ByLaws

Florida Association on Higher Education and Disability (FL-AHEAD) Bylaws

Adopted: 2008

Revised and approved: Summer 2017

ARTICLE I: THE ORGANIZATION

 Section 1. Name: 

This not-for-profit, statewide organization shall be known as The Florida Association on Higher Education and Disability, or FL-AHEAD, also referred to as the Association throughout this document.

Section 2. Affiliation.

The Florida AHEAD (FL-AHEAD) shall be an affiliate of the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD), an international professional membership association committed to full participation of persons with disabilities in post-secondary education.

Section 3. Purpose:

  The purpose of the Association is to promote communication among post-secondary disability service professionals, provide educational and professional development opportunities for its members, and to develop a statewide network for disability support services.

Section 4. Mission:

The mission of the FL-AHEAD is to enhance professional knowledge and educational initiatives that effect full participation of individuals with disabilities in post-secondary education and specifically:

  • Promote timely statewide communication among disability services professionals through Florida listserve
  • Sponsor professional development opportunities for individuals in the field.
  • Publish and disseminate statewide resources including: best practices, research, current and emerging technology, and other advancements in the field.
  • Expand current and develop new educational post-secondary resources and opportunities for students with disabilities.
  • Provide information and strategies that encourage the use of universal design principles throughout the higher education community.
  • Recognize members of the Affiliate who have contributed to the profession.
  • Recognize students, programs, or research within the state that impacts higher education and disability

To fulfill the Florida AHEAD mission, the Association shall promote:

Educational Opportunities

The Association shall serve as the state’s primary source of expertise for information on disability, disability awareness, related legislation, disability rights and responsibilities, and any other relevant information as it relates to higher education and disability. This objective may be accomplished through any of the following means:

  • Offering assistance to members on topical information, current issues and needed resources.
  • Collecting and disseminating relevant information through various venues such as publications (electronic or hard copy) and training programs.
  • Maintaining an up-to-date website with resources and links to other relevant sites.

Professional Development

The Association shall organize and host activities for the purpose of providing professional development opportunities for disability service providers and their constituents in the region. This objective may be accomplished through activities such as:

  • Hosting statewide meetings/conferences to address both national and state-wide issues.
  • Facilitating access to experts in areas of particular interest.
  • Facilitating access to webcasts and other broadcasted events for remote and/or under funded institutions.
  • Sponsoring video- and/or teleconference meetings and presentations.

Leadership Development, Professional Interaction and Networking Opportunities

The Association shall facilitate professional interacting and networking opportunities for statewide disability service professionals and their constituents.

  • Offering scholarships/fee waivers for members or other representatives from member/represented institutions of higher education in Florida, to attend statewide events and/or become members of the Association.
  • Leadership and Professional development support at the national level for active members of the Affiliate that have consistently engaged with the organization for more than one year but lack resources to attend the National AHEAD sponsored activities/events.
  • Developing an electronic distribution list and/or a listserv that is all-inclusive.
  • Holding some statewide events in places that are accessible to institutions throughout Florida.
  • Sponsoring video- and/or teleconference meetings and presentations.

Section 5. Definition:

For purposes of these By-laws and for the governance of the association generally, the phrase “persons with a disability” shall be defined as any person who (a) has a physical or mental impairment which may substantially affect one or more of such person’s life activities; (b) has a record of such characteristic; or (c) is regarded as having such a characteristic.

 

ARTICLE II:  STRUCTURE

 The Florida AHEAD has been established as a volunteer professional organization directed by an Executive Board and operated under the authority of the Executive Board. This Executive Board will be comprised of elected officers and committee chairs, and its purpose will be to carry out the mission of the Association through policy formation, fiscal management, open communication with the membership at large, maintenance of historical records, and development and oversight of the organization.

 

ARTICLE III:  MEMBERSHIP

 Section 1:

Florida AHEAD is an equal opportunity organization and does not discriminate in its membership with regard to race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, age, gender status, sexual orientation, disability, marital status or political affiliation.  Florida AHEAD is committed to the values of diversity, inclusion and universal access.  This association acknowledges that embracing a wide spectrum of people with diverse opinions, perspectives, and ideas will only enhance and make stronger the growth, development and creativity of the Association and therefore all interested individuals and institutions are encouraged to become members.

Section 2:

Membership shall be open and available to any interested person who supports the mission of FL AHEAD and paid dues in accordance with the membership categories contained in the Bylaws. The benefits of membership include notice of the availability of educational programs, materials and publications produced and/or distributed by the Association; reduced registration fees for statewide events and conferences; eligibility to apply for scholarships/fee waivers for statewide events and conferences; eligibility to run for office, participate and/or chair Association committees, and vote in Association elections. Additional benefits may be determined by the Executive Board.

