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History of the AIEF

The Beginning.
In November 1955, twelve Records Administrators from various New York Corporations and City Government Agencies founded the Association of Records Executives and Administrators (AREA), a non-profit organization chartered to facilitate the exchange of records management information. The new organization provided record keepers with a forum to discuss their record keeping concerns, namely the organization, maintenance, retrieval, preservation, and destruction of information.

Around the same time, another group, the American Records Management Association (ARMA), was formed for the same purpose. AREA and ARMA merged in 1975, thus creating a new organization, the Association of Records Managers and Administrators (ARMA). ARMA International continues to be a leader in the field of records and information management by providing educational programs and opportunities, as well as a forum for networking among records and information management professionals.
Because the earlier American Records Management Association had a defined educational purpose, a tax exempt Education and Scholarship Fund had been created in January 1973. The application for tax exempt status stated that the Fund was being created for the sole purpose of granting scholarships to individuals enrolled full time in an institution of higher learning and following a course in the field of records management. This restriction ultimately became a major drawback, since it severely limited how the Fund could be used and, thus, made it difficult to promote contributions.

A broader role.
By the mid-1990's, the Board of Directors of ARMA International realized that the Education and Scholarship Fund did not meet the needs of individual ARMA members, chapters, or the field of records and information management. Consequently, at the January 1996 meeting of the Long Range Planning Committee, a report of the Educational Delivery Systems Task Force, which recommended that ARMA pursue changing the Education and Scholarship Fund to an exempt 501(C)(3) organization (a Foundation) was accepted. This change would broaden the funding opportunities beyond the very limited scholarships available for full-time students in approved program schools.

A motion to create a Foundation was presented to the ARMA Board of Directors at their meeting in March 1996. The motion passed and steps were immediately undertaken to investigate the dissolution of the original Fund and the creation of a Foundation.

A foundation is created.
The ARMA International Educational Foundation, which was incorporated August 11, 1997, received its 501(C)(3) tax-exempt status in January 1998. The Foundation is an outgrowth of ARMA International. The Foundation will help to define the future of records and information management by funding educational opportunities and instruction to individuals for the purpose of improving and developing their capabilities in the area of records and information management; funding scientific research in records and information management; and awarding grants, scholarships and fellowships to individual students and educational institutions to further promote and develop records and information management.