To Download the PDF file: Click Here.
Georgia Association of the Deaf
As Revised at the 2011 Conference
in Pine Mountain, Georgia, July 1, 2011
ARTICLE I – NAME
This organization shall be known as the Georgia Association of the Deaf, Inc. (hereafter known as The Association).
The Association shall be incorporated under the laws of the state of Georgia as a non-profit educational, welfare, and deaf advocate association (the word Deaf here after incorporates those persons with a hearing loss).
The Association shall be a cooperating member of the National Association of the Deaf. The Association shall meet all of its obligations as a cooperating member association, including payment on the annual quota as set by the National Association of the Deaf, and send to the National Conferences the maximum number of representatives to which it is entitled under the laws of the National Association, providing that Board of Directors finds this financially feasible.
ARTICLE II – OBJECTIVES
(a) Shall be a non profit organization by, of, for deaf/hard of hearing persons.
(b) Its goals shall be established to ensure equal access for the deaf and hard of hearing community to all of life’s opportunities afforded its hearing counterparts.
(c) Its general purpose and powers shall be to promote and advocate the educational, health, housing, vocational, cultural, social, and recreational welfare of its Deaf and Hard of Hearing constituents.
(d) Its specific and primary purpose shall be to act as a coordinating statewide agency to address the needs of Deaf and hard of hearing through advocacy, resources, and dissemination of information to parents, professionals, consumers or other interested parties.
ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP
Membership in the Association shall be in four classifications:
Active – Active membership shall be open to any resident of Georgia who attends our Association conferences, or who wishes to take an active part in the Association. Membership shall also be open to the hearing, but governing shall be limited to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. Active members who are bona fide residents of Georgia for two years may be nominated for office in the Association.
Residents, who live near this state’s borders, and desire participation in a nearby GAD Chapter, shall have all rights of active membership including holding an office, except the position of the President.
Associate – Associate membership shall be open only to non-residents other than those living near the state’s borders (Article III Section 2A above). At the state conference, associate members have the privilege of the floor but may not vote.
Honorary – Honorary members: Any person may be made an honorary member by a majority vote of those present at a conference. They shall be entitled to all of the privileges of active members. They shall not be subject to the dues of the Association.
Student – Any High School or College student may be a member of the Association upon payment of membership dues. They shall be entitled to all of the privileges of active membership.
ARTICLE IV – BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Board of Directors of the Association shall be a President, the Immediate Past President (see Article V, Section 13), a Vice President, a Recording Secretary, a Treasurer, the Membership Chair, the Chapter Presidents, the State Jr. NAD Director, the Senior Citizens Association President, and the Miss Deaf Georgia Pageant Director.
The Board of Directors shall be responsible for the general management and affairs of The Association as expressed by resolution or otherwise, and shall have the power to use any available funds of The Association to promote the interests of The Association.
The Board of Directors shall have the power by a majority vote to suspend any officer from the privileges of The Association, or to suspend any officer from the discharge of his/her duties for good and sufficient reasons, however, such suspended member shall have the right to appeal to the Board of Directors at its next regular meeting following the suspension and thereafter to the membership at the next conference.
When a Chapter President is unable to attend a meeting of the Board/Conference, he/she is required to have the chapter Vice President or other chapter representative to attend in his/her place, therefore, if a chapter president or representative does not attend 3 consecutive meetings of the board without sufficient reason, she/he is removed from the Board and the Chapter shall elect a new president.
ARTICLE V – OFFICERS
The officers of The Association shall be the President, the Vice President, the Recording Secretary, and the Treasurer.
The President -
A. Shall preside at all Board of Directors, General and Conference meetings of The Association and rule on matters in dispute. An appeal from a ruling by the President may be sustained by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the membership at conference.
B. Shall head the list of Association representatives at conferences of the National Association of the Deaf and shall be the Association liaison officer in matters in which the state and national associations are concerned.
C. Shall perform all duties originally associated with the office of President, including co-signing all payable checks with the treasurer.
