(Revised September 10, 2015)


Southern Association of Pre-Law Advisors

Preamble:  These Bylaws and all amendments, along with Constitution, shall constitute the rules and regulations governing the procedures of SAPLA and the conduct of its members.

ARTICLE 1.  Definition of Membership

Section 1.  Members in good standing are certified by the Treasurer as those individuals and/or representatives of institutions who have paid dues in accordance with the Constitution.

Section 2.  Associate Members and other individuals in attendance at the annual business meeting shall have floor privileges without voting rights.

ARTICLE II.  Functions of Membership

Members have the right and responsibility to participate in the Association's activities.  Members support the Association by bringing to the officers questions and concerns about Pre-Law advising which should be addressed.

ARTICLE III.   Officers

Section 1.      President.      The President is the chief executive officer of the Association.  S/he serves a term of two years, except as provided in the Constitution, beginning with the adjournment of the annual business meeting.  The duties of the President shall be to:

A. Preside at the annual business meeting and at Executive Committee meetings;

B. Call special meetings of the Association as deemed necessary, after consultation with the Executive Committee, to conduct Association busines

C. Be an ex-officio member of all committees.

D. Oversee the annual membership drive

E. Set the agendas for annual and Executive Committee meetings.

F. Appoint ad hoc committees as deemed necessary to conduct Association business.

G. Appoint a Communications Coordinator and a Diversity Outreach Coordinator.

H. Appoint the Law School Representative to the Executive Committee.

I. Appoint, on request, assistants to aid officers in fulfilling their duties.

a. Appointment Process: The President will present his or her preference for appointments to the Board, along with a rationale for those appointments. The Board will discuss the potential appointments and have the opportunity to suggest others to fill the appointments. The President can consider that information when making a final decision on the appointments.

b. Term Length of Appointed Positions: Appointed positions will serve two year terms at the pleasure of the President.

J. Fulfill other duties as needed.

Section 2.      President-Elect  The President-Elect becomes President upon completion of the previous President's term of office. The President-Elect assumes the duties of the President in the event of the incapacity of the President.  The duties of the President-Elect shall be to:

A. Serve as the Program Chair for the subsequent annual conference:

1. Help in developing the agenda for the annual conference.

2. Issue a call for panels, presenters and conveners.

3. Obtain commitments from program participants and benefactors.

B. Perform such other duties as the President designates.

Section 3.      Vice-President .        The Vice-President shall become President-Elect upon completion of the Vice-President's term of office. The duties of the Vice-President shall be to:

  1. Serve as Assistant Program Chair for the annual conference
  1. Coordinate, with the help of other officers, the funding of the annual conference.
  1. Perform such other duties as the President designates.

Section 4.      Treasurer.     At the request of the Treasurer, the President shall appoint an assistant to serve a concurrent term to aid in fulfilling the duties of the office.  The duties of the Treasurer shall be to:

A. Maintain a roster of members in good standing as well as other identifiable persons who might become members.

B. Distribute notices of and collect dues owed to the Association.

C. Oversee the financial accounts of the Association and pay its bills appropriately.

D. Report the financial status of the Association to the annual business meeting.

E. Keep updated statements on the policies, procedures, membership guidelines, service, and programs of SAPLA for distribution.

F. Perform such other duties as the President shall designate.

Section 5.      Secretary.

 The duties of the Secretary shall be to:

A. Record the minutes of the annual business meeting and of the Executive Committee meetings for distribution to the members.

B. Maintain the records of the Association meetings.

C. Perform such other duties as the President shall designate.

Section 6.      At-Large Pre-Law Advisor.

There shall be at least one At-Large Pre-Law Advisor elected to a two-year term.

Section 7.      Communications Coordinator.

A. Coordinate and solicit information for the publication of a newsletter at least twice a year, preferably once in the fall and once in the spring.

B. Maintain an informative, up-to-date website representing the Association.

C. Solicit information and proceedings of the Association meetings and activities to include on the website along with other significant links.

D. At the appropriate time, at the direction of the Board, the Communications Director will add to his/her responsibilities the preparation, editing and distribution of the SAPLA Handbook for Pre-Law Advisors.

