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Evergreen Garden Club Bylaws

(as amended through April 2019)

ARTICLE I

OFFICERS AND THEIR ELECTION

The officers of the Evergreen Garden Club (hereinafter referred to as the “Club”) shall be a President, a First Vice-President, a Second Vice-President, a Recording Secretary, a Corresponding Secretary-Parliamentarian, a Treasurer, an Assistant Treasurer, and together shall constitute the Executive Board.

All officers other than the Treasurer shall be elected at the April or May meeting to serve a term of one year.  The Treasurer shall be elected for a two-year term.  An officer may serve for more than one term. 

Voting shall be by written ballot and shall be conducted by mail (including electronic mail). The voting process shall be administered by the Nominating Committee. Ballots shall be sent to the membership at least 15 days prior to the date on which they are due. The votes of a majority of the Active Members shall be necessary to elect each officer. Ballots may be counted so long as they are received by the time of the meeting at which they are due.

There shall be a Nominating Committee of three members, to be appointed by the President in advance of each election, whose duty shall be to nominate a candidate for each office at the ensuing election.  Nominations may also be made from the floor at the time the nominations slate is proposed to the membership.

 

The next immediately preceding past three Presidents may be called upon by the Executive Board to confer with it in an advisory capacity, but shall have no vote in the decisions of the Board.

A vacancy occurring in any office through death or resignation shall be filled for the balance of the unexpired term thereof by a majority vote of the members in attendance at the first regular meeting of the Club following the occurrence of such vacancy.

 

ARTICLE II

THE EXECUTIVE BOARD

The Executive Board shall be made up of the officers of the Club, shall have the management of the Club, shall exercise a general supervision over its interests and activities, and shall see that the Constitution and Bylaws are enforced.  Meetings may be called by the President or at the request of any other member of the Executive Board.

 

ARTICLE III

DUTIES OF THE OFFICERS

A) The President shall conduct meetings, appoint committees and shall be an ex-officio member of all committees, with the exception of the Nominating Committee for the election of Officers.

B)  The First Vice-President and the Second Vice-President shall be in charge of the Club’s programs for the year, including arranging for speakers, hosts and refreshments for each meeting.  The First Vice-President shall assume the duties of the President in her absence.

C) The Recording Secretary shall keep the minutes of all meetings and lists of members.

D) The Corresponding Secretary-Parliamentarian shall send out notices and attend to all correspondence connected with the Club, shall decide all points involving parliamentary procedure in the conduct of the meetings and shall submit in proper form all proposed changes in the Constitution and Bylaws.

E) The Treasurer shall collect all dues, keep an account of all receipts and disbursements, and transact any other business relating to the financial status of the Club.

F)  The Assistant Treasurer shall assist the Treasurer in all of her duties.

 

ARTICLE IV 

MEMBERS

The membership of the Club shall consist of four membership categories:

A)  Active Members shall not exceed forty-five (45) at any time. They shall meet all of the membership criteria set forth in the Constitution and these Bylaws. Active Members shall attend at least three meetings each year.  They shall participate in the activities of the Club, including serving in leadership positions and on committees, and hosting and providing refreshments for meetings. Each Active Member shall be entitled to one vote at all meetings of the Club.

B)  Associate Members shall not exceed twenty (20) at any time. An Active Member may request to change her membership status to Associate for good cause, which may include, but shall not be limited to, moving away from the DC area, extended illness of the member or her spouse, or having been an Active Member for at least fifteen (15) years.  Any member wishing to apply for Associate status shall submit her request in writing (including by email) to the President.  The Executive Board shall vote on each request, and their decision shall be final.  Associate members may attend up to two (2) meetings each year.  They shall be obligated to pay dues each year, but they shall not be entitled to vote, have any voice in the policies of the Club, nor be required to attend, host, or provide refreshments at meetings. Associate members may second but may not propose candidates for membership.  

C)  Absentee Members are Active Members who leave the DC area for an extended period of time and intend to return to the area. They shall be obligated to pay dues, in an amount equal to one-half the amount of regular dues, but they shall not be entitled to vote, have any voice in the policies of the Club, nor be required to attend meetings.  

D)  Honorary Members shall not exceed five (5) in number at any time. Honorary Members must be members who have done outstanding work in the Club and whose interest in the Club has been unfailing. They shall be notified of Club meetings and may attend all meetings without obligation of entertaining or assuming any duties. Honorary Members shall not be required to pay dues, and shall not be entitled to vote nor have any voice in the policies of the Club. The Executive 

Board shall nominate all candidates for Honorary Membership, and election shall be in the same manner as for Active Membership.

An Active Member may apply to become an Associate Member by sending a written request (including by email) to the President.  An Associate Member requesting to return to Active Membership shall send a written request (including by email) to the President.  Associate members requesting to return to Active status shall take second priority (after Absentee Members) over new candidates provided there is a vacancy. The membership shall vote on all requests for an Active Member to become an Associate Member, and for an Associate Member to return to Active status.  Upon approval of these Bylaws, all current Associate and Affiliate Members shall become Associate Members.

