NOTES REGARDING PROPOSED CHANGES TO THE TEXAS ASSOCIATION OF MUSEUMS CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS

TAM Blog , Executive Leaders Digest ,

Proposed edits to the Constitution and By-Laws were presented for discussion by the TAM Executive Committee to the Council on December 7, 2021. Revisions as discussed and presented are were voted on by the Executive Committee on February 23, 2022 and announced to Membership for the 30-day comment period as required by TAM By-Laws on February 23, 2022. Membership will vote on the proposed changes at the annual Business Meeting on March 24, 2022. 

CONSTITUTION

ARTICLE II: Mission and Vision

Was: Mission and Vision

The Texas Association of Museums strengthens the Texas museum community through collaborations, connections, professional development, and advocacy. The Texas Association of Museums serves our museum community by nurturing and training museum leaders, developing and celebrating the field, and voicing the public worth of museums. The core values of the Texas Association of Museums are:

 

We educate our members as to best practice in the field. 

We provide opportunities for our members to connect and learn from each other. 

We empower our members to become leaders in the field. 

We strengthen Texas Museums. 

We recognize excellence. 

We advocate and promote the educational role museums and other such institutions play within their communities 

We stand in solidarity against racism, white supremacy, marginalization, and oppression against communities of color.

 

Alteration: Mission, Vision, and Core Values

Mission: The Texas Association of Museums strengthens Texas museums by educating on best practices, advocating for the field, and recognizing excellence among its members.

Vision: The Texas Association of Museums aspires to set the standard among regional associations by fostering an inclusive, professional environment for museums to develop high-quality, relevant programming, well-equipped staff, and a strong infrastructure through which they inspire and transform their audiences.

Core Values: TAM members

  • Lead by example in our cultural communities.
  • Continue to grow in understanding racism's legacies, be aware of our biases, and practice antiracist behavior.
  • Promote professional development opportunities for all career levels.
  • Innovate and inspire through member collaborations.
  • Build awareness of the value of science, technology, art, history, and culture while striving for accuracy.
  • Support advocacy efforts on behalf of Texas museums.

 

Justification: 

To clarify the distinction between Mission and Vision; make the text more succinct while being inclusive of all TAM members and recognizing each member’s potential for growth and understanding, and commitment to their stakeholders.

 

BY-LAWS

ARTICLE III: Officers

Section 1:

Was: 

The officers of the Association shall be a President, Vice-President of Annual Conference Program Committee, Vice-President for Development, Vice-President for Special Initiatives, Secretary, Treasurer, and immediate Past-President.

Alteration: 

The officers of the Association shall be a President, Vice-President of Annual Conference Program Committee, Vice-President for Development, Vice-President for Special Initiatives, Vice-President of IDEA (Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility), Secretary, Treasurer, and immediate Past-President.

Justification: 

To strengthen the promotion of TAM’s core value to “continue to grow in understanding racism’s legacies, be aware of our biases, and practice antiracist behavior,” and to continue to be responsive to the diversity of needs of the museum professionals who are members of TAM.

 

ARTICLE III: Officers

Section 3:

Alteration: Add Section 3.H 

The Vice-President of IDEA shall work with Council and Standing Committees to help promote and advocate for matters related to inclusion, diversity, equity, and access within TAM.

 

Justification: 

Clarify role of new Vice-President of IDEA (Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility) position. 

ARTICLE IV: Council

Section 1:

Was: 

The Council shall be composed of seven officers and eight members-at-large. These fifteen members shall be the only voting members of the Council. They must be residents of or work in the State of Texas.

Alteration: 

The Council shall be composed of eight officers and eight members-at-large. These sixteen members shall be the only voting members of the Council. They must be residents of and/or work in the State of Texas.

Justification: 

To account for the  VP of IDEA as an officer position.

 

ARTICLE VI: Executive Committee

Section 1:

Was: 

The Executive Committee shall be composed of the President, who shall serve as chair, Vice- President, Vice-President for Development, Vice-President for Special Projects, Secretary, Treasurer, and immediate Past President.

Alteration: 

The Executive Committee shall be composed of the President, who shall serve as chair, Vice- President, Vice-President for Development, Vice-President for Special Projects, Vice-President of IDEA, Secretary, Treasurer, and immediate Past President.

Justification: 

To add the  VP of IDEA  to the Executive Committee, highlighting its importance to the growth and leadership of the EC.

 

ARTICLE VII: Nominations and Election to Council

Section 1:

Was:  

The Nominating Committee, not to exceed five members, shall consist of the immediate Past-President as chair, at least one outgoing Councilmember not eligible for re-election, and representatives from the general membership of the Association. The general membership representatives shall be appointed by the Council at the first Council meeting following the Annual meeting. The Nominating Committee shall report recommended candidates for Councilors-at-Large and Officers to the Council no later than three months prior to the start date of the terms to be filled by the nominees (e.g., if the nominees are standing for election for terms to begin on March 1, then the Nominating Committee shall report the slate no later than December 1 of the prior year.

