Approved by National Audubon Society Board of Directors, 5/18/12
PROCEDURES FOR ELECTION OF REGIONAL DIRECTORS TO THE NATIONAL AUDUBON BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Article III, Sections Three and Fourteen, of the By-Laws of National AudubonSociety (NAS) state,“…the Board shall include no fewer than one Director representing each region of the National Audubon Society, who shall have been nominated by either chapters or members of the Society in the region each represents, through procedures approved by the Board … The names of the regionally nominated Directors shall be placed upon the official slate of nominees of the National Audubon Society for election at the Annual Meeting of Members.”
• All chapters in a Chapter Election Region where an election is to occur shall be sent by October 1 from the Chapter Services Office an email with information about the election and nomination process and a schedule of deadlines for the election.
• Each chapter in good standing on the July 1st preceding the election cycle in a NationalAudubon Chapter Election Region has the opportunity to nominate one NationalAudubon member to run via the chapter nomination process.
• The specific nomination process for each chapter is to be determined by that chapter. The process must be open with notice to chapter members at least 30 days prior to the selection of the nominee.
• In addition to nomination by Chapters,the Regional Directors acting as a nominating committee may nominate one or more candidates to be voted on by the Chapters in that region.
• Candidates also may be nominated by petition signed by 20 or more individual members in the region.
• The member must live in the Chapter Election Region where the election is occurring. All candidates must confirm in writing their willingness to serve as Regional Director. Contact information and a consent form will be available online.
• All nominations must be entered online between January 1 and February 15.
• In the event nominations for a particular region are not received within specified time periods, the Chapter Services Office will work with the Regional Directors on the Board to create an amended election schedule.
• Campaigning by nominees may take place between February 22 and April 30.
• The Chapter Services Office will provide each candidate in the regional election,for campaign purposes,one set of email addresses for each chapter president in the region,and another set of email addresses for each chapter newsletter editor in the region. One set of chapter president email addresses will also be sent to any chapter which nominates a candidate for the regional election.
• Each nominee,chapter and council has the opportunity to take whatever campaign steps it deems appropriate to promote the election process.
CHAPTER VOTING PROCEDURES
• If more than one candidate is nominated to fill the open position by any of the means noted above,all candidates will be presented for a vote of the Chapters in an election. If there is only one candidate for the open position,the sole candidate will be nominated directly to the NAS Board of Directors and an election will not take place.
• The Chapter Regional Election process uses a weighted vote system that provides each chapter with a specific number of ballots. The number of ballots assigned to any given chapter is based on the total NationalAudubonMembership size of the chapter as of June 30 preceding the election as validated by the Membership Department of NationalAudubonSociety. Chapters with up to 500 members will receive 1 ballot;from 501 to 1000 members,2 ballots;from 1001 to 1700 members,3 ballots;1701 to 2500 members,4 ballots;and over 2500 members,5 ballots. A chapter may choose to cast all of its ballots for one candidate or split its vote among the candidates.
• Each chapter is responsible for developing and carrying out its election in a fair and appropriate fashion. Whether the election is by membership vote,action of the Directors,or otherwise,the chapter should provide reasonable notice of all aspects of the election process to the members.
• Notice of the election could be provided in newsletters,correspondence or memos to members,posted on bulletin boards in places whereAudubonactivities are normally announced,and/or by announcements at regular chapter meetings. These notices should inform the chapter members of the nominees and their biographies. The date,time and place where the actual chapter voting will take place should always be included.
• Ballots will be made available online to all Chapter Presidents or their designated alternate between February 22 and April 30.The results of the chapter election must be certified by the chapter and entered online by the Chapter President or designated alternate by April 30.
• Ballots and Election Certification Forms received after April 30 will not be counted.
• The Chapter Services Office will maintain a site for this election on the National AudubonWeb Page at http://chapterservices.audubon.org/chapter-leader-guide/election-progress. The site will contain information on the candidates, a reminder of the key dates, a “chat room” for chapters to query their candidates and a listing of chapters that have returned their ballots.
