[Mansa-l] MANSA election process

Laura Arntson mansa_treas at yahoo.com
Sun Oct 26 05:11:55 CDT 2008

I hope you excuse my use of english (my french is not sufficient to respond as adequately as I wish here).
I am pasting the MANSA By-Laws below (these have been ratified by the board and went through the concurrence process of ASA about 10 years ago?).
As an academic association, MANSA has established by-laws that guide the electoral process. MANSA elections, just like other academic organizations (e.g., American Anthropologial Association, Society for Ethnomusicology, African Studies Association, etc.) do not follow the same procedure as the national electoral process, such as the presidential electoral process currently underway.
Statements of candidacy were posted to the MANSA listserv prior to the voting by proxy. Not all MANSA members are currently subscribed to the MANSA listserv.
I am aware that not all members of MANSA who may wish to vote via the proxy e-ballot (that is, all current members, including sponsored members, who will not be present at the annual MANSA meeting held during the ASA Annual Meeting) are subscribed to the listserv. therefore, I decided to send out copies of the proxy e-ballot (in english, french, and portuguese) to all the current & sponsored members of MANSA for whom I have e-mail addresses. 
I attached the statements of candidacy to the proxy e-ballots so that those voting via proxy ballot would have an opportunity to see the statements of candidacy, in case they had not yet seen them.  Just as with other academic organization elections, the statements of candidacy accompany the ballot.
______________MANSA By-Laws _______________
I. The name of the organization shall be Mande Studies Association and shall be known as MANSA. 
II. The Mande Studies Association is an independent professional society established in the United States that is open to all Mande scholars, from any nation, academic discipline and/or professional interest.
III. The specific aims of the organization are the following:
A. To promote scholarly research, both within and outside Africa, in all areas and disciplines of the social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities relevant to the Mande experience and environment.
B. To encourage international cooperation and facilitate the exchange of ideas and meaningful dialogue among persons engaged in research on Mande societies.
C. To encourage the publication and dissemination of scholarly and artistic works as well as primary sources on Mande studies and related topics.
D. To organize panels, symposia, and conferences on Mande Studies at meetings of regional, national and international organizations.
E. To provide the general public with information on issues of historical, cultural, and contemporary interest in Mande areas of Africa.
IV. Organization of the Mande Studies Association
Article I. Executive Council
Section 1. The business of the Association shall be managed by the
Officer of the Association.
Section 2. The Executive Council shall consist of the Officers of the Association and members of the Advisory Board.
Section 3. Any Executive Council member may resign at any time, provided such a resignation is made in writing. Any Executive Council member may be removed by a vote of two-thirds majority of members of record.

