Article I. NAME AND OBJECTIVES
(a). The name of this organization shall be the Estuaries Section of the American Fisheries Society, hereinafter referred to as the Section and Society respectively.
(b). The objectives of the Section shall be those of the American Fisheries Society as set forth in Article I of the Constitution, and especially, (1) to encourage the exchange of information pertinent to the broad scope of multidisciplinary estuarine issues among members of the Society who belong to this Section; (2) to support and inform the Society’s mission and activities as they relate to estuaries and coastal ecosystems; and (3) to encourage, through awards, leadership opportunities, and other incentives, student participation in the Society and Section.
(c). All activities of this Section shall conform to the Society’s Constitution, Rules, Bylaws, and Procedures.
Article II. MEMBERSHIP
(a). Membership in the Section shall be open to active members of the Society who have an interest in estuarine issues as they relate to fish and fisheries.
(b). Membership is established or renewed by calendar year upon payment of annual Section dues through the Society.
Article III. OFFICERS
(a). The officers of the Section shall consist of a President, a President-Elect, a Secretary, and a Treasurer. One person may hold the offices of Secretary and Treasurer concurrently, at the discretion of the Executive Committee.
(b). All officers must be members in good standing of the Society and the Section.
(c). Officers shall be elected at the annual meeting or by mail or electronic ballot received by members at least 60 days prior to the annual meeting. Members will be allowed at least 30 days from the distribution date to return ballots to the Chair of the Ballot Tally Committee. Terms of newly elected officers shall commence at the Society’s annual meeting; however, terms of newly elected officers shall coincide with those of the Parent Society officers.
(d). Officers shall serve for terms of two years; however, the Secretary and Treasurer may serve more than one consecutive term.
(e). If an office is vacated, the Executive Committee shall appoint a qualified replacement to fill the remainder of the term.
(f). No elected officer or appointed committee member of the Section shall receive any salary or other compensation. Expenses may be defrayed from funds available to the Section when authorized by the Executive Committee.
Article IV. DUTIES OF OFFICERS
(a). The President of the Section shall preside at all meetings, chair the Executive Committee, make appointments, and serve as a voting member of the Society’s Governing Board, except that the President shall serve as a non-voting member unless the Section has at least 50 members at the end of the previous calendar year. The President also performs other duties and functions as authorized by the Section’s Executive Committee. The President shall succeed to the office of Past-President at the end of the term.
(b). The President-Elect shall chair the Program Committee and shall assume the duties of the President if the latter is unable to act. The President-Elect shall advance to the office of President at the end of the term.
(c). The Secretary shall keep the official records of the Section, submit minutes of the Section’s meetings to the Society’s Executive Director within 30 days after each meeting, and discharge other duties as requested by appropriate Society officers.
(d). The Treasurer shall collect, manage, and disburse all Section funds as authorized by the Executive Committee or the membership, submit records of receipts and disbursements at the annual Section meeting, submit a mid-year report to the President in advance of the Society mid-year Governing Board meeting, and discharge other duties as requested by the Executive Committee, or appropriate Society officers.
Article V. EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
(a). The Executive Committee of the Section shall consist of elected officers, the immediate Past-President, and other Section members in good standing as may be appointed by the President. The Executive Committee is authorized to act on behalf of the Section between annual meetings.
(b). A quorum is required for transaction of official business at an Executive Committee meeting. A quorum for an Executive Committee meeting shall consist of a majority of the members. Executive Committee members may appoint a proxy.
(c). Each member of the Executive Committee shall have one vote on Executive Committee decisions. In the event of a tie, the President’s vote shall be the deciding vote.
(d). Executive Committee meetings are called by the President.
Article VI. SECTION COMMITTEES
(a). Committees and Chairpersons of committees, except as listed in Articles IV, V, and VI of these Bylaws, shall be appointed and charged by the President. Except for Standing Committees, Section committees shall cease to function upon the discharge of the duties for which they were appointed.
(b). The Section has established the following Standing Committees:
Ballot Tally: counts ballots in all Section elections and other membership votes on Section business. Chaired by the Secretary; reports to the President.
Nominations: Solicits nominations for elected offices of the Section; chaired by the Past-President; reports to the Executive Committee.
Awards: Develops plans, funding proposals, and announcements for Section awards; chaired by the Treasurer; reports to the Executive Committee.
Newsletter: Edits the Section’s electronic newsletter; solicits news, information, feature articles, etc; chair appointed by the President; reports to the President.
Program: Plans the Section’s annual meeting; develops or solicits proposals for Symposia; chaired by the President-Elect; reports to the Executive Committee.
Bylaws: Periodically reviews Section Bylaws and proposes amendments; coordinates with the Society’s Constitutional Consultant; chaired by the Past-President; reports to the Executive Committee.
Article VII. MEETINGS, VOTING, AND QUORUM
(a). The Section shall hold at least one meeting annually at a time and place designated by its Executive Committee.
(b). A quorum at any meeting for transaction of official business shall be 5 Section members.
(c). Business and voting may be conducted via mail or electronic media if approved by the Executive Committee.
(d). Unless otherwise specified in these Bylaws or the Constitution of the Society, meetings are conducted according to the latest edition of Robert’s Rules of Order.
(e). Decisions at meetings are by simple majority of active members voting, except that two-thirds majorities are required in special cases such as amending the Bylaws and suspending a Rule. Other less frequently used voting requirements are described in Robert’s Rules of Order.
Article VIII. DUES AND FEES
The Executive Committee shall establish annual dues subject to approval of the members voting at the annual meeting. The Executive Committee may assess registration fees for annual meetings.
Article X. AMENDMENT OF BYLAWS
(a). The Bylaws are the defining document for the Section and take precedence over all other rules and procedures of the Section. The Bylaws cannot be suspended and cannot be changed without prior notice to members.
(b). The Bylaws of the Section may be amended by a two-thirds majority approval of those members voting, provided that the proposed amendments are circulated in writing to the membership at least 30 days prior to a meeting. If voting is by mail or electronic ballot, members must be given at least 30 days to return their ballots.
(c). In accordance with the Society Constitution, all amendments shall be reviewed by the Society’s Constitutional consultant for conformity with the Constitution, Rules, and Procedures of the Society.* The Constitutional Consultant presents the adopted amendment(s) to the Society Governing Board for approval.
(d). Following approval by Section membership, bylaw amendments must be submitted to the Executive Director of the Society at least 45 days before the next meeting of the Society’s Governing Board.
(e). Bylaw amendments shall not be implemented until they have been approved by the Society’s Governing Board and the Section receives written notice of their approval from the Society Executive Director.
*The Section’s Executive Committee is encouraged to work with the Society’s Constitutional Consultant on any proposed amendments before a vote of the Section membership. This will usually expedite the process.
A pdf version of the Estuaries Section Bylaws can be downloaded here: