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Summary PPSA By-Law changes (2006 revision):
Board leadership: Remove the Vice Chair and Vice Chair elect—redistribute the duties. Increase the number of members-at-large to eight (8): four (4) elected per year. All vacancies in board leadership are filled by either, the Chair-elect stepping up, the chair remaining, or the past chair filling in. A past chair vacancy will be filled by a board appointment, as will be member-at-large vacancies. Members-at-large may run for and serve up to two successive terms. All board positions are elected by a plurality voting system.

Penn Professional Staff Assembly By-Laws

Revised 3/2006 to take full effect July 1, 2007

Article I: Name

The name of this organization shall be Penn Professional Staff Assembly.

Article II: Membership

Members of this organization shall all be employed by the University of Pennsylvania as monthly paid, exempt staff, excepting *senior level administrators, and those individuals having primary academic appointments (*senior level administrative positions are defined as those employees assigned to a non-numerical grade category, known as “ungraded” (UNG)).

Article III: Purpose

The purposes of this organization shall be to provide:

• A forum whereby opinions of members can be collected and expressed on issues facing the University and higher education and to act as liaison to express the views, opinions and concerns of the members to the senior administration.

• A mechanism for supplying voting representatives to serve on all major University committees affecting members and their respective functions.

• Regularly scheduled Executive Board meetings whereby communication lines within the University can be fostered and maintained; as well as semesterly meetings of the general body.

• Relevant information to its members regarding resources available within the University and the field of higher education enabling staff to remain current in the field and promoting professional development.

Article IV: Officers and Executive Committee

The officers shall consist of a Chairperson, a Past Chairperson, and a Chairperson-elect.

There shall be an Executive Board, consisting of the Chairperson, Past Chairperson, Chairperson-elect, and eight (8) members-at-large.  The Executive Board promotes  representation of departments throughout the University.  In addition to the functions described elsewhere in these by-laws, the Executive Board shall be consulted by the officers for guidance in all matters on which action is indicated, or on which consultation with the senior administration of the University is contemplated.  The Executive Board shall also nominate persons to serve on consultative committees. A quorum of the Executive Board shall be seven (7).

Section A

The Chairperson:

• Shall be the principal executive officer.

• Shall convene and preside over monthly Executive Board meetings.

• Shall (in consultation with the Chairperson-elect) prepare meeting agendas and any written public statements with regard to the Assembly’s activities. The Executive Board should also be consulted on all public statements.

• Shall (in consultation with the Executive Board) appoint new member(s) to advisory boards and ad hoc committees.

• Shall serve on University Council (UC) and the UC steering Committee.

• Shall designate maintenance of the list serves and website to an Executive Board member or create a special non-voting position specifically for this function.

• Shall maintain a current membership list.

• Shall succeed the past Chairperson after a one-year term.


• Shall be elected by the general body and serve for three years on the Executive Board—one year in each office—Chairperson-elect, Chair, and Past Chair.

• Shall serve on University Council (UC) and the UC steering committee.

• Shall (in consultation with the Chairperson) prepare meeting agendas and any written public statements with regard to the Assembly’s activities. The Executive Board shall also be consulted on public statements.

• Shall at the first meeting of the year solicit one volunteer from the board to be recording secretary and one to serve as treasurer (if needed) and shall coordinate the responsibilities of these positions.

• Shall administer the nomination process for annual elections each spring.

• Shall succeed the Chairperson after a one (1) year term.

• In the absence of the Chair or at his/her request, the Chair-elect shall substitute for the Chair when necessary.

Past Chairperson

• Shall coordinate the appointment of PPSA representatives to all University Council committees and serve as liaison between representatives and the Executive Board.

• Shall serve as the PPSA representative on University Council’s Committee on Committees.

Eight (8) Members at Large:

• Shall advise the officers on issues, concerns, and opinions relevant to the membership.

