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Commander Resigns before taking the position


Guest Angye
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No, the person coming in second never moves up to first place to replace the person who was elected.  Since the elections have already taken place, you have a vacancy in the office of Commander, which I assume is the equivalent of president. Unless your bylaws provide otherwise, your vice-commander, if you have such an officer, automatically becomes the Commander and the vacancy is (or will be) in the office of vice commander.  That is assuming that your bylaws provide that in the event of a vacancy in the office of Commander, the vice commander becomes commander.  If not, then you do have a vacancy in the office of Commander which should be filled in accordance with the vacancy filling procedures in your bylaws.

Edited to strikeout the last two sentences.  I don't know why I said that!  If the bylaws are silent and RONR is the parliamentary authority, the vice commander automatically becomes commander in the event of a vacancy in the office of commander.   Thanks to Bruce Lages for catching that.

Edited by Richard Brown
Added last paragraph and struck out last two sentences of original post.
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1 minute ago, Guest Angye said:

I can’t find anything in the bylaws about filing a vacancy of the commander. 

And we are being told the outgoing commander will stay as commander until it’s solved 

What do your bylaws say about the duties of the vice commander?  Do they say anything about serving or taking over in the case of the absence, death or resignation of the commander?   It is very unusual for bylaws to not say...somewhere...what happens in the event of a vacancy in the office of the president/commander.

But, assuming for the sake of argument that the bylaws are indeed silent about a vacancy in the office of commander, what do they say about the procedure for filling vacancies?

Another question:  Who is it who is telling you that the outgoing commander will stay on as commander "until it's solved"?  

Final  question (which isn't necessarily determinative):  Do your bylaws say that officers serve until their successors are elected?

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15 minutes ago, Richard Brown said:

Another question:  Who is it who is telling you that the outgoing commander will stay on as commander "until it's solved"?  

 

Exactly. It seems to me that a large portion of the questions here involve the passive voice construction. Plea to questioners: please tell us who is telling you things. Second plea to questioners: don't listen to people who are self-interested and/or can't support what they say. We can work with "the President says he gets to stay in office." But, more importantly, the passive voice construction here comes from, I think, a more fundamental issue in parliamentary law: please understand that, if the assumptions and rules of RONR apply, the assembly is in charge. Many issues we see here result from assemblies which listen instead of acting or exercising their own power. Boards are not in charge. Presidents are not in charge. (Speaking about ordinary organizations here, and unless the bylaws say otherwise.) The assembly is in charge, it gets to interpret the rules, it determines what is in the bylaws and what powers boards and officers have, and it gets the final say. 

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3 minutes ago, Guest Angye said:

The by laws r vague I don’t see anything about a vacancy being filled except for a board member position. The commander said he would hold the office until it was filled. 

If the commander is on the board, what do they say about a vacancy on the board?

Ignoring vacancies for a moment, somewhere in the bylaws they (hopefully) define the term of office of the commander. What do they say there? Please quote exactly what they say about that, if anything.

One term for a person unilaterally deciding to remain in a position to which he was not re-elected, unless the rules call for that, is "coup." The commander might say he will hold the office until it is filled, but unless your rules call for that, his words are meaningless. He doesn't just get to decide what happens.

Finally, I think it's been asked before, but is there a vice-commander or similar position?

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Yes there is a 1st Vice he just swore in last nite. 

The bylaws say To fill an unexpected vacancy on the board of directors, such members shall be elected by a two-thirds majority of the board of directors, then must be ratified by the membership at the next regularly called meeting of the post. 

 

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 If in this organization the Commander functions as a president, it seems to me that a vacancy in the office of Commander is filled automatically by the 1st Vice, just as prescribed in RONR for a vacancy in the office of president, unless the bylaws expressly provide otherwise.  Richard, I'm not sure why you said that the Vice becomes Commander only if the bylaws specifically provide for this. Are you assuming that the Commander functions as something other than a president?

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7 minutes ago, Bruce Lages said:

Richard, I'm not sure why you said that the Vice becomes Commander only if the bylaws specifically provide for this.

I'm not sure, because earlier in that paragraph  I said the vice commander becomes the commander unless the bylaws specifically provide otherwise.  This was my exact statement:  " Unless your bylaws provide otherwise, your vice-commander, if you have such an officer, automatically becomes the Commander and the vacancy is (or will be) in the office of vice commander".  Some  bylaws do indeed provide that a vacancy in the office of president shall be filled in a way other than by the vice president automatically becoming president.  I agree that if the bylaws are silent, the automatic ascendancy provisions of RONR would dictate that the vice commander automatically becomes commander.  So, I really don't know why I added the sentence that seems to contradict the above!    Good catch! :unsure:

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21 minutes ago, Guest Angye said:

Ahhh I found this.. no office shall be vacated until a successor can be duly elected or appointed and confirmed to the Indiana department of the American Legion. 

Well, then, that does seem to give the outgoing commander the right (indeed, the obligation) to continue to serve until a successor is elected or appointed.   That's the sort of language we were looking for.

Edited to add:  Actually, on second thought, I'm not so sure.   I forgot that the new commander had been elected but resigned prior to taking office.  I see how it can be argued that a successor was indeed elected but resigned and now the vice commander-elect will become commander on the date that the new officers are to assume office. 

Edited by Richard Brown
Added the words "or appointed" to the first sentence and added last paragraph
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9 hours ago, Guest Angye said:

Yes there is a 1st Vice he just swore in last nite. 

The bylaws say To fill an unexpected vacancy on the board of directors, such members shall be elected by a two-thirds majority of the board of directors, then must be ratified by the membership at the next regularly called meeting of the post. 

 

Assuming that the Commander is the presiding officer of the society, RONR's rules for the president's position apply.  If the bylaws do not provide special instructions for filling a vacancy in the office of commander in particular, then the general rules for filling vacancies  (including the ratification requirement) to not apply.  Instead, the 1st vice-commander automatically becomes commander, and other numbered vice-commaders move up one slot, leaving a vacancy in the highest-numbered vice-commander.

That vacancy is filled in the normal method provided for in the bylaws.

Edited by Gary Novosielski
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