Department of Membership (History)
The Department of Membership was created in 2004 to oversee the administration of all membership levels in the community.
The Department of Membership was created at the 2004 Admin Meeting, when the first departmental structure was implemented for the administration of the community. The initial department was co-led by the Master at Arms and the Keeper. There was no director position for this department.
During the 2006 Admin Meeting, the position of Director of Membership was created. This position was created to oversee the Head of Ajahs, Company Commanders, and all levels of membership. This position replaced the Keeper and Master at Arms in their previous leadership roles in the Department of Membership. Vivianna L'antreau was hired as the first Director of Membership.
One major membership change during this year was the implementation of the Guesting System for Junior Members visiting the Ajahs and Companies. The forum structure changed to allow membership groups one “public” forum, called the Sitting Room, where guests can visit, and one private forum, called Chambers, where only members of the Ajah/Company can post.
The Guesting system had a successful year and proved to be a viable program for Junior Members. The time limit for aspiring to a Community Group was shortened from 10 weeks to 6 weeks. During this year it was decided to create two new administrative positions to oversee the Junior Member levels of Accepted and Soldiers, making four total positions: Mistress of Novices, Mistress of Accepted, Captain of Recruits, and Captain of Soldiers. Valadilene Aldieb was hired as the first Mistress of Accepted, and Doneavan al'Keavin was hired as the first Captain of Soldiers.
During this year there was another major change to junior membership with the creation of the rank of Resident Citizen, for members who wish to stay in the City and choose not to join the Tower.
It was decided during this year that the administrative positions in this department would rotate every 18 months.
During the 2010 Admin Meeting, it was decided to allow +1 bonds to people who met certain criteria. In order to track these criteria, as well as members’ service to the Tower, the Merit System was first discussed.
The Merit System was officially launched during this year, with the first awards being presented at Anniversary Party 2011 in Charleston, SC. The Archivist took over the administration of Merits. The department also began an initiative for all members on the forums to have both First and Last names in their forum username.
The major membership change during this year was the decision to proceed with full integration. This meant that the ranks of Aes Sedai and Gaidin would no longer be gendered roles in the community. Resident Citizens were also given the option of a Who’s Who profile in the Library.
Integration was implemented and all community groups were open to Junior Members starting January 1. Senior Members were also given the option to demote and change tracks if desired. The Junior Member administrators were also changed and reformed into two positions: Master/Mistress of Novices and Recruits, and Master/Mistress of Accepted and Soldiers.
A focus group was created to discuss additional bonds for Gaidin, and the consensus was that Gaidin groups could decide for themselves whether to implement an additional bond. All of the Gaidin membership groups decided to implement the extra bond.