National Muslim Law Students Association

NMLSA Bylaws

ARTICLE I

Officers

Section 1

A.      National President:  The President of this Association shall be responsible for:

  1. Exercising general authority over the business and activities of this Association;
  2. Chairing all National Board meetings; and 
  3. Serving as the NMLSA representative to such organizations as the: National Association of Muslim Lawyers, and other such organizations as the Board or Assembly shall assign; and
  4. Co-signing with the National Treasurer all checks issued by this Association; and
  5. Serving as an ex-officio member of all Association committees; and
  6. Exercising general executive authority over the business and activities of this Association,
  7. Performing such other functions and exercising such further duties as the Board or the Assembly may assign.

B.      National Vice-President:  The Vice-President of this Association shall be responsible for:

  1. Exercising general executive authority over the business and activities of this Association, and chairing all National Executive Board meetings in the event of the incapacity or absence of the National President; and
  2. Serving as an ex-officio member of the Board of Governors of American Bar Association’s Law Student Division (“A-LSD”) and appointing, when necessary, a NMLSA member in good standing to serve as a liaison to the A-LSD.  The A-LSD liaison shall be appointed by the National Vice-Chair, subject to approval of the National Executive Board; and
  3. Serving as an ex-officio member of all NMLSA committees; and
  4. Performing such other functions and exercising such further duties as the National President, the Board or the Assembly may assign. 

C.      Secretary:  The Secretary of this Association shall be responsible for:

  1. Maintaining and distributing the minutes and agenda for all meetings of the Board; and
  2. Distributing a copy of the Constitution and Bylaws for this Association to;
    •  Each Board member at the first Board meeting; and
    •  Each chapter registered at the National Convention;
  3. Maintaining a record of the membership of NMLSA.
  4. Serving as an ex-officio member of all Association committees; and
  5. Performing such other functions and exercising such further duties as the National President, the Board, or the assembly may assign.

D.     Treasurer:  The Treasurer of this Association shall be responsible for

  1. Handling all funds and securities of this Association and ensuring that they are deposited in such facility, and in such manner, as the Board may designate; and
  2. Assuring that entries are regularly made in the financial records, accounting for all funds received and disbursed by this Association; and
  3. Submitting the financial records of this Association to a certified public accountant, pursuant to Article VIII, Section 4 of the Constitution; and
  4. Making regular financial reports to the Board; and
  5. Co-signing, with the National President, all checks issued by this Association; and
  6. Filing annual corporate reports on behalf of the Association; and
  7. Pursuant to Article VIII, prepare the financial report and present it at the Annual Convention. This report shall consist of a full disclosure of the National Organization.
    • the term “full disclosure” means a delineation of amounts received and dispersed indicating all dates and parties involved; and
  8. Submitting a NMLSA Budget for the year at the first regularly scheduled Board meeting, to include;
    • Statement of accounts; and
    • Statement of unpaid bills with explanation; and
    • Statement of transfers between accounts; and
    • Statement of income; and
    • Detailed account of how all funds were used; and
    • Detailed account of all anticipated expenses based on future program needs, history, and accounting for emergencies; and
  9. Performing such other functions and exercising such further duties as the National President, the Board, or the Assembly may assign. 

D.      Director of Communications:  The Director of Communications shall be responsible for:

  1. Coordinating internal and external communication of information; and
  2. Coordinating all matters related to the NMLSA website.
  3. Publishing and circulating a national newsletter at least once during the term of office,
  4. Performing such other functions and exercising such further duties as the National President, the Board, or the Assembly may assign.

E.      Director of Academic & Professional Development:

F.      1-L Representative:

  1. Representing the interests of 1Ls on the NMLSA Board.
  2. Working with the College Student Division to develop programming for outreach and recruitment for Muslim law students.
  3. Maintaining regular communication with Circuit Chairs and pre-law advisors at undergraduate institutions in the United States.
  4. Work on compiling and publishing the Annual NMLSA Guide to U.S. Law Schools.

 H.     Circuit Chairs:  The Circuit Chairs shall be responsible for:

  1. Exercising general executive authority over the business and activities of his or her circuit; and
  2. Organizing regular circuit-level meetings and an annual convention.
  3. Developing circuit-level programming, facilitating the interaction between members within the circuit, assisting in the registration of members within the circuit, and forwarding all relevant information from NMLSA to the members within his/her region.
  4. Performing such other functions and exercising such further duties as the National President, the Board, or the Assembly may assign.
  5. The Circuit Chairs shall report regularly to the President and Vice President.

