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Constitution & Bylaws

Constitution & By-Laws of the Arkansas Association for Women Veterans, Inc.
Article I
Purpose
1. Arkansas Association for Women' Veteran is to serve as an advocate for Arkansas women veterans. AAWV will empower our women veterans with information about their benefits, opportunities, and programs that are available to ensure their success. AAWV will be the voice to our community for and about our women veterans.

2. The AAWV recognizes that there are issues unique to women veterans and their families and it is important that there be an organization in place design to assist in dealing with those issues. The AAWV was formed to empower and inform women veterans regarding benefits, opportunities, networking, and programs to which they may be entitled and provide a voice of advocacy. Through this empowerment it is the hope and practice of this organization that women veterans will serve as examples to our state, their families, and the respective military components of which they served. AAWV will strive to inform the communities at large about the issues and challenges that women veterans face, as well as ways that the community can serve as a support mechanism for women veterans.

The name of the organization shall be Arkansas Association for Women Veterans, Inc.

Article II
Nature of the Association
1. The Arkansas Association for Women Veterans, Inc. is an affiliation of veterans and service organizations and is a civilian organization composed of people who are current or former members of any recognized nationally chartered veterans or service organizations, their spouses or families of same, to include parents. There is no rank that exists in the Arkansas Association for Women Veterans, Inc. (henceforth referred to as the AAWV) and no member shall be addressed by military title in any meeting of the AAWV nor use such military rank or title for purposes of influence.
a. equitable access to federal and state veterans’ service and benefits;
b. Assess the needs of women veterans with respect to improve the women’s veterans programs.
c. To make recommendations to leaders in our community to improve benefits and services.
d. Review programs, research projects, and other initiatives.
e. Incorporate women veterans issues in the association's strategic plan and the program shall provide assistance to women who served in the United States Armed Forces.

Article III
Members of the Board
1. There shall be no less than ten (10) and no more than twenty (20), voting members of the board to include the officers. The president will be a non-voting member unless there is a tie vote, in which case the president will cast the deciding vote.
2. Members of the Board shall be drawn from the membership of the association.
3. Board members will serve terms of two (2) years, with ½ the members of the initial board to serve one (1) years in order to establish an alternate-election year cycle for the board as a whole, in order to ensure that at least ½ the board members have experience in serving at all times, thereby providing continuity.
4. Board meetings will be held quarterly, to occur on the third Tuesday of the months of November, November, February, May and August.
5. Those board members who miss more than two unexcused sequential absences will be automatically removed from their position and an election held for replacement to complete that board member's time of tenure, unless such mitigating circumstances are presented by the member that might justify that member to continue to serve. The member is responsible for presenting such mitigating circumstances to the board as a whole which will consider waiving the removal based on a majority vote.
6. A majority of board members constitutes a quorum.
7. In absence of a quorum, no formal action shall be taken except to adjourn the meeting to a subsequent date. 8. Passage of a motion requires a simple majority (i.e., one more than half the members present so long as there is a quorum).
8. Special meetings shall be convened by the petition to the Secretary by a majority of the voting members. All meetings shall be governed by Robert’s Rules of Order and are not considered as mandatory for the purposes of continued board membership. Special meetings may be held at any time when called for by the President/Vice President or a majority of Board members.

Article IV
Officers of the Board
1. Officers of the Board shall consist of a President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer nominated by the Board and voted in by a majority vote of the Board.
2. Elected officers will serve a term of one year as elected officers, with board membership to consist of two-year terms.
(a) The President shall preside at all Board meetings, appoint committee chairs and members and perform other duties as associated with the office.
(b) The Vice-President shall assume the duties of the President in case of the President's absence.
(c)The Secretary shall be responsible for the minutes of the Board, keep all approved minutes in a minute book, and distribute copies of minutes to all members of the board at least electronically.
(d) The Treasurer shall keep a current record of the organization’s budget, membership dues payment status and prepare financial reports as needed.
(e) All officers shall serve a term for one (1) year or until their successor is elected or appointed.
3. Election Process- board election shall take place annually, with the exception of the initial board election. At that election, ½ the board members will be elected to serve one two (1) year term and ½ the members will be elected to a two (2) year term. Those members of the board to initially serve a two (2) year term will include the core members, which are the officers. All Board elections will be for the period of two (2) year terms with elections being held at the November meeting.
4. There shall be no proxy voting nor shall there be any absentee voting. Any member who is entered into nomination for an officer position shall be present at the November election meeting or will be removed from consideration for such office.
5. If any measure is passed by the necessary vote of all members of the Association, then any shall not make any public statement disagreeing with the position taken by the vote of the Association. If such happens then such person is subject to being expelled from membership or representation as a voting member of the Association.
6. There will be no membership dues unless and until the constitution and by laws are amended to allow such dues.

Article V
Membership
1. There will be two types of membership: primary and associate memberships. Those women veterans who have served in any branch of the United States military services will be eligible for Primary Membership. Spouses, family members and responsible parties are eligible for Associate Membership in the Association.
2. Any member of the board who has a financial, personal, or official interest in, conflict or appearance of conflict with any matter pending before the Board, of such nature that it prevents or may prevent that member from acting on the matter in an impartial manner, will offer to the Board to voluntarily excuse him/herself and will vacate his seat and refrain from discussion and voting on said item.
3. The fiscal year of the board shall be January 01- December 31.

Article VI
Amendments
1. These by-laws may be amended by a two-third vote of Board members present at any meeting, provided a quorum is present and provide a copy of the proposed amendment(s) are provided to each Board member at least one week prior to said meeting.
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