CMS President's Letter to the Membership: April 2, 2020

Dear Colleague,

I am writing today to ask you to reaffirm your support of our mission during this unprecedented time. As a member of The College Music Society, you know well how our organization has been a leader in music higher education since the Society’s inception. Built upon the belief that our strength is embodied within our diversity, The College Music Society has led innovation within the field since 1958 and continues to lead the profession amidst the unforeseen challenges of COVID-19. 

As the world addresses the pandemic, you will not be surprised to know that CMS has been adversely affected financially, since our operations depend on revenues from services like the Music Vacancy List, the Directory of Music Faculties, and CMS Professional Notices. All of these services have seen significantly lower revenues in just these past few weeks. To offset the downturn, CMS staff salary and benefits have been reduced, specifically a 50% pay cut for the executive director, a 25% pay cut for other full time staff, and elimination of the Health Savings Account benefit. 

These must be short-term cuts, since maintaining our national staff at those levels is unsustainable. Of course, we hope that normal revenues will resume as the world recovers from the disruption. Led by our indefatigable executive director Bill Pelto, we have already applied for federal disaster relief through the Small Business Administration and the recently-passed "CARES Act.” In addition, I am asking that you consider a financial contribution above your annual membership dues; this is not an ask that I make lightly. The Board of Directors hopes to raise a total of $200,000 to sustain our position as a leader within the field during this world crisis and until the country is back to work. I hope you will join the CMS Board of Directors in contributing amounts as listed below (or any amount of your choosing):

Suggested Contribution

Regular member:
    Professor  $100
    Associate professor  $75
    Assistant professor  $50
    Other $50
Low income member $3)
Retired member $50
Lifetime member $50

If 75% of our membership contributes as requested, we will raise approximately $200,000, enough for us to maintain current (reduced) staffing levels until normalcy returns, and to continue our leadership role in higher education for the future.

Thank you for everything you have done and are doing for CMS. Please select the contribution button below if you are able to assist in this effort.  

With best wishes for your good health,

Eileen M. Hayes, Ph.D.
CMS President