Guidelines for the Election Process
The following are guidelines that the NY Section has provided for their election process. Sections within R1 should consider using a similar process in their nominations and elections of Section Officers for the next term. Sections may also refer to Section 9.4.H in the IEEE MGA Operations Manual for additional information.
These guidelines can also be used for each Society Chapter nominations and election process as well.
Section Chair appoints an N&A (Nominations & Appointments) or Nominating Committee Chair and Committee or allows the N&A Chair to select members of his or her committee. In the New York Section, past practice has been that the outgoing Section Chair is by default the Chair of the N&A Committee. In other sections, the senior past chair serves as the chair of N&A Committee. In either case, the individual must not be planning to be on the ballot of the election.
The Nominating Committee usually consists of three (3) Section Executive Committee members. These member cannot be: one of the current elected officers of the Section , or an individual intending to stand as a candidate for elected office. The Nominating Committee will typically consist of the three most recent past Section Chairs, with the most recent past Section Chair serving as the Chair of the N&A Committee.
Please note: any member in good standing may serve as an officer. There are no requirements for having a prior role within a Section to serve as an officer.
The Nominating Chair prepares a “Call for Nominations” announcement which should be sent out via the IEEE e-Notice system to all eligible members of the Section with a deadline to respond. This “Call for Nominations” e-Notice shall include a notice about petition candidates. Attached are two examples of the “Call for Nominations” announcement, one for the NY Section and one for the NY PES/IAS Chapter. The Section “Call for Nominations” announcement shall be sent out to all Section members and the Chapter “Call for Nominations” announcement shall be sent only to the particular Society Chapter members. This request can be made in the vTools e-Notice system.
In some sections, the prior Vice Chair of the Section is encouraged to serve as the Chair of the next term. The primary requirement is that term limits are observed for all officers.
Term limits: Please consult the IEEE MGA Operations manual regarding term limits (9.4.F Article 7).
- All officers shall be elected by Section members of Graduate Student Member, Member, Senior Member and Fellow Grade. Elections for all officers shall take place every one or two years, in accordance with the term of office as defined by the Section.
- The term of office for all officers shall be one or two years. A Section must define the officer term as one or two years and record it in its local operating procedures document; if the officer term is not recorded in the local operating procedures document, it shall be two year. An individual may continue in the position until a successor has been duly elected and takes office.
- The term of office shall normally be from January 1 through December 31.
- The consecutive period of service in any one office shall normally not exceed four years. All officers shall not serve in any one position, in any single organizational unit, more than six years in total. Exceptions to this rule require approval by the Region Director who will annually report such exceptions to the MGA Board.
Responses from the membership in the NY Section are typically required back by around June 15th from all prospective candidates. Once all responses are received, the Nominating Committee meets to review and evaluate the qualifications of potential candidates. The Nominating Committee determines the proposed slate of officers by the end of June. The proposed slate shall include not less than two (2) nor more than three (3) candidates for each officer position when possible. The term “when possible” is key here since there may be only one candidate qualified or nominated for each officer position.
Note: Candidates (Section members) who were nominated but NOT recommended by the Nominating Committee shall be notified that they were not recommended by the N&A Committee and will become petition candidates in the election process. In the NY Section, petition candidates must establish a petition for the Section Executive Officer position that they are interested in running for and must get their petition signed by 1% of the eligible voting members of their particular Section. i.e. In the NY Section we require 25 or more eligible (current year IEEE dues paid) NY Section members to sign a petition.
In accordance with IEEE Bylaw I-307.17, “the number of signatures required on a petition shall be determined as follows. For all positions where the electorate is less than 30,000 voting members, signatures shall be required from 2% of the eligible voters. For all positions where the electorate is more than 30,000 voting members, 600 signatures of eligible voters plus 1% of the difference between the number of eligible voters and 30,000 shall be required.” The petition shall be completed at least 28 days before the date of the election.
An email should be sent out to the petition candidates requesting that they return their respective petitions by a specific deadline (the NY Section uses August 15th). The email shall explain the petition process and required number of signatures.
Petitions are required to be submitted by August 15th via priority mail with tracking or via e-mail to the Section Chair and Secretary. The Section Chair and / or Secretary shall forward the names of successful petition candidates (petitions received by the required deadline) to the N&A Chair for inclusion to the proposed slate of Section Officers. The petition candidates shall be included and designated on the election ballot as “Petition Candidate”.
The proposed slate of Section Officer candidates including those endorsed by the N&A Committee and petition candidates shall be submitted to the Section Executive Committee for ratification. After discussion the Section Chair shall move (request that a motion be made) that the proposed slate of officers for the new term be approved.
The proposed slate of Section (or Chapter) Officers shall be announced to the entire Section (or Chapter) membership via IEEE e-Notice, Section / Chapter newsletter and Section / Chapter website. Within this announcement, the date of elections shall also be included. Currently in the NY Section, elections are held “in-person” after an Excom meeting. All Section members are invited to attend the “election meeting” and vote for their candidate. Section members must request to attend the election meeting and must bring with them their current IEEE membership card to confirm their eligibility for voting. At this point in time, the Section Chair should appoint a Tellers Committee that is responsible for setting up the ballot and counting the votes for the election. The Tellers Committee shall consist of Excom members not running for a Section Officer position.
Sections are also encouraged to utilize the vTools election balloting system. This system allows members to vote remotely, and it also has the capability of publicly posting each candidate’s biography, photo, and position statement. It has a built-in automated email functionality. It also keeps a running count of votes that the Tellers Committee can utilize for summarizing the outcome of the election. The link provided has tutorials that can be followed by the Tellers Committee in order to setup the ballot. It is available at no charge to the Section.
Elections are held on the date announced to the Section membership. Voting is done via a secret ballot (or electronically if the section has set up an electronic ballot via vTools). In the New York Section, elections are usually held at the end of the November Section Excom meeting. The Excom meeting is usually scheduled for 4:00 pm and the elections are held at 5:00 pm. “In-person” elections should be held at a time (usually after work hours) when most Section members can attend.
An IEEE e-Notice shall be sent to all Section / Chapter members announcing the new slate of Section / Chapter Officers: Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer and Secretary for the new term or coming year. The respective Section / Chapter newsletter and website shall also announce the new slate of officers. The Section / Chapter Secretary shall submit the names and titles of Section / Chapter Officers in the vTools application.
Please note, Officer reporting is a mandatory step in the elections process and it serves two purposes. First, it is eventually used to attach a record of service as an Officer within the individual’s personal history in IEEE (within SAMIEEE). Second, and more important, this information is used as a direct feed for web pages that list Officers for Sections AND Chapters.
If anyone has any questions or concerns with the above guidelines please e-mail Robert Pellegrino at email@example.com.