Bylaws

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(Approved by Council on 29 April 2011 and by FHP members on 27 January 2012)

ARTICLE I-NAME AND DEFINITIONS OF TERMS

This subunit of the American Physical Society, existing in accordance with Article VIII of the Constitution of the Society as revised in 1990, shall be called the Forum on the History of Physics.

In the following text, "Society" shall signify the American Physical Society; "Council" and "Executive Board" shall signify the Council and the Executive Board of the Society, respectively; "Executive Officer" shall signify that Officer of the Society; and "Regular Meeting" shall signify the principal meeting held once a year by the Forum.

The “Official Year” shall extend from the close of one Regular Meeting to the close of the next Regular Meeting.

ARTICLE II-OBJECTIVE

The objective of the Forum shall be the encouragement of scholarly research in the history of physics and the diffusion of knowledge of this history and its relation to other scholarly disciplines.

ARTICLE III-ENABLING CONSTITUTIONAL PROVISION

Article VIII of the Constitution of the Society, as said Article may be subsequently revised or amended, is hereby incorporated in these Bylaws by reference.

ARTICLE IV-MEMBERSHIP AND DUES

The members of the Forum shall consist of members of the Society who have been members of the erstwhile Division of History of Physics or who have indicated in accordance with procedures established by the Council their desire to join the Forum and who retain membership from year to year by the payment of designated dues or by other method established by the Council.

ARTICLE V-MEETINGS

1. Regular Meeting. One meeting of the Forum, to be known as the Regular Meeting, shall be held annually at such time and place as shall be ordered by the Executive Committee, subject to approval by the Executive Officer. Whenever it shall be feasible and not to the disadvantage of the members of the Forum, the Executive Committee may order this or any other meeting to be held conjointly with a Meeting of the Society or of another society, conference, or group, so long as such joint meeting does not conflict importantly with the schedule of Meetings of the Society as determined by the Executive Officer. The registration fees for the Regular Meeting, when not held jointly with a Meeting of the Society, shall be fixed after consultation with the Executive Officer.

2. Other Meetings. Meetings of the Forum, other than the Regular Meeting, may be initiated by the Executive Committee or by petition of twenty percent of the members of the Forum, subject to approval by the Executive Officer. Special conferences may be sponsored in whole or in part by the Forum, subject to the rules and regulations specified in the Society’s Constitution and Bylaws.

3. Papers at Meetings. Programs of meetings of the Forum may provide for the inclusion of both invited and contributed papers. When a meeting of the Forum is held in conjunction with a meeting of the Society, the rules of the Society shall apply to submitted papers.

When a meeting of the Forum is not held in conjunction with a meeting of the Society, the Executive Committee shall prescribe the subject and character of the meeting, which may include limitations on the subject matter of submitted papers. The Secretary-Treasurer shall fix the deadline date for receipt of titles and abstracts in consultation with the Executive Officer and shall designate the place to which they should be sent. The amount of time to be allowed for the presentation of a paper at the Regular Meeting shall be determined by the Program Committee, except as otherwise directed by the Executive Committee. These allotments of time shall be consistent with the Constitution and Bylaws of the Society and with regulations of the Council.

ARTICLE VI-EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

1. Governance. The Forum shall be governed by an Executive Committee, which shall have general charge of the affairs of the Forum.

2. Composition. The Executive Committee shall consist of the Officers of the Forum, the most recent Past Chair, the Forum Councilor, and six Members-at-Large. The newsletter Editor and a representative of the Center for History of Physics of the American Institute for Physics shall be non-voting members of the Executive Committee.

3. Executive Committee Meetings. The Executive Committee shall meet at least once each year. The principal meeting shall be held during the Regular Meeting of the Forum. Any member of the Executive Committee unable to attend a meeting may name a non-voting alternate to represent him or her, subject to the approval of the Chair. The Chair of the Forum shall preside over the Executive Committee meetings. A majority of the voting members, including at least two Officers, shall constitute a quorum. The Chair may hold a vote by electronic mail on issues that require attention in the time between Regular Meetings. The Chair may invite guests to attend meetings of the Executive Committee.

ARTICLE VII-OFFICERS AND FORUM COUNCILOR

1. Officers. The Officers of the Forum shall be a Chair, a Chair-Elect, a Vice-Chair, and a Secretary-Treasurer.

2. Duties of the Chair. The Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Executive Committee of the Forum at which his or her attendance is possible. The Chair shall prepare the agenda of meetings of the Executive Committee and perform such other functions as may be provided in the Bylaws.

3. Duties of the Chair-Elect. The Chair-Elect shall act in place of the Chair if the latter is unable to perform his or her duties. The Chair-Elect shall perform such other functions as may be provided in the Bylaws.

4. Duties of the Vice-Chair. The Vice-Chair shall act in place of the Chair-Elect if the latter is unable to perform his or her duties. The Vice-Chair shall perform such other functions as may be provided in the Bylaws.

