Constitution

The North Dakota Association of the Blind, Inc.

Constitution

Adopted: June 11, 2011

Last Amended: June 9, 2019

Table of Contents

Article I. Name 3

Section 1. 3

Article II. Purpose 3

Section 1. 3

Article III. Membership 3

Section 1. 3

Section 2. 3

Section 3. 4

Section 4. 4

Section 5. 4

Article IV. Officers 4

Section 1. 4

Section 2. 4

Section 3. 5

Section 4. 6

Article V. Executive Board 6

Section 1. 6

Section 2. 7

Section 3. 8

Article VI. Conventions 9

Section 1. 9

Section 2. 9

Section 3. 9

Section 4. 9

Section 5. 9

Section 6. 9

Article VII. Amending the Constitution 9

Section 1. 9

Section 2. 10

Article I. Name


Section 1. The name of this organization shall be: The North Dakota Association of the Blind, Incorporated. Hereinafter, this organization shall be referred to by its trade name, NDAB.

Article II. Purpose


Section 1. The purpose of NDAB shall be:

A. To promote the educational, social and cultural betterment of individuals who are blind or visually impaired, particularly for those persons who reside in North Dakota.

B. To encourage and assist persons who are blind or visually impaired, especially those with recent sight loss, to develop their abilities and potentialities so that they can assume their rightful role in the community.

C. To promote public understanding of vision loss and of the capabilities of persons who are blind or visually impaired.

D. To work with organizations and agencies in the interests of individuals who are blind or visually impaired.

E. To strive to enhance the way of life for persons who are blind or visually impaired.

F. To improve opportunities for employment for persons who are blind or visually impaired.

Article III. Membership


Section 1. Any person 18 years of age or older shall be eligible for membership in this organization.


Section 2. A majority (more than 50%) of the membership shall be comprised of persons who are “legally” blind or visually impaired.


Section 3. Junior Members. A person under the age of 18 (or no younger than 14) may apply for membership. They shall be considered junior members of NDAB and may not hold office or have voting rights in the organization until the age of 18 has been attained. However, junior members of NDAB may serve as committee members and shall have the right to participate in deliberations of the organization while it is assembled in Convention.


Section 4. Application for Membership. Any person wishing to become a member of this organization shall make application to the executive board. The executive board reserves the right to approve the worthiness of individuals who seek to become members of NDAB. An applicant seeking membership shall not be excluded solely based upon their age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation nor for their membership in another consumer organization of the blind.


Section 5. Dues. The annual convention reserves the right to establish or change membership dues. Members shall pay annual dues each year. Payment of annual dues shall be a pre-requisite for the right to vote or hold office in NDAB. If a member’s current dues are not paid by May 30th, that person’s membership is forfeited and they must reapply to become a member.

Article IV. Officers


Section 1. Officers NDAB shall have the following officers: president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, development director, immediate past president, and three board directors. Other officers may be added by a two-thirds vote of the convention. The president and vice president and two of the directors must be legally blind or visually impaired.


Section 2. Election of Officers

A. Officers shall be elected for a term of two years and until a successor is elected or appointed.

B. Directors shall be elected for a term of three years and until a successor to that directorship is elected or appointed. One director will be elected at each annual convention.

C. The president and vice president shall not be elected for a third consecutive term.

D. The three (3) directors shall not succeed themselves in that office.

E. Whenever an office or directorship is vacated, the person who is appointed to fill that position shall serve until the next Convention when an election for that office must be held.

F. Whenever an office or directorship is vacated, the counsel and consent of the remaining members of the Board shall be required for appointment to fill vacant positions of officers or directors.

G. The immediate past president shall hold this office until a new president is elected. If for whatever reason the position of Immediate Past President is vacated, that position shall remain vacant.

H. Unless a candidate is unopposed, all elections shall be by ballot and a majority of all the votes cast shall be required for election.

I. Installation of officers shall be made the last order of business of the convention prior to adjournment.


Section 3. Qualifications of officers

A. The president and vice president and two of the directors must be legally blind or visually impaired.

B. Attainment of the minimum age of 18 and payment of annual dues shall be pre-requisites for the right to hold office.

C. All elected officers and directors shall be a resident of the State of North Dakota during their terms of office or in a city in a neighbor state, that city shall share a common border with its sister city in North Dakota. Examples of such cities are Fargo – Moorhead and Grand Forks – East Grand Forks.

D. To avoid undue influence and any potential conflict of interest, no more than one member from a household shall serve concurrent terms as a member of the executive board.