Article II. Officers
Section 1. Term Lengths.
(a) The President shall serve for a term of two years.
(b) The Vice President shall serve for a term of two years.
(c) The Secretary-Treasurer shall serve a term of two years and shall be elected on alternate years from the President and Vice-President
(d) A Member at Large shall serve a term of two years.
Officers must be members in good standing.
All officers may stand for re-election by the members if they so choose. The three-year term begins upon an officers election by the members at the annual meeting. Any officer who expects to be unable to fulfill his/her duties adequately for a year or more shall resign with the option of standing for re-election at another time.
Section 2. Officers Duties
(a) The President shall preside at all meetings of the members of the Executive Council and at all business meetings of the Association. She/He shall, in general, supervise and manage all the business and affairs of the Association. She/He shall have authority and power, in the name of the Association, to sign checks, drafts, notes, and orders for the payment of money by the Association. The President and/or his designee shall edit and distribute the Association Newsletter, and shall keep current the official Membership List which names all members of record. The President shall designate committees as she/he deems necessary to carry out specific duties related to the activities of the organization. Such committees and their appointed heads shall dissolve immediately after their specific duties have been accomplished.
(b) The Vice President shall, in the absence or disability of the President, perform the duties and exercise the powers of the President.
(c) The Secretary-Treasurer shall serve as Secretary of the Association. She/He will record the minutes of both Executive Council and regular business meetings and make the minutes available to the President for distribution in the Newsletter. She/He shall perform any other duties which are delegated by members of the Executive Council. The Secretary-Treasurer shall have custody of all funds and other valuable documents of the Association. She/He shall have authority and power to endorse, on behalf of the Association, checks, notes, and other obligations, and deposit same to the credit of the Association in such bank or banks as the Executive Council may designate. She/He shall record the income and expenditures of the Association and give a full written report of all monies received and paid out at the annual business meeting of the membership.
(d) The Member at Large shall serve on the Executive Council of the Association and assist in the decision-making process of that body.
Article III. Vacancies Among Officers
Section 1. If the office of any officer becomes vacant, the remaining officers, as the Executive Council, may appoint or elect any qualified person to fill such a vacancy, who shall hold such office for the unexpired term and until a successor is elected or appointed.
Section 2. An interim appointee named by the Executive Council may stand for office at the end of the unexpired term and will begin a regular term upon election at the annual meeting.
Article IV. Advisory Board
Section 1. There shall be an Advisory Board of five dues-paying members for the purpose of supporting the Association in its scholarly endeavors and suggesting research in areas of interest to the Association. Members of the Advisory Board shall be approved by the membership in attendance at the annual meeting and shall be persons acknowledged within their respective fields as scholars and authorities. Every effort should be made to select members representing gender and geographical balance, and Members of the Advisory Board shall serve for a two-year period. Members of the Advisory Board must attend the business meetings of the Association at least biennially. Out-going presidents and vice-presidents shall be honorary members of the Advisory Board.
Article V. Meetings
Section 1. A meeting of the members shall be held annually. At the annual meeting, any vacant post on the Executive Committee will be filled. Candidates for office shall submit brief statements for publication in the last newsletter preceding the annual meeting. Members not in attendance may vote by written proxy.
Section 2. Special meetings of the members, for any purpose, may be called by the President of the Association or the Executive Council. The notice for such special meetings shall state the purpose thereof.
Section 3. For the transaction of normal business and the election of officers and approval of members of the Advisory Board, a simple majority vote by members of record present shall suffice. For the removal of a member of the Executive Council or to change the By-Laws at the
annual meeting, a vote by two-thirds of the dues-paying members of record is required.
Article VI. Dues
Section 1. Membership Dues Categories
(a) Regular and institutional dues for membership in the society shall be $10.
(b) Student dues shall be $5.
(c) Voluntary Sponsors of the Association shall pay dues of $25.
Article VII. Voting
Section 1. Each member of record shall be entitled to one vote on each matter submitted to a vote of the members. Executive Council members and officers shall be elected by a majority of the votes cast at a meeting of the members of record. Voting for officers shall take place by secret ballot. Changes to the By-Laws require a two-thirds majority of members of record, and this quorum is needed for a vote of such changes at the annual meeting. Any other action to be taken by vote of the members shall be authorized by a majority of the votes cast at a meeting by the members of record.
Article VIII. Amendment and Repeal of By-Laws
Section 1. These by-laws may be amended, repealed, or adopted by two-thirds of the dues-paying members, either by mail vote or by vote at the annual meeting.
Since the revision and acceptance of the By-Laws, an amendment has been proposed that can be voted on at the next meeting. It is proposed that Section IV, Article II, Section 1. Term lengths, (c) Secretary-Treasurer be amended to read: "The Secretary-Treasurer shall serve a term of two years and shall be elected on alternate years from the President and Vice President." This is to ensure that the Secretary-Treasurer, President and/or Vice President are not all replaced at the same time, which was the intention behind adopting a three-year term for the Secretary-Treasurer.


--- On Sun, 10/26/08, Simonis Francis <Simonis at mmsh.univ-aix.fr> wrote:

From: Simonis Francis <Simonis at mmsh.univ-aix.fr>
Subject: [Mansa-l] RE : Candidature du Dr. Kassim Koné à l'intention des MANSAdenw francophones
To: "Kassim Kone" <Kassim.Kone at cortland.edu>, "MANSA" <mansa-l at groups.txstate.edu>
Date: Sunday, October 26, 2008, 2:44 AM

Cher collègue,
J'ai bien reçu votre lettre de candidature et je vous en remercie. Il apparaît clairement en effet que vous avez toute légitimité pour briguer le présidence de Mansa.
Permettez-moi cependant de vous faire part de mon étonnement. La procédure de vote a en effet débuté, et si je ne connais pas bien le processus électoral des Etats-Unis, il est de règle, dans les pays francophones, que la campagne électorale cesse 24 heures avant le début du scrutin. Or celui-ci est en cours depuis une semaine déjà. Le procédé que vous employez serait donc perçu comme déloyal et entrainerait immmédiatement l'annulation de l'élection. 
Mansa et certes une organisation internationale, mais ne pourrions-nous pas être attentifs à agir de manière à ne choquer aucun d'entre nous ?
Bien cordialement,
Francis Simonis
Maître de conférences (HDR) d'histoire de l'Afrique à l'université de Provence
Directeur des publications universitaires de Provence


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