APS News

APS Members Vote Yes on Corporate Reform

The votes are in and the APS corporate reform initiative passed overwhelmingly, 94 percent to 6 percent. All together, 8,101 people voted, or about 17 percent of the membership, roughly the same as an average general election.

November 12, 2014

"The result of this vote is a stunning affirmation by the APS membership of the future of their Society,” said APS President Malcolm Beasley.

The Council will soon hold its final vote on whether to ratify the proposed changes to the Society’s foundational documents that were drafted by the Committee on Constitution and Bylaws following recommendations from the Committee on Corporate Reform.

"The member vote was a critical part of this deliberative process, and getting to this point required the sustained hard work by our dedicated volunteer leaders and our wonderful APS staff,” said Kate Kirby, APS executive officer. “With a positive Council vote, we can begin to implement the transition plan, as spelled out in the new Constitution & Bylaws.”

The effort to reform the Society’s governance and leadership structures began officially in September 2013 when the APS Executive Board formed the Committee on Corporate Reform. Following months of work, a discussion at the APS Leadership Convocation, and town hall meetings at the APS March and April Meetings, the preliminary version of the proposed plan was submitted to the APS Council in June 2014.

On August 16, the Council met in Chicago and voted to forward the proposed Constitution & Bylaws and Articles of Incorporation to the members for comment. Having considered their responses, the Council voted on September 27, 2014 to place these documents before the membership for approval. Member voting started on October 6 and ended on November 10.

The revised documents would change the roles of the existing Council and Executive Board. The Council would become the Council of Representatives, chaired by a speaker, and would be responsible for all matters of science and membership, including science policy, prizes and awards, units, and meetings. The Executive Board would become a Board of Directors made up of the presidential line, the treasurer, and nine council members including the speaker of the Council. It would be in charge of all matters of governance and finance.

The new Constitution & Bylaws would create a CEO position to directly oversee all day-to-day operations of the Society in place of the current triumvirate. Finally, the amended Articles of Incorporation and the new Constitution & Bylaws will bring APS into compliance with Washington, D.C. statutes governing nonprofit corporations.

Related Information

Gray arrow APS Governance Changes Webpage