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Independent Review Committee
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In 2016, the GCLS Board of Directors commissioned an independent review of the awards process. The Independent Review Committee ("IRC") Report was presented to the Board of Directors and GCLS Membership during the 13th Annual Conference in Chicago, IL.  

The IRC proposed, and the Board has agreed to, several changes to be implemented in the 2018 Awards cycle. These are outlined on the 2018 Award Changes page. Additionally, the Board asked the IRC to work with a cadre of GCLS volunteers to address judging-related concerns and revise evaluation instruments for the 2019 Awards. That work already has begun.

IRC member bios and IRC presentations, board reports and research reports are listed below and available for download. The two IRC presentations were given at the 2017 Annual Conference in Chicago, one at the Membership Meeting and the second immediately after at an hour-long GCLS Awards Update for interested members. (Both videos can be viewed HERE. The IRC presentation at the Membership Meeting begins around the 29 minute mark.)

 

Primary IRC Goals

The IRC's primary goals for this project were as follows:

  • Conduct an independent review to ensure the quality, integrity and prestige of the GCLS awards process, a key component of GCLS’s stated mission: “to recognize and promote lesbian literary work.”
  • Make recommendations for how the awards process can be improved so best books have an even better chance of being recognized as Goldie finalists and Goldie winners.
  • Suggest ways to implement recommended improvements in the 2018 awards and beyond.
  • Develop survey instruments, metrics and other devices as benchmarks for subsequent reviews

 

IRC Members - Brief Bios

  • Virginia Dodge Fielder (chair): Retired corporate executive and market researcher for newspaper industry. GCLS member for six years. Attended nine conferences with partner KG MacGregor.
  • Donna Brown: GCLS member since beginning. Served as Goldie judge for one term. Avid reader and Xena: Warrior Princess fan. Administrative Assistant for sheriff’s department.
  • Jane Chen: Won Goldie in 2010 writing as Trinity Tam (with wife Nell Stark) for everafter. Has attended three conferences. Marketing VP and Harvard grad.
  • Leigh Howell: Attended seven GCLS conferences with sister Lynne Pierce of Lesfic Unbound. Former editor for Blue Feather Books. Lives with husband Steve.
  • MJ Lowe: GCLS member since 2004. Served on Board of Directors in 2008-2010 and as Awards Administrator for 2012-2014. Librarian by trade and training.
  • Elaine Lynch: Attended 11 conventions. Served as Goldie judge five times. Been reviewing books since 2005. Married to GCLS Trailblazer Lee Lynch. Retired Quality Control specialist.
  • Rosa Moran: GCLS member since beginning. Attended all conferences and awards ceremonies. Served as judge for four years. “Techie” by trade and training.
  • Sharon Owens: Avid reader belonging to GCLS for seven years. Attended five conferences. Been presenter at awards ceremony. Retired library worker and former attorney. 

For more detailed committee bios, please download the PDF document in the list below.

 

Research Report Descriptions

Awards Administrators and Board Liaisons

  • 12 open-ended surveys sent via email on 7/28/16 to ask about perceived strengths and weaknesses in the awards process, plus recommendations for improvements. Top-line results from 11 respondents completed on 8/15/16 and summarized in document entitled IRC Research – Administrative Assistants and Board Liaisons.
Publishers
  • 12 open-ended surveys sent via email on 8/31/16 to ask about perceived strengths and weaknesses in the awards process, plus recommendations for improvements. Top-line results from 11 publishers completed on 9/22/16 and summarized in document entitled IRC Research – GCLS Publishers.
Awards Nominators
  • Quantitative surveys sent on 11/1/16 to 107 authors/publishers/readers who nominated books for the 2017 Goldie Awards to assess key elements of the submissions process. Top-line results from 32 nominators completed on 11/21/16 and summarized in document entitled IRC Research – Awards Nominators.

Goldie Judges

  • Former 2015 Judges: 31 open-ended surveys sent via email on 11/21/16 to people who judged the Goldie Awards in 2015 but not  in 2016 to ask about perceived strengths and weaknesses in the awards judging process, plus recommendations for improvements. Top-line results from 15 former judges completed on 12/12/16 and summarized in document entitled IRC Research – Former Goldie Judges.
  • 2016 Judges: 69 quantitative surveys sent via email on 3/5/17 to people who judged the 2016 Goldie Awards to assess key elements of the judging process and to secure reaction to specific suggestions for improvements. Top-line results from 43 judges completed on 3/19/2017 and summarized in document entitled IRC Research – 2016 Goldie Judges.
GCLS Membership
  • Quantitative survey emailed on 5/5/17 to 593 eligible GCLS members to ask about the Ann Bannon and Tee Corrine specialty awards. Top-line results from 150 responses completed on 5/22/17 and summarized in document entitled IRC Research – 2017 Membership Survey.
Key Metrics
  • Analysis of metrics on entries, publishers and awards in past three awards cycles (2016, 2015 and 2014), plus metrics on judges for 2017 and 2016, completed on 1/5/17. Results detailed in document entitled IRC Research – GCLS Key Metrics.
Proposed Awards Categories and Category Structure
  • Draft presentation on proposed categories sent to key stakeholders for comment on 1/22/17. Reactions incorporated in later revisions. Final recommendations, including proposed category definitions and judging guidelines, detailed in document entitled IRC Proposal – GCLS Categories.

 

Independent Review Committee Reports

More InfoHide Info ]
Reports consisting of the research data and results of the Independent Review Committee's 1-year project reviewing the GCLS Awards process and procedures.
Item Name Posted By Date Posted
IRC Presentation - 2017 GCLS Awards Update PDF (1.36 MB) Administration 7/17/2017
IRC Presentation - 2017 Membership Meeting PDF (508.28 KB) Administration 7/17/2017
IRC Report - 2017 Final Report to GCLS Board PDF (1.33 MB) Administration 7/17/2017
IRC Research - Awards Admins & Board Liaisons PDF (297.85 KB)  more ] Administration 9/24/2017
IRC Research - Publishers PDF (291.53 KB)  more ] Administration 9/24/2017
IRC Research - Awards Nominators PDF (566.99 KB)  more ] Administration 9/24/2017
IRC Research - Goldie Judges - 2015 PDF (291.23 KB)  more ] Administration 9/24/2017
IRC Research - Goldie Judges - 2016 PDF (826.05 KB)  more ] Administration 9/24/2017
IRC Research - Membership Survey PDF (881.98 KB)  more ] Administration 9/24/2017
IRC Research - GCLS Key Metrics PDF (1.29 MB)  more ] Administration 9/24/2017
IRC Research - GCLS Proposed Categories PDF (725.64 KB)  more ] Administration 9/24/2017
IRC Member Bios PDF (122.38 KB) Administration 9/24/2017

2018 Tee Corinne Nominations

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