Date Approved by Council: April 10, 2019
Date Ratified by Members: September 20, 2019
In the following text, "Society" and "APS" shall signify the American Physical Society, "Council" and "Board" shall signify the Council of Representatives and the Board of Directors of the Society, respectively; and "Annual Meeting" shall signify the principal meeting held once a year by the Forum.
ARTICLE I - NAME
This organization within the American Physical Society shall be called the Forum on Graduate Student Affairs and shall be referred to in the following text as "the Forum" or as "FGSA".
ARTICLE II - OBJECTIVE
The objective of the Forum is to enhance the Society's ability to meet the needs of physics graduate students, to make available support resources, and to provide them with an opportunity for increased inclusion and participation in the activities and decision-making of the physics community.
ARTICLE III - ENABLING CONSTITUTIONAL PROVISION
Article VIII of the Constitution and Bylaws of the Society and the associated Policies & Procedures, in their current or subsequently revised form, are incorporated in these Bylaws by reference.
ARTICLE IV - MEMBERSHIP
Any member of the Society who has indicated a desire to join the Forum and has met all requirements and procedures established by Board and Council, can be a member of the Forum.
ARTICLE V - EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
- Governance. The FGSA shall be governed by an Executive Committee, which shall establish the policies and have responsibility for the affairs of the Forum.
- Composition. The Executive Committee shall consist of the Officers of the Forum, the most recent Past Chair, the Forum Councilor, and four Members-at-Large, elected to staggered two-year terms.
- Executive Committee Meetings. The Executive Committee shall meet at least once a year. A majority of Executive Committee members, including at least two Officers, shall constitute a quorum.
- Annual Meeting. An annual meeting of the Forum, open to all members, shall be held once a year. This meeting will normally be held at either the APS March or April meeting.
ARTICLE VI - OFFICERS AND FORUM COUNCILOR
- Officers. The Officers of the Forum shall be a Chair, a Chair-Elect, a Secretary, and a Treasurer, and an International Student Affairs Officer, all of whom must be members of the Forum.
- Duties of the Chair. The Chair shall have overall responsibility for the affairs of the Forum and shall preside at all meetings of the Executive Committee at which his or her attendance is possible. The Chair shall, with the Secretary, prepare the agenda of Executive Committee meetings.
- Duties of the Chair-Elect. The Chair-Elect shall serve as the Chair of the Program Committee. In addition, the Chair-Elect shall assume the duties of the Chair whenever the Chair is unable to perform them.
- Duties of the Secretary. The Secretary shall maintain the records of the Forum including minutes of Executive Committee meetings. The Secretary shall distribute the minutes to each member of the Executive Committee, the Society Corporate Secretary, and the Forum Webmaster within six weeks after each meeting; The Secretary shall work with the Webmaster to ensure that the minutes are posted on the Forum website within eight weeks. The Secretary shall notify the Chair of matters requiring Executive Committee action. The Secretary shall arrange for announcing, distributing, receiving and counting the annual election ballots from the membership, and for informing the Society Corporate Secretary, candidates, and Forum membership of election results.
- Duties of the Treasurer. The Treasurer shall have responsibility for all funds in the custody of or placed at the disposal of the FGSA and shall, with the approval of the Chair, authorize disbursements from these funds for FGSA expenses. The Treasurer shall present a financial report and an annual budget at the meeting of the Executive Committee.
- Duties of the International Student Affairs (ISA) Officer. The ISA Officer shall chair the International Student Affairs (ISA) Committee. The Officer shall serve as the principal point of contact between the Forum and similar organizations in countries outside the United States and shall act as a student advocate for international student issues to the American Physical Society, in conjunction with the APS Chief Government Affairs Officer and APS Director of International Affairs. FGSAsponsored international activities, including conferences and student issues, shall be reported annually by the ISA Officer to both the FGSA Executive Committee and the APS Director of International Affairs.
- Duties of the Past Chair. The Past Chair shall serve as the Chair of the Nominating Committee.
- Duties of the Forum Councilor. The Forum Councilor shall serve as a liaison between the Council and the Executive Committee of the Forum. Following each Council meeting, the Forum Councilor shall report to the Executive Committee of the Forum regarding actions taken by the Council that affect the status and operations of the Forum.
ARTICLE VII - ELECTION AND TENURE OF THE OFFICERS, EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBERS, AND FORUM COUNCILOR
- Qualifications. Officers, the Forum Councilor, and Members-at-Large, must be members of the Forum for at least six months prior to nomination. Officers and Members-at-Large shall not hold an elected office in another APS unit for the duration of their elected term, with the exception of the Chair during their term as Past-Chair.
- Nomination and Election of the Chair-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, Forum Councilor and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee. Each year the Nominating Committee shall select at least two candidates for the office of Chair-Elect, four candidates for the two openings for Member-at-Large, and at least two candidates for Councilor during the final year of the term of the current Councilor. The Nominating Committee shall also nominate two candidates for the office of Secretary, Treasurer or ISA Officer during the final year of the term of the current officer. The Nominating Committee shall consult with the Chair before nominating any candidate for a consecutive term. In the event that the current Secretary is nominated for a consecutive term, the Executive Committee shall appoint responsibility of election administration (see 3. Balloting, below) to either the Treasurer of Past Chair, to avoid conflict of interest.
