About IWCA / Governance / Constitution
July 1, 2013
If you’re interested in reading the pre-2013 IWCA Constitution, you may download it here.
Article I: Name and Objective
Section 1: The name of the organization shall be the International Writing Centers Association, hereafter referred to as IWCA.
Section 2: As an assembly of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), the IWCA supports and promotes the scholarship and professional development of writing centers in the following ways: 1) sponsor events and conferences; 2) forward scholarship and research; 3) enhance the professional landscape for writing centers.
Article II: Membership
Section 1: Membership is open to any individual who pays dues.
Section 2: Dues structure will be set forth in Bylaws.
Article III: Governance: Officers
Section 1: Officers will be Past President, President, Vice President (who becomes President and Past President in a six-year succession), Treasurer, and Secretary.
Section 2: Officers will be elected as stipulated in Article VIII.
Section 3: Terms of office shall commence immediately after the NCTE Annual Convention following the election, unless the term fills a vacancy (see Article VIII).
Section 4: Terms of office for the Vice President-President-Past President succession will be two years in each office, non-renewable.
Section 5: Terms of office for the Secretary and Treasurer will be two years, renewable.
Section 6: Officers must maintain IWCA and NCTE memberships during terms of office.
Section 7: The duties of all Officers will be those set forth in Bylaws.
Section 8: An elected Officer may be removed from office for sufficient cause upon unanimous recommendation of the other Officers and a two-thirds vote of the Board.
Article IV: Governance: Board
Section 1: The Board shall insure a broad representation of the membership by including Regional, At Large, and Special Constituency Representatives. Regional representatives are appointed (see Section 3); At Large and Special Constituency Representatives are elected as specified in Bylaws.
Section 2: Elected Board member terms shall be two years, renewable. Terms shall be staggered; to establish stagger, term lengths may be temporarily adjusted as outlined in Bylaws.
Section 3: Regional affiliates are entitled to appoint or elect to the Board one representative from their regional.
Section 4: The President will appoint non-voting Board members from complementary organizations as outlined in Bylaws.
Section 5: Board members must maintain IWCA membership during term of office.
Section 6: The duties of all Board members, elected or appointed, are set forth in Bylaws.
Section 7: An elected or appointed Board member may be removed from office for sufficient cause upon unanimous recommendation of the Officers and a two-thirds vote of the Board.
Article V: Governance: Committees and Working Groups
Section 1: Standing committees will be named in Bylaws.
Section 2: Subcommittees, task forces, and other working groups will be commissioned by the President, constituted and charged by the Officers.
Article VI: Meetings and Events
Section 1: Under the leadership of the Conferences Committee, the IWCA will regularly sponsor professional development events as specified in Bylaws.
Section 2: Event hosts shall be affirmed by the Board and selected according to procedures outlined in Bylaws; the relationship between hosts and the IWCA shall be detailed in Bylaws.
Section 3: The General Meeting of the membership will take place at IWCA Conferences. Insofar as possible, the IWCA will also hold open meetings at CCCC and NCTE. Other general meetings may be held at the discretion of the Board.
Section 4: The Board will meet bimonthly if possible but no less than twice per year; a quorum shall be defined as a majority of Board members, including at least three Officers.
Article VII: Voting
Section 1: All individual members are entitled to vote for Officers, elected Board members, and constitutional amendments. Except as specifically stated elsewhere in the Constitution or Bylaws, a simple majority of legal votes cast will be required for an action.
Section 2: Voting procedures will be specified in Bylaws.
Article VIII: Nominations, Elections, and Vacancies
Section 1: The Secretary will call for nominations; candidates may nominate themselves, or any member may nominate another member who agrees to be nominated. Effort will be made to insure voters may choose from at least three candidates for any position.
Section 2: To be eligible, candidates must be IWCA members in good standing.
Section 3: The elections timetable will be specified in Bylaws.
Section 4: If the office of President becomes vacant before term, the Past President will fill the role until the next annual election when a new Vice President can be elected. At the annual change of officers, the sitting Vice President will assume the Presidency, and the Past President will either complete the Past Presidency or the office will become vacant (see Section 5).
Section 5: If any other Officer position becomes vacant before term, the remaining Officers will make a temporary appointment effective until the next annual election.
Section 6: If regional representative positions become vacant before term, the president of the affiliated regional will be asked to appoint a new representative.
Article IX: Affiliated Regional Writing Centers Associations
Section 1: The IWCA recognizes as its affiliates the regional writing centers associations listed in Bylaws.
Section 2: Affiliates may relinquish affiliate status at any time.
Section 3: New regionals who apply for affiliate status are approved by a majority vote of the Board; application process and criteria are outlined in Bylaws.
Section 4: All regional affiliates are entitled to appoint or elect to the Board one representative from their regional.
Section 5: Regionals in good standing demonstrating need may apply to the IWCA for grants or other support for regional activities as outlined in Bylaws.
Article X: Publications
Section 1: The Writing Center Journal is the official publication of the IWCA; the editorial team is selected by and works with the Board according to procedures set forth in Bylaws.
Section 2: The Writing Lab Newsletter is an affiliated publication of the IWCA; the editorial team works with the Board according to procedures set forth in Bylaws.
Article XI: Finances and Financial Relationships
Section 1: Main revenue sources include membership dues and revenues from IWCA-sponsored events as detailed in Bylaws.
Section 2: All Officers are authorized to sign financial contracts and reimburse expenses on behalf of the organization according to conditions set forth in Bylaws.
Section 3: All revenues and expenditures will be accounted for and reported by the Treasurer in compliance with all IRS regulations pertinent to nonprofit status.
Section 4: Should the organization dissolve, the Officers shall oversee the distribution of assets in compliance with IRS regulations (see Article XIII, Section 5).
Article XII: Constitution and Bylaws
Section 1: The IWCA shall adopt and maintain a Constitution outlining the organization’s principles and a set of Bylaws outlining implementation procedures.
Section 2: Amendments to the Constitution or Bylaws may be proposed by 1) the Board; 2) by two-thirds vote of members attending an IWCA General Meeting; or 3) by petitions signed by twenty members and forwarded to the President.
Section 3: Changes to the Constitution are enacted upon a two-thirds majority of the legal votes cast by the membership.
Section 4: Adoption of and changes to Bylaws are enacted upon a two-thirds majority vote of the Board.
Section 5: Voting procedures are stipulated in Article VII.
Article XIII: IRS Regulations to Maintain Tax Exempt Status
The IWCA and its affiliates shall comply with the requirements to be exempt as an Organization described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code:
Section 1: Said organization is organized exclusively for charitable, religious, educational, or scientific purposes, including, for such purposes, the making of distributions to organizations that qualify under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code.
Section 2: No part of the net earnings of the organization shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable to its members, trustees, officers, or other private persons, except that the organizations shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in section 1 hereof and in article __1__ of this constitution.
Section 3: No substantial part of the activities of the organization shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and the organization shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements) any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.
Section 4: Notwithstanding any other provision of these articles, the organization shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried on (a) by an organization exempt from federal income tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or (b) by an organization, contributions to which are deductible under section 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code.
Section 5: Upon the dissolution of the organization, assets shall be distributed for one or more exempt purposes within the meaning of section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or shall be distributed to the federal government, or to a state or local government, for public purpose. Any such assets not so disposed of shall be disposed of by a Court of Competent Jurisdiction of the county in which the principal office of the organization is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organization or organizations, as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.