Election Petition Deadline Approaches

August 29th, 2010

The deadline for ICAS members to place their names on the ballot for election to the Board of Directors as a petition candidate is Thursday, September 9, 2010. In accordance with Section 9, Paragraph B(2) of the ICAS Bylaws, candidates making use of this process must submit a petition signed by ten (10) voting members that arrives at ICAS headquarters by 5:00 p.m. EDT on September 9.

For those interested, Section 9 the ICAS Bylaws (which can be found on page 16 and 17 of the 2010-2011 ICAS Industry Guide) provides specific direction on the nomination and election process. The Board of Directors selects a Nominating Committee Chairman from among those directors not eligible for re-election that year. The Chairman, in turn, identifies members for the Nominating Committee, at least two of who must be former members of the Board. The Nominating Committee then solicits potential nominees from among the membership. It considers a number of issues and criteria.

For instance, the overall ICAS membership is comprised (roughly) of 40 percent event organizers, 40 percent performers and 20 percent support service providers (air bosses, concessionaires, photographers, etc.). Typically, the Nominating Committee seeks to ensure that the make-up of the Board reflects the general make-up of the larger organization with an appropriate and proportional number of event organizer, performer and support service provider members sitting on the Board. The Nominating Committee also considers things like previous business or board experience, reputation and experience within the air show community, specific expertise or experience that might be useful to ICAS and the air show community, and the ability of prospective board members to put aside their own personal or organizational concerns to work for the greater good of the entire air show industry.

This presents the Nominating Committee with both a difficult assignment and a great deal of responsibility. Juggling dozens of considerations to come up with a qualified slate of candidates that will be elected to help lead the organization is a considerable challenge. In 2009, the committee included four past chairmen of the ICAS Board of Directors and one past Board member. The 2010 Nominating Committee is chaired by current ICAS Board member Judy Willey from the Portland International Air Show. Serving with her are past Board Chairmen Harry Wardwell and Charles Hutchins and former Board members Mike Berriochoa and Sean Tucker.

When it concludes its review of potential candidates and in accordance with specific direction in the bylaws that obligate it to, “…evaluate and recommend a slate of qualified director candidates to the voting membership for the annual election of Directors,” the Nominating Committee makes recommendations on whose names should be included on the ballot to be voted on by the general membership. Typically, the committee recommends three candidates to appear on the election ballot to fill three vacancies. There will be four vacancies to fill in December of this year.

Importantly, the Bylaws also provide direction on how a member who is not recommended by the Nominating Committee may have his or her name added to the Board of Directors election ballot. This process requires the prospective nominee to submit a petition with signatures from ten (10) dues-paying members to endorse the nomination. Introduced into the ICAS Bylaws in December of 1993 as a mechanism to ensure that every member had an opportunity to stand for election to the ICAS Board if he/she is interested, this process has subsequently worked as intended. Without exception, on every occasion that a member has made use of the petition process, his name has been included on the election ballot to run against those nominees recommended by the Nominating Committee.

Each year, at the ICAS Convention and in accordance with the ICAS Bylaws, an election is held to determine which members will fill vacancies on the Board. The names on the ballot include the slate recommended by the Nominating Committee and any candidates who are nominated using the petition process.

The ICAS Board periodically reviews the bylaws and election process to affirm that it remains current and accurate. Recognizing this, the ICAS Board has authorized creation of an ad hoc committee of ICAS members and has asked that group to review both the election-related verbiage in the ICAS Bylaws and the manner in which this direction has been executed by the organization during the last several years. Importantly, the new committee will be asked to recommend changes to the bylaws that allow for electronic voting by e-mail and/or the internet. Generally, the group will be tasked with making any and all recommendations on changes it may have for improving the process.