Below are the Constitution and By-Laws of the American Musicological Society-Capital Chapter. They are also available for download in pdf format: Constitution2015.
Article I: Name
This organization is known as the “Capital Chapter of the American Musicological Society.” In the Constitution and Bylaws of the Capital Chapter, the American Musicological Society is referred to as “the Society” and the Capital Chapter as “the Chapter.” The official abbreviation for headings, checks, etc. must read: “CC-AMS.”
Article II: Objectives
The object of the Chapter shall be the same as that of the American Musicological Society, as stated in the By-laws of the Society, namely, the advancement of scholarship in the various fields of music through research, learning, and teaching. The Society shall be operated as a nonprofit corporation exclusively for this object.
Article III: Area
The geographical area of the Chapter includes those parts of the states of Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia comprising the following Zip Codes: Maryland, 20601 – 21499 and 21701 – 21799; Virginia, 22001 – 23299 and 24401 – 24499; West Virginia, 25401 – 25499; District of Columbia, 20001 – 20599. National members of the Society who reside or work outside the aforementioned areas may also be members of the Capital Chapter upon application to the Chapter Secretary-Treasurer and payment of Chapter dues, as described in the Chapter Bylaws under Article I: Membership and Dues.
Article IV: Membership
The membership of the Chapter consists of Regular (Senior) Members, and Student (Junior) Members residing within the Chapter’s geographical area. The eligibility for membership is as provided in Article III of the Society’s Bylaws. Membership in good standing in the Society is a prerequisite to Chapter membership. Members of the Society who reside or work outside the areas mentioned under Article III above may also become members of the Capital Chapter upon application to the Chapter Secretary-Treasurer and payment of Chapter dues.
Article V: Government
The officers of the Chapter constitute its permanent government. The officers consist of a Chapter Chair, Vice-Chair (if the Chapter so desires), Secretary and Treasurer. The same person may serve as both Secretary and Treasurer. The Chapter Chair, on the advice of fellow officers, may from time to time appoint committees to function ad hoc. Such committees include, but are not limited to, such functions as nominations and program planning.
Article VI: Meetings
The Chapter must hold at least one general meeting during the calendar year. General meetings are open to all interested persons, but business sessions of the general meeting are only open to active members. Meetings of the officers are open only to the officers of the Chapter. Guests may be invited to the general business or officers’ meetings by the Chair of the Chapter or presiding officer, with a letter or email of invitation, of which a copy must be sent to the Chair of the Chapter and the Secretary of the Chapter, should the presiding officer not be the Chair of the Chapter.
Article VII: Amendments
The Constitution or Bylaws of the Chapter may be amended by two-thirds (2/3) vote of those active regular members who vote on the specific amendment. (See the Chapter Bylaws, Article VII). All amendments to the Constitution or to the Bylaws must be in consonance with the Bylaws of the Society.
Article VIII Ratification
This Constitution is ratified and comes into force by a vote of two thirds (2/3) of the members voting in a ratification ballot.
Article I: Membership and Dues
All members of the Society who live in the Capital Chapter area (as defined in the Chapter Constitution) are members of the Chapter. Members may be “active” or “inactive.” The Chapter sets annual dues. The dues are payable at any time, but are valid only for a specified calendar year or for the remainder of the calendar year of payment. Members who have paid Chapter dues are “active members.” (These members need not be residents of the Capital Chapter area.) Members who have not paid dues are designated “inactive members.” Inactive members may be reinstated to active membership by paying for the current year. Inactive members do not attend Chapter business meetings or vote in Chapter elections or for winners of the Lowens Award Competition. Only active student members are eligible for the Lowens Award Competition. Prospective members or members of other Chapters who are requesting transfer and active membership are to remit their dues with their letter of request. Those entering after November 15 may choose to apply their dues to the next calendar year.
Article II: Duties and Privileges of Officers
The Chair is the chief administrative officer of the Chapter and presides at general meetings of the Chapter. The Chair is an ex officio member of all committees except the Nominating Committee, but has no voting privileges in them. The Chair may apply to the Society for a monetary grant for particular projects within a chapter’s official activities or functions (Society Bylaws, Article XI.6.). The Vice-Chair assists the Chair, administers the Irving Lowens Award for student research, and completes any term of office that the Chair leaves incomplete. The Secretary is responsible for the Chapter’s membership records, membership mailings, Chapter directory, minutes of Chapter business meetings, and the website. The Secretary administers Chapter elections, collects and preserves written material concerning Chapter business, submits the required yearly Chapter report about meetings and financial operations to the Society’s national office, and forwards copies of any Chapter publications within one month of issue to the Secretary of the Society and the editor of the Society’s Journal. The maintenance of the website may be delegated by the Secretary to an active member of the Chapter who will then serve as Webmaster, though responsibility for the content of the website rests with the Secretary. The Treasurer keeps, receives, and disburses Chapter funds, keeps an accurate and full account of all Chapter financial transactions, maintains a Chapter checking account and a savings account, if desired, and submits an annual financial report to the Chapter membership and the Secretary of the Society. The National Council Chapter representative represents the Chapter at the annual meeting of the Council of the Society and reports to the membership of the Chapter at the subsequent Chapter meeting. Two National Council student representatives represent the student members of the Chapter at the annual meeting of the Council of the Society. The student members are students who have embarked on doctoral programs in any field of musical scholarship (Society Bylaws, Article IV.2.). The first student representative to be appointed, in collaboration with the second student representative, prepares and presents a report to the membership at the subsequent Chapter meeting. The official correspondence privilege on behalf of the Chapter is reserved for the officers. Only the Chair, Vice-Chair, and Treasurer may sign checks.
