes that the capacity within agencies to conduct and use evaluation is central to achieving agencies’ missions and should be prioritized appropriately in funding requests.
While OMB memorandum M-23-20 points to evaluation specifically as a mechanism for reducing barriers and inequality, AEA’s letter also urged agencies to consider that program evaluation can and should be a fundamental component of all the research and development efforts noted in the memorandum. AEA recommended agencies dedicate broader attention to evaluation to ensure necessary coordination of evidence activities across priority areas.
The integration of evaluation in OMB’s priority memo is encouraging for the evaluation community – and AEA will continue to engage in opportunities to strengthen the generation and use of evaluation to inform federal policies and decision-making in the future.
EPTF welcomes four new members
The Evaluation Policy Task Force (EPTF), AEA’s driving force on federal evaluation policy, selected four new members: Christina Yancey, Esther Nolton, Margaret Hargreaves, and Ted Kniker. These individuals bring extensive expertise and contribute greatly to expanding the diversity of skills, representation, and professional experience included on the Task Force.
EPTF placed a call for new member nominations in May and received many highly qualified candidates. The Task Force is thrilled to have such well-respected members and leaders in the evaluation community join its effort to advocate for improving evaluation capacity within the federal government.
Christina, Esther, Meg, and Ted join the current members of the EPTF, which include: Demetra Nightingale, Diana Epstein, Gregory Phillips II, Katherine Dawes, Kathryn Newcomer, Kerry Bruce, Leslie Fierro, Lisa Aponte-Soto, Melvin Mark, Maurice Samuels, Nick Hart (Chair), and Nicole Bowman.
AEA is proud to announce the 20th cohort of scholars selected for the Graduate Education Diversity Internship (GEDI). GEDI leadership carefully chose these exceptional individuals who represent the future of evaluation experts and champions of culturally responsive evaluation. We extend a warm welcome and congratulations to these scholars. Meet the 2023-2024 GEDI Cohort!
We are also thrilled to announce the selection of two new GEDI Co-Directors, Dr. Lisa Aponte-Soto (GEDI 6, Evolution) and Dr. Monique Liston (GEDI 12, District 13), both alumni of the GEDI Program. Dr. Aponte-Soto is affiliated with Tanoma Consulting, LLC, while Dr. Liston is associated with UBUNTU Research and Evaluation. Each will join current GEDI Co-Director Dr. Saúl I. Maldonado in leadership of the GEDI program.
Liston and Aponte-Soto succeed Dr. Brandi Gilbert who served as Co-Director from 2017-2023 and will serve as the Professional Development Coach for GEDI scholars.
The American Evaluation Association (AEA) is proud to announce the 2023-2024 cohort of fellows selected for the Minority Serving Institution Fellowship (MSI). These highly accomplished individuals from and/or serving traditionally underrepresented groups in the fields of applied social sciences, public health, and education at a Minority Serving Institution were selected by an advisory group comprised of alumni of the MSI Fellowship. Congratulations to them on this significant achievement. Meet the 2023-2024 MSI Cohort!
We encourage you to support the AEA Giving Campaign to help increase the participation of evaluators and academics from and serving underrepresented groups in the profession of evaluation and within AEA. Your contribution can truly make a difference.
Share your accomplishments with AEA! We are excited to introduce the AEA Publishing Corner, which will spotlight work published by our members. If you have a recent publication or professional accomplishment you would like to share, please submit it here.
This month we are spotlighting Susan Wolf who recently published Guidebook to Community Consulting: A Collaborative Approach. This book is published by Cambridge University Press.
International Evaluation Events
There are numerous international evaluation events taking place in the coming months. You can find more international events on the Better Evaluation website.
Asia-Pacific Evaluation Association
4th APEA Conference & Evalvisionasia 2023
Manila, Philippines, 4–7 December 2023
Save the date- African Evaluation Association (AfrEA)
11th AfrEA International Conference
Kigali, Rwanda, 18–22 March 2024
Sign up for upcoming sessions in our Digital Knowledge Hub!
Future Search: Transformation Through Stories - Past, Present and Future Session
October 31 | 12:00 PM EDT
November 7 | 12:00 PM EDT
In this eStudy, participants will learn the methodology, facilitator mindset, and nuances related to Future Search.
AEA Focus Group eLearning Course
Course Facilitator: Rhonda Williams, PhD
Have you ever been tasked with obtaining feedback from a group of stakeholders? Do you have an interest in improving your strategies for focus groups? Have you thought about improving the coordination and planning for others to share their thoughts?
Purchase the Focus Group eLearning Course to:
Introduction to Evaluation 101
Introduction to Evaluation 101 is designed to teach you fundamental evaluation skills, allowing you to maximize the use of your evaluation and drive it home for the end user.
Purchase the Introduction to Evaluation 101 eLearning Course to:
AEA members receive discounts from certain publishers. Use the special codes below during your next purchase:
What's new this month in the AEA Online Career Center? The following positions have been added recently:
Explore the Online Career Center
AEA would like to recognize and thank some of its most longstanding members. Click here to view individuals who are celebrating 5+, 10+, 20+, and 30+ years with the association this month!
AEA would like to welcome those who have recently joined the association. Click here to view a list of AEA's newest members.
AEA is a professional association of evaluators devoted to the application and exploration of evaluation in all its forms.
The association's mission is to:
Phone: 1-202-367-1166 or 1-888-232-2275 (U.S. and Canada only)