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American Chemical Society Best Practices for Election Procedures in ACS Local Sections and Divisions William H. (Jack) Breazeale, Jr., Chair ACS Committee.

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Presentation on theme: "American Chemical Society Best Practices for Election Procedures in ACS Local Sections and Divisions William H. (Jack) Breazeale, Jr., Chair ACS Committee."— Presentation transcript:

1 American Chemical Society Best Practices for Election Procedures in ACS Local Sections and Divisions William H. (Jack) Breazeale, Jr., Chair ACS Committee on Nominations and Elections

2 American Chemical Society 2 Webinar Objective Offer a tutorial that presents information on best practices for election procedures in ACS Local Sections and Divisions

3 American Chemical Society 3 Local Section/Division Election Procedures Webinar Key Content Areas: Manner of Elections Balloting (paper and electronic) Role of Tellers Reporting Election Results Vacancies, Election Disputes

4 Local Section/Division Election Procedures Webinar Key Content Areas: (Candidates) Finding future candidates (discussion) (Logistics) Follow-ups Acknowledgments American Chemical Society 4

5 Local Section/Division Election Procedures “A Local Section/Division shall elect its own officers, Councilors and Alternate Councilors.” (ACS Constitution - Article XII, Sec. 5b and Article XIII, Sec. 2b) American Chemical Society 5

6 Local Section/Division Election Procedures Local Section and Division bylaws govern the election process. Following the bylaws and revising where appropriate, minimizes election disputes and avoids the possibility that an election must be re- run. American Chemical Society 6

7 Manner of Elections Local Section and Division bylaws typically specify that: Officers, Councilors and Alternate Councilors are elected by members for a specific term. (Neither Society Affiliates, Local Section/Division Affiliates, may vote, nor hold an elected position. Student members may vote; and if the bylaws permit, they may hold an elected office.) A Nominating Committee is required, and by whom and by when the Committee is appointed. American Chemical Society 7

8 Manner of Election Local Section and Division bylaws typically specify: How the election will be conducted for officers and Councilors (balloting at a regular meeting, by mail, and/or electronic balloting) The opportunity for nomination by petition American Chemical Society 8

9 Balloting Balloting should be fair and open to all eligible voters. Ballots should include the name of candidates in a predetermined order (bios and statements should also be included). Ballots should be returned in a separate envelope with a space for a signature. American Chemical Society 9

10 Balloting Always request a current mailing list for those members eligible to vote. (Remember neither Society Affiliates nor Local Section/Division Affiliates may vote.) Retain this list with your voting information for one year. Ballots should not be printed as part of a local section or division newsletter. The period for distribution and return of ballots is usually clearly stated in the bylaws and adhered to. American Chemical Society 10

11 Balloting All ACS elections must be conducted confidentially: the local section/division does not know how an individual member voted in the election. American Chemical Society 11

12 Electronic Balloting Check your bylaws to ensure that the bylaw election information is current and allows for electronic balloting. Ensure that words like “mail”, “signature”, “envelope”, and other similar words are removed from the local section/division bylaws. If changes are needed, submit proposed changes to the Committee on Constitution and Bylaws (C&B) at American Chemical Society 12

13 Electronic Balloting Like mail ballots electronic balloting procedures shall meet the requirements of: 1)Fair and open balloting 2)Balloting that is confidential 3)Protection against fraudulent balloting 4)Ballot archiving 5)Timely reporting of results American Chemical Society 13

14 Electronic Balloting - locating a vendor for electronic elections Check with: Other local section/divisions using an electronic voting system Local college or university – they may have electronic balloting systems for their own use to which they may be willing to give you access SurveyMonkey – American Chemical Society 14

15 Electronic Balloting - locating a vendor for electronic elections Survey & Ballot Systems – –www.surveyandballotsystems.com (contact for details)www.surveyandballotsystems.com The ACS national election vendor – VR Election Services (VRES) –www.vres.uswww.vres.us American Chemical Society 15

16 Electronic Balloting Local Sections and Divisions that are currently using an electronic voting system may be totally electronic or using a hybrid much like the ACS national election system: a combination of paper and electronic ballots. American Chemical Society 16

17 Electronic Balloting Process for electronic balloting in the ACS national election: ACS national election uses an outside vendor (VRES) to manage all aspects of the election. The vendor mails the ballots out to all of the voting membership, receives the ballots back at their office, and tallies the votes. Immediately prior to the election period, the Society sends the vendor the list of all current ACS members. The list qualifies these members as eligible to vote in the election. American Chemical Society 17

18 Electronic Balloting Process for electronic balloting in the ACS national election: The vendor uses the list of member numbers to generate Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) for each ACS member. The vendor tracks which PINs are used for electronic voting and mail ballots in order to reconcile the situations in which a member were to vote by both methods. American Chemical Society 18

19 Electronic Balloting Solutions for resolving double voting include: –First ballot received takes precedence –Mail ballots take precedence –Internet ballot takes precedence –Both ballots denied American Chemical Society 19

20 Electronic Balloting The procedure used in ACS national elections is that the first ballot received (either by Internet or by mail) takes precedence and automatically prohibits the second ballot from being counted. The PINs are encoded as a bar code, which allows the vendor to accurately scan and reconcile each returned (mail ballot). After the ballots have been reconciled, any record of the association of the ACS member numbers with the PINs will be destroyed, which ensures confidentiality for the ACS member. American Chemical Society 20

