Article I – Executive Board
The officers of the USA shall be the:
|Vice President||one year|
|Corresponding Secretary||one year|
|Recording Secretary||one year|
|Treasurer Alternate||one year|
|Marketing and Communications Chair||one year|
|Archivist Alternate||one year|
Shared Governance Committee representatives shall be the:
|Facilities & Support Services Committee Representatives||one year|
|Facilities & Support Services Committee Alternates||one year|
|Planning & Budgeting Committee Representatives||one year|
|Planning & Budgeting Committee Alternates||one year|
|University Life Committee Representatives||one year|
|University Life Committee Alternates||one year|
|Campus Bookstore Advisory Board Representative||one year|
|Campus Recreation Advisory Board Representative||one year|
|Dining Advisory Board Representative||one year|
The USA Standing Committee chairpersons shall be the:
|Welcome & Outreach Committee Chair||one year|
|Scholarship Committee Chair||one year|
|Fundraising Committee Chair||one year|
|Professional Development Committee Chair||one year|
|Program Planning Committee Chair||one year|
Non-Voting Members of the Executive Board shall be the:
|Immediate Past President||one year|
|Task Force Representatives||one year or length of task force|
Article II – Responsibility of Officers
All officers of the USA shall:
- ensure, in all dealings with University Administration and Committees, that the opinions and interests of the staff are fully and accurately represented;
- maintain complete and accurate records (i.e. committee reports, agendas, etc.) which shall be posted to the USA server.
The President shall:
- preside at all USA meetings, including executive board meetings, and provide an agenda to all members prior to the meetings;
- call special meetings as necessary;
- represent the USA on the University Council;
- represent the USA on the UH System Staff Executive Council (USSEC);
- function as a liaison to other organizations and entities;
- transmit information from the University Administration and Shared Governance to the membership;
- fulfill any other duties as prescribed by the governing document or as directed by the USA;
- ensure that all members have an opportunity to address the organization during meetings.
The Vice President shall:
- replace the President when the President is unable to perform their duties;
- be responsible for organizing speakers, sponsors, and programming at meetings, according to the President's direction;
- assist the President in the performance of their duties, as needed and requested by the President;
- keep abreast of USA issues and goals in preparation for the assumption of the Presidency in the following year;
- represent the USA on the University Council;
- represent the USA on the UH System Staff Executive Council (USSEC);
- serve as chairperson of the Spring event committee;
- become the President at the end of the current President’s term.
The Recording Secretary shall:
- maintain a current list of USA members;
- record, post to the USA server, and distribute minutes of the executive board meetings;
- record, post to the USA server, and distribute minutes of the general membership meetings;
- handle physical inventory of USA university property.
The Corresponding Secretary shall:
- conduct the correspondence of the organization;
- perform all mailings;
- assist the President in organizing the annual USA planning session;
- handle nominations and election duties as described in Article V and VI in this document;
- coordinate nominations and ballots for the Hawk Spirit Award Program.
The Treasurer shall:
- maintain and safeguard all moneys of the organization;
- maintain accurate records of all transactions;
- pay all bills as directed by the President;
- report on the state of the treasury at all general membership and executive board meetings;
- have experience with the UHCL financial system.
The Treasurer Alternate shall:
- serve as a non-voting member of the Fundraising Committee;
- assist the Treasurer in their duties;
- assume the duties of the Treasurer when the Treasurer is not available;
- become the Treasurer at the end of the current Treasurer’s term;
- have experience with the UHCL financial system.
The Marketing and Communications Chair shall:
- develop an annual timeline to collect information, publish, and distribute regular communications in collaboration with the Exec Board - including website updates, campus emails, and social media posts;
- edit and distribute campus communications according to the developed annual timeline;
- coordinate the timeline and publication of all communications, publications, and promotional materials within the annual timeline, in collaboration with the President;
- publish all bi-monthly Exec Board and General Meeting minutes to the campus community within one week of each meeting;
- ensure all USA branding and publication guidelines are followed in all marketing efforts;
- manage short-term volunteers to support communication efforts - such as graphic designers, special contributions, multi-media specialists, social media, historian/archivist, website, newsletter, etc.;
- oversee the day-to-day administration of all USA social media accounts including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. and maintain account subscriptions accordingly.
The Archivist shall:
- be responsible for collection and categorization of all USA-related materials in an organized, well-defined manner;
- be the official USA photographer;
- provide documentation of all USA events in a media suitable for reference and viewing (i.e. photography, scrapbook, memorabilia);
- provide a central, accessible location for archived files to the USA board members;
- provide necessary data/history for news articles and publicity for USA.
The Archivist Alternate shall:
- assist the Archivist in their duties;
- assume the duties of the Archivist when the Archivist is not available;
- become the Archivist at the end of the current Archivist’s term.
The Immediate Past President shall:
- serve as a non-voting member of the Executive board for one year;
- assist the President whenever requested and fulfill any other function as the executive board may direct.
The Webmaster shall:
- maintain the USA website;
- create and publish online ballots for Executive Board elections, special elections, and amendments to the Constitution and By-Laws;
- attend UHCL Web training.
Article III – Shared Governance Committees
Term of Office:
- The organization shall elect representatives and alternates to the committees of the Shared Governance structure.
- Representatives to the committees of the shared governance structure shall serve for a term of one year, beginning on the first class day of the fall semester. Alternates to the Shared Governance structure shall serve as alternate for one year and as representative the following academic year.
- The USA shall have two representatives and two alternates for each shared governance committee.
- Representatives and alternates elected to taskforces shall serve for the duration of the task force, unless for some reason they are unable to do so.
- The representatives are responsible for attending all meetings of the committee for which they have been elected. If unable to attend, the representative is responsible for contacting that committee alternate so that the USA will be represented. The alternate is responsible for attending meetings of the committee for which they have been elected in the absence of the representative. If neither can be present, the President shall appoint an executive board member to attend in their absence.
- Either the Representative or Alternate of each committee must be present at USA monthly meetings to report on committee or task force activities. A written report is to be submitted to the Recording Secretary in advance of the meeting. Representatives are required to inform the President of impending votes in Committees and Task Forces. The President will then place the item on the agenda for the next meeting and a call will be made for a consensus of the membership.
- Representatives will post to the USA server a written annual report at the end of the academic year for the USA Board. This report will include a brief summary of the pertinent events or changes within that shared governance entity for the year. Reports shall be no more than two pages in length.
Shared Governance Committee Descriptions:
- The Facilities and Support Services Committee (FSSC), shall have the responsibility of dealing with issues involving facilities,
space, parking, computing, and the library. Specifically, the responsibilities of
the FSSC are as listed below:
i. University, school, or other constituent facilities and space needs;
ii. University, school, or other constituent computing needs;
iii. Library needs;
iv. Parking issues and policies.
- Standing Subcommittees of FSSC include
i. Parking Subcommittee;
ii. Space Allocation & Utilization Subcommittee.
- The Planning and Budgeting Committee (PBC) shall have the responsibility for coordination of all university-wide planning
and budgeting activities as well as oversight of university assessment and fundraising.
The PBC will review and recommend to the University Council the various plans and
their associated resource needs. The university president is the final authority on
all such matters. Specifically, the responsibilities of the PBC are as listed below:
i. University-wide planning;
ii. University-wide budgeting;
iii. Oversight of university assessment;
iv. Oversight of university fundraising.
- The University Life Committee (ULC) shall consider all matters relating to personnel and to student life in the
university community. The ULC shall make recommendations on these matters to the University
Council. Specifically, the responsibilities of the ULC are as listed below:
i. University-wide policies;
ii. Student policies;
iii. Safety, health, and quality of life issues.
- Standing Subcommittees of the ULC include:
i. Hugh P Avery Award Selection
Shared Governance Sub-Committees:
- The President shall appoint Shared Governance Sub-Committee representatives to a one-year term. Representatives are responsible for attending all sub-committee meetings for which they have been appointed. If a representative cannot be present, the President shall appoint an Executive Board member to attend in their absence.
- The sub-committee representative must be present at all USA meetings to report on Sub-Committee activities. If they cannot be present, a written report is to be submitted to the President or Secretary in advance of the meeting.
- Appointed Sub-committee representatives are to inform the Executive Board and general membership of the nature of impending votes in sub-committees and shall cast a vote as directed by the membership at large and the USA Executive Board.
Article IV – Board and Committees
Board and Committees:
- The USA standing groups shall be the Executive Board, Welcome and Outreach Committee, Scholarship Committee, Fundraising Committee, Professional Development Committee, Program Planning Committee, and Spring event Committee. Ad-hoc or special purpose committees may be established as the need arises and as directed by the Executive Board.
- Each standing committee shall serve until the completion of the task or until the standing committee is dissolved. Membership of standing committees is appointed by the President from amongst USA members.
Composition and Function:
- The Executive Board shall consist of the Shared Governance representatives and the officers of the USA, including the immediate Past President as a non-voting member. The board shall plan the agenda for the organization for the year and present issues to the membership for consideration and voting as appropriate. Specific duties of the board represent the entire membership and acknowledge the needs and concerns of all the members in carrying out decision-making responsibilities.
- The Scholarship Committee shall call for applications from those USA members pursuing academic programs at this or other institutions. The committee shall make scholarship awards as determined by the applications. The Scholarship Committee Chair shall also serve on the Jean Nettles and William A. Staples Scholarship Committees.
- The Fundraising Committee shall plan all fundraising events including the breakfast table, Harvest Fair, or any other fundraiser decided on by the committee and Executive Board. The Treasurer Alternate shall serve as a non-voting member of this committee.
- The Welcome and Outreach Committee shall plan all welcome and outreach events. The committee will welcome all new USA members and invite them to the next USA meeting.
- The Program Planning Committee shall be responsible for programs and events such as staff luncheons, and any other projects, programs, and events decided on by the committee and Executive Board. All program and event ideas shall be brought before the Executive Board for approval or recommendation prior to any action being taken.
- The Spring event Committee shall be responsible for overseeing the planning of the annual faculty and staff Spring event program. The Vice President shall serve as chair for the committee.
