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It is Spring Time everyone!  It’s not only time to plant flowers but to choose officers. During this time of year many organizations are electing new officers and board members.  Be sure that you do it fairly, honestly and follow the rules. 

The first procedure is to look in your bylaws to see what they say about this entire process.  The bylaws should include the eligibility requirements.  Anyone who is not eligible even if nominated and elected cannot serve.  Remember this important point.  The next step is to appoint a Nominating Committee.  Hopefully the bylaws state that the board or members appoint or elect the committee and not the president. (This provision allows one person to basically control the organization.  I smell a rat here!) After the nominating committee is appointed, they should look for the best people to serve in these offices.  The committee should look for those who are committed to the organization, are willing to devote the time and attention to the office, and have the skills to fill the duties of the office.  The committee should not have to come up with more than one nominee for each office.  The committee must ask each nominee if they are willing to serve before they are selected.  At the meeting designated to present the nominations, the committee reports and presents its nominees for each office.  Then the president repeats back the names and asks for further nominations from the floor.

After the nominees are presented then the president takes a vote.  If the bylaws state that it shall be a ballot vote, then the vote must be taken by ballot unless the bylaws provide an exception when there is only one nominee for each office.  The vote can be taken by voice, by a show of hands, by roll call or by ballot.  No one is elected until they receive a majority vote. Even if only one person is nominated for a slot, the members still have to vote.  A nomination is not an election.  Sometimes bylaws state that an election is valid if a person receives the most votes or a plurality of the votes.  So look in your bylaws!

After the election be sure to give the new officers some training!  This is where organizations have their break down and things go awry. 

Little Ben’s final words of wisdom:  So plant some flowers, water your garden and see how they grow.  Do the same for your new officers (without the water.) Shower them with training and praise.  Then see how they grow!