 

Section 2

Succession of Officers:  In the event that the National President is unable to complete a term of office, the National Vice-President shall automatically rise to the position of National President for the remainder of the term.  If the Vice-President is unable to fulfill this duty, an acting President will be elected by simple majority vote of the Board.  In the event that any other National Officer is unable to complete a term of office the Board shall elect a replacement to serve the remainder of the term.  Such election will be coordinated by the Board.

Election Procedures:  Those members seeking election to National Offices shall be required to sign a statement before being officially recognized as a candidate.  That statement will include; 1) a statement of the fiduciary duty of Board Members of the Association; 2) a description of the duties of the particular office; and 3) a pledge to fulfill Article III, Section 1 of the Bylaws. 

 

ARTICLE II

Committees

Section 1

Duties of Committees

A.      Constitution and Bylaws Committee:  A Constitution and Bylaws Committee composed of no less than six (6) members shall be appointed at the first regular Board meeting following the Annual Convention.

  1. Formulate and distribute guidelines and procedures governing the manner in which proposed constitutional and bylaw amendments are to be a) structured or written b) submitted, and c) distributed; and
  2. Put proposed constitutional and bylaw amendments in proper form, eliminating duplication where similar amendments are offered in logical sequence; and
  3. Coordinate and supervise the constitutional and bylaw amendment session.

B.      Convention Arrangements Committee:  A Convention Arrangements Committee composed of no less than six (6) members shall be appointed at the first regular Board meeting following the annual convention.  It shall be the duty of this committee to plan and submit the proposed schedule of meetings, procedures, and special events of the convention for the following year.

  1. A convention report shall be submitted to the Board for its approval no later than the last regular meeting before December 31st The National President, the Chairs of the Committee on Constitution and Bylaws, Credentials and Membership, Elections, Grievances, Resolutions and Rules shall be ex-officio members of the Conventions Arrangements Committee. 

C.      Credentials and Membership Committee:  A Credentials and Membership Committee composed of no less than six (6) members shall be appointed at the first regular Board meeting following the annual convention.  It shall be the duty of this committee to :

  1. Coordinate and supervise the registration procedure at the National Convention; and
  2. Determine the membership classification of each chapter upon registration; and
  3. Formulate and distribute information as to the authorized number of votes per chapter; and
  4. Authorize voting delegates and alternate delegates; and
  5. Approve all proxy certifications.
  6. Candidates currently seeking election to a National Office of the Association are barred from membership on the Credentials and Membership Committee.

 

D.      Elections Committee:  An Elections Committee composed of no less than six (6) members shall be appointed at the first regular Board meeting following the annual convention.  It shall be the duty of this committee to;

  1. Formulate and distribute qualifications, guidelines, and procedures governing; a) candidate eligibility and b) campaign activities; and
  2. Determine the eligibility of each candidate
  3. Candidates currently seeking election to a National Office of the Association are barred from membership on the Elections Committee.

E.      Grievance Committee:  A Grievance Committee composed of no less than six (6) members shall be appointed at the first regular Board meeting following the annual convention.  It shall be the duty of this committee to:

  1. Formulate and distribute guidelines and procedures governing the manner in which grievances are to be: (a) structured, (b) submitted, and (c) received and coordinate and supervise the grievance resolution process.

F.       Resolutions Committee:  A Resolutions Committee composed of no less than six (6) members shall be appointed at the fist regular Board meeting following the annual convention.  It shall be the duty of this committee to:

  1. Formulate and distribute guidelines and procedures governing the manner in which resolutions are to be a) structured or written, b) submitted, and c) distributed; and
  2. Put resolutions in proper form, eliminating duplications where similar resolutions are offered and ensuring that all resolutions relating to a specific subject will be offered in a logical sequence; and
  3. Coordinate and supervise the resolutions sessions.

G.       Rules Committee:  A Rules Committee composed of no less than six (6) members shall be appointed at the fist regular Board meeting following the annual convention.  It shall be the duty of this committee to formulate, distribute and prepare for adoption a group of rules known as the “Standing Rules of the Convention.”  These usually contain both parliamentary rules relating to the conduct of business and non-parliamentary rules. 