D. Shall maintain an updated Georgia Association of the Deaf manual, complete with a schedule of required actions and contact persons for each action. The manual shall be passed to the new President at the time the new officers take oath.
The Vice President
A. Shall discharge the duties of the President in his absence.
B. Shall perform duties as assigned by the President.
C. Shall act as liaison officer between the Home Office and Chapters and in such capacity shall help promote growth and stability in same.
D. Shall, and with the President’s share of the responsibility, have full management of the Home Office and its designated functions.
E. Shall, if so designated by the President, act as ex-officio representative to all community, local, state, and other functions.
F. Shall keep a complete list of the officers and their post office addresses.
G. Shall give in ample time to each member notices of any upcoming meetings.
H. Shall appoint a chairperson for the Bylaws and the Awards Committees.
The Recording Secretary
A. Shall keep a correct record of the proceedings of the Association at its various settings and prepare the same for publication as may be directed by The Association.
B. Shall have charge of all papers and correspondences of The Association except that which properly belongs to other officers.
A. Shall receive all monies belonging to the Association.
B. Shall keep an accurate account, verified by vouchers, of its receipts and expenditures and submit an audited report of the same to the Association at its next regular meeting.
C. Shall pay no bills over $200.00 unless approved by the Board of Directors.
D. If and when the Membership Chair resign or leave for any good reason, the treasurer will take over until she/he will be replaced.
E. The term of the Treasurer shall be four (4) years, but limited to two (2) terms.
F. The Financial Overseer
- Shall be elected by the membership.
- Shall assist the Treasurer in IRS/CPA questions, investments, bookkeeping and shall oversee and verify payments made by the Treasurer.
- Shall assist the two (2) trustees appointed by the president who shall examine the records of the Treasurer prior to every board meeting.
- The Financial Overseer and the trustees shall not be members of the board.
A. Shall give members notice of their dues, when due and keep record of those who are in arrears.
B. Shall maintain the membership database.
C. Shall give printed address labels to the GAD Banner Editor.
D. Shall verify membership at the Conference.
The officers shall not serve more than three (3) successive terms (in the same office).
Term of office shall be two (2) years.
The officers of the Association shall be elected by a majority ballot of the members in conference assembled except for Chapter Presidents who shall be elected by their own chapter members within sixty (60) days prior to the convention. The retiring Chapter Secretary or the President shall send a formal (written or printed) statement to certify the newly elected Chapter President to the GAD President.
The GAD delegates to the NAD Conference shall be limited to the officers or the Board members. Of that group the Board will vote to determine the delegates, according to the NAD quota.
During the election of new officers there shall be no voting by mail or proxy.
Newly elected officers shall assume office immediately after final adjournment of the current conference and continue in office until their successors are elected and qualified. The following oath shall be administered by the retiring President or other member in good standing. Chapter Presidents shall be sworn in by the new President at the next Board of Directors meeting following the conference.
” I solemnly promise to observe and uphold the By-Laws of the Association, to promote its welfare, and to protect it from those who would willfully harm it. I shall at all times discharge the duties of my office to the best of my ability (so help me God.)” (as optional).
The outgoing President shall assume the office of Immediate Past President for a period of six months with all the rights and duties of membership on the Board of Directors.
In the event of a resignation of an officer, a formal notice with a statement of reason thereof shall be submitted to the Board of Directors who shall be empowered to appoint a qualified member of the Association to fill the vacancy until the next conference whereby the general membership shall vote a qualified member to fill the position.
A spouse and/or partner may not hold the office of President, Vice President, Recording Secretary, or Treasurer at the same time.
Officers and Committee Chairpersons of the Association shall be paid for any necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties. They shall submit vouchers or written reports of their expenses to the Board of Directors for their approval.
