Guide: Councilor-at-Large

[ A+ ] /[ A- ]


2008-2009 Edition

Note Bene: Per Council decision, 22 October 2008, this Guide is meant to be a “living document” and must be maintained in a Word format to facilitate revision. Please feel free to revise as needed, adding your initials in parentheses after revision, thus enabling follow-up questions if necessary. At the end of your term, please forward a copy of this Guide to the ADE secretary for archiving. The ADE secretary will distribute the appropriate Guide to the incoming elected Council members, as well as forwarding copies of all Guides to the ADE president.

ADE Council

“Council members serve for 3 years. The council is the decision-making body for the Association, especially in matters of policy. “The council shall have general supervision of the affairs of the association between its business meetings, fix the hour and place of meetings, and make recommendations to the association. The council may delegate any one or more of its members to represent the association or to perform an executive function when attendance by the full council would be impractical.” (Constitution, Article VI) The council hears issues and propositions, presented by the president and committee chairs, discusses them and votes. These discussions take place all year long via e-mail, and also at three council meetings, held in conjunction with the annual meeting. They take an active role in long range planning and often serve as ex officio members of committees. They should make themselves available to ADE members interested in any of the issues under discussion. The Council ratifies the appointment of committees by the president (Constitution, Article VII), elects the ADE’s representative to the NHPRC (Bylaws, Section 6), and approves the budget.”

MJK clarifications 9/09: “Council members serve for 3 years”: There are three councilors-at-large, elected in the same manner as the officers of the ADE. Each councilor serves a three-year term. Because their terms are staggered and partially overlapping, only one new councilor-at-large is elected each year. At large members are eligible for re-election but do not receive compensation or reimbursement for expenses related to attendance at the annual meeting. Each councilor’s term begins at the close of the annual meeting at which their election is announced.

There is no suggested timeline for specific activities. Rather, a councilor-at-large should be prepared throughout his or her term to serve in an advisory capacity to the president and Council. As such, the councilor should be well versed in the Constitution and By-laws of the Association and should also have a good grasp of Roberts Rules of Order Newly Revise, which governs the proceedings of the ADE. The councilor-at-large should keep abreast of the latest issues of Documentary Editing, updates to the ADE Web site, and the e-newsletter. The councilor often provides institutional memory to Council proceedings; occasionally serves as a devil’s advocate to ensure that all ADE’s constituents are represented; offers feedback and votes on issues and topics under consideration; provides suggestions for new members, committee members, and potential award recipients; reviews budgets, committee reports, and official contracts or endorsements that involve the ADE. The councilor-at-large tries to be sure the Association’s best interests and the priorities of the long range plan are at all times well represented.

During their terms, councilors-at-large have served on ADE committees (but usually do not chair them), have participated in advocacy activities, and have assumed special tasks at the direction of the president and Council. Ideally a councilor-at-large should be an experienced member of the ADE whose familiarity with the Association might include possible service on a committee or a previously held elected office. Councilors-at-large should make every effort to attend the Council meetings scheduled throughout their term. Sometimes the president-elect asks an incoming councilor-at-large to be present for the portions of the Council meeting that precede the councilor’s installation so that issues that carry over from one administration to the next and that were recently discussed in Council will have some context. At large members cannot vote at these sessions until officially installed.

The ADE secretary should provide the incoming councilor-at-large with minutes of the previous Council meeting or a report on the votes and actions taken by the Council in the previous year, a copy of the ADE long range plan, as well as the agenda of the Council meeting that occurred before the councilor was officially installed.