The names below and on the ballot appear in a (fixed) random order.
Eduardo Blanco is an Associate Professor at the University of Arizona. He was previously Associate Professor at Arizona State University (2021-2022), and Assistant Professor (2014-2020) and Associate Professor (2020-2021) at the University of North Texas. He received his PhD in 2011 from The University of Texas at Dallas. He has been a reviewer for *ACL conferences for over a decade and currently serves in the standing reviewer team of the Computational Linguistics and Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics journals. He has co-organized multiple workshops collocated with *ACL conferences and has served as Area Chair, Senior Area Chair, Demo Chair, and Workshop chair for several ACL, NAACL and EMNLP conferences. He also reviews for and serves as mentor in the Student Research Workshops organized by these conferences. In 2020, he served as Virtual Infrastructure Co-Chair for EMNLP, where he was responsible for designing and coordinating the caption editing process to improve accessibility of prerecorded presentations.
I was appointed to the NAACL Board in 2022. During my first year on the Board, I served in the committees charged with selecting recipients for the JSALT Summer School Scholarship and the Regional Americas Fund. I am proud to share that these committees awarded more funds to more applicants than in previous years. For example, we awarded scholarships to cover the full travel costs to attend the JSALT Summer School, and the Regional Americas Fund gave support to a larger and more diverse pool of researchers. The community has proposed and implemented several initiatives to improve the reviewing process, ensure high quality programs in conferences, and broaden participation (Student Research Workshops, Regional Americas Fund, WiNLP, etc.). If elected to the NAACL board, I will work on initiatives to broaden participation and improve access:
Allyson Ettinger is an assistant professor in the Departments of Linguistics and Computer Science at the University of Chicago. She received her PhD in Linguistics from the University of Maryland in 2018. Her interdisciplinary work combines cognitive science, linguistics, and computer science to tackle topics of robustness and interpretability in NLP systems, and to study language processing in humans. She has served as reviewer, area chair, or senior area chair for NAACL, ACL, EMNLP, TACL, COLING, EACL, CoNLL, ICLR, NeurIPS, ICML, as well as the Cognitive Science Society and other AI and cognitive science journals and workshops. Since 2019 she has served on the central organizing committee of the Society for Computation in Linguistics (SCiL) Annual Meeting. She also organized the Workshop on Building Linguistically Generalizable NLP Systems (“Build It Break It”) in 2017, and served on the Student Research Workshop organizing committee for ACL 2017 and the Diversity & Inclusion committee for ACL 2020.
If elected as a board member, beyond working to ensure high-quality conferences in terms of reviewing process and conference structure, I would also place particular priority on the following:
Yunyao Li is the Head of Machine Learning, Apple Knowledge Platform, where her team builds the next-generation machine learning solutions to help power features such as Siri and Spotlight. Previously she was a Distinguished Research Staff Member and Senior Research Manager at IBM Research - Almaden, leading the building and delivery of core language technologies to over 20 IBM products and solutions. She also co-led the IBM-Stanford HAI partnership. Her technical contributions span the areas of natural language processing (NLP), data management, information retrieval, and human computer interaction. She is particularly known for her work in scalable NLP, enterprise search, and database usability. She is an ACM Distinguished Member. She was an IBM Technology Academy Member and a Master Inventor. She was a member of the inaugural New Voices program of the US National Academies and represented US young scientists at World Laureates Forum Young Scientists Forum in 2019.
Yunyao has served the CL/NLP and database communities with distinction. She regularly serves as organizer (e.g., track chair, workshop chair), senior committee member for top conferences (e.g. ACL, NAACL, EMNLP, SIGMOD, and IJCAI) and editorial board member (e.g. TACL and PVLDB). She initiated and co-chaired the inaugural Industry Track at NAACL’18, the first ever industrial track in a major NLP conference. Its success has not only ensured its continuation in future NAACL conferences but also led to the inaugural industrial tracks at other major NLP conferences (COLING’20 and EMNLP’22). She has also given interdisciplinary tutorials (e.g. “Explainability for Natural Language Processing ‘’) and organized workshops (e.g. workshops of Data Science with Human-in-the-Loop) to stimulate cross pollination of research with different research communities. She is an industry advisor for the Master of Science in Natural Language Processing program at UC-Santa Cruz. She received her undergraduate degrees from Tsinghua University, and her masters and Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor.