ARTICLE VII – THE COMMITTEES
There shall be six (6) standing committees:
(4) Publicity & Newsletter (5) Youth
Education – Shall educate the public on deafness (causes and effects) cultural,and educational issues, support the preservation of the state schools for instruction of the deaf. In addition, shall work toward the most appropriate educational system (and practice thereof) of the deaf in public schools (mainstream) and/or institutions of higher education. With the Board of Director’s approval, this committee may address other related topics as deemed appropriate
Legislation – Shall read the titles of all bills introduced in the state legislature. If after close examination there are found unfavorable bills which may reflect on the welfare of the deaf, the Board of Directors shall be notified immediately so that proper action may be taken. The Committee shall also initiate and file new processes and legislation as deemed necessary.
Bylaws – Shall consider all proposed amendments to the Bylaws, and when such amendments are properly submitted to the Chairperson, shall recommend their acceptance or rejection. Shall provide a new copy of the revised Bylaws to the members within 90 days after the conference.
Policy – Shall be responsible for developing, implementing, and maintaining board, district chapter, conference and overall association policy.
Fund Raising – Shall be responsible for fundraising activities such as annual giving, special events, and any other means in helping GAD raise funds.
Membership – Shall be responsible for enhancing membership in GAD, coordinating membership dues, with reminders of expiration dates, conducting annual membership drives and perform other responsibilities as necessary including NAD Quota and mailing list.
The Publicity Committee shall be responsible for the association’s public relations, resolutions, and recommendations.
The Jr. NAD Committee Director:
1) Shall serve on the GAD Board with monthly reports and updates.
2) Shall promote statewide local Jr. NAD Activities with local directors.
3) Shall be the liaison person between local Jr. NAD Chapters, the GAD, and the NAD.
4) Shall assist in developing materials from National to Local areas.
5) Shall perform other responsibilities as necessary for Jr. NAD well-being.
Miss Deaf Georgia Pageant Director:
The Director of the Miss Deaf Georgia Pageant (MDGP) shall be selected by a majority vote of the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors shall hold final governing authority in all matters. The Director’s duties shall be, but not limit to:
1) Interface with Conference Chairperson to coordinate logistics and activities.
2) Comply with guidelines as set forth by GAD/NAD.
3) Coordinate fundraising activities.
4) Serve as a liaison between Miss Deaf Georgia and Miss Deaf America Pageant.
5) Serve as a base for Miss Deaf Georgia’s activities during her reign.
6) Establish a MDGP committee.
The Miss Deaf Georgia Pageant (MDGP):
1) The Association shall sponsor concurrent with its biennial conference, a pageant to select the representative for Georgia at the Miss Deaf America Pageant (MDAP) which is held concurrent with the biennial NAD Conference, only if there are contestants.
2) Miss Deaf Georgia Pageant shall be conducted within the guidelines of MDGP, which will be monitored by the Director.
i. These guidelines shall not in any way conflict with MDAP.
ii. They shall be revised after MDAP State Director meetings, and shall be approved by the majority of the Board of Directors.
3) Funds for MDGP shall be kept in a separate sector of the Association’s checking account with $1,000.00 petty cash managed by the MDGP Committee Treasurer in their own account.
The Association shall offer a one-time $500.00 scholarship annually to a graduating high school Senior in Georgia who is deaf or hard of hearing. The Scholarship will be payable to the attending college, university, technical, or vocational school upon enrollment. The GAD Board of Directors may withdraw the scholarship due to any unforeseen reason.
A. The applying senior must present a letter of acceptance by a college, university, technical or vocational school.
B. Seniors must have at least a 3.0 grade point average or above and will attend his/her educational/training site after graduation, anytime from June to October of the same year.
C. Must have participated in at least two extracurricular activities in high school such as sports, clubs, school newspaper or yearbook, etc. or two community activities, i.e. 4-H Club, volunteer at camp, hospital, nursing home, etc.
D. Graduating seniors from Georgia School for the Deaf, Atlanta Area School for the Deaf, or any high school can apply for the Scholarship.
E. Applicants must have been a legal resident of Georgia for four years or more.
ARTICLE VIII – DUES AND ASSESSMENTS
The Board of Directors, from time to time, shall set membership dues and assessments subject to a majority vote of board members presented at the board meeting.
