BY-LAWS FOR THE SAN DIEGO CHAPTER OF THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF TEACHERS OF SINGING
Article I. NAME
As chartered by the Board of Directors of the National Association of Teachers of Singing, Inc., on 6/15/75, and subject to its By-laws, the name if this organization is the National Association of Teachers of Singing, San Diego Chapter (“NATS San Diego”)
Article II. PURPOSE
NATS San Diego adopts fully the stated purposes of the National Association, which are: (1) to encourage the highest standards of the vocal art and of ethical principles in the teaching of singing; (2) to promote vocal education and research at all levels, both for the enrichment of the general public and for the professional advancement of the talented NATS San Diego, as an organization, subscribes without reservations to the “Code of Ethics,” adherence to which is one of the conditions of individual membership in the National Association.
Article III. MEMBERSHIP
The San Diego Chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing shall be open to all persons regardless of national origin or citizenship. Membership in the San Diego Chapter will be considered once a person first becomes a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing, Inc. No such member will be refused membership in NATS San Diego; however, such chapter membership will be terminated when a member is not in good standing, resigns from or is dropped from, membership in the National Association.
Membership classifications as specified by the national association are as follows (details can be found on the www.nats.org website):
A. Full Member: 22+ years of age; person of known personal integrity; accept and abide by the Code of Ethics as stated on this form; teach an average of six or more voice students each week (each section of class voice equals one student); and meet one of the following : (Degrees must be appropriate to the teaching of singing.) Bachelor's degree + three years voice teaching/coaching after receipt of degree. Master's degree or doctorate + two years voice teaching/coaching after receipt of degree. (Experience as a graduate teaching assistant in voice may fulfill the teaching /coaching requirement.) Professional singers or accompanists who teach but do not have degrees (Bachelors, Master, or Doctorate) as described in a & b: four years’ experience as a professional singer or coach + teaching voice/coaching for two years after the four years of experience. Others without degrees as described in a & b: four years of private voice study +five years of voice teaching/coaching following the four years of private instruction.
B. Associate Member: are beginning teachers of singing whose training and/or teaching experience does not yet qualify them for Full Membership. Associate Members have full power of vote but may hold office only at the chapter level. Associate Members may sponsor themselves or their students in NATSAA Competitions. Years of Associate Membership do not accrue toward Emeritus Membership status.
C. Affiliate Member: includes any person or group who has a close relationship to or interest in vocal pursuits, but not actually engaged in the teaching of voice. This category may include accompanists, coaches, music stores, publishers, interested otolaryngologists and speech therapists, etc. Affiliate members may not vote or hold office at any level.
D. Emeritus Member: includes active NATS members who have attained their 68th year and have been members in good standing for at least 20 years. Requests for this membership status must be approved by the Board of Directors. Though emeritus members may not hold elective office at the national, regional, or state level, they may hold chapter office and may vote.
E. Honorary Member: includes people who have held a national office in NATS or any person upon whom this chapter (by means of nomination and vote) may desire to grant this title. Honorary members may not hold office or vote.
Article IV. OFFICERS OF THE BOARD AND THEIR DUTIES
A. The Executive Board of the chapter will consist of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Membership Chair, two Student Auditions Competition Co-Chairs, Publicity Chair, Past President, and Advisor. Past President and Advisor will not be considered elected positions.
B. The President will preside at all regular and special meetings as well as at the Executive Board sessions. The President shall see that the By-Laws of the Chapter are enforced. (S)he shall administer the overall policies adopted by the Board and the Membership, and shall act as representative of the Chapter with the National organization as well as with the general public. The President shall appoint the chairperson of all standing committees subject to approval of the board. The President shall attend all committee meetings of the board. The President shall attend all committee meetings ex-officio with the exception of the Nominating Committee. The President shall initiate the preparation of the annual budget of the Chapter’s overall activities, and after consultation with the Treasurer, submit it to the Board for final action. The President shall be authorized to sign all legal documents and bank checks together with the Treasurer in payment of the Chapter’s bills. The President may appoint members or fuse positions (for example, fuse “secretary” with “membership chair) in the instances where the positions are not filled during an election. This action is subject to a vote by the executive board. The President shall supervise the publishing of a newsletter approximately 9-10 times per year, working with the Publicity Chair and whatever assistance is available.