Alteration: 

The Nominating Committee, not to exceed five members, shall consist of the immediate Past-President as chair, at least one outgoing Councilmember not eligible for re-election, and representatives from the general membership of the Association. The general membership representatives shall be recommended by the Council at the first Council meeting following the Annual meeting. The Nominating Committee shall present the slate of candidates for Officers and Councilors-at-Large to the Council at the 3rd Quarter Council meeting, or no later than three months prior to the start date of the terms to be filled by the nominees (e.g., if the nominees are standing for election for terms that begin on March 1, then the Nominating Committee shall report the slate no later than December 1 of the previous year).

Justification: 

To clarify the Nominating Committee is presenting a slate for approval by the Council to present to Membership for slate voting and the schedule for doing so.

Section 2:

Was: 

The Nominating Committee’s slate shall make every attempt to develop a slate of nominees for Officers and Councilors-at-Large which represents various institutions, disciplines, geographic, and ethnic diversity. 

Alteration: 

The Nominating Committee shall develop a slate of nominees for Officers and Councilors-at-Large which represents the diversity of its member institutions, disciplines, identities, and locations.

Justification: 

This wording commits the Nominating Committee to creating a diverse slate reflective of its membership.

 

Section 3:

Was: 

The Nominating Committee’s slate shall provide at least six candidates for the four vacant Councilor-at-Large positions. 

Alteration: 

The Nominating Committee shall provide four candidates for the four vacant Councilor-at-Large positions to be voted on as a slate by TAM membership. Members in good standing will have the opportunity to vote in favor or against the slate as a whole. 

Justification: 

Slate voting is more equitable because it eliminates the “popularity contests” and lower voter turnout associated with elections, removing barriers for entry for young and diverse professionals to be involved in leadership roles. Slate voting will help TAM better assemble nominations around strategic priorities, ultimately resulting in better governance. Slate voting has proven successful in other museum-related organizations.

Section 4:

Was: 

The Nominating Committee’s slate shall provide at least one candidate for each vacant Officer’s position.

Alteration: 

The Nominating Committee’s slate shall provide one candidate for each vacant Officer’s position.

Justification: 

“At least” is not necessary because TAM desires to move to slate voting with one candidate presented per open position. 

Section 5:

Was: 

Election of Officers and Councilors-at-Large shall be by printed or electronic ballot distributed or made available to the membership no later than two months prior to the start date of the terms to be filled by the nominees (e.g., if the nominees are standing for election for terms to begin on March 1, 2012, then ballots shall be distributed or made available no later than January 1, 2012). The requirement to distribute ballots or make ballots available to membership may be met by (1) mailing printed ballots or (2) posting the ballots on the Association website and sending electronic notices to all known e-mail addresses in the Association membership records. The President shall appoint a Teller Committee of no less than three individual members in good standing of the Association, none of whom is a candidate for election. The Teller Committee shall compute the results. The results shall be reported to the membership either by mail or electronically. The Officers and Councilors-at-Large shall take office on March 1.

Alteration: 

Election of Officers and Councilors-at-Large shall be by digital ballot. Announcements of the Slate to be voted upon will be made no later than two months prior to the start date of the terms to be filled by the nominees (e.g., if the nominees are standing for election for terms to begin on March 1, then the announcement of the Slate shall be made available no later than January 1 of the same year). Ballots and the portal for digital voting for the Slate will be sent to members and open for receiving votes no later than 30 days prior to March 1.  The requirement to distribute ballots or make ballots available to membership may be met by (1) mailing printed ballots or (2) posting the ballots on the Association website and sending electronic notices to all known e-mail addresses in the Association membership records. Each individual member will have one vote; each institutional member will have one vote. The President shall appoint a Teller Committee of no less than three individual members in good standing of the Association, none of whom is a candidate for election. The Teller Committee shall compute the results. The results shall be reported to the membership digitally through the TAM website, newsletters, and social media posts. New Officers and Councilors-at-Large shall take office on March 1.

Justification: 

To provide transparency and clarity of the Slate voting process and digital advancements. 

Section 6:

Was: 

Nominations for any office or for Councilor-at-Large may be made by write-in ballot by any individual member or institutional representative. The nominee must consent to the nomination either orally or in writing. The printed or electronic ballot shall include space for the name of candidates nominated by write-in ballot.

Alteration: 

Delete Section 6.

Justification: 

No longer needed with the move to Slate voting.

 

ARTICLE VIII: Standing Committees

Section 1:

Was: 

There shall be the following standing committees of the Association: Nominating, Long Range Initiatives, Membership, Development, and Annual Meeting Program.

Alteration: 

There shall be the following standing committees of the Association: Nominating, Long Range Initiatives, Membership, Development, Annual Meeting Program, and IDEA (Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility).

Justification: 

Inclusion of IDEA as a standing committee.