ARTICLE IV:  MEETINGS

 The Florida AHEAD shall hold an annual meeting of the members for the purpose of conducting the business of the organization as proposed or presented by any of its members. The President shall be responsible for giving due notice of the annual meeting to members of the Association, propose an agenda and request other agenda items for consideration. The Additional special meetings may be called by the Executive Board to address issues that affect the Association and its members. Any member may propose to the Executive Board the calling of a special meeting, and the Board will then determine by resolution or by vote of the membership whether a special meeting is warranted. When using a membership vote, a vote of at least thirty percent of the membership in favor of calling a meeting will indicate a special meeting is warranted.

 

ARTICLE V: ELECTION OF OFFICERS

Section 1.  Election and Term of Office. 

All association officers shall serve a two-year term.  Except for the President-Elect whose commitment is for one (1) year, all other officers of the FL-AHEAD shall make a two year commitment.   Elections for the President-Elect and Secretary shall coincide and be staggered with the election for the Treasurer.  The Executive Board named in the articles of incorporation of the organization shall be the President, President-Elect, Secretary and Treasurer.  The terms of the President, President-Elect and Secretary shall run until the date of the annual Spring Conference in which elections are held, and the term of the Treasurer shall run until their successors are duly elected and responsibilities transferred through official notice of new designee. No member-elected officer’s term shall expire until a successor shall have been duly elected. The terms of the officers shall expire at the conclusion of the Spring Conference following their election, unless the Executive Board shall by resolution determine otherwise.

Section 2.  Succession of President-Elect.

Upon completion of the term as President-Elect, the President-Elect shall become President of the organization, unless the Executive Board shall, by majority vote of the whole Board, at a meeting called for the removal of an officer under Section 4 herein below, determine that the President-Elect shall have ceased to be eligible to hold office (e.g. because of termination of membership) or is, for cause, unqualified to hold the office of President, in which case the office of President-Elect shall become vacant.

Section 3. Removal

Any officer elected by the members may be removed, by majority vote of the members at a special meeting called for that purpose.  If a meeting is called for the removal of a member- elected officer, the notice of such meeting shall so state and shall state the cause(s) for such removal.  Removal of any officer elected or appointed by the Executive Board may be removed by the Board whenever in its judgment the best interests of the organization would be served thereby.

Section 4.  Vacancies

In the event of a vacancy in the office of President, the President-Elect shall assume the duties of President, without prejudice to his or her ensuing term of office.  In the event of a vacancy in the office of President-Elect, the members shall elect both a President and a President-Elect at the next regular annual meeting of members.  Any vacancy in any other office because of death, resignation, removal, disqualification or otherwise, may be filled by selection and majority vote by the Executive Board

for the unexpired portion of the term.

Section 5.  Nomination of Officers

Nominations for all offices being vacated shall be accepted for a period of no less than 30 days, with notice of the nomination and election dates being given to the membership at least 21 days prior to the opening of the nomination period. Electronic voting shall be open and available to members for at least 15 days. Voting for elections shall close by no later than 2:00 p.m. (CST) or 3:00 p.m. (EST) on the last day, and the President shall announce the results of the election within two working days of the close of election. The officers’ terms shall begin on May 1 following the elections.  The terms of the President, President-Elect and Secretary shall expire on April 30th.

Section 6.  Election Procedure

The President-Elect, Treasurer (depending on officers to be elected in a given election cycle), or a committee commissioned for the purpose of election, shall:

  • Poll the membership for the names of possible candidates to be placed on the nomination ballot for the positions of President-Elect, Secretary and Treasurer,
  • Nominated members will be contacted either via mail or electronically of acceptance of candidacy. No person nominated and accepted as a candidate shall be placed in nomination for another office during the current election.
  •  The President-Elect, Treasurer, or The Election Committee shall conduct the election of officers by secret ballot (paper or electronic) at least two weeks prior to Spring Conference. Only by majority vote of the members of this Association in accordance with this Article will officers be elected.
  • The Executive Board may, prior to the first regular meeting of the members, establish procedures for nomination by petition and/or from the floor at the annual meeting.

 

ARTICLE VI:  EXECUTIVE AUTHORITY

 Section 1.  General Powers

The affairs of the FL-AHEAD shall be managed by its Executive Board, except for functions and powers reserved to the members.  Executive authority of the Association shall rest with the Executive Board as described below. The Executive Board shall use the Bylaws contained herein as the ultimate authority for the Association.