An Active Member may apply for Absentee Membership by sending a written request (including by email) to the President. Upon return to the DC area, an Absentee Member may apply for reinstatement of Active Membership by sending a written request (including by email) to the President. Reinstatement shall be automatically granted when a vacancy exists in the membership. Absentee Members shall receive first priority over both Associate Members requesting to return to Active status and new candidates for membership. There is no limit on the number of Absentee Members.

 

Any member wishing to resign from the Club shall send a written notification (including by email) to the President.  Former members who have resigned from the Club and wish to be reinstated must go through the same formalities as candidates for original membership.

All Members, except Absentee Members, shall be notified of all Club meetings.  

All Members, except Absentee Members, must maintain a residence in the Washington Metropolitan Area.  

 

ARTICLE V

ELECTION OF NEW MEMBERS

The Membership Committee shall require one letter of proposal and two seconding letters for any person to be considered for membership.  A letter of proposal must be written by an Active Member, who has been a member for longer than one year.  Seconding letters may be written by members in any category, excepting those who have been members for less than one year.  Membership on the Executive Board or membership on any Club Committee shall not deprive a member of her right to sponsor a candidate for membership.  An Active Member may propose one candidate and second one candidate each year, or may limit her endorsements to seconding two candidates for election annually.  Other members may not second more than two candidates in any one year.

It shall be the responsibility of each sponsor to collect all letters for her candidate for presentation to the Membership Committee and ensure that her candidate is familiar with the Constitution and Bylaws of the Club.

The Membership Committee must receive all letters for the proposed candidates by the first of October or the first of February or March (depending on the meeting schedule).  The Committee shall then present the names of these candidates to the Club at the October or February or March meetings.  At the November and April meetings, the names of such candidates (along with an indication, where applicable, that they are daughters or daughters-in-law of current members) shall be listed in alphabetical order upon ballots, and each member, a quorum being present, shall vote secretly for no more names than there are openings in the Active Membership or there are candidates, whichever number is lesser.  No more than five (5) new members may be elected in any given year, except that the number may be exceeded if the candidates are daughters or daughters-in-law of current members.  In no case will the number of Active Members exceed forty-five (45).

Those receiving the greatest number of votes shall be elected to membership except that any candidate who fails to receive the affirmative vote of all but six members present at the meeting may not be elected.  Any tie shall be resolved by the plurality of a second ballot.

The April meeting each year, the Membership Committee for the coming year shall be announced.  This Committee shall have been appointed by the President and shall consist of a Chairman and two members.  All vacancies, temporary or permanent, occurring in the composition of the Membership Committee shall be filled by appointment of the President.


 

ARTICLE VI 

DUES

Active and Associate Members’ dues shall be one hundred fifty dollars ($150), due not later than October 31st of each year.  Absentee Members’ dues shall be half that amount.  New members joining in the fall shall pay $100 in dues.  New members voted on in the spring shall be considered members and pay dues in the next fiscal year.  A member shall be required to pay a twenty-five dollar ($25) late fee if she has not paid by December 1st.  Honorary Members shall pay no dues.  Dues are not refundable.

NOTE: Evergreen Garden Club is recognized under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and membership dues may be deductible for Federal income tax purposes.

 

ARTICLE VII

MEETINGS

At least six monthly meetings shall be held each year, generally on the third Tuesday of the month, from October through May.  The date of any meeting may be changed at any time.  A meeting may be cancelled due to inclement weather or other extenuating circumstances.

A quorum at any membership meeting shall consist of a majority of the current Active Members.

Active Members are expected to attend at least four meetings in any fiscal year.  The Executive Board may periodically remind Active Members who have not been attending meetings regularly of their obligation to do so.

 

An Active Member who was dropped from the Club for lack of attendance and who wishes to apply for reinstatement shall send a signed, handwritten request to the President.  At the following meeting of the Club, the Membership Committee may present her name to the membership.  

Reinstatement will be effected by a two-thirds affirmative vote of Active members at a meeting at which a quorum is present and payment of a twenty-five dollar ($25) reinstatement fee.

Each member is strongly encouraged to host a meeting or provide refreshments when requested to do so by one of the Vice-Presidents. If she is unable to do so, she must arrange to exchange her duty with another member as soon as possible. In case of illness or an emergency absence from the City, one of the Vice-Presidents will arrange for the exchange. Refreshments should be simple.

 

ARTICLE VIII

BYLAW AMENDMENTS

These Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote at any meeting of the Club regularly called, a quorum being present, provided the proposed amendment has been submitted in writing at the previous meeting, and a copy of the proposed amendment has been sent to each member at least ten (10) days before the meeting.


 

ARTICLE IX

FISCAL YEAR

The fiscal year of the Club shall begin on the first day of July and end on the last day of June in the following calendar year.

 

ARTICLE X

GOVERNING LAW

The Club shall be governed by the laws of the District of Columbia, including the DC Uniform Unincorporated Nonprofit Association Act (DC Code § 29-971.01 et seq.)

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