BALLOT COUNTING PROCEDURES
• All ballots will be held unopened by the Chapter Services Office until voting has been completed.
• The counting is open to any Audubonmember. The Chapter Services Office shall open,count and tally the chapter ballots received. The candidate receiving the most votes,and at least 40% of the total votes cast,will be declared the regional nominee. The Chapter Services Office shall certify via email,to the chairperson of the Nominating Committee for the NAS Board of Directors,the name of the winning regional nominee,whose name will be placed on the slate of nominees to the NAS Board that is voted upon at the Annual Meeting of Members. The new nominee will be able to participate in subsequent NAS Board meetings. All ballots will be secured and retained by the Chapter Services Office until after the Annual Meeting.
• The Chapter Services Office will announce promptly via email the results of the election including the number of votes received by each candidate,to all candidates and to the president,or acting president,and newsletter editor of each chapter in the Chapter Election Region. The name of the candidate for whom a chapter voted will not be released by NationalAudubonbut each chapter may inform its members of the chapter’s choice by an appropriate means as determined by such Chapter’s Board of Directors. All nominees will be called immediately after the ballots are counted.
• In the event of a tie among the candidates receiving the most votes,or in the event that no candidate receives at least 40% of the votes,the Chapter Services Office will promptly make arrangements to conduct a runoff between the two top candidates. Runoff ballots will be made available online to all chapters in the Chapter Election Region.
• Chapters with disqualified ballots will receive a prompt letter from the Chapter Services Office explaining the fact of the disqualification and the reason why the chapter’s vote was disqualified.
• Any other questions on the election process should be directed to Lynn Tennefoss,Vice President,State Programs and Chapter Services,National AudubonSociety,Building 30,Fort Missoula Road,Missoula,MT59804. Telephone/Fax: (800) 542-2748. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
• In the event of a vacancy existing among the Regional Directors, the election procedures described above will apply to fill the vacancy with the following modifications:
• The Chapter Services Office will create a schedule under a shortened timeframe to fill such vacancy, providing for nominations and, if necessary, a special election. The schedule will include the following:
- A date for the initial notice to Chapters in the region where the vacancy exists, announcing the vacancy and the deadlines described in this list;
- A period of time for making nominations and a deadline for receipt of nominations by the Chapter Services Office;
- If there is only one candidate and no election shall take place, the date on which the Chapter Services Office shall notify Chapters and National Audubon staff in the region where the vacancy exists, and the Nominating Committee of the NAS Board of Directors of the winning nominee who will fill the vacancy;
- If there is more than one candidate, then:
i. A period of time during which campaigning by the nominees may occur;
ii. A period of time during which ballots will be made available;
iii. A deadline for receipt of Chapter ballots by the Chapter Services Office;
iv. A deadline for tallying the Chapter ballots by the Chapter Services Office and informing the candidates, Chapters, National Audubon staff in the region where the vacancy exists, and the Nominating Committee of the NAS Board of Directors of the winning nominee who will fill the vacancy; and
- In all cases, the date of the next meeting of the NAS Board of Directors at which the winning nominee shall be elected to fill the vacancy and the date of the next annual meeting of members at which the winning nominee shall be placed on the ballot to complete the term of the Director who resigned.
• The Chapter Services Office will not maintain a web site in connection with the filling of a vacancy. Any questions or comments on the filling of the vacancy should be directed to the Vice President, State Programs and Chapter Services, at the contact information listed above.
• The NAS Board of Directors shall elect the winning regional nominee to fill the vacancy at the next meeting of the NAS Board following the election. The winning nominee will be eligible to attend such meeting of the NAS Board as a voting member of the NAS Board.
• The winning nominee so elected by the NAS Board of Directors to fill the vacancy shall serve until the next annual meeting of members, when the winning nominee shall be placed on the ballot to complete the term of the Regional Director whose departure from the NAS Board gave rise to the vacancy.