ATA Board Elections Policy

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ATA Board Elections Policy

1. Nominations

  1. Foundation
    The Nominating and Leadership Development Committee (NLDC) shall be appointed pursuant to Article VII, Section 2.d. of the ATA bylaws.

  2. Nominations to the Board of Directors
    Every year, ATA holds elections for three Directors' positions (three-year term) and, in uneven-numbered years, for the positions of President-elect (two-year term), Secretary (two-year term), and Treasurer (two-year term). The NLDC shall identify and propose candidates for each elective position that becomes vacant in that year. It shall propose preferably two candidates for each Officer position (President-elect, Secretary, and Treasurer) and at least two candidates for each Director position.

    The NLDC shall consider all nominations and self-nominations from all qualified members first. If it deems necessary, the NLDC shall also consider and propose additional candidates who were not otherwise nominated. In exceptional cases, a single candidate can be proposed for a position if the NLDC has conducted an extensive search and has been unable to identify a suitable second candidate in its view.

    The NLDC shall attempt to put forward a balanced slate that is representative of the membership at large in accordance with best practices relating to leadership development. In putting together the slate, the NLDC may not reject a nominee solely based on age, race, religion, ethnicity, national origin, gender identity, sexual orientation, working or other languages or other factors that do not directly impact the candidate's inherent leadership ability or ability to effectively represent the membership.

    The NLDC shall impress upon candidates the obligations of Board service, such as time commitments, the fiduciary duties, and adherence to policies.

  3. Nominations Calendar
    A Call for Nominations shall be distributed every January via The ATA Chronicle and other ATA media. It shall include information about the different ways to become a candidate.

    ATA members may propose themselves to the NLDC as potential candidates, be proposed by other members, or be approached by the NLDC.

    Those who respond to the Call for Nominations shall indicate in writing their willingness to run for office, and provide the NLDC with supporting information regarding their qualifications.

    Nominations shall close on March 1. No later than May 1, the NLDC shall present the names of the candidates proposed, together with their written acceptances, to Headquarters, to be forwarded to the Board of Directors.

    The NLDC shall verify, and Headquarters shall confirm, the Active membership status of each candidate before the proposed slate is presented to the Board. The Board shall instruct Headquarters to inform the candidates of the acceptance or non-acceptance of their candidacy by the NLDC and to publish the slate proposed by the NLDC to the membership in the June issue of The ATA Chronicle and on the ATA website and in other ATA media.

    No later than June 25, the candidates nominated by the NLDC shall submit a photograph and a written statement of their backgrounds and platforms (not to exceed 500 words) to Headquarters.

  4. Candidates by Petition
    Once the slate has been published, further nominations for any position may be submitted in accordance with the procedures for petitioning as outlined in the ATA Bylaws, Article VII, Section 2.d.3.

    Petitions must be accompanied by the statements and photographs of the candidates. The statements shall not exceed 500 words.

    No later than August 5, the NLDC shall send to Headquarters the petitions of the candidates by petition in compliance with the requirements above. Headquarters shall forward the list of candidates by petition to the Board.

    The candidates' statements and photographs shall be published in the September issue of The ATA Chronicle, included in the proxy package provided to each voting member, and on the ATA website and in other ATA media.

2. Campaign

  1. Campaigning
    It is the policy of the Association that campaigns should be open, dignified, positive, and focused on the issues and on the qualifications of the candidates. Candidates shall not accept campaign contributions nor shall they personally incur more than nominal expenses for campaigning purposes.

  2. Endorsements
    Because the opinions and comments of the Association’s leadership may be perceived as carrying more weight, all elected office holders and employees of the Association are expected to maintain neutrality surrounding elections, refraining from publicly endorsing or showing preference to any candidate for office, either explicitly or implicitly. No resources of the Association or its Divisions shall be used to promote any candidate outside of their usual publications. Chapters of ATA are encouraged to refrain from making endorsements and to observe an equal space policy.

  3. Equal Space Policy
    Equal space shall be made available for all candidates in all ATA publications and platforms. Sufficient space (maximum word count 500 words) and a photograph will be allocated for each candidate in The ATA Chronicle to set forth their qualifications and goals for the position and to respond to questions appropriate for the position sought. Space may also be made available on electronic forums.

3. Elections

  1. Proxies
    Voting members may authorize a limited (instructed) proxy by providing instructions electronically, if available, to a proxy holder, subject to provisions of New York State law and the ATA bylaws. A designated person may be used to tally the proxies and officially cast the votes at the Annual Meeting of Voting Members as provided in the bylaws. Candidates for office may not be designated as a proxy holder.

  2. Ballots
    Candidates’ names shall be randomized on ballots and proxies.

  3. Candidate Withdrawals
    If a candidate withdraws their nomination more than 4 weeks before proxy voting has begun, the NLDC shall recruit a new candidate for the position and the new candidate shall be listed on the ballot.

    If a candidate withdraws their nomination less than 4 weeks before proxy voting has begun, the withdrawing candidate shall remain on the proxy ballot and the printed ballot, but any votes cast for the withdrawing candidate will be void.

    If a candidate withdraws their nomination after proxy voting has begun, and there is no other candidate nominated for the position, the position shall be considered vacant and filled in accordance with the Association bylaws.

  4. End-of-Elections-Cycle Actions
    At the conclusion of each elections cycle, the NLDC shall transfer to Headquarters all records and files of its discussions and actions. The chair shall contact the Executive Director to coordinate this transfer.

Approved by the ATA Board of Directors, October 27, 2019