5. Duties of the Secretary-Treasurer. The Secretary-Treasurer shall maintain the records of the Forum including minutes of Executive Committee meetings, Forum activities, and membership lists. The Secretary-Treasurer shall notify the Executive Committee of matters requiring the decision of said Committee. The Secretary-Treasurer shall prepare minutes of Executive Committee meetings and shall submit these minutes to each member of the Executive Committee within six weeks after each meeting. The Secretary-Treasurer shall supervise the Forum Elections according to Article VIII-3 of these Bylaws. Following elections, such minutes are to include the results of the election and a roster of the current Executive Committee membership, and the election results shall be forwarded to the Executive Officer.

The Secretary-Treasurer shall keep the Council and Executive Officer of the Society informed of the activities and needs of the Forum.
The Secretary-Treasurer shall have responsibility for all funds in the custody of or placed at the disposal of the Forum and shall authorize disbursements from such funds for expenses in a manner that is consistent with the general policies of the Society and the Forum. Financial records shall be kept on an annual basis consistent with the fiscal policies of the Society. The Secretary-Treasurer shall present a financial report at the principal meeting of the Executive Committee.

The Secretary-Treasurer shall make arrangements for preserving the records of the Forum.

6. Duties of the Forum Councilor. The Forum Councilor shall serve as liaison between the Council of the Society and the Executive Committee of the Forum. Following each Council meeting, the Forum Councilor shall report to the Officers regarding Council actions that affect the status and operations of the Forum. Reports shall be made to the entire Executive Committee during their regularly scheduled meetings.

ARTICLE VIII-ELECTION AND TENURE OF THE OFFICERS, EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBERS, AND FORUM COUNCILOR

1. Qualifications. Officers, Forum Councilor, and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee must be current members of the Forum at the time that nominations are announced.

2. Ballot. The Vice-Chair, Secretary-Treasurer, Forum Councilor, and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall be elected by mail and/or electronic ballot as hereinafter provided.

3. Nomination and Election of the Vice-Chair, Secretary-Treasurer, Forum Councilor, and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee.

The Secretary-Treasurer shall invite Forum members to suggest candidates for the various Executive Committee positions and convey these suggestions to the Nominating Committee. If as many as five percent of the total Forum membership determined on 30 June of the year preceding the election suggest the same person for the same office, that person shall be deemed to have been nominated. Each year the Nominating Committee, taking account of suggestions received from the membership, shall nominate at least two candidates for the office of Vice-Chair and for open positions of Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee. The Nominating Committee shall nominate one or more candidates for the office of Secretary-Treasurer during the final year of that officer's term and at least two candidates for the position of Forum Councilor during the penultimate year of the Forum Councilor’s term. The candidates nominated for Forum Councilor must be submitted to the Executive Committee for approval. The Nominating Committee shall notify the Secretary-Treasurer of the proposed slate of candidates in sufficient time for the Forum Councilor nominees to be approved by the Executive Committee and for the election to occur before the Regular Meeting.

The Secretary-Treasurer shall poll the Forum membership by mail and/or electronic ballot, stating a closing date at least three weeks prior to the Regular Meeting. Ballots shall be returned to and counted by the Secretary-Treasurer or his or her designate. Election shall be decided by a plurality of those voting. If there is a tie, the Executive Committee shall decide the election, with the Chair voting only in the case of a tie among the other Executive Committee members. The Secretary-Treasurer shall communicate the results of the election to the Chair at least two weeks prior to the Regular Meeting and shall publish the results in a manner designated for official announcements.

4. Vice-Chair, Chair-Elect, Chair, and Past Chair. The member elected as Vice-Chair shall serve in that office for one year, then for one year as Chair-Elect, then for one year as Chair, and then for one year as Past Chair. Neither the Chair nor Past Chair shall be nominated for the office of Vice-Chair in the year following his or her term of office.

5. Terms of Office. The terms of office of the Officers and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall begin at the close of the Regular Meeting of the Forum following their election. The Secretary-Treasurer shall serve for a term of three years and may not serve more than two consecutive terms. A person who is first appointed Secretary-Treasurer in order to fill a vacancy in that office is eligible to serve two three-year terms in addition to the initial partial term. Members-at-large serve staggered three-year terms. The tenure of a Member-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall terminate in the event of his or her assumption of a post as an elected Officer of the Forum, and the unexpired portion of his or her term shall be filled as hereinafter provided for a vacancy.

The term of office of the Forum Councilor shall begin at the beginning of the calendar year following his or her election. Forum Councilors shall serve for a term of four years and may not serve more than two consecutive terms. A person who is first appointed Forum Councilor in order to fill a vacancy in that office is eligible to serve two four-year terms in addition to the initial partial term.

6. Vacancies in the Offices. If a vacancy occurs in the office of Chair, the Chair-Elect shall succeed and complete the term and shall serve as Chair also in the following year. The Vice-Chair shall serve simultaneously as Chair-Elect during the remainder of the term and shall continue to serve as Chair-Elect in the following term.

If a vacancy occurs in the office of Chair-Elect otherwise than through advancement to Chair, the Vice-Chair shall become Chair-Elect. In this case, and also if the office of Vice-Chair becomes vacant for other reasons, the office of Vice-Chair shall remain vacant for the remainder of the term. In the next scheduled election, candidates for both Chair-Elect and Vice-Chair shall be nominated.