No member shall be entitled to privileges of active membership whose dues are in arrears.
Any person who attends the conference for the first time and has never been a member of the GAD in the past shall be eligible for the membership conference fees if he/she becomes a member and pay membership dues.
Active membership dues shall not be subject to discounts.
ARTICLE IX – OFFICIAL HEADQUARTERS
The Association shall maintain an official headquarters to be known as the Home Office of the Association which shall:
A. Be located in Metropolitan Atlanta, Georgia.
B. Be under the direct supervision of the President of the Association.
C. Be staffed by the President, the Vice President, the Recording Secretary, the Treasurer of the Association and the Chapter Presidents.
In the Home Office shall be kept the official records, research materials and supplies of literature for publicity purposes. It shall build up and maintain a library of information on the deaf, including books, bound volumes of periodical materials, and other informative materials it may find and make available to research workers, students, writers, and others in search of information on the deaf. The President shall appoint, with approval of the Board of Directors, a librarian and historian to oversee all records, books, and other materials relating to the Association and the deaf in general.
ARTICLE X – PROPERTY OF THE ASSOCIATION
The Treasurer shall have sole responsibility for all property of the Association and shall report inventory activity to the Board of Directors.
Inventory of Property
B. If the office of the President changes, the retiring President and the incoming President shall sign the inventory sheet indicating this is a true estimate that all has been accounted for.
C. The Vice President, the Recording Secretary, and the Treasurer shall keep a copy of the inventory sheet in their files for reporting at the conference.
D. All items sold or traded shall be so identified on the inventory sheet.
Disposal of Property
During periods between conferences when it is necessary or expedient to dispose of any property of the Association, such disposition or sale shall be decided by a majority of the Board of Directors.
ARTICLE XI – OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER OF THE ASSOCIATION
The official Newsletter of this Association shall be the GAD BANNER.
It shall be printed and distributed depending on sufficient GAD BANNER funds.
Subscription is included in membership dues.
The President shall appoint an editor to take charge of the Newsletter:
A. The Editor shall perform duties as assigned for the GAD Banner.
B. The Editor shall be responsible for the publishing, layout, redesign, become familiar with postal requirements, and dealing with printer/publisher.
C. the Editor shall be entitled to appoint/select an Assistant Editor or any other resources necessary to uphold the Editor’s duties.
Subscriptions will be available to non-members. The rate shall be decided by the Board of Directors.
ARTICLE XII – DISTRICT CHAPTERS
District Chapters may be formed in any city or county of the state when seven or more eligible persons petition to the President for a chapter. Such district chapters shall be subject to the By-Laws and to the authority of the Executives Board of the Association. A person may become a member of the Association by sending dues to the Association/chapter treasurer. Only then can a person become a member of the chapter by paying chapter dues. Chapters shall elect their own President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. They may provide for the election of a delegate to have authority to speak for the chapter in all matters coming before the conference.
Chapters shall be responsible for their Chapter President’s expenses to the GAD conference, including combination ticket, hotel, Miss Deaf Georgia Pageant, and related activities if any.
Chapters shall reimburse their representatives to the Board of Directors meetings and any related expenses that are incurred.
No chapter shall be legally formed until presented with a charter signed by the President and the Association Secretary and affixed with the Seal of the Association.
All chapters of the Georgia Association of the Deaf, Inc. shall incorporate in the name of the chapter the word “Georgia Association of the Deaf” or the initials of the Association “GAD” so that the connection with GAD will be evident.
All chapter meetings shall be governed by Robert’s Rules of Order. Six or more active members, not counting the Chapter President, of a chapter shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. If a quorum is not present, the chapter can still conduct a business meeting, but cannot vote on any business or motions.
A chapter established in a large city or county may include in its membership the deaf residing in nearby smaller communities where there are not enough members to start a separate chapter.
Each chapter may create an expense fund upon which to defray all legitimate expenses of said chapter.