E. To avoid conflict of interest officers shall not hold office while serving as an officer in another consumer organization of the blind.


Section 4. General Duties. Officers and directors shall have the following duties:

A. To regularly attend meetings of the board and be knowledgeable about the business that needs to be discussed and acted upon.

B. To be actively involved in the activities of the organization and to provide leadership on the committees of NDAB.

C. To serve as voting members of the executive board.

D. Each officer shall perform all duties normally associated with the office according to Roberts Rules of Order Revised and any additional duties assigned by the convention or the executive board.

Article V. Executive Board


Section 1. Composition of the executive board.

A. NDAB shall have an executive board composed of the president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, development director, immediate past president and three (3) board directors. A majority of all members of the board shall be blind or visually impaired.

B. The elected and listed officers (6) and board directors (3) shall constitute the voting members of the Executive Board.


Section 2. Duties of the Executive Board.

A. The executive board shall serve as the governing body of NDAB between conventions.

B. The board shall present a report of its meetings and activities to the convention. All minutes of meetings of the executive board are to be published in the Promoter, the official publication of NDAB.

C. The board shall carry out the policies and programs of NDAB as adopted by the convention.

D. The board shall supervise the planning of all conventions and set the dates of the annual convention if not decided upon by the convention.

E. The board shall review all applications of prospective members and shall vote on their acceptance.

F. The board shall share the information it has regarding the qualifications of new members.

G. The board shall remove from service any inactive, inefficient or uncooperative committee personnel.

H. The board shall present a yearly report of its official acts at the annual convention. Such acts are actions that have been taken in the name of NDAB and are not a part of the policies and programs that have been adopted by the convention.

I. All official actions taken by the executive board shall be subject to review by the conventions of NDAB.

J. The board shall hear charges brought against members and decide whether the member should be suspended or expelled. Any board decision may be appealed to the convention.

K. The executive board shall receive resolutions and present them to the convention.

L. Between conventions the executive board shall have general supervision of the Promoter, the official publication of NDAB.


Section 3. Meetings

A. The meetings of the executive board may be held in person or by telephone conference call. The board members may be polled in writing and the secretary shall keep a record of the votes cast.


B. The executive board shall be called into session at the discretion of the president or upon request of ten percent (10%) of the members of NDAB, or upon request of any three (3) members of the executive board. The secretary shall notify the members of the meeting. Any member may object to the sufficiency of the notice in writing or by appearing at the meeting. If a member does not object to the sufficiency of the notice the member shall have waived the right to object.

C. The executive board shall hold a meeting at the time and place of the convention of NDAB. To maintain organizational continuity, the executive board is instructed to hold a minimum of 4 quarterly meetings per year. An interval of 3 months should not pass between each executive board meeting. A quorum for the business meetings of the executive board of directors shall be six (6) members.

D. All meetings of the executive board shall be open to all NDAB members and others that are invited by the president.

The only exception to this open meeting rule is if the president is to convene the board in executive session for the purpose of considering and discussing sensitive matters, issues and information of a financial nature that are confidential to the parties involved.

Article VI. Conventions


Section 1. The primary authority of NDAB shall reside with the membership whenever it is assembled in convention and shall herein be referred to as the convention.


Section 2. NDAB shall hold a regular annual convention and may hold special conventions.


Section 3. The convention shall fix the time and place of the next or succeeding conventions. If the convention fails to perform this duty the executive board shall set the time and place for such.


Section 4. A notice of each convention shall be given to all members at least thirty days prior to the meeting.


Section 5. A majority of the membership present at any convention shall constitute a quorum.


Section 6. Roberts Rules of Order Revised shall govern on all parliamentary questions not covered by this Constitution or the By-Laws of NDAB.

Article VII. Amending the Constitution


Section 1. This Constitution may be amended by the following procedures:

A. Any proposed amendments to the Constitution shall be submitted in writing to the executive board at least 60 days prior to the Annual Convention.

B. The executive board shall place the petition to make amendment(s) to the Constitution on the agenda of the next convention and shall include a copy of the proposed amendment(s) with the notice of the convention.

C. A two-thirds vote of all members present and voting shall be required for the adoption of any constitutional amendment.


Section 2. A motion to amend the Constitution may be made and considered at a regular convention.

A. The said motion shall require a simple majority.

B. If the motion to consider passes, the proposed amendment shall be placed on the agenda of the next convention and a copy of the proposed amendment shall be included with the notice of convention.

C. A two-thirds vote (2/3) of those present and voting is required to pass all proposed constitutional amendments.