- The Professional Development Committee shall be responsible for overseeing the planning of professional development opportunities for staff. All program and event ideas shall be brought before the Executive Board for approval or recommendation prior to any action being taken.
- The President shall appoint the chair and the members of all Task Forces from interested USA members.
- Each member of the Task Force shall serve until the completion of the task or until the Task Force is dissolved.
Article V – Nominations
Procedures for Conducting the Call for Nominations:
- The entire membership shall be solicited for nominations for the election of officers on the first business day in June of each year. The deadline to submit nominations shall be clearly stated on the call for nominations and shall be announced at the June general meeting.
- The Corresponding Secretary shall prepare and distribute an email calling for nominations. Nominations shall only be accepted on the form provided.
- The Corresponding Secretary shall notify all nominees and provide them with a Nomination Acceptance form. A person may be placed on the ballot for a position only if he or she has submitted a signed Nomination Acceptance form.
- In the event that a person is nominated for more than one position, the Corresponding Secretary shall notify that person immediately upon receipt of the nomination. When a person is nominated for more than one position, that person must notify the Corresponding Secretary in writing of their preference.
Article VI – Elections
Positions a Person May Hold:
- A person may hold only one officer, governance committee representative, or alternate position at any time. A USA officer, governance committee representative, or alternate may hold a leadership position on any other USA committee and/or Task Force.
Election of the Executive Board:
- Election of officers, committee representatives, alternates, and chairs shall be held in July with terms beginning on the first class day of the fall semester.
- In the event of a loss of a Vice President, the President will announce that a special election to select a replacement will be conducted. The same process as for the annual elections shall be followed.
- All elections shall be conducted in accordance with the prescribed election guidelines presented in Sections 3 and 4.
Procedures for Conducting Elections:
- For purposes of an election, a quorum is defined as ten percent (10%) of the USA membership. No election is valid without a quorum. A simple majority of those members voting shall carry an election. In the event of a tie for any position, a run-off for that position shall be held.
- The Corresponding Secretary shall prepare a ballot from the nominations submitted and verified.
- Ballots shall be distributed electronically to the entire membership on or before the first working day of July.
- The deadline to return a completed ballot shall be clearly stated on the ballot.
- Each USA member shall be allowed to vote only once, and this stipulation shall be clearly stated on the ballot.
- The Webmaster shall collect all returned ballots and deliver them to the President.
Counting the Ballots and Announcing Winners:
- The candidate with the most votes for a position shall be declared the winner of that position.
- In case of a tie, a run-off election for that position shall be conducted.
- The President shall announce the results of the election to the entire membership on or before the July USA general meeting.
- In the event that the election results are contested, the President shall call an emergency Executive Board meeting to discuss and settle the disputed election as deemed appropriate. The person(s) disputing the election shall be notified in writing of the Board's decision.
Alternative to Electronic Ballots:
- The Executive Board, at its discretion, may conduct elections in a paper format, providing that measures to ensure anonymity and security are developed and duly communicated to the USA membership.
Article VII – Removal from Office
- Any elected officer or elected committee representative may be removed from office by a two-thirds majority vote of the executive board whenever, in their judgment, the best interests of the organization shall be served by such removal.
- In the event of inappropriate or lack of representation in fulfilling the duties as defined in the By-Laws, the board shall conduct counseling steps with the officer or committee representative prior to removal from an office or committee. Any such counseling by the board will be a confidential matter and part of the executive board records only.
- If the subject officer or representative is not available for or refuses counseling, the board will document and proceed with the removal from office.
- Additionally, if counseling is deemed ineffective after 30 days, the removal process can proceed.
- Balloting procedures to replace any elected position as a result of removal from office will be the same as any special election as defined in Article VI.
- The committee chairperson may remove a committee member upon the approval of the President. A task force member may be removed by the Task Force Chairperson upon approval by the President.
- Appointed positions will be replaced at the discretion of the Executive Board.
Article VIII – Vacancy of Office
In case of resignation or removal of office, the President shall appoint a member to serve on an interim basis for a specified period of time, except in the case of the Vice President.
If the Vice President assumes the office of President before the President's term of office expires, they will fill the remainder of the President’s term prior to beginning his or her own term. A special election shall be called to fill the vacant term of Vice President should they take over the office of President.
Special elections shall be conducted as stated in Article VI.
An interim officer, interim committee representative, or interim committee alternate will serve until the end of that academic year, or until the next scheduled or called election.
A resignation should be a formal letter that includes the date, a name to whom it is addressed, the reason for the resignation, and the person's signature, submitted to the Recording Secretary. During the vacancy of the resigned position, the President will absorb the duties of the vacant position or will appoint an interim from the board members. Once the position has been filled, the normal duty functions will transfer to the new board member.
Article IX – Amendments
The By-Laws may be amended by a two-thirds majority vote. Before becoming effective, any resolution to amend the By-Laws must be submitted to and approved by the Executive Board. A copy of the resolution to amend the By-Laws must be provided to the association membership by the Corresponding Secretary. There is to be a referendum vote of the association membership within 30 working days from the time the resolution is emailed. The votes are to be tallied and the results made known to the membership.