CONSTITUTION OF THE GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY COLLEGE DEMOCRATS

ARTICLE I: Name of Organization

The name of the organization shall be the Georgetown University College Democrats, also known as GUCD.

ARTICLE II: Purpose of Organization 

The purpose of this organization shall be to advance the goals and ideals of the Democratic Party for the benefit and enrichment of the Georgetown University undergraduate community. GUCD is committed to helping to create a social, civil, nurturing, and participatory community among its members.

ARTICLE III: Membership of Organization

The general membership of the organization shall be open to any currently-enrolled undergraduate students of Georgetown University. The group does not discriminate in any form, including: race, ethnicity, religion, socioeconomic status, involvement in the Armed Forces, sexual orientation, gender identity, nationality, immigrant status, age, linguistic background, and ability status.

 

ARTICLE IV: Executive Board 

The central executive body of the organization shall be named the Executive Board. The Executive Board shall consist of a Chair, Director of Advocacy, Director of Campaigning and Off-Campus Affairs, Treasurer, Director of Communications, Director of Membership, Director of Speakers, and Director of Advancement and Alumni Relations. All members of the Executive Board except the Treasurer (who is appointed) shall be elected to their positions from among the active membership for a one-year term beginning January 1st of the year after which they are elected and terminating on December 31st of the same year.

A. Descriptions of the positions are as follows:  

  1. Chair: The Chair shall manage the Georgetown University College Democrats Executive Board and serve as chief executive of the entire organization. They are responsible for the oversight of all organization activities, for chairing all Board and leadership meetings, and for coordinating the activities of the different departments. The Chair must have served on the Board prior to serving as the Chair.

  2. Director of Advocacy: The Director of Advocacy shall be responsible for the coordination of advocacy teams, the oversight of on-campus advocacy events, and the support of advocacy member’s efforts to undertake trips to Capitol Hill. They shall serve as Vice Chair, and are thus responsible for taking the place of the Chair in an event where the Chair is not present.

  3. Director of Campaigning and Off-Campus Affairs: The Director of Campaigning and Off-Campus Affairs shall serve as the bridge between GUCD and the local branches of the Democratic Party. They shall inform the club of opportunities to become involved in political campaigns and coordinate club canvassing trips. The Director shall also serve as contact person to any off-campus organization wishing to establish contact with the club. They shall represent GUCD to the DC Federation of College Democrats.

  4. Treasurer: The Treasurer is the organization's chief budgetary officer, representing GUCD to the Student Activities Commission (SAC). The Treasurer is responsible for collecting and recording membership dues, as well as receiving reimbursements and compensation from the university when applicable. Finally, the Treasurer is responsible for ensuring that the organization operates in compliance with all SAC, university, and federal rules and regulations.

    1. This is the one appointed position on the Executive Board, which will be for the full calendar year.

    2. The Executive Board shall interview and appoint a member as Treasurer within two weeks of the election taking place in an open application process similar to that used for the selection of the Leadership Team.

  5. Director of Communications: The Director of Communications shall coordinate event publicity, blogging, HoyaLink, tabling, flyering, contact with the media, social media, and online messaging. The Director will also supervise mailing list emails and may appoint an Editor-in-Chief of The Progressive.

  6. Director of Speakers: The Director of Speakers will invite speakers, plan events with those speakers, obtain co-sponsors for speaker events, reserve the rooms for their own events, and along with the Director of Advancement & Alumni Relations, select the Alumnus of the Year.

  7. Director of Membership: The Director of Membership will plan events that enrich the experience of club members, such as professional development trainings and social events. It is their duty to lead the planning of the winter and spring semi-formal. The Director of Membership is also responsible for maintaining the GUCD Member Resources folder. This folder contains documents relevant to all members of the club, such as this Constitution, the Member Directory, and access to the Google Calendar.

  8. Director of Advancement & Alumni Relations: The Director of Advancement & Alumni Relations is responsible for fundraising for GUCD. In addition to fundraising, they shall produce the alumni newsletter, direct all alumni correspondence, and build relationships with alumni as mentors and resources for GUCD members.

B. The Executive Board shall be responsible for the daily operation of the organization and its activities. In addition, the Executive Board may interview and appoint other members of the Leadership, as delineated in Article V. The Board may, at its discretion, promulgate by-laws by its majority vote to govern the club’s activities and functioning. Such by-laws will be made available alongside this Constitution.

C. When there is a quorum, all Board decisions require a majority vote of 50% plus 1 unless otherwise stipulated in this Constitution. A quorum shall be defined as having more than half the number of total Board members in good standing present. In the event of a tie, the Board will defer to the preference of the Chair, or, in the absence of the Chair at a given vote, the preference of the Acting Chair.

D. In the event of a Constitutional dispute, the Executive Board shall summon the most senior available former Chair on campus of GUCD who is still an undergraduate student. Their decision on the proper interpretation of the Constitution regarding the matter of concern will be final. If no past Chair meets these qualifications, the obligation falls to the most senior past Vice Chair/Advocacy Director, then the most senior past Treasurer. If no suitable person exists, it shall be determined by a vote of the General Membership  

 

ARTICLE V: Leadership Team 

The Executive Board may appoint members of the organization to various positions on the Leadership Team.

A. Appointments are made at the beginning of each academic semester. Further appointments, including the filling of vacancies, may be made at the discretion of the Executive Board. Each Executive Board retains the right to institute and modify positions on the Leadership Team each semester.

B. All undergraduate students shall be given the opportunity to submit an application for a leadership position in a department to the Executive Board, and shall be subsequently interviewed by a quorum of elected members of the Executive Board.

