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Appointments made by (secret) ballot


Guest Jerrymacgp
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I am the Chair of the governing board of a not-for-profit body established by statute to regulate the practice of a profession in our jurisdiction. From time to time, we may be asked to appoint representatives of either our board or of the organization to outside entities, often at a governance level. In addition, we establish governance committees of the board on a regulator basis, both standing committees with term limits, and special or ad hoc committees.

When we are required to make these and similar appointments, we often solicit volunteers or nominations for the post(s) in questions, and then hold a vote, frequently by secret ballot. Once all the ballots are submitted and counted, a "winner" is declared. Then we hold a second vote, on a Motion to appoint so-and-so to the post in question. In my view, that second Motion is redundant, and the balloting process should suffice to make the appointment, unless there is some irregularity. In addition, when there is only one candidate for a post, we do not declare that individual elected by acclamation, but again require a Motion to appoint the individual. That also seems to me to be redundant.

This process seems simply an extra step that takes little time when it occurs at a face-to-face meeting, but it introduces extra delay when it involves teleconference meetings and electronic vote in question that come up between face-to-face meetings, which are permitted both by our enabling legislation and our Bylaws. For example, a ballot is sent out for an electronic vote to make an appointment which has a deadline before our next face-to-face meeting, usually for legislated reasons beyond our control. Once all the ballots are in by the voting deadline, we then hold a second electronic vote to affirm the appointment of the individual who gained the plurality of the votes on the ballot.

Do we need that second vote?

Thank you.

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52 minutes ago, Guest Jerrymacgp said:

From time to time, we may be asked to appoint representatives of either our board or of the organization to outside entities, often at a governance level. In addition, we establish governance committees of the board on a regulator basis, both standing committees with term limits, and special or ad hoc committees.

Well, let's split this up.  First a general rule: if you were electing your own officers, you would not need a motion to seat them, because not having officers required by your bylaws is not an option.  So, the first question is: is it an option to make these appointments, or not?  When it comes to the outside representatives, you say you are asked.  Are you obligated to?  If not, you have two questions to answer  - should we send someone, and whom should we send?  In that case, it's likely you'll need to make two decisions, although I'm not convinced the manner you describe is the best manner.  When it comes to committees, there are standing and special committees.  On the standing committees, not filling them is not an option, so you only have one question - who gets the position?  On special committees, yes, you need a motion to create the committee, although the motion might incorporate the people to be appointed, or it might call for an election.  

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