Section 2: Elected Officers

The executive officers for The FL-AHEAD shall include President, President-Elect, Secretary, and Treasurer. All elected officers shall be elected by a majority vote of the members in accordance with term cycles.

Section 2:1 PRESIDENT

The President is responsible for the efficient and effective operation of the Affiliate. The President shall serve a (1) two-year term as the principle executive officer and shall preside over meetings of the members and of the Executive Board. Upon completion of a one year term, the President will assume the position of Immediate Past-President.

Duties include but are not limited to the following:

  • Authorized to sign, in conjunction with another designated member of the Executive Board, any legal or fiduciary documents pertaining to the organization
  • Attend, open and call to order all general and Executive Board meetings
  • Giving due notice of the annual meeting to members of the Association, propose an agenda and request other agenda items for consideration.
  • The President is also responsible for gathering input and evaluating the Association’s effectiveness in fulfilling its mission and reporting his or her findings to the Executive Board and presenting to the general membership at the Spring Conference.
  • Serve as official liaison to AHEAD and other organizations or appoint a designee
  • Ensure adherence of the Affiliate to the Affiliate Bylaws as set forth by the membership
  • Complete and distribute a year-end report for the Board and general membership
  • Ensure continuation of insurance in all categories of coverage
  • Attend annual conferences in their entirety
  • Perform any other duties assigned by the Bylaws or membership-at-large
  • The President shall serve a (1) year term, staggered with the term of the President-Elect, and elections for this office will occur every other year.

2.2 PRESIDENT- ELECT

In the absence of the President, the President-Elect takes the chair and follows the same list of duties as the President. The following year, the President-Elect assumes the duties of President. The President-Elect position is a two (2) year commitment to the association.  The first year as President-Elect and the second year as President.
Duties include but are not limited to the following:

  • The President- Elect shall solicit nominations for the slate of officers and Board members to be elected before the Spring Conference.
  • In the absence of the President, the President-Elect will assume the duties of that office
  • The President-Elect is also responsible for the following:
    • Attends annual conferences in their entirety
    • Organizes and oversees the annual election of officers according to the Association Bylaws
    • Acts as the Affiliate Historian
    • Attend a majority of regularly scheduled Executive Board meetings
    • Perform any duties assigned by the President, Executive Board, or membership-at-large
    • Serve as primary point of contact with conference location hosts
    • Coordinate logistics for event hosting, catering, and other conference related services
    • Ensure conference registration, evaluation, and other related information is being fully considered within the conference planning process
    • Engage the Executive Board in the process of conference planning
    • The President-Elect shall serve a (2) two-year term, staggered with the term of the President, and elections for this office will occur every other year.

2.3 SECRETARY:

The Secretary is the recording officer of the Affiliate.

Duties include but are not limited to the following:

  • The secretary shall record the minutes of all meetings of the members and the Executive Board and keep them in the Association’s official records.
  • Prepare meeting minutes for review and revision no later than 3 weeks following the meeting
  • The Secretary shall give due notice (at least 30 days) to the members of the Association regarding the content of amendments and the nature and date of upcoming votes on the amendment.
  • Submit revised minutes to Board at next monthly tele-meeting for approval
  • Attend a majority of regularly scheduled Executive Board meetings
  • Attend annual conferences in their entirety
  • Submit approved minutes for posting to the Affiliate website
  • Confirm timely posting of minutes to website one week after submission
  • Prepare and communicate Affiliate documents for any required state or federal filings
  • Perform any duties assigned by the President, Executive Board, or membership-at-large
  • The Secretary shall serve a (2) two-year term, staggered with the term of the Treasurer, and elections for this office will occur every other year.

2.4 TREASURER

The Treasurer is the chief financial officer of the Affiliate. Duties include but are not limited to the following:

  • Transfer funds between Association accounts to meet obligations, at the direction of the Executive Board
  • Utilize accounting methodologies agreed upon by the Executive Board
  • Provide updates on the approved budget to the Executive Board twice per year, in conjunction with conference planning and facilitation
  • Provide accounting records to membership at annual meeting. Accounting records include budget summary of assets, income and expenditures
  • Prepare or assist in the preparation of regulatory filings
  • Provide reports to auditors
  • Ensure documentation of speakers to include pertinent information for completion of 1099 forms; mail forms by January 31.
  • Maintain all receipts and payment records (travel requests, reimbursement forms, etc.).
  • Inform membership regarding renewal and membership status
  • Issue Membership Certificates upon new or renewed memberships
  • Attend all regularly scheduled Executive Board meetings
  • Attend annual conferences in their entirety
  • Perform any duties assigned by the President, Executive Board, or membership-at-large

If the Association is unable to determine a replacement for an outgoing officer, the outgoing officer shall retain the duties of said office until such time as a replacement is found and approved by the membership unless the outgoing officer is unable. No elected officer shall be eligible to serve two consecutive terms in the same office except by resolution of the Executive Board and consent of that officer.