C. A simple majority of elected Board members may fill any vacant appointed positions.  

 

ARTICLE VI: Elections

The General Membership shall elect the members of the Executive Board. Elections shall be conducted by the Election Commission, as described in Article VII.

A. Elections shall be held during the final two months of the Fall semester, according to the discretion of the Election Commission.

B. All candidates and voters shall be active members of the organization, as verified by the Director of Communications. The Director of Communications shall submit to the Election Commission no later than 48 hours in advance of any election a list of all voting members. The Election Commission must certify this list and approve any additions by its majority vote.

C. Every voting member has one vote per race.

D. Elections shall be conducted online through a vote tabulation service.

E. Elections for all offices shall be by instant runoff voting. If a race between two candidates ends in an exact tie, all members of the current Executive Board shall vote to decide on the winning candidate.

F. No nominations from the floor are allowed, except in the event that no eligible candidate has declared their candidacy for a position before the deadline set by the Election Commission. If no candidatures are announced, once the new Executive Board has been elected, they shall fill this vacancy pursuant to Article X, with with the appointed member taking office immediately.

G. The Election Commission may, at its discretion, add rules and regulations to those already present in the Constitution in order to assist in their administration of the election.

H. In the event of any election dispute, a majority vote of the Election Commission acts as the arbiter of election laws. All decisions of the Election Commission are final.

I. Upon being elected, each outgoing member must meet at least once with the incoming member prior to the end of the outgoing member’s term to aid in transition planning. It is the responsibility of the Election Commission to ensure that these transition meetings take place.

J. New Boards begin their terms on January 1st, and terms on the Executive Board last for one year.

K. This organization is committed to reflecting the diversity of our Georgetown community in regards to race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, immigrant status, socioeconomic status, and ability. To promote diversity within the club and its leadership, GUCD aims for its Executive Board to be gender-split and otherwise diverse. If the candidate pool before annual elections does not reflect this aim, the current Board is obligated to actively see out and encourage all qualified individuals to run for a position. 

ARTICLE VII: Election Commission 

The Executive Board shall appoint a three-member Election Commission consisting of three former Executive Board members who, by participating, are forfeiting any opportunity to run for the Executive Board in the future. The Election Commission shall be responsible for notifying the General Membership about the election, maintaining a list of candidates, sending all election related e-mails, issuing ballots to members, enforcing campaign spending limits, counting the ballots, certifying the results, and ensuring the fairness of the election process. The Election Commission has the authority to penalize members or candidates who violate its rules.

ARTICLE VIII: Removal from Executive Board 

Members of the Executive Board are considered not in ‘good standing’ and may be removed for cause from their position by a ⅔ vote of the elected Executive Board, which would be presided over by the Election Commission.

ARTICLE IX: Chair Vacancies

The Vice Chair shall serve as Acting Chair during any period in which the Chair is temporarily unable to discharge their duties. Should the Advocacy Director/Vice Chair be unable to function as Acting Chair, the Acting Chair should be offered to the Director of Campaigning and OffCampus Affairs, then the Treasurer, then the Director of Speakers, then the Director of Membership, the Director of Communications, and then the Director of Advancement and Alumni Relations. In the event that a 2/3 majority of the Executive Board determines that the Chair is permanently unable to serve, the Acting Chair shall serve in this capacity until a new Chair is elected pursuant to Article X to serve out the remainder of the previous Chair’s term.

ARTICLE X: Executive Board Vacancies 

In the event of resignation, temporary suspension, leave of absence, removal, or other absence from the Executive Board aside from the Chair, the position will be opened to the active General Membership.

A. The Chair shall immediately appoint a member from that department for a term only until an election can be held. Elections shall be held similar to the process described in Section VI, with the elections being conducted within two weeks of the vacancy being declared.

B. The Executive Board must make it clear when advertising the vacancy as to whether or not the new Board member will be temporary or permanent until the next election.

C. Other Executive Board members may run for the vacant position, but in declaring their candidacy for the vacant position, automatically vacate their position on the Board. The elections to fill any and all vacated seats as a result shall occur at the same time as the election to fill the originally vacated position.

ARTICLE XI: Constitutional Reform

Every four years from the ratification of this Constitution in Fall 2017, the Chair shall appoint a Constitutional Convention to reassess, and if necessary, amend the Constitution. This Council shall be confirmed by a two-thirds majority of the Executive Board. Following their appointment, the Council shall act separately from the Executive Board. Current Board members may provide input on any proposed amendments, but cannot hold a position on the Council.

ARTICLE XI: Amendments to the Constitution

Regardless of method of amendment, the current revised text of this Constitution shall be included in the weekly club email following any amendment, and shall be available on demand at the request of any club member. This Constitution may be amended, pending SAC approval, with either:

A. A simple majority vote of the Executive Board and a two-thirds majority vote of the current Leadership Team, present and voting, which would be presided over by an Election Commission.

B. A majority vote of the Constitutional Convention, outlined in Article XI, and approved by a two-thirds majority vote of the current Leadership Team, which would be presided over by an Election Commission.

C. A unanimous vote of the Executive Board, provided the Chair certifies in writing to an Election Commission that the change is of a grammatical or stylistic nature and does not materially change the meaning of the document. Should the Election Commission reject the Chair’s certification, the Board may pursue amendment by the previous sections.

AFFIRMATION OF AMENDMENT 

We, the duly elected members of the Executive Board of the Georgetown University College Democrats, do hereby affirm that the above-written is now the Constitution of the organization, effective January 1, 2019.