Article III: Terms of Office
The term of every office, except that of National Council Representative, is two years. The Chair is elected in odd-numbered years and the Vice-Chair and Secretary-Treasurer (or Secretary and Treasurer) in even-numbered years.
One National Council Student Representative is elected each year to a two-year term. The National Council Chapter representative is elected for a three-year term in accordance with the national Bylaws of the Society. Every active member may become a candidate for elective office, except for the office of Student Representative, which is reserved for student members of the Chapter only. No member may be a candidate for the office of Chair or Vice-Chair more than twice in succession. The National Council Representatives may not succeed themselves. No member may accept a Chapter office during the first year of service in any other Chapter office. Members may not continue in office if their permanent residence has been transferred out of the Chapter’s jurisdiction, if they become physically or mentally incapacitated, if they are suspended from active membership, or if their removal has been requested by the Executive Board of the Society or by the two-thirds majority of the Chapter’s membership voting in a referendum called for that purpose. Unexpired terms of the offices of Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, and National Council Representative are to be filled by a special election. The Chair may appoint a replacement Student Representative to the Society’s Council. Officers begin their terms of office by July 1. In the event of no fall meeting, they assume office by October 1.
Article IV: Elections
1) On or before March 15 of each year, the Secretary mails or emails a ballot containing the proposed slate of officers prepared by the Nominating Committee. The ballot may also be posted
to the Chapter website by its Webmaster or by the Secretary. Ballots that are mailed are to be accompanied by envelopes marked “Cap. Chap. Ballot”; they are returned to the Secretary. Ballots must include brief professional biographies of each candidate for office. 2) Active members may add a candidate for office to the ballot in writing, but the added candidate must receive the majority vote in order to be considered “elected.” 3) The consent to serve if elected must be obtained by letter or email from every nominee or write-in candidate whose name appears on the ballot before the vote takes place. 4) The membership of the Chapter must receive the ballots from the Secretary by April 15 or at the very latest at the last Spring chapter meeting. 4) The ballots are tabulated at the Spring meeting by two (2) active regular members (who are not officers) chosen and supervised by the Secretary. If there is no Spring meeting, the ballots must be tabulated by April 25. The new elected officers will be announced at the spring meeting or, if the ballots are tabulated afterwards, by email before May 31. Candidates receiving the greatest number of valid votes are considered elected. In case of a tie, a run-off election must be held. The newly-elected officers should become familiar with the Chapter’s files or affairs before their term of office begins. The incumbent Chapter officers must close all business by June 30 of their last year in office and transfer all Chapter documents to their successor by July 31.
Article V: Meetings
With the advice of the officers, the Chapter chair determines the dates of meetings. The Chapter chair, secretary or program chair mails or emails notices of an approaching meeting at least one month in advance. A simple majority of the officers or one-third of the active membership has the authority to call a special meeting. Voting privileges at business meetings are restricted to active members. The business meeting is to be governed by the most recent edition of Robert’s Rules of Order in matter of parliamentary procedure.
Article VI: Chapter Archive
An archive shall be maintained to preserve items relating to the chapter. The types of materials housed in the Archive include but are not limited to: programs, abstracts, and hand-outs from chapter meetings; correspondence about chapter business (including print-outs of important e-mails); records of performances and papers; and membership records. The Archive shall be housed at a library within the geographical bounds of the chapter. The chair shall appoint an archivist, who for an unspecified term shall work with a librarian of the institution to manage the collection. The Archive shall be available for viewing by any interested person, although sensitive items may be sealed for an appropriate length of time at the discretion of the archivist, donor, or a chapter officer. Any chapter member may donate items to the Archive at any time by contacting the archivist; officers should submit materials deemed unnecessary for active chapter business shortly after the conclusion of their term. Donations are subject to review by the archivist and the holding library; if material is deemed superfluous to the Archive then the archivist will contact the donor in order to return the items. If the donor does not accept the return of the items then they may be disposed of at the archivist’s discretion.
Article VII: Dissolution
Upon dissolution of the Chapter, assets shall be distributed for one or more exempt purposes within the meaning of section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or shall be distributed to the federal government, or to a state or local government, for a public purpose.
Article VIII: Amendments
Amendments to the Constitution or Bylaws of the Chapter may be proposed by any five active regular members and submitted to the Secretary by October 1. The secretary then mails or emails the text of the proposed amendment to the active membership, together with ballots or directions for voting, by October 10. The marked ballots are to be received by November 10.