Article I: Purposes and Aims
In Accordance with the recommendation of interested Africanists meeting in Syracuse on November 2, 1973, the New York African Studies Association (NYASA) is hereby established.
The mission of NYASA is to encourage African Studies by:
(1) sponsoring conferences, conversations, workshops, seminars, and other forms of scholarly interchange;
(2) facilitating faculty and student interchanges among various college and universities in New York State and surrounding areas;
(3) encouraging cooperative relationships in library acquisitions, cataloging and exchanges, teaching aids, and materials;
(4) advising the appropriate bodies on the coordination of African Studies programs throughout New York State in order to preclude unnecessary duplication and waste of resources;
(5) strengthening African Studies within the State by:
(a) facilitating university, college, high school and elementary school curriculum development;
(b) encouraging the expansion of languages relevant to the study of Africa;
(c) promoting the establishment of certain minimum scholastic standards to facilitate the general acceptance within New York State of African Studies course credits granted by the various universities and colleges.
(6) fostering cooperation between universities, colleges, high schools, and other public and private institutions:
(7) stimulating research in African Studies among individuals in the different educational fields in New York State;
(8) exploring the desirability of encouraging programs in the field of international development relating to African countries;
(9) considering and adopting appropriate courses of action that promote greater attention to African Studies and a greater concern for African affairs.
(10) informing NYASA members, individuals and institutions designated by the Executive Committee of relevant news pertaining to NYASA throughout the year by a newsletter or similar publication.
Article II: Membership and Dues
Membership of NYASA will be open to all those having a scholarly or professional interest in Africa and the African diaspora.
The types of membership are faculty, individual, representative of institution or agency and student.
Annual dues will be charged as established by the Executive Committee.
Article III: Rules of Procedure
Participation in meetings of NYASA shall be open to all NYASA members.
Any and all organizations with an interest in African Studies may send observers to meetings of NYASA.
Voting at meetings of NYASA shall be open only to NYASA members.
Article IV: Officers
President: The President will be elected at the annual meeting of NYASA and shall serve for one year. No President may serve more than two consecutive terms in that office. The President will serve as the Executive Officer of NYASA and the Chairperson of the Executive Committee of NYASA. With the approval of the Executive Committee, the President shall call meetings, conferences, conversations, workshops, etc. The President shall normally preside at such meetings but may delegate this function to the Vice President, or if s/he is unable to preside, to any other member of the Executive. The President will coordinate the activities of the subcommittees of NYASA and will serve as liaison between NYASA and other bodies interested in African Studies. The President shall carry out the wishes and directives of NYASA.
Immediate Past President: The Immediate Past President will remain a voting member of the Executive Committee for one year to help in transition of duties.
Vice President: The Vice President will be elected at the annual meeting of NYASA and shall serve for one year. The Vice President will act as Chairperson whenever the President is unable to function. S/he shall serve as a member of the Executive Committee and shall assist the President in the performance of duties.
Vice President for Publications: The Vice President for Publications (VPP) shall be an appointed officer by the NYASA Executive Board and shall serve under its jurisdiction. The VPP shall be a published scholar, with editing and managing skills. The VPP shall direct the the Publications Committee on matters of journals, book publications, and the book awards for the organization. The VPP and the Publications Committee shall assist in the organization of the annual conference and the supervision of conference abstracts and program, should the Publications Committee be called upon to assume that role. If impeached and removed, a member of the Publications Committee shall be appointed by the Executive Board as the new VPP.
Secretary: The Secretary will be elected at the annual meeting of NYASA and shall serve for one year. The Secretary shall serve as a member of the Executive Committee and as its Secretary. S/he shall prepare the minutes of the NYASA Executive Committee and Annual Business Meetings, maintain membership cards, and perform such duties as are requested by the Executive Committee or the President.
Treasurer: The Treasurer will be elected at the annual meeting of NYASA and shall serve for one year. The Treasurer shall serve as a member of the Executive Committee. S/he shall oversee the finances and the financial records of NYASA. The Treasurer shall submit a financial report at Executive Committee Meetings and at the annual business meeting.
At-Large Members: Six at-large members (3 elected at the annual meeting and 3 appointed by the Executive Committee) may be drawn from among the NYASA membership. At-large members should be selected to assure representation of public and private institutions, of universities and colleges, high schools, and other public and private institutions concerned with African Studies.
Student Representative: In addition to the six at-large members there will also be two student representatives who will be chosen from the student members of NYASA. They will be elected at the annual meeting and serve for one year.