C. The Vice President will be responsible for coordinating the special events and meetings of the chapter. Those responsibilities will include: generating ideas for special events; receiving and vetting suggestions for special events from NATS San Diego members; coordinating with site representatives for the special events; generating, sending out, and receiving applications for participation in special events; coordinating the committee to judge applications; and any other duties necessary for the successful execution of a NATS San Diego special event. The Vice President may delegate event coordination duties to committee members or fellow board members in the event that they need extra help. The Vice-President will also discharge the duties of President when necessary.
D. The Secretary will be responsible for keeping and publishing meeting minutes of all sessions of the Executive Board, shall write all correspondence and keep chapter records, including programs, newsletters, etc. Within two weeks of an Executive Board meeting or action, the Secretary shall send the minutes to the Executive Board. Meeting Minutes shall be made public to any chapter member who requests the meeting minutes, but it is not mandatory to publish meeting minutes for public viewing.
E. The Treasurer shall be the custodian of the funds of the chapter, shall give receipts as appropriate, and shall keep a record of all paid dues. The treasurer shall keep detailed records of financial documents, expenses, and expense reports.
(S)he will give a monthly report to the board and file the same with the Secretary, will sign checks, and will pay all expenses incurred by an officer or committee chairperson in the interest of the organization, with the sanction of the Executive Board. Receipts for reimbursement must be submitted within sixty days of incurring the expense. Failure to properly submit receipts within the prescribed period may result in denial of reimbursement.
F. The Membership Chair shall be responsible for matters of membership within the chapter. Those responsibilities include sending out correspondence to new members, collection of member information, as well as collating and distribution of the annual chapter directory which shall include the current (revised) Code of Ethics and By-laws. The Membership Chair will also keep current the various mailing lists for the chapter, and furnish this information as needed to committee members.
G. The Competition Co-Chairs will be responsible for the annual Student Auditions and any other adjudicated events and shall form and chair a committee/s of his/her choosing which shall take care of all planning and arrangements for said contest/s and the ensuing recital/s.
H. The Publicity Chair will contact news media, write suitable articles, send reminder notices to chapter members via regular mail, email or other media approximately ten days before each NATS San Diego event. Maintenance of the chapter’s website and inquiries regarding updates of content, will be addressed by the Publicity Chair. The Publicity Chair will work with the President in publishing a newsletter, 9-10 times per year.
I. The Social Chair will be responsible for arranging events of a purely social nature.
The Social Chair will also be responsible for coordinating food and beverage service at
the special meetings and events of the general membership. The Social Chair will have
J. The Member-At-Large will attend board meetings and have duties determined at those
meetings on an ad hoc basis, The Member-at-Large will have voting privileges.
K. The Advisor will serve on the Executive Board and shall serve as a sounding board and counsel for that board. The Advisor will be appointed by the Board and will have voting privileges.
L. It is the prerogative of the sitting board whether or not to elect a Website Chair. The website chair is responsible for the updating and upkeep of the chapter website; they are in charge of making sure all information is accurate and current. The Website Chair may aid the Publicity Chair in the upkeep of chapter social media accounts, and may work with the secretary and the Membership Chair to make sure the website and all social media platforms are kept up to date. The Website Chair may be a voting member.
M. The Past President will act in an advisory capacity to the Executive Board and will have voting privileges.
N. Each elected officer shall be the custodian of all chapter properties and records pertaining to that office and shall transmit them to his/her successor at the close of the term in the office.
O. It is the prerogative of the sitting board whether or not to appoint a student intern. The student intern can be assigned to any area where the board feels they need additional assistance. If an intern is desired, a job description for the intern must be published and agreed to by the intern and the sitting President. The intern is ultimately overseen by the President and Vice President. The intern shall not be a voting member. Should the intern wish to come up with initiatives, they must propose them to the board before any new item shall pass. They may attend board meetings by invitation from the President.
Article V. MEETINGS
A. The regular meetings of the board shall be held approximately once a month between September and May on specific days determined by the board.