Section 3: Appointed members

Additional members of the Executive Board shall be determined by the presiding officers and may include positions such as individuals representing specific areas of the region and/or types of institutions of higher educations, or other such positions as deemed necessary by the Executive Board to be inclusive. These positions shall be appointed by the President with the approval of the rest of the Executive Board. Terms and responsibilities shall be described as the positions are created. No appointed member shall serve more than a 3 year term.

 Section 4.  Compensation

There is no compensation from the association for any officer.  Officer of the association shall not receive any stated salaries for their services unless approved per amendment, per a specified period of time, by the membership.  The cost of attending regular meetings should be incurred by Officer as it is by regular members.

 

ARTICLE VII:  FINANCE

 Section 1: Responsibility

The Executive Board is responsible for maintaining the fiscal integrity of the Association and for ensuring financial stability and growth. The Treasurer shall serve as the chief financial officer for the organization.

Section 2: Income

Income shall be derived from sources consistent with the purpose and mission of the Association, as contained in Article III of this document, and from membership dues as set by the Executive Board.

Section 3: Fiscal Year

The fiscal year for the Association shall be from July 1 – June 30.

Section 4: Transactions

All financial transactions, fees and references made thereto will be in U.S. funds.

Section 5: Disbursement

Disbursement of Association funds shall be determined by the Executive Board and used for purposes consistent with the purpose and mission of the Association as contained in Article III of this document. No part of the net earnings of the Association shall be disbursed for the benefit of any member, officer, sponsor or private individual, except when such payment is warranted as the responsible compensation for services rendered to or for the Association in effecting its purpose.

Section 6: Dissolution

In the event of the dissolution of The FL-AHEAD, all Association assets will be liquidated, any Association debts shall be paid, and any remaining Association proceeds shall be submitted to the national AHEAD to hold for future use in The FL-AHEAD.

 

ARTICLE IX:  DUES

Section 1.a.  Annual Dues

The members shall determine from time to time the amount of the dues payable to the organization by members of each category.  Such determination shall be by a resolution approved by a majority of members present and voting at a duly called meeting, or by a majority of those responding by mail or electronic format, provided that at least one third (1/3) of the members eligible to vote shall respond.  Notice of any proposal to increase the dues of any class shall be given to the members at least thirty (30) days before any meeting at which such proposal shall be presented, or before ballots are solicited by mail or electronic format.

Section 1.b    Membership Categories.

  • Institutional Membership – Higher Education: Administrators/Directors/Coordinators/Counselors/Staff of Disability Services at Florida’s 2- and 4-year public and private colleges and universities. This membership level is eligible to hold office and has full voting privileges. This membership is transferable to another staff member at the same institution if there is a change of staff during the membership year as long as the original membership was paid for by the institution.
  • Professional – Higher Education Other: Administrator/ Directors/Coordinators/Counselors/Case Managers of other Florida agencies/professional organizations providing services to and promoting access or advocating for post-secondary students with disabilities can also serve as professional members. This membership level is eligible to hold office and has full voting privileges. This membership is not transferable unless upgraded to the institutional level (agency and higher education only).
  • Associate: Former professional members, administrative/support staff at any Florida agency/professional organization/post-secondary institution, advocates or family members of students with disabilities. This membership level is not transferable, not eligible to hold office and has no voting privileges.
  • Emeritus Professional: Individual retired from positions in higher education who were previous members of Florida AHEAD. This membership level is not transferrable, not eligible to hold office and has no voting privileges.
  • Student: Individuals enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program at a Florida institution of higher learning. This membership level is not transferable, not eligible to hold office and has no voting privileges.

Section 1c.  Payment of Dues.

Membership dues for the Fiscal year shall be paid no later than October 15th.

 

Membership Category Membership Due
1. Professional $25.00
2. Institutional Basic (Up to 3 Professionals) $70.00
3. Institutional Plus (Up to 5 Professionals) $100.00
4. Associate $35.00
5. Pre-Professional (Graduate Student) $15.00
6 Student (Undergraduate) $10.00
7. Emeritus Professional $10.00

Section 1.c. Default and Termination of Membership.  When any member of any class shall be in default in the payment of dues, such member shall be subject to suspension and termination as provided in Article III of these By-laws.

