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Officer Responsibilities

An organization belongs to its members. The officers do not "run" the organization. It is your responsibility as an officer:
  1. To see that the business of the organization is conducted in an orderly, efficient, and proper manner.
  2. To see that an organization operates according to its constitution and bylaws.
  3. To see that the group works towards accomplishing its goals and objectives.
  4. To help keep the group a friendly, cooperative, congenial one in which each member is given an opportunity to express him/herself and participate in the organization's program.
  5. To keep the organization moving ahead and functioning effectively.
  6. To provide an example to others through your attitudes and actions the organization itself. You are its representative, as well as its leader.
  7. To develop the ability to inspire the members to work for the good of the organization.
  8. To be enthusiastic, to outline needed work, and to follow through to see that the work is being done by those who have accepted the responsibility.
  9. To budget your time well and to give proper balance to your academic program and co-curricular activities.
  10. To evaluate your meetings in terms of what has been accomplished and what benefits have been received by your members.

Duties of the Officers

The duties as listed here are general duties of the four main officers of any organization. Each organization should have a supplemental list of specific duties which are designed to implement the special functions and interests of their group. Also, if additional officers or standing committee chairpeople are appointed, their duties should be outlined and given to the at them beginning of their term of office.

I. The President

  1. To be a good presiding officer:
      Know the proper procedure for conducting a meeting.
    1. Be impartial. Avoid expressing your personal opinions.
    2. Have a knowledge of parliamentary procedure.
    3. Prepare an agenda for each meeting.
    4. Check the minutes of the preceding meeting to make certain that you have not forgotten important business that should be discussed again or finished.
  2. Understand and follow your constitution and bylaws.
  3. Set an example for your organization in fairness, courtesy, and obedience to rules.
  4. Represent your group, or see that a person is appointed to represent your group, at all campus meetings where representation is requested.
  5. Carry out the group's decisions and wishes even though you personally may not agree completely with the decisions reached.
  6. Know the College's policies and regulations and see that they are followed at all meetings and activities of your organization.
  7. Keep your advisor informed of all meetings, make certain that he/she is invited to all meetings and be certain that he/she is consulted before making plans for special meetings and events. Show him/her the courtesy of checking to make certain that he/she can attend before plans are started for any activity.
  8. Know the duties of the other officers and help them in carrying them out.
  9. See that a master plan is prepared for the year's activities early in the semester. Each club and organization should have a project or goal for the semester.
  10. Call regular executive committee meetings and plan to check with your advisor before each regular meeting. Your advisor should attend the executive committee meetings. Executive committee meetings should include all officers.
  11. Appoint committees to assist in getting things done, to help spread the burden of work among all club members and to give others an opportunity to participate.
    1. The president must keep in touch with committees as he/she is usually an ex-officio member of all committees. He/she is responsible for seeing that they complete assignments.
    2. A chairperson of every committee should always be indicated.
    3. Remember to call on committees for reports and take action on their reports.
  12. Do not try to do all the work yourself. A good president assigns responsibilities to others. It is his/her role to follow up and check and recheck to see that the work is being done. Total participation of all members of a group makes for a strong organization.
  13. Develop the habit of writing things down that you have to do before the next meeting. Trusting your memory is a poor substitute for having a notebook where you record those things you must do and deadlines you must meet.

II. The Vice President

  1. Take over the president's responsibilities when the president is unable to carry out his/her duties for any reason. Because of this, the vice president must be familiar with all of the duties of the president.
  2. Be ready to assist the president in any way possible.
  3. Assume and carry out all special duties that may be assigned to you by the constitution, the president, the executive committee, or members.
  4. Attend all executive committee meetings and meetings of the organization.
  5. Know and understand your organization's constitution and bylaws.

III. The Secretary

  1. The secretary is the president's "right hand person." The president depends upon the secretary for information of an official nature which can be found in the records of the organization.
  2. The secretary is the custodian of the permanent records of the organization and they must be kept in a complete and accurate manner. Here is a suggested outline that may be of help to secretaries in writing minutes.
    1. Give the hour, day, month, place of meeting, and name of presiding officer.
    2. State whether the minutes of the last meeting were:
      1. approved as read.
      2. approved as corrected (if there were corrections, list them).
    3. Give a statement concerning all reports read and the action taken on them.
    4. Record items discussed under old business.
    5. Record items discussed under new business.
    6. Each motion that carries should be included under the item of business with which it was discussed.
    7. State the time of adjournment of the meeting.
    8. Sign the minutes.
  3. Read the minutes and correspondence clearly and loudly so the group can hear them at meetings.
  4. Be able to produce quickly the minutes of the preceding meetings and find items of information quickly.
  5. Keep an accurate and up-to-date list of members, their addresses and telephone numbers, and record their attendance at each meeting.
  6. Keep in the secretary's notebook a copy of the constitution and bylaws and have the documents available for easy reference during meetings.
  7. Keep a copy of all reports presented to the organization by committees or officers.
  8. Take motions down accurately and be prepared to read them back almost immediately.
  9. Be responsible for all organization correspondence and develop a facility for writing, using proper grammar and correct phrasing, and neatness in writing or typing. All correspondence should be signed by the secretary with his/her own name and title.
  10. Act as secretary for the organization as a whole. Officers and chairpeople of committees are responsible for correspondence as it relates to their duties.