B. Special events and meetings of the general membership will be scheduled by the board as closely as possible to the following schedule: a Fall meeting/event to be held in October/November. Event/meeting times and locations will be announced in the newsletter or by special announcement at least 14 days in advance.
C. A quorum for a meeting of the Executive Board shall be one-half of the elected officers.
D. Regarding Voting: Any necessary action outside of a regular Executive Board meeting may be voted on electronically or by mail, providing a) it is initiated by the President, b) all Executive Board members are contacted, c) responses are in written form including mail and all electronic transmissions such as facsimile and email communications, and d) all written consents shall be filed with the minutes of the meeting, and shall have the same force and effect as a vote of the Executive Board.
E. Regarding Chapter-Wide Votes: If there is no response from a member of the chapter, their lack of a response cannot be counted as an affirmative vote. E-votes must receive a quorum of the Executive Board (half of Board members plus 1) of responses in order to be valid, after which a simple majority will decide the outcome. It is understood that 3 business days is the minimum time allotted to receive e-vote responses. The President may set a deadline for responses, not to be fewer than 3 business days.
Article VI. STUDENT AUDITIONS
This program is an opportunity for voice students of all levels to receive helpful and encouraging adjudications from NATS voice teachers. Student Auditions are not a profit-making endeavor. Accumulated student and teacher entrance fees, minus expenses, will be distributed as monetary awards among the winners. Details and all other governing factors of the competition will be at the discretion of the Student Auditions Co-Chairpersons in consultation with his/her committee members and the Executive Board.
Article VII. EXECUTIVE BOARD AND ITS DUTIES
A. The Executive Board shall consist of all elected officers and the immediate Past President.
B. The Executive Board shall be the governing body of the chapter.
C. Elections may be held during the month of April by means of a mail or email ballot. A nominating committee appointed by the President will select a slate of candidates to be presented to the general membership for election.
D. Officers are elected for a term of two years. Any vacancy occurring during a term of office shall be filled by presidential appointment with the approval of the Board. The term of office will begin on June 1 and end on May 31.
E. No member will hold more than one elected office at a time. Elected officers, with the exception of the Treasurer and Student Auditions Co-Chairs, will not be eligible for more than two consecutive terms in the same office.
F. Any member in good standing at the Full, Associate, or Emeritus level will be entitled to vote.
Article VIII. COMMITTEES
Standing committees may be authorized by the President with the approval of the Board.
Article IX . DUES AND ASSESSMENTS
A. The annual NATS San Diego membership dues are $40.00 for Full members, Associate, and Affiliate members. Emeritus and Honorary members are not required to pay dues. Dues are payable by February 1 of each year. Dues not paid by February 1 will be considered delinquent and the member will be dropped from the roster and the member’s name will not appear in the directory.
B. Annual dues are payable to the National Association upon notice from that office.
C. Special programs may involve additional charges at the discretion of the Board.
Article X. DIRECTORY
The membership chair will be in charge of publishing a directory each year which lists contact information for each member, helpful references, and the code of ethics. The directory will be edited each year after February 1 and will be assembled and distributed by mid-May.
Article XI. CONDUCT OF BUSINESS
The conduct of business at a regular Executive Board meeting will be as close as possible to the below outline, with subheadings within each category as the President sees fit. Call to order, ratification of previous meeting minutes, treasurer’s report, open discussion, and adjournment must be included in every Executive board meeting.
A. Call to order
B. Ratification of minutes of previous meeting
C. Treasurer’s report
D. Old Business
E. New Business
F. Open Discussion
Article XII. AMENDMENTS
A. These By-Laws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of chapter membership, provided the proposed amendment has been presented to the membership in writing at least fourteen days in advance of voting.
Article XIII. ROBERT'S RULES OF ORDER
A. In all instances not specified in the By-Laws, The Robert’s Rules of Order Revised will be the governing authority. The revisions to the By-Laws were submitted in July of 1980, May of 2004, June of 2007, May of 2009, November of 2014, and October of 2021.
B. To address potential lack of knowledge and application surrounding “Robert’s Rules of Order”, and to avoid conflicts surrounding differences of interpretation, The board, at least once per year, will revisit Robert’s Rules of Order to understand how they apply to a regular Executive Board meeting.