Much has changed since the first issue of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD) was published in February of 1963. John F. Kennedy was President, Beatlemania was the rage in the U.K. but hardly anyone knew about the band in the United States, and the Bell Telephone Company (later know as AT&T) was getting ready to launch the newfangled “touch tone phone” with 10 buttons (no star, no hashtag). The Association's newest publication was titled Mental Retardation, a term which had not yet accumulated sufficient baggage to be considered pejorative. Potential authors either prepared their manuscripts on typewriters, or handwrote their manuscripts and solicited the services of typists to produce final drafts. Submissions, distribution of manuscripts to reviewers, reviewer feedback, and editorial decisions were all accomplished though the postal service. Personal computers, online submission systems, and E-journals would have been utterly foreign concepts to the journal's early contributors.
Although much has changed, much has stayed the same. IDD's first editor, Glenn E. Milligan (1963), introduced the first issue by explaining “This new publication is to be devoted to interpreting research findings, reporting of demonstrations, describing new approaches and methods, and analyzing problems faced by professional persons. . . .” (p. 2). Over time, the journal's focus has not really changed so much as it has become clearer. Today's IDD provides an outlet for researchers to report the results of investigations that are relevant to the work and interests of professionals from diverse disciplines, an avenue for policy analysis and recommendations, and a forum to respectfully and thoughtfully share perspectives on critical issues facing the field. It is a great honor to have been selected as the new Editor.
I want to express my appreciation for the guidance, the patience, and the excellent humor that IDD's outgoing Editor, Dr. Glenn Fugiura, has provided to me during the transition. I would be remiss if I did not give a “shout out” to Kathleen McLane and Michael Winfield from AAIDD for all of their encouragement and support, as well as to the good people at Allen Press who have been willing to answer all of my questions as I learned to navigate the links and folders that comprise AllenTrack, the web-based manuscript management system. IDD's consulting editors have shown themselves to be an amazing group of scholars, who approach each review very thoughtfully and make every effort to be helpful. High-quality reviews assure the credibility of the journal, and it has been evident to me that IDD's consulting editors are up to the task. Finally, I am thrilled to be working with the “Dream Team” of Associate Editors who agreed to begin this journey with me: Susan Havercamp, Amy Hewitt, Hedda Meadan, Jim Patton, and Bob Schalock.
Since its inception, IDD has been a “must read” for leaders in the interdisciplinary field of intellectual disability and related developmental disabilities. Its success is not only a credit to the eight editors who preceded me, but to the many authors who have contributed to the journal over time. I'm truly grateful to all who choose to submit their work for potential publication in IDD. In the end, any journal is only as good as the people who write for it. I am confident that the legacy of IDD will be preserved during my tenure as Editor because the field of IDD is replete with colleagues who are willing to invest their time and effort in the challenging, but ultimately rewarding, work of writing.