Secretariat Director: The Secretariat Director shall attend Executive Committee meetings as a voting member. S/he will maintain membership and financial records and perform such duties as requested by the Executive Committee or the President.
NYASA Newsletter: An editor or co-editors for the newsletter shall be appointed by the Executive Committee to prepare at least two issues a year, with the aid of Executive Committee members and the Secretariat. S/he/they shall be voting members of the Executive Committee.
Local Arrangements Chair: The organizing committee at the site of the next annual conference shall choose a chair who will become a voting member of the NYASA Executive Committee. The Chair shall present a conference date, a call for papers, and a budget for review by the Executive Committee. Expenses should equal the amount raised locally, and the NYASA advance along with dues collected will be returned to NYASA along with a final report.
Provision for filling vacancies: In case of resignation or termination of service by an officer, the Executive Committee will be empowered to appoint a member of NYASA to serve the remaining period of service of that officer.
Article V: Impeachment
NYASA Executive Board members and other appointees shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and if found guilty of, high misconduct, malfeasance, nonfeasance, or other high crimes. The impeachment process shall be conducted by at least seven members of the NYASA Executive Board. NYASA and the accused may seek legal counsel, but the fair hearing process is only limited to the NYASA Executive Board and its decision is valid for all intents and purposes
Article VI: Committees
Executive Committee: The Executive Committee of NYASA shall comprise the President (who will serve as its Chairperson), Immediate Past President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Secretariat Director, Newsletter Editor/s, Local Arrangements Chair, and up to six at-large members as defined above. The Executive Committee shall assist the President in carrying out the responsibilities outlined in Article IV, Section 1. The Executive Committee shall review the conference budget before approving the advancing funds and receive a final accounting after each conference.
Publications Committee: The NYASA Publications Committee (PC) shall be appointed by the Executive Board and shall be responsible for the acquisition and editing of manuscripts as well ads publishing and marketing of the NYASA Journal (NYASA) and/or Book Projects. The Publications Committee shall review publications and credentials for the NYASA Book Awards. Members of the Publications Committee shall be no more than eight people and shall maintain tenure at the jurisdiction of the Executive Board. Impeachment and termination the their positions shall be completed by a two-thirds majority of the Executive Board.
Elections Committee: At least one month before the annual meeting of NYASA, the President shall appoint a three member Elections Committee to prepare a slate of candidates for office and obtain their approval to stand for election.
Other Committees: NYASA may establish subcommittees to assist in the performance of its functions. Also, ad hoc committees as judged necessary by the Executive Committee may be appointed. Ad hoc committee responsibilities shall not encroach upon those of any regular committee or subcommittee.
Article VII: Meetings, Agenda, and Quorums
NYASA shall hold an annual meeting and such other meetings as it or the President, with the approval of the Executive Committee, shall decide. Meetings of the Executive Committee shall be called by the President or by any three members of that Committee.
The Planning and announcement of meetings and the preparations of the agenda shall be the responsibilities of the President and the Executive Committee. At any meeting an item may be added to the agenda by the vote of one-fourth of the members present and voting. The announcement of the annual meeting will be made at least one month in advance.
A quorum for elections and transaction of business at any meeting of NYASA shall consist of ten percent of its members. A quorum for transaction of business at any of the Executive Committee shall consist of a majority of its members.
Article VIII: Secretariat
NYASA will establish a Secretariat at an academic institution in New York State for the purpose of maintaining membership records and a bank account. After three years, the relationship will be reviewed and if satisfactory to all involved, renewed for another term of three years. The Secretariat Director will pay bills, send financial reports to the treasurer, send membership renewal letters, provide mailing labels for the NYASA Newsletter and conference mailings, and handle such other responsibilities as are assigned by the Executive Committee.
Article IX: Election
Elections shall be by secret ballot at the annual meeting of NYASA. Following the presentation of a slate of candidates by the Elections Committee, nominations will also be accepted from the floor. A majority of the votes cast by members present shall constitute election.
Article X: Amendments
Amendments to the by-laws shall be proposed to alter the language, delete, or insert a new structure, function, vision, or mission for the organization. Amendments shall be proposed by a member or members of the Executive Committee and approved by two thirds of that body’s membership. Amendments shall be ratified through and informed consent of the general membership assembly by a simple majority, for all intents and purposes, valid to the NYASA Bylaws.
Adopted April 4, 1974. Last revised April 5, 2014.