Section 8.      Diversity Outreach Coordinator

The duties of the Diversity Outreach Coordinator shall be to:

A. Increase minority representation by coordinating outreach to such entities as Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU).

ARTICLE IV:  Committees

Section 1.         Standing Committees

  1. Executive Committee

1. Membership.  The Executive Committee consists of the following voting members:

    1. President, who serves as Chair
    2. President-Elect
    3. Vice-President
    4. Treasurer
    5. Secretary
    6. At-Large Pre-Law Advisor
    7. Immediate Past President
    8. A law school member appointed by the President
    9. The SAPLA-Designated representative to PLANC, ex-officio
    10. Diversity Outreach Coordinator
    11. Communications Coordinator
    12. SAPLA members holding PLANC Offices, ex-officio
  1. Duties:
    1. Carry out the business of the Association between annual business meetings.
      1. The committee shall meet at least once a year between annual business meetings. 
      2. A quorum for the transaction of business by the Executive Committee shall be five of its voting members.
    1. Select the Designated Representative to PLANC each year who, along with the SAPLA President, shall represent SAPLA in the PLANC program.
    1. Appoint replacements to fill the unexpired terms of any officers who vacate their positions before their terms expire.
    1. Request meetings with chairs of Association committees as needed.
  1. Nominations Committee        
  1. Membership.
    1. The members of the Nominations Committee and its chair shall be appointed by the President in consultation with the Executive Committee prior to the annual meeting. They shall serve for the time required to prepare a slate of nominees for the annual business meeting.
  1. Duties.
    1. The Nominations Committee shall prepare a slate of nominees for all elected officers and present that slate at the annual business meeting. Nominations should be submitted to the Nominating Committee thirty (30) days prior to the annual meeting.  The Committee is responsible for obtaining the consent to serve from each nominee.  The slate of nominees shall be communicated to the SAPLA membership prior to the annual business meeting. Additional nominations may be made from the floor.
  1. The Chair of the Nominating Committee shall preside over the election of officers at the annual business meeting.
  1. Conference Committee
  1. Membership.
    1. The members of the Conference Committee shall be the President, the President-Elect, the Vice-President and the representative from the host institution, and other members appointed by the President.  Members shall serve through the next annual meeting. The President-Elect shall chair this Committee.
  1. Duties.
    1. The Conference Committee shall develop the theme and select the location for the annual meeting, subject to the approval of the Executive Committee.
    1. The Conference Committee shall have the responsibility for the efficient organization and execution of the plans, programs, and arrangements for the annual conference.
    1. The Committee shall arrange time at the conference for the annual Association meeting.

Section 2.         Ad Hoc Committees

Ad Hoc Committees shall be appointed from time to time at the discretion of the President or Executive Committee to attend to special work of the Association.

ARTICLE V:    Standing rules of Business Meetings

  1. The Chair of the business meetings shall be the President, unless otherwise provided for by these Bylaws.
  1. A quorum for the transaction of business at the annual business meeting shall be the number of full members present. Official decisions of the Association shall be made by a simple majority vote of those present and voting.
  1. Members shall identify themselves when recognized by the Chair to speak.
  1. All business conducted will conform to the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order, unless otherwise specified by the SAPLA Constitution.

ARTICLE VI:  Amendments to the Bylaws

Section 1.         Amendments to the Bylaws may be proposed by any member.

Section 2.         Such proposed amendments shall be submitted in writing to the President and to the Secretary at least thirty (30) days in advance of the annual business meeting.  All members will be notified of proposed amendments in advance of the annual meeting.  E-Mail notification shall be deemed sufficient notification.

Section 3.         Proposed amendments to the Bylaws shall be adopted by a majority vote of the members present and voting at the annual business meeting.

Section 4.         Any adopted Bylaws amendment shall take effect upon the completion of business at the annual business meeting.

ARTICLE VII:  Adoption

These Bylaws will take effect immediately upon their approval in accordance with the Constitution and thereby replace those adopted in 1988, as amended in 1991 and 2003.