If vacancies occur in the offices of both the Chair and the Chair-Elect, the Vice-Chair shall become Chair and shall complete the term. In this case a special election shall be held to fill the offices of Chair-Elect and Vice-Chair. The members so elected shall continue to serve as officers in the normal succession order.

Vacancies in any other elected office shall be filled, or left unfilled, by the Executive Committee until such time as the vacancy can be filled by election procedures.

The officers may decide to hold a special election, if needed, at any time.

ARTICLE IX-APPOINTED COMMITTEES

1. Nominating Committee. The Nominating Committee shall consist of the Past Chair and three members of the Forum appointed by the Chair and one member appointed by the Executive Officer for one year terms. The Chair shall ascertain through the Executive Officer the identity of this member. The Past Chair shall serve as Chair of the Nominating Committee. If the Past-Chair is unable to serve, the Executive Committee shall appoint a replacement from the Forum membership. The Nominating Committee shall prepare a slate of candidates for the positions of Vice-Chair, Secretary-Treasurer, Forum Councilor, and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee as needed, according to Article VIII-3 of these Bylaws. The Nominating Committee shall advise the Chair on suitable candidates for Society committees, including relevant Society Prize and Award committees, and on candidates for Society offices. The Nominating Committee shall perform such other duties as described in the Bylaws.

2. Program Committee. The Program Committee shall consist of the Chair-Elect, the Vice-Chair, and other members as needed, appointed by the Chair in consultation with the Chair-Elect. The Chair-Elect shall serve as Chair of the Program Committee. The Program Committee shall have the responsibility of assisting the Executive Officer, or his or her designate, in arranging the meetings of the Society. For meetings of the Forum, including the Regular Meeting, the Program Committee shall be responsible for the solicitation and selection of invited papers and for the arrangement of the programs of such meetings.

3. Fellowship Committee. The Fellowship Committee shall consist of the Vice-Chair and four other members of the Forum appointed by the Chair to a one-year term. The Chair shall appoint the Chair of the Fellowship Committee from among the members. The Fellowship Committee shall promote the nomination of candidates for Fellowship, shall review the qualifications of such candidates, and shall report its recommendations to the Executive Committee for approval before submission is made to the Executive Officer.

4. Editorial Board. The Editorial Board shall consist of three or more members of the Forum appointed by the Chair for terms of one to three years. The Chair shall appoint the Chair of the Editorial Board from among the members. The Editorial Board shall assist the Editor in policy decisions regarding the Forum newsletter, History of Physics Newsletter, and any other publications sponsored by the Forum. The Editorial Board may solicit articles for publications of the Society, and shall serve as the Forum interface with editors and publications for the popular press. The Editorial Board has oversight responsibilities for the Newsletter, the Website and any other publications sponsored by the Forum.

5. Prizes and Awards Committee. The Prizes and Awards Committee shall consist of at least three members of the Forum appointed by the Chair. The Chair shall appoint the Chair of the Prizes and Awards Committee from among the members. The Prizes and Awards Committee shall consider policies and procedures for any Forum prizes and awards and make recommendations regarding these prizes and awards to the Executive Committee. The Prizes and Awards Committee shall be responsible for fundraising for any Forum prizes or awards that are approved by APS Council.

6. Terms of Office of Appointed Committee Members. The terms of committee members appointed by an incoming Chair shall commence at the beginning of the year in which the Chair assumes office.

7. Ad Hoc Committees. The Chair shall appoint ad hoc committees as necessary, which shall serve during his or her term as Chair.

ARTICLE X-NEWSLETTER

The newsletter of the Forum, History of Physics Newsletter, shall be managed and edited by an Editor, who shall be elected by the Executive Committee for a term of three years. The Editor shall oversee the preparation and distribution of the History of Physics Newsletter. There shall be at least one issue per year; the frequency and timing of these issues shall be determined by the Editor in consultation with the Secretary-Treasurer, subject to approval of the Executive Committee or its delegate. The Executive Committee may direct the Secretary-Treasurer to distribute complimentary copies of the newsletter to specified non-members of the Forum. The Editor shall be assisted in policy decisions by the Editorial Board.

ARTICLE XI-WEBSITE

The website of the Forum shall be managed and edited by a Webmaster, who shall be elected by the Executive Committee for a term of three years. The Webmaster shall be assisted in policy decisions by the Editorial Board.

ARTICLE XII-OFFICIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

Official announcements shall be made in the History of Physics Newsletter, and in such other publications as the Executive Committee may direct.

ARTICLE XIII-PROCEDURE FOR AMENDMENT OF BYLAWS

Proposal of an Amendment to these Bylaws may be made by the Council, by the Executive Committee, or by a petition to the Chair signed by not fewer than ten percent of the members of the Forum. If the proposed amendment originates within the Forum, it must be approved by Council before further action can be taken.

Following Council approval, the Secretary-Treasurer shall distribute copies of the proposed Amendment to all members of the Forum accompanied by ballot forms, by mail and/or electronically, setting a closing date for voting on the Amendment not less than four weeks after distribution of the ballot forms. Adoption of the Amendment shall require a two-thirds majority of those voting on the Amendment.