The Chapter President
A. Shall preside at all meetings of his respective chapter.
B. Shall perform for his chapter all the duties ordinarily associated with the office of the Chapter President.
C. Shall attend all Board of Director meetings of the Association as a representative of his/her chapter.
D. Shall appoint an alternate representative to the Board of Directors meeting if he/ she is unable to attend.
E. Must first approve the annual financial report before it is sent to the state Association’s Recording Secretary.
Under no circumstances shall the Association be responsible for the obligations arising from any debts or contracts of any of the chapters.
The Chapter shall pay yearly association dues of $50.00 to the Association.
Chapters shall elect new officers for their chapters within forty five (45) days before to the Association’s conference and shall assume office immediately after the conference and submit to the Recording Secretary of the Association the names of the new officers along with the minutes of the meeting and names of the members voting.
The Association Treasurer with the Association President’s approval shall contact the officers of any inactive Chapter, by letter and other means, explaining that if they remain inactive, the By-Laws require that they turn over all their chapter monies and records to the Association. They will be given 60 days to try to become active again, and if not active by the end of 60 days, they will turn over all monies and records to the parent association.
ARTICLE XIII – MEETINGS
The Order of Business of this Association shall be as follows:
Reading of Minutes
Report of Officers
Report of Committees
New Business (Elections of new officers and convention bids)
Meetings of the Board of Directors shall be held at least four (4) times per year and shall be called by the President. Fifty one percent (51%) of the Board members present shall constitute a quorum.
The Board of Directors shall have the power to call a special at large meeting of the Association whenever fifty (50) or more of the active members make a petition for such a meeting.
Fifteen (15) active members in good standing at any conference meeting shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. There must be fifteen members besides the officers.
In all matters of business affecting the Association except amendments to the Bylaws and where specified in other sections of the By-Laws a majority vote of the active members shall be decisive.
The President shall, when necessary, appoint others to help preserve order during any regular meeting of the Association.
ARTICLE XIV – CONFERENCES
The Conference of the Association shall be held every two years. The time and place will be chosen to meet the needs of the members. (It is customary that the GAD Conference be held approximately one year following the NAD Conference.) The Board of Directors has the authority to change the date and length of the meeting for the best interest of the Association.
Members will be notified by mail at least four months before the Conference. In addition, members will be mailed a final notice one month before the Conference.
Only Association members can participate in business meetings as it pertains to ARTICLE III, SECTION 4. Non-members attending the business meeting will be charged a registration fee.
A. The Association shall host future Conferences and the Board of Directors shall decide on the date and location with recommendations from active members. The Association Chapters may bid to host the One-Day General Meeting (One Day Conference) with the Board of Directors’ approval.
B. The President of the Association will be a member of the Conference Committee and any meetings he/she is required to attend his/her expenses will be paid from Conference funds.
C. The Board of Directors shall have the power to change the place and date of the Conference when circumstances warrant such action. This can only be done by 2/3 vote of the Board of Directors at the time of vote.
D. The Association Board of Directors shall appoint an active member for chairperson for upcoming conference on recommendation by active members.
E. The chairperson of the Conference shall select willing active members from each chapter for appropriate committee of the Conference with the approval of the Board of Directors.
F. The chairperson of the upcoming Conference hosted by the chapter winning the bid shall be subject to the approval of the Board of Directors.
No association conference event shall conflict with Miss Deaf Georgia Pageant.
ARTICLE XV – ONE-DAY GENERAL MEETING
A One-Day General Meeting of the Association shall be held the same year of the NAD Conference to meet special needs by the members. The Board of Directors shall have power to change date and length of the meeting deemed advisable for the best interest of the Association. Interested chapters may bid to host the One-Day General Meeting at any Board of Directors meeting.
Three months advance notice shall be mailed to the members before the One-Day General Meeting. Final notice shall be mailed one month before the meeting.
The One-Day General Meeting shall be open to all. The host with the Board of Directors approval will decide fees.