• Shall serve for two (2) years, four (4) being elected each year.  Members-at-large may run for a second two-year term, but may not serve more than four years total as a member-at-large. 

Article V: Elections

Voting—When the nominations have been presented at the final spring meeting a vote of the membership shall be taken.  All positions are elected by plurality voting system. There shall be no voting by proxy.

Nominations—At least forty-five (45) days in advance of the final spring meeting, the Chairperson-elect shall circulate to the members a notice of the positions to be filled by election and an invitation to suggest candidates for those positions, with supporting letters if desired. The Chairperson-elect shall select and secure acceptance of nomination of two or more candidates for each position to be filled by election. If only one nomination is received for a position, the Chairperson-elect shall solicit at least one more nomination. If one cannot be found, the one nomination will be put forward to the membership. The list of candidates compiled by the Chairperson-elect shall be circulated to the members, together with a brief biographical statement on each candidate, as an enclosure to the agenda at the final spring meeting at which the election is to be held. At the spring meeting, the Chairperson-elect shall formally nominate its candidates for the respective positions.

Article VI: Vacancies and Succession

If a vacancy occurs in the leadership of the board it shall be filled in the following manner.  If the Chair-elect is unable to move into the Chair position, the current Chair may choose to remain in the position for another year.  If the current Chair is unable to remain in the position, the Past Chair will be asked to serve as chair and the board will elect a Chair-elect from amongst itself to succeed at the appropriate time, and the Chair, in consultation with the board, will appoint a former board member to serve as Past Chair.

If the Chair is unable to move into the Past Chair position, the current Past Chair may choose to remain in the position for another year.  If the Past Chair is unable to remain in the position, the Chair, in consultation with the board will appoint a former board member to serve as Past Chair.

Whenever a vacancy occurs among the members-at-large of the Executive Board who do not serve ex-officio, the Executive Board shall appoint a successor, who shall serve until the final spring meeting, at which time a successor shall be elected for the balance of the unexpired term.

If a first year member-at-large of the Executive Board chooses to run for Chair-elect they forfeit the remainder of their term, which must be filled by general body election.

Article VII: Meetings

The Executive Board shall hold monthly (12 months) meetings (minimum) open to any PPSA member to attend.  The meeting times and locations shall be made public via the web site and  Almanac

General body meetings shall be scheduled as deemed necessary, excepting for the annual spring meeting for the purpose of holding elections as provided by these by-laws and for such other business as may come before the membership. The time and place of the annual spring meeting shall be subject to the approval of the Executive Board.

A general body meeting will be held at the beginning of the academic year.

At least one professional development meeting will be held during the year.

A quorum of the assembly shall consist of thirty (30) members.

Article VIII: Amendments

Amendments to these by-laws must be initiated by a letter signed by at least ten (10) members and submitted to the Executive Board for transmittal to the members at large at least thirty (30) days in advance of the meeting at which they are to be acted on. A majority vote of those members present and voting at the meeting is necessary for approval.

Article IX: Parliamentary Authority

The rules contained in Roberts’ Rules of Order shall govern meetings of this assembly in all cases in which they are applicable and in which are not inconsistent with these by-laws.

Article X: Adoption

These by-laws shall be adopted when approved by a two-third vote of the members present and voting at the organization meeting.

Spring 2006 Amendment

For the purposes of being able to implement the changes from the existing (revised February 2000) PPSA by-laws to the revised and proposed PPSA by-laws of 2006, a Vice-Chair Elect shall be elected at the May 31, 2006 elections, this person shall serve as the Vice-Chair Elect for the academic year 2006-2007 and shall then become a member-at-large for the remainder of the term, that is the academic year 2007-2008.  The spring 2007 elections will elect only one leadership position (Chair-Elect) and the necessary number of members-at-large to sustain eight (8) positions on the Executive Board.



  Almanac, Vol. 52, No. 27, March 28, 2006


March 28, 2006
Volume 52 Number 27


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