21 Electronic Balloting For more information on local section and division elections, please visit and view the document “Protocols for Conducting Elections in Divisions and Local Sections.” American Chemical Society 21

22 Role of Tellers The appointment of tellers and their roles should be identified in the bylaws. Tellers should count ballots, tally votes, determine invalid ballots based on the local section/division guidelines. A method for handling tie votes should be clearly stated in the bylaws and adhered to. Tellers should report the vote tally, including rejected ballots to the local section or division secretary or other officer as specified in the bylaws. The report should reach the secretary as soon as possible. American Chemical Society 22

23 Reporting Election Results The secretary or designated officer of the local section or division reports the election results as soon as possible. Following the report to the local section or division, the secretary should report results to the ACS Executive Director for certification. The deadline, as designated in the bylaws, is December Following the announcement of election results, ballots and a copy of the ballot mailing list should be archived for a period to be specified in the bylaws. The recommended period is one year. American Chemical Society 23

24 Vacancies and Election Disputes In the event of a vacancy by an officer or Councilor of a local section or division, a provision should exist in the bylaws calling for selection of an officer either by succession of an officer, appointment of an officer, or special election. Provisions for election disputes should be clearly stated in the bylaws. However, if the dispute cannot be settled, it should be reported to the ACS Committee on Nominations and Elections for resolution. American Chemical Society 24

25 Vacancies and Election Disputes If in a local section or division election the Committee on Nominations and Elections (N&E) finds a significant violation of the Constitution and Bylaws provision regulating procedures, which appears to benefit the winning candidate, the committee may declare the election void and order a new election to fill the vacancy. N&E contact: American Chemical Society 25

26 Local Section/Division Election Procedures Challenges Local Sections and Divisions Face –Identifying candidates to run for office –Following their election bylaw –Reporting election results by the December 1 deadline American Chemical Society 26

27 Local Section/Division Election Procedures Suggestions for identifying candidates for office: –Have the nominating committee maintain a list of possible candidates that are carried over each year –Develop a leadership succession plan –Encourage current officers to mentor members who could possibly become leaders –Recognize current officers for their volunteer efforts –Consider enrolling in the ACS Leadership Development System Course: “Engaging and Motivating Volunteers” American Chemical Society 27

28 Local Section/Division Election Procedures The four-hour ACS Leadership Development System course, “Engaging and Motivating Volunteers” offers the following: –How to ask others to step-up and volunteer –How to delegate and share responsibility for projects –How to keep projects moving –Understand what form of motivation will excite and commit volunteers Visit for more details.www.acs.org/leaders American Chemical Society 28

29 Local Section/Division Election Procedures How have you identified candidates for local section/division offices? What suggestion can you offer others? (discussion) American Chemical Society 29

30 Other Challenges – Updating the Election Bylaw When considering unit bylaw changes, the Committee on Constitution and Bylaws (C&B) offers two documents on the ACS website: –Quick guide for making proposed bylaw changes for C&B Preliminary Review –Bylaw guidelines and MODEL BYLAWS They are located at - then click Constitution and Bylaws, or contact American Chemical Society 30

31 Other Challenges Reporting Election Results by the December deadline –Officers should be listed in the Yellow Book –Committee appointments delayed (Councilor/Alternate Councilor results critical to the process) –Can’t access FORMS, if election results are not in Important: Report Election Results by December 1 American Chemical Society 31

32 Frequently Asked Questions Can letters of endorsement be included in the official ballot mailing? American Chemical Society 32

33 Frequently Asked Questions Can the nominating committee be chosen by someone other than the local section or division chair or the executive committee? American Chemical Society 33

34 Frequently Asked Questions What are the steps in certifying the local section/division election? American Chemical Society 34

35 Frequently Asked Questions “If I suspect an election violation in my local section or division, what is my recourse?” American Chemical Society 35

36 Follow-ups Refer to the frequently asked questions (FAQ) document and the slide presentation “A Tutorial on Best Practices for Election Procedures in ACS Local Section and Divisions posted at Follow your bylaws as they pertain to elections in the local section or division. Always review the bylaws prior to the beginning of the election process. American Chemical Society 36

37 Follow-ups Update your bylaws as needed by contacting the Committee on Constitution and Bylaws at or For election questions, please contact or call American Chemical Society 37

38 Reminder Closely following the bylaws helps ensure that officers are properly in place, and are authorized to act on behalf of your local section or division! American Chemical Society 38

39 Questions/Discussion American Chemical Society 39

40 Acknowledgements The Committee on Nominations and Elections thanks the following for their contributions to this webinar: –Mitchell R. M. Bruce, Chair, Committee on Local Section Activities –Michael Morello, Chair, Committee on Divisional Activities –Harmon Abrahamson, Chair, Committee on Constitution and Bylaws –Flint Lewis, ACS Secretary and General Counsel Staff Liaison, Committee on Nominations and Elections –Yvonne Curry, Assistant Secretary for Governance Affairs, Assistant Staff Liaison, Committee on Nominations and Elections American Chemical Society 40


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