PREPARED FOR NOISE/NEWS INTERNATIONAL, 2005 JUNE.
The history of the Canadian Acoustical Association (CAA) dates back to a meeting of 18 persons interested in acoustics held at the National Research Council in Ottawa, Ontario, on March 29, 1962. The discussions there indicated that activities in acoustics within Canada should be structured and coordinated. The following year, a second meeting was held, and the group adopted the title Canadian Committee on Acoustics for its activities. Tom Northwood was appointed as Chair and Tony Embleton was appointed as Secretary. The group continued its activities for the next nine years, and held regular meetings each year at different locations in the Provinces of Ontario and Quebec.
The year 1972 was a major milestone for the committee. During a meeting at McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, the question was raised: “Where do we go from here?” Two items discussed were the publication of a newsletter and a change in the name of the organization. The first issue of the newsletter was published, and a guest article dealt with the question of how the organization should be structured: as a committee, an association, or a society. Regular annual meetings continued, and at the meeting in 1974, the name Canadian Acoustical Association /L’Association Canadienne d’Acoustique (CAA/ACA) was adopted. The CAA Newsletter continued to be published, and, by 1975, its circulation exceeded 250. The incorporation process was initiated in 1976 by Hugh Jones, and the organization was officially incorporated on April 22, 1977.
The CAA became a Member Society of International INCE in 1978 with John Hemingway appointed as the first CAA representative. Work continued on the improvement and upgrading of the newsletter; its format was changed in 1978, and in 1983 it became more of a technical journal with news and its name was changed to Canadian Acoustics. The journal is currently published quarterly, including refereed papers in both of Canada’s official languages (English and French), with Ramani Ramakrishnan serving as Editor-in-Chief.
A major event in the history of the CAA was the organization of the 12th International Congress on Acoustics which was held in Toronto, Ontario in 1986 July in conjunction with the 25th meeting of the CAA. The meeting was a great success with 954 participants from 36 countries.
The CAA holds its general conference, Acoustics Week in Canada, in the fall of each year at different locations across the country. Conferences generally draw 100–150 participants, and consist of special plenary seminars, a symposium of two or more days of organized sessions on all aspects of acoustics, laboratory or concert-hall tours, and a social program (reception, banquet, awards ceremony). Summary papers are published in a proceedings issue of Canadian Acoustics. Recent meetings have been held in Ottawa (2004), Edmonton (2003), Charlottetown (2002), Toronto (2001), Sherbrooke (2000), and Victoria (1999).
In 2005, the CAA is holding two meetings: a special joint meeting with the Acoustical Society of America in Vancouver, British Columbia, was held in May (chaired by Murray Hodgson and Stan Dosso), and, in October, Acoustics Week in Canada in London, Ontario (chaired by Meg Cheesman and Vijay Parsa).
The CAA actively encourages and supports excellence in students and young professionals studying/working in acoustics in Canada, with student travel subsidies available for CAA conferences and other acoustics conferences, student and young-professional paper and presentations awards, a major post-doctoral award (the Edgar and Millicent Shaw Postdoctoral Prize in Acoustics), graduate student awards in a number of specialized areas of acoustics, an undergraduate award, and a high-school award for science fair projects in acoustics. Christian Giguère is presently serving as the CAA Awards Coordinator.
The CAA currently has more than 350 members, a number which has grown steadily over the past few years. The Association is administered by a Board of Directors, with eight elected directors serving four-year terms, and an Executive presently consisting of President (Stan Dosso), Past President (John Bradley), Executive Secretary (David Quirt), Treasurer (Dalila Giusti), and Editor-in-Chief (Ramani Ramakrishnan). More information on the CAA is available at website http://caa-aca.ca (maintained by David Stredulinsky).