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June 13, 2003

Duster Elected 96th President of the American Sociological Association

Washington, DC, June 13—Befitting ASA's upcoming 100th birthday in 2005, the organization conducted its first election ever to allow members to vote online via the Internet, ushering in the leadership of ASA's centennial year. Troy Duster, New York University, was elected to serve as the 96th President of the American Sociological Association (ASA) and will be in office as President during ASA’s centennial year. Caroline Hodges Persell, New York University, was elected Vice President. Duster and Persell will assume their respective offices in August of 2004, following a year of service as President-elect and Vice President-elect, respectively. Also, Franklin Wilson, University of Wisconsin-Madison, was elected Secretary. He will begin his three-year term in 2005, following a year of service as Secretary-elect.

Healthy Turnout at the “E-Polls”
The ASA community can take pride in the fact that of the 9,536 members eligible to vote, 2,940 ballots were cast, constituting a 30.83 percent response. This is the highest ASA voter participation rate in four years, and this rate is higher than most nonprofit associations experience, according to surveys. Nonprofit associations typically have participation rates among eligible voters of less than 20 percent. Although this was the first year that ASA offered the capability to view election information and cast votes online, some 55 percent (1,600) of the voters took advantage of this new feature, using a special and secure ASA election webpage.

Election to President is the highest honor ASA members can bestow on a colleague. As President, Duster serves as Chair of the ASA Council, which governs the Association and its policies. He also chairs the Program Committee for the 2005 Annual Meeting, to be held in Philadelphia, PA, on August 13-16, 2005. This is the Annual Meeting that will commemorate ASA’s centennial celebration.

In announcing the results of the election, Secretary Arne L. Kalleberg and Executive Officer Sally T. Hillsman extended their heartiest congratulations to the newly elected officers and committee members. Also elected were: four Council Members-at-Large, two members for the Committee on Publications, and six members on the Committee on Nominations.

Member Resolution
Two thirds of the members who cast a vote on a member-generated resolution voted in support of the resolution calling for the Association to take a position favoring an immediate end to the war against Iraq. The resolution emphasized that this position does not in any way reflect support for the Hussein dictatorship but rather a view that such involvement could create more problems than solutions. This resolution was entered onto the ASA annual election ballot before the conclusion of major hostilities in Iraq. The membership vote becomes an official position of the American Sociological Association.

Of the 31 percent of ASA's membership who were eligible to vote in the 2003 election and who cast votes, almost all voted on the resolution. In addition, most who voted participated in a public opinion poll reflecting their personal views on the American involvement in the war: 75 percent were in favor of America ending its involvement.

The newly elected 2004 officers and their positions are:

Troy Duster, New York University

Vice President-elect
Caroline Hodges Persell, New York University

Franklin Wilson, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Eduardo Bonilla-Silva, Texas A&M University
Nan Lin, Duke University
Diane Vaughan, Boston College
Min Zhou, University of California-Los Angeles

Committee on Publications
Judith Howard, University of Washington
Erik Olin Wright, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Committee on Nominations
Julia Adams, University of Michigan
Manuel de la Puente, U.S. Census Bureau
Susan Farrell, Kingsborough Community College
John Hagan, Northwestern University
Rosanna Hertz, Wellesley University
Annette Lareau, Temple University

Committee on Committees
Cynthia Fuchs Epstein, City University of New York-Graduate Center
Rick Fantasia, Smith College
James Jasper, Independent Scholar
Michael Kimmel, State University of New York-Stony Brook

Journalists are invited to attend any of the more than 500 sessions, book panels, poster sessions and symposia featured on a wide range of topics at the ASA Annual Meeting in Atlanta, GA. Press facilities will be located in the Hilton Atlanta Hotel. For more information on the Annual Meeting contact Johanna Ebner at the ASA Press Office at (202) 383-9005 x332 or

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About the American Sociological Association
The American Sociological Association (, founded in 1905, is a non-profit membership association dedicated to serving sociologists in their work, advancing sociology as a science and profession, and promoting the contributions to and use of sociology by society.