It is an exciting time for the CL/NLP field with many opportunities and challenges. As a board member, I would like to ensure that we work on the following issues:
Bridging academic and industry research: The rapid growth of language technologies and their applications are affecting both the research community and the daily lives of many people. I will continue to advocate efforts to bridge academic and industry research and enable more cross pollination. I hope to help promote better understanding and appreciation of practical issues related to language technologies in non-trivial real-world systems as well as influence fundamental research that leads to next-generation of such technologies.
Promoting interdisciplinary work: One of my goal is to stimulate more interdisciplinary research within the NAACL community, by encouraging more interactions (e.g. invited talks, panels, tutorials and workshops) with other related communities such as Computer Vision, Visualization, Human Computer Interaction, Data Management, Robotics, and Social Science. As a board member, I would like to help formalize mechanisms to encourage and empower such interdisciplinary work.
Supporting growth of the community: With the increasing attention on diversity and inclusiveness of our community, community building activities (e.g. ACL mentoring, WiNLP, etc) are also growing. I would like to strengthen the existing community building activities by supporting efforts to enable more coordination among them for broader impact. In addition, I would like to extend such initiatives to attract more talents (e.g. undergraduates) from a diverse background into the field and provide more support for the growth of junior researchers, from senior PhD students to new faculty members and junior industry researchers.
Jonathan May is a Research Associate Professor in the Computer Science Department of the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California, a Research Lead with USC’s Information Sciences Institute, and an Amazon Scholar. He received a PhD in 2010. He has previously worked at BBN Technologies and at Language Weaver. His interests include automata theory, machine translation, common-sense reasoning, semantic parsing, and dialogue. He is currently treasurer of NAACL. Jon previously served as a Senior Area Chair for EMNLP and AACL in 2022, workshop and task organizer of SemEval from 2016 to 2019, handbook chair for NAACL 2018, social media co-chair for NAACL in 2016, and local arrangements co-chair for NAACL in 2010.
Thank you for considering me for an additional term as NAACL treasurer. The past two years put great stresses on all our professional and personal lives, but, remarkably, NAACL has come through in a financially stable state. This is due, in large part, to the changing economics of virtual and hybrid conferences, but also due to fiscally sound leadership. We were able to reorganize our obligations to Seattle (originally ACL 2020, moved to NAACL 2022) and Mexico City (originally NAACL 2021, now NAACL 2024) and after several online conferences are now able to plan for in-person meetings with hybrid components for 2025 and beyond. I look forward to aiding in the financial aspects of those decisions as we transition to a new team of professional conference organization experts.
Apart from our annual conference, NAACL continues to support NACLO/OCLCLO, to promote CL/NLP awareness at the high school level. We provide scholarship funds for the JSALT summer workshop series. We also sponsor initiatives from our Regional Americas Fund support structure. As our account surplus has grown modestly, we are now committing to more in-depth support beyond RAF, including targeted events in the Americas to deepen the exposure of budding researchers across the Americas to NLP.
As your treasurer, I will embrace NAACL’s commitment to continue to increase access to those who wish to join the NLP, linguistics, AI, and computer science communities. We will realize this commitment by balancing the location and nation of NAACL and Americas-based ACL conferences to account for the myriad logistical issues faced by members who value in-person networking and collaboration. We will realize it by taking a balanced approach to conference fees and membership dues. By asking those who are in positions to do so to shoulder more of the financial burden of our conference activities, we can ensure that anybody who wants to attend NAACL can, while also remaining financially solvent and maintaining a capital base to forestall unexpected events. Finally, we will realize our commitment by actively soliciting and responding to feedback from our membership, so that we can organize in a way that is well-suited to all and furthers the goal of promoting computational linguistics research and innovation in the Americas.