Association members shall be entitled to a special member discount on the One-Day General Meeting ticket fees; however they must pay full membership dues. Non-members shall pay the full rate on the One-Day General Meeting ticket fees. Registration fees shall be waived for any High Schools students. Any High School students shall be admitted without charge to all business meetings and workshops, but they shall be responsible for their own lodging and meals.
The president of the chapter shall be ex-officio member of One-Day General Meeting committee and when his/her presence is required at meetings, his/her expenses shall be paid from the chapter funds unless the Association hosts the One-Day General Meeting, then the Association is responsible for expenses.
The Association will assume responsibility any deficit resulting from One-Day General Meeting held by the chapter and any profits remaining after all expenses are paid shall be allocated as follows: 50% to chapter and 50% to the Association.
a. Speakers / special projects shall be approved by the Board of Directors.
b. Monies shall be audited by the host chapter and a final financial report to be submitted to the Board of Directors three (3) months after the meeting.
c. One-Day General Meeting must be held within a 50-mile radius of the host chapter’s hometown with the exception of the Association and Board approval.
d. Any other party conducting One-Day General Meeting shall remit full profit to the Association.
e. The Board of Directors shall, by 2/3 votes, have the power to change One-Day General Meeting site and/or date when circumstances warrant such action.
f. In the event no bid for One-Day General Meeting site, the Association shall be responsible for the upcoming meeting.
g. The host chapter shall appoint a chairperson for the upcoming One-Day General Meeting.
Association members shall be entitled to a special GAD Member rate ticket for the One-Day Meeting, provided they pay or have paid the full membership dues. Non-members shall not be entitled to a special rates.
ARTICLE XVI – AFFILIATED ORGANIZATIONS
There shall be three (3) affiliation groups:
A. Active Nonprofit Organizations.
Any “Of, For, and By” the Deaf 501(c)(3) organization may affiliate with the State Association upon payment of annual dues of $ 50.00. The organization shall send one representative to the conference and each shall have an one-vote voting privilege. To meet the criteria of “Of, For, and By” Deaf, the organization must meet two out of three requirements:
(1) majority of its Board of Directors is Deaf,
(2) Executive Director is Deaf, and
(3) a majority of staff is Deaf.
B. Associate Nonprofit Organizations.
Those not meeting the criteria as Active Nonprofit Organizations may affiliate with the State Association upon payment of annual dues of $100.00.
C. For Profit Organizations.
For profit organizations may affiliate with the State Association upon payment of annual dues of $150.
D. All three affiliations shall receive 5 copies of the GAD Banner and shall be waived of conference booth fees (limited to one booth).
E. The Board of Directors shall have the power to disapprove any and all such applications by any organization to become affiliates with the Association.
All affiliated organizations shall have full charge of their own funds and property and shall not be financially responsible to the Association; except to the extent of paying their annual dues. Conversely, the Association assumes no financial responsibility for any of its affiliates or cooperating agencies.
ARTICLE XVII – DISSOLUTION OF ASSOCIATION AND/OR CHAPTERS
In the event of dissolution, the assets of Georgia Association of the Deaf, Inc. shall be given to the National Association of the Deaf or a similar organization operating exclusively for charitable, educational, and moral welfare of the deaf as determined by the Board of Directors.
ARTICLE XVIII – AMENDMENTS
Amendments to the Bylaws of the Association shall be presented to the membership by the Bylaws Committee at the conference, which may be amended by a vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the active members voting on the floor.
Amendments to the By-Laws of the Association shall be made in writing and mailed to the Bylaws Committee Chairperson two months prior to the conference at which time the by-law committee appointed by the Vice President shall study and make reports at the convention. The By-Law Committee Chairperson shall list all propositions 15 days prior to the conference for each member’s consideration.
Any new proposals or revisions made by the conference attendees shall be referred to the next Bylaws chairpersons and Bylaws Committee, and the committee shall present the new proposals or revisions to the next conference.
ARTICLE XIX – PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY
ROBERT’S RULES OF ORDER, REVISED shall be the parliamentary authority for the conduct of board and conference meetings, whenever not in conflict with the bylaws stated herein.