IV. The Treasurer

  1. A. The treasurer is responsible for all funds of the organization.
    1. The treasurer must meet with Student Center Accounting.
    2. Collect all money. A receipt should be given for all money collected.
    3. Deposit all funds in the organization's account immediately.
    4. Sign all payment orders, along with the advisor, for the withdrawal of funds.
  2. Prepare a budget and have it approved by the executive committee and membership.
  3. Make certain the organization expends money in keeping with the approved budget and within college policy and regulations.
  4. Make a treasurer's report at each business meeting of the organization, listing receipts, expenditures, and balance on hand.
  5. See that all bills are paid promptly.
  6. Keep a record of all money handled, both incoming and outgoing, and indicate purposes for which the money was dispersed.
  7. Have records available and in a condition for examination at any time.
  8. Do not write payment orders for amounts for which you do not have a bill. Inform members of the college's purchase order policy.
  9. For specific questions concerning financial responsibilities of student organizations, consult the Student Center Accounting.

V. Membership

All organization officers must maintain a 2.0 GPA and be in good standing with the College.

Committees

Purpose

  1. Committees are appointed for the purpose of enabling an organization to accomplish a greater quantity of business (by dividing it among the members) than would be possible if the entire membership was to devote its time to each particular subject.
  2. Committees are appointed to obtain information on a subject and to analyze and arrange the information so it may be presented briefly and clearly to the membership. A recommendation as to what action should be taken may be included in a report by the committee.
  3. Committees, unless given special authority, do not act for the organization itself. However, since their recommendations are frequently followed by the membership, their duties and responsibilities should be taken very seriously. Their recommendations should be arrived at only after careful research and serious thought on the problem at hand.
  4. Committees should be kept small with usually three to five members. A chairperson, usually one of the committee members, should be designated and is responsible for calling the committee meeting and seeing that a report is prepared and presented.

Committee Reports

  1. Once a committee is appointed, a report should be called for at the next meeting of the organization or at a specified date.
  2. Committee reports are usually in written form. It is desirable to have each committee member sign the report, but when this is not possible, the chairperson should sign it.
  3. At least two copies of the report should be prepared, one for the president and the other for the secretary, to be placed in the record book. If possible a duplicate or mimeographed copy should be provided for each member of the organization.
  4. Any recommendations in the report must be acted upon by the organization membership.
  5. The committee should always be thanked by the president for the work they have done.

The Executive Committee

  1. The executive committee of an organization is made up of the elected officers and the advisor.
  2. This group is responsible for representing all members of the organization, for seeing that the constitution is followed, that decisions reached by a group are put into action and carried out and that the organization is accomplishing its goals.
  3. This group is not a decision-making body, but rather a recommending body. Its responsibility is to sit down, consider, and think through problems, issues, and activities which face an organization. This previous planning and thinking permits certain recommendations and suggestions to be made so that the entire membership can take action without too prolonged a discussion, thus expediting the meetings.
  4. This body is not responsible for doing all the work of the organization and assuming responsibilities for those activities that rightly belong to the members. Theirs is a responsibility of discovering and suggesting what needs to be done.
  5. The executive committee should meet before each regular business meeting of the organization and set up the agenda for the meeting.
  6. If the organization is not accomplishing its purposes and goals, the executive committee should discuss what might be done to help the group process. Once suggestions are arrived at, they are presented to the organization as suggestions.
  7. Any recommendation or suggestion made by the committee must be acted upon by the membership. A committee should never say "the board decided we should...," rather it must say "the committee has discussed the problems and wishes to make the following suggestion..." or "the committee has discussed the next item of business and wishes to present several possible solutions for your consideration..."
  8. An organization cannot afford to do without an executive committee. They make for a well organized organization that is able to get things done, keep its members interested, and become an active group on campus.

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