American Association of Law Libraries
Draft Empirical Research Caucus Bylaws

Article I: Name

The name of this caucus of the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) shall be the Empirical Research Caucus.

Article II: Object

The object of the Empirical Research Caucus is to : 1)encourage law librarians to expand their knowledge of trends in empirical research, empirical research methods, and multidisciplinary resources related to legal topics and research; 2) facilitate librarian instructional efforts to increase information literacy in regards to empirical research; 3) encourage law librarians to engage in research and publication regarding empirical evaluation of patron services, patron literacy, and other related topic such as law and society; 4) maintain a listing of publications by librarians on conducting empirical research or reporting empirical research; 5)            partner with AALL Special Interest Sections, including ALL-SIS, PLL-SIS, and CS-SIS, to support and publicize programming and professional development opportunities addressing empirical research and the organization and administration of empirical research support programs; 6) provide a forum for sharing knowledge related to empirical research including development and archiving of data, availability of existing data, and requirements for institutional review boards.

Article III: Membership

a. Membership shall be open to any AALL member requesting affiliation with the Empirical Research Caucus.  Membership shall be renewable each year.
b. Members shall have the right to hold office, to vote to serve on committees, and to access or receive either electronic or print publications of the Caucus.

Article IV: Meetings

a.There shall be an annual meeting of the Empirical Research Caucus held in connection with or during the annual meeting of AALL. The scheduling of the Caucus annual meeting during the annual meeting of AALL shall be cleared with the appropriate AALL offices. Meetings shall be open to all members of AALL, but no person who is not a Caucus member may vote in any meeting.
b. A quorum shall consist of the members present at the Caucus meeting held during the annual meeting of AALL .

Article V: Officers and Committees

Section 1. Officers

The officers shall consist of a Chairperson, Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect and a Secretary/Treasurer.  Candidates for an officer position shall be members of the Caucus.  

Section 2. Duties of Officers

a. Chairperson
It shall be the duty of the Chairperson to: coordinate all business and projects of the Caucus through the Executive Committee of this Caucus; appoint members to the committees of the Caucus; act as a liaison to AALL; and prepare an annual report of Caucus activities.

b. Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect
It shall be the duty of the Vice Chairperson/ Chairperson-Elect to serve as the manager of electronic resources, including websites and blogs for the caucus and to perform any other duties delegated to him/her by the Chairperson.

c. Secretary/Treasurer
It shall be the duty of the Secretary/Treasurer to maintain all records of the Caucus. This includes taking and reporting of minutes of business meetings; managing transactions and preparing reports, including an annual report of Caucus activities; and in conjunction with the Chairperson, preparing ballots for annual elections, and tabulating results.

 Section 3. Executive Committee

There shall be an Executive Committee consisting of the officers named above, the immediate past Chairperson, and a Member-at-Large. The Member-at-Large shall be elected for a two-year term, and shall perform duties comparable to those usually assigned to such members in similar caucuses.

Section 4. Committees

a. There shall be such standing or special committees as the Executive Committee or the membership of the Caucus shall create.
b. There shall be a standing Nominating Committee, appointed by the Executive Committee, to consist of two members, no one of whom shall be a member of the Executive Committee, and no one of whom shall be a candidate for office at the succeeding election. Each member of the Nominating Committee shall serve for a term of one year; the chair of the Nominating Committee shall be designated by the Executive Committee.

Section 5. Terms of Office

The Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect shall serve a two-year term, the first year as Vice Chairperson and the second year as Chairperson.  A new Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect shall be elected each year. The Secretary/Treasurer shall serve a two-year term. Officers and the Executive Committee Member-at-Large shall serve in office until the adjournment of the annual business meeting.

Section 6. Vacancies

A vacancy in the position of Chairperson shall be filled by the present Vice Chairperson/ Chairperson-Elect, who shall serve until the end of the Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect’s own elected term. If a vacancy occurs in the office of Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect, Secretary/Treasurer or Member-at-Large, the position shall be filled by appointment of the Executive Committee. The person appointed shall serve until the next regularly scheduled election, at which time all offices shall be filled for their ordinary terms.

Article VI: Nomination and Election of Officers and Members-at-Large

Section 1. Nominations

The Nominating Committee shall submit the names of two candidates for the office of Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect and two candidates for the Member-at-Large position, and the names of two candidates for Secretary/Treasurer when those offices are to be filled, to the Chairperson in sufficient time to enable the Chairperson to inform the members of the Caucus of the nominations prior to July 1, either by e-mail, or by posting on the Caucus listserv. The Committee shall seek potential candidates representative of the diverse employment and background of the membership.

Section 2. Chairperson

In the event that the Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect cannot assume the duties of Chairperson and such fact is known prior to July 1, the Nominating Committee shall also submit to the current Chairperson the names of candidates for the office of Chairperson for the term of one year, to appear on the ballot with the candidates for Vice Chairperson/Chairperson-Elect, Secretary/Treasurer and Member-at-Large. If the Vice Chairperson /Chairperson-Elect cannot assume the duties of Chairperson and it becomes known after July 1, the Executive Committee shall appoint a member to serve for one year as Chairperson.

Section 3. Nomination by Petition

Further nominations may be made upon written petition of three members of the Caucus.  Such petitions, accompanied by written acceptance of the nominee, must be filed with the Chairperson not later than June 15.

Section 4. Ballots

The election of officers will be conducted every year by paper, email or electronic ballot. The secretary shall prepare an official ballot, including nominations by petition. The professional position of each nominee shall appear on the ballot. Marked ballots shall be returned to the Secretary/Treasurer by a specified deadline. In the event electronic ballots are used, the details of conducting the election shall first be approved by the Executive Committee. The Committee shall ensure that an election conducted by electronic balloting is fundamentally fair and preserves the right of secret ballot. The candidates receiving the largest number of votes shall be elected and shall be so reported at the annual meeting. All candidates shall be notified of the results of the election at the earliest possible time. In the event that the Secretary/Treasurer is a candidate for office, marked ballots shall be returned to and tabulated by the Chair of the Nominations Committee.

Section 5. Tie Votes

In case of a tie vote, a run-off election shall be held by special mailing or by electronic ballot.

Section 6. Destruction of Ballots

If there are no challenges to the results of the election, the ballots may be destroyed by the Secretary after the annual meeting.

Article VII: Amendments

Section 1

Bylaws of the Caucus may be adopted, amended, or suspended at the annual meeting of the caucus by a majority vote of the members present and voting. In the alternative, bylaws may be adopted, amended, or suspended through an email or electronic ballot. In the event electronic ballots are used, the details of conducting the election shall first be approved by the Executive Committee.

Section 2

All Caucus members shall receive notice of proposed amendments to the bylaws. Notice of proposed amendments to the bylaws may be emailed to the Caucus members, distributed via listserv or other electronic means in advance of the Caucus annual meeting.

Section 3

Following passage by the Caucus, any amendment shall take effect only after it has been presented to the AALL Bylaws Committee for review and approval by the proper AALL organizational entity.

Article VIII: Parliamentary Authority

Sturgis’ Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure, in the latest edition, shall govern all deliberations of the Caucus when not in conflict with the bylaws of the Caucus.