 

ARTICLE X: AMENDMENTS TO BY-LAWS

Section 1: Proposals for Amendment

Proposals for amendment, alteration or repeal of these Bylaws, or for adoption of new Bylaws, may be initiated by resolution of the Executive Board, by unanimous resolution or consent of a standing committee, or by petition of at least 10% of the membership.

Section 2: Submission of Proposals

Proposals for amendment, other than those initiated by resolution of the Executive Board, shall be submitted to the Executive Board, which, in turn, shall call for a vote of the membership. The Executive Board may call a special meeting of the membership to discuss the amendment, may submit the amendment to a vote by mail (and e-mail or web posting where practicable), or, when within a reasonable timeframe, may submit the amendment to the members for a vote at the annual meeting.

Section 3: Approval

These Bylaws may be amended, altered or repealed and new Bylaws adopted only by majority vote of the members of this Association in accordance with this Article.

Section 4: Notice

The Secretary shall give due notice (at least 30 days) to the members of the Association regarding the content of the amendment and the nature and date of the upcoming vote on the amendment.

ARTICLE VIII:  COMMITTEES

The President, with the approval of the Executive Board, shall name standing and ad hoc committees as deemed necessary to conduct the business of the Association. All such committees shall operate within the purpose and mission of the Association as contained in Article III of this document, and they shall be specifically charged as to their purpose and function. Standing committees shall remain in operation at the discretion of the Executive Board, and ad hoc committees shall be dismissed upon completion of their assigned tasks.

AFFILIATE TIMELINE OF ACTIVITIES

January

  1. Treasurer files annual report and pay appropriate dues with the Florida State Department of State, Division of Corporations’ Record.  http://dos.myflorida.com/sunbiz/manage-business/efile/annual-report/.  Be sure to make the name change when appropriate each time.
  2. President-Elect/President begins planning call for nomination for the Dr. Ken Marquard’s Professional Excellence Award.
  3. President-Elect/President begins planning call for nomination for the Bea Awoniyi Scholarship

February

  1. Treasurer notifies members about dues and membership status.
  2. Executive Board’s first quarterly meeting.
  3. Planning for the Narrowing the Gulf Conference (NTG)
  4. President-Elect/President calls for nomination for the Dr. Ken Marquard’s Professional Excellence Award and sends out the nomination form.
  5. President-Elect/President begins planning call for nomination for the Bea Awoniyi Scholarship and sends out scholarship application.
  6. Treasurer and President-Elect order the gift for the Dr. Ken Marquard’s Professional Excellence Award.
  7. President sends out draft agenda for the Spring Conference and calls for additional agenda items.

March

  1. Secretary renews affiliate membership with the National AHEAD.  Submit form and elect type and level of support.
  2. Secretary distribute agenda at the meeting and takes the minutes of the meeting.
  3. Treasurer presents copies of the treasury report.
  4. Transition will happen during the Spring Conference (Narrowing the Gulf Conference).
  5. Treasurer(s) will ensure that bank businesses are conducted and completed during this time for smooth transition—signature changes, etc.  The association banks with Bank of America and there is one very close to the location of the conference in Clearwater.

April

  1. Member meeting happens during the Spring conference (Narrowing the Gulf Conference).
  2. President presides over the meeting.
  3. President provides information about the State of Affairs of the association.
  4. President-Elect announces the winner and presents the Dr. Ken Marquard’s Professional Excellence Award during NTG
  5. President-Elect announces the winner and presents the Bea Awoniyi Scholarship for Attendance to National AHEAD Conference during NTG
  6. New Officer(s) send notification and introduction to the membership.
  7. President touch bases with St. Petersburg College to ensure the success of Narrowing the Gulf.
  8. Executive Board’s second quarterly meeting 

May

June

  1. Affiliation’s economic year-end. (July 1 – June 30)
  2. Update Membership application and send to Affiliate Website Edit Request
  3. Treasurer post membership status and send to members.

July

  1. Treasurer closes and reconciles the books and accounts for the organization.
  2. Secretary updates membership of their status and sends minutes of all meetings and updates.
  3. President send information about when and how members at the conference will connect and/or get together.
  4. Executive Board’s third quarterly meeting

August

  1. Complete the IRS Tax 990N (e-Postcard)

September

  1. President polls membership for topic for the Fall conference

October

  1. President calls and convenes Fall meeting of the association.
  2. Executive Board’s fourth quarterly meeting

November

  1. President works with St. Petersburg College to plan for Narrowing the Gulf Conference—seek presenters and provide support.