Merit Committee Chair (Orator)


The CAMWS Orator serves as the chair of the Merit Committee (Charter: https://camws.org/mer-com-charter) and oversees the selection of honorees for Ovationes at the Spring CAMWS meeting; coordinates the research on the honorees necessary to write the Ovationes; coordinates with the calligrapher to ensure that the presentation scrolls will be completed properly, sent to the CAMWS meeting venue, and signed by the CAMWS President; writes the Latin Ovationes; delivers the Ovationes and presents the scrolls at the banquet; and prepares a written version of the Ovationes for publication in The Classical Journal.


Schedule of Duties of the Merit Committee Chair:



  1. Solicits, from the members of the Merit Committee, nominations of individuals deemed deserving of an Ovatio at the spring CAMWS meeting and banquet.
  2. Invites the committee to review potential honorees proposed but not selected in previous years and to propose additional names of those deemed to deserve the honor.
  3. Coordinates the discussion, with the committee, of the relative merits of the potential nominees. 
  4. Checks with the Secretary-Treasurer to determine the CAMWS membership and service record of the potential honorees.
  5. Guides the committee discussion so as to agree on a list of (usually) three honorees, with a couple of alternates in case any of the selected honorees will not be attending the CAMWS meeting and banquet.


  1. Confirms the final selection of honorees and alternates with the committee and ensures that the identity of the honorees will be kept secret.  (Surprising the honorees with the Ovatio at the banquet is an important part of the honor.)
  2. Checks with the Secretary/Treasurer to confirm that the selected honorees will be attending the CAMWS meeting and banquet.  (Honorees need to be present at the banquet to receive an Ovatio and scroll.)  If any of the initially-chosen honorees will not be attending, they are replaced with alternates.
  3. Begins, with the help of the committee, to gather the information about each honoree’s academic and service record necessary to write the Ovationes.


  1. Continues to gather the appropriate information about each designated honoree’s academic career and service. 
  2. Double-checks with the Secretary-Treasurer that each of the designated honorees will be attending the banquet at the CAMWS meeting.  (After the names have been given to the calligrapher, it is too late to change the list.)
  3. Communicates with the calligrapher and confirms the date of the CAMWS meeting for which the scrolls will be needed; sends the calligrapher the list of honorees and dates, in Latin, that will be written on the presentation scrolls; and arranges for the shipment of the scrolls to an appropriate recipient at the host university. 
  4. Begins to write the Latin Ovationes.


  1. Continues to work on the Latin Ovationes with input from the committee as needed.
  2. Checks in with the calligrapher to ensure that there are no difficulties with the scrolls and that they have been shipped in a timely fashion to an appropriate recipient at the host institution.

 Annual Meeting:

  1. Retrieves the scrolls that were shipped to the host institution and arranges to have the CAMWS President sign them, while keeping the identity of the honorees confidential.
  2. Attends the banquet, delivers the Ovationes, and presents the scrolls to the honorees.


  1. Sends a written version of the Ovationes to the editor of The Classical Journal for publication.