Ellis M. (Pat) Craig, Ph.D.
AAIDD Texas Chapter Membership Chair
Thinking about joining AAIDD-TX? If not, why not? Following are some compelling reasons for doing so.
Membership in the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD) has many benefits for professionals and others working or interested in the field. Educational opportunities are abundant. AAIDD’s professional journals contain information on the latest advances in the field. The networking opportunities include 24 professional divisions, special interest groups, and action groups that communicate important information and in which on-line participation is invited. The geographic structure of AAIDD allows networking opportunities on a regional and state level. AAIDD membership automatically makes one a member of the Texas chapter and the 6-state Region V. The Student and Early Career Professionals groups offer career and networking links to assist new members in the field to make important contacts. All members can access a Career Center in which one can post or search for a job. Members-only educational web forums and electronic newsletters provide timely information. As a financial benefit members receive discounts on book store purchases (AAIDD publishes some of the leading books in the field), webinar courses, and convention registration (including the AAIDD-TX convention).
There are a variety of membership categories that can make joining financially reasonable. Students receive a 20% discount for any membership category. The annual dues for the Basic membership are $75. This includes access to an electronic version of one of the two journals, the American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AJIDD) or Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD). All members have access to a new journal, the electronics-only Inclusion. A Classic membership (electronic access to both journals) is $125. The Standard category, which includes print copies of the journals, is $175. A Premium category, which includes special gifts of Association books, is $250. A Corporate membership for $595 is also available, with 20% discounts for the memberships of an unlimited number of employees. On-line or printable membership registration is available at www.aaidd.org.
Although AAIDD has over 3,000 members from over 55 countries, our current Texas membership is only 154. This is up one from the August report. However, I did note that this included a recently deceased member, B.R Walker. Dr. Walker was a long-term Superintendent of Austin State School (when it was called that). He was also the first Board Chair of the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists. In addition, he was the only Texas resident to serve as President of the national AAIDD. He was a regular Attendee at AAIDD-TX conventions. He will be missed. I hope that some of you out there working in the field, especially younger individuals, will join the organization and help continue its proud tradition. The Texas chapter is seeking ideas about how to increase the membership. If you have any ideas or recommendations, or would be willing to serve on the Membership Committee, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or our Texas Association Manager (email@example.com).