- Balloting. The Chair-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, Forum Councilor, International Student Affairs Officer , and Members-At-Large shall be elected by mail or electronic ballot by the Forum membership. Election notification and voting procedures shall be sent to all members by the election administration. Voting shall be open for a minimum of two weeks. All votes should be cast and counted by December 1. In the event of a tie, the current members of the Executive Committee shall determine the winner by ballot.
- Term of Office. The Chair-Elect shall be elected to a one-year term, followed by a one-year term as Chair, and a final year on the Executive Committee as Past Chair. The four Members-At-Large shall serve staggered, two-year terms with two Members-at-Large elected each year. The Secretary, the Treasurer, and International Student Affairs Officer shall each serve one staggered, two-year term with either a Secretary, or a Treasurer and International Student Affairs Officer being elected each year. The Forum Councilor shall serve a four-year term. All terms of office shall coincide with the calendar year.
- Vacancies in Offices. If a vacancy occurs in the office of Chair, the Chair-Elect shall succeed and complete the term of the Chair and serve as Chair the following year. If the Chair-Elect succeeds to Chair due to a vacancy, the position of Chair-Elect shall remain vacant for the remainder of the term until the next regular election. If a vacancy occurs in the offices of both the Chair and the Chair-Elect, the Executive Committee shall appoint one of their members to serve the remaining term as Chair and both the offices shall be filled during the next election. If a vacancy occurs in any office, other than the Chair, the position shall remain vacant until the next regular election, at the discretion of the Chair.
- Official Year. The Official Year of the Forum shall coincide with the Calendar Year.
- Removal from Office. In the case of an Executive Committee member being unable to fulfill the requirements of office, the Executive Committee member shall be removed from office in consultation with the Society Corporate Secretary and by a unanimous vote of the remaining Executive Committee members. Vacancies shall be filled according to 5. Vacancies in Offices, above.
ARTICLE VIII - STATUTORY COMMITTEES, APPOINTED COMMITTEES AND POSITIONS
1. Statutory Committees
There shall be two statutory committees of the FGSA:
- Nominating Committee. The Nominating Committee shall be chaired by the Past Chair of the Forum and shall also include four members of the Forum appointed by the Chair to staggered two-year terms, and one member appointed to a one-year term by the Society Chief Executive Office. The Forum Chair shall contact the Society Corporate Secretary for the identity of this member. The Nominating Committee shall solicit suggestions from the membership of qualified members from which to select a slate of candidates for elected positions. The Nominating Committee shall also advise the Forum Chair and the Society Corporate Secretary on suitable candidates for Society offices and committees.
- Program Committee. The Program Committee shall consist of the Chair-Elect and four members appointed by the Forum Chair to staggered two-year terms. The Chair-Elect shall serve as the Chair of the Program Committee. The Program Committee shall assist in arranging sessions including symposia of invited and contributed papers sponsored by the Forum at meetings of the Society. The Program Committee shall cooperate with the Society Director of Meetings and the Program Committee of any other unit of the Society that is interested in sponsoring sessions or symposia in areas of interest to the Forum. The Program Committee shall attempt to find a forum representative to act as a local coordinator for events.
2. Appointed Committees and Positions
There shall be one appointed committee and two appointed positions of the FGSA:
- International Student Affairs Committee. The International Student Affairs Committee shall consist of four members appointed by the Forum Chair to staggered two-year terms. The ISA Committee shall assist the ISA Officer as the principal point of contact between the Forum and similar organizations in countries outside the United States. The Committee shall act as a student advocacy group for international student issues to the American Physical Society, in coordination with the APS Chief Government Affairs Officer and the APS Director of International Affairs.
- Forum Newsletter Editor. The Executive Committee shall appoint an Editor of the Newsletter to a two-year term. The Newsletter Editor shall be responsible for collecting and reporting on issues and events in the interest of Forum members and producing at least one newsletter each year. Election and balloting information shall be included in one newsletter each year.
- Forum Webmaster. The Executive Committee shall appoint a Webmaster to a twoyear term. The Webmaster shall be responsible for keeping the Forum website upto- date and for posting the minutes of the Executive Committee in a timely fashion.
3. Ad hoc Committees and Positions. The Chair may appoint other ad hoc committees and positions, which shall serve only during his or her term as Chair. The terms of committee members appointed or recommended by an incoming Chair shall commence immediately if appointed in the year in which he or she assumes office, otherwise on the first day after the Chair assumes his or her position. Members of ad hoc committees should be members of the Forum in good standing.
4. Committee and Position Vacancies. In case of a vacancy in a committee or position, the Chair, in consultation with the Executive Committee, may fill the opening. The replacement shall have the same term as that of the vacant member.
ARTICLE IX - AMENDMENT OF BYLAWS
Proposals for amendments to these bylaws may be made by the Council, by the Society Governance Committee, by the Forum Executive Committee or by petition to the Forum Chair signed by not fewer than five percent of the members of the Forum. However an amendment is initiated, it must be reviewed by the Society's Governance Committee and approved by Council before further action is taken. Following Council approval, the Secretary shall distribute copies of the proposed amendment to all members of the Forum Voting on the proposed amendment shall be carried out by mail or electronic ballot as specified by the Secretary. The adoption of an amendment shall require the affirmative vote of not less than two thirds of the members voting. The amendment shall become effective on the first day of the month following ratification by the Forum membership.