 H.     The Board may assemble an Advisory Board of prominent and knowledgeable professionals to provide it with expertise, guidance and support.  The Advisory Board shall be invited to attend and participate in the National Conference.

 ARTICLE III

Meetings

 Section 1

National Executive Board Meeting:  Each incoming Board shall establish, before the adjournment of the Convention, the time and place of the first regular Board meeting, to be held no later than June 30th.  At the first regular Board meeting the National President shall determine the meeting schedule, subject to the approval of the Board.

 A. Board members are required to attend or send a representative to all national Board meetings.

 B. Board members who do not attend meetings shall be expelled from the National Board.

  1.  In case of expulsion, the national Board will select a new Board member.
  2. The Board has total discretion to expel.
  3. The Board shall not expel members with extenuating circumstances, e.g., financial inability to attend, or sudden illness.

 Section 2

 Quorum:

 A.     National Executive Board:  A quorum of the Board shall consist of a simple majority.

 NOTE: For the purposes of this document, a simple majority establishing a quorum shall be defined as one more than half of the elected officers of the Board.

 B.     General Assembly: A quorum of the Assembly is a simple majority of the active chapters registered at the National Convention.

Section 6

National Academic Retreat for First Years:  A National Coordinator appointed by the National President shall coordinate the National Academic Retreat.

  1. In conjunction with the National Academic Retreat, each of the remaining regions shall also hold a retreat, designated to be held within the respective region.
  2. All retreats shall be held in the month of September October.
  3. As a service to the dues-paying membership of NMLSA, no additional fees shall be charged to participants.

 

 ARTICLE IV

 Financial Affairs

Section 1

Financing: This Association shall be financed primarily by dues, fund-raising activities, donations, and grants. 

Section 2

Financial Efforts:  All National financial efforts shall be for the benefit of all members and chapters in accordance with rules promulgated by the Board.

ARTICLE V

Voting

Section 1

Simple Majority Vote:  For the purpose of this document, a simple majority vote shall be defined as: at least one more than half of the votes cast by persons legally entitled to vote, excluding blanks and abstentions, at a regular or properly called meeting at which a quorum is present.

Section 2

Two-Thirds Vote:  For the purpose of this document, a two-thirds vote shall be defined as: at least two-thirds of the votes cast by persons legally entitled to vote, excluding blanks and abstentions, at a regular or properly called meeting at which a quorum is present.

Section 3

Three-Fourths Vote: For the purpose of this document, a three-fourths vote shall be defined as: at least three -fourths of the votes cast by persons legally entitled to vote, excluding blanks and abstentions, at a regular or properly called meeting at which a quorum is present.

ARTICLE VI

Disciplinary Proceedings

Section 1

Grounds:  Failure to perform the duties of the office as prescribed in this Constitution and Bylaws, or conduct detrimental to the well being of this Association shall constitute grounds for disciplinary action.

Section 2

A. Recommendation:  A National Board member or any member of NMLSA may submit to the Board a written recommendation that a officer be disciplined for conduct described in Section 1 of this Article and Article X of the Constitution. 

B. Hearing:  The Board, acting on such recommendation, voting by a simple majority may call a hearing on the merits of the recommendation at the next regularly scheduled Board meeting or at a special meeting to determine whether there are grounds for disciplinary action against the officer in question.  Such officer shall be given reasonable, written notice and an opportunity to defend him/herself at said hearing.

C. Discipline:  If grounds for disciplinary action exists, censure or impeachment of the officer in question shall be appropriate.

D. Censure:  Censure shall be in order upon two-thirds vote of the Board. 

Section 3

Impeachment:  Impeachment is in order upon a two-thirds vote of the Board or a two-thirds vote of the General Membership.

ARTICLE VII

Parliamentary Authority

Section 1

Robert’s Rules of Order:  The rules contained in the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the Association in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with the Constitution and Bylaws and any special rules of order the Association may adopt.

Section 2 

Parliamentarian:  One or more persons shall be appointed by the National President, subject to the approval of the Board to serve in the position of an Advisor to advise and counsel the National President and the Board on parliamentary procedure of this Association.

Section 3

Interpretation:  The Parliamentarian, shall be the final authority, subject to Article III, Section 2(D) of these Bylaws, to decide all questions of interpretation and construction of the parliamentary authority and procedural rules of this association.  The Parliamentarian shall be responsible for providing all delegates with the current procedural rules.