|2016 Board of Directors Election|
The following procedures will be followed for the election of individuals to the Board of Directors of the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA).
All Full, Individual Members and Sustaining Member designated voting representatives of the NPA are eligible for election to the Board of Directors provided that:
Affiliate Members are not eligible for election to the Board of Directors.
A call for applications shall be issued to the membership and published on the NPA website at least 30 days prior to the election. Those wishing to appear on the voting ballot must ensure that the following application packet is submitted in full. Nominees should also be aware that documents 1 - 3 below will be posted on the NPA website and publicly available to its membership, and therefore should ensure that no personal contact information is included (address, phone/fax number, email address, etc.):
Note that the letter of support is to be sent by the referrer directly to: email@example.com.
Items 1 - 3 will form the primary basis for member review of nominees, so it is recommended that nominees take great care with these materials. All application materials must be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org, no later than July 11, 2016, at 11:59 pm EDT. The NPA Nominating Committee will validate applications. All validated applicants will appear on the ballot for election.
The ballot will be sent to the voting membership of the NPA by email and posted on the NPA website. Only those individuals who have received a confirmation of their voting membership prior to this date will be eligible to vote. Members of the NPA will have two weeks to submit their votes for up to four candidates. Voting concludes on October 7, 2016 at 11:59 pm EDT. The four candidates with the largest number of votes will be invited to join the Board of Directors within the constraints of the number of postdoc and nonpostdoc positions available (Section 4.1 of Bylaws) and pending verification that at least 10 percent of the membership voted (Section 4.9 of Bylaws). Tie votes will be settled by a vote of the Board of Directors in which a simple majority shall rule.
2016 Election Timetable
Service on the NPA Board will require a considerable commitment of your time and energy. Service on the Board is significantly different in nature from what you may have experienced as a committee member of the NPA. If you would like to participate in the NPA but are unclear about your availability or ability to commit right now, we recommend that you become actively involved in one of the membership committees. This will introduce you to the organization and allow you to explore your options for serving in a leadership role within the NPA.
If you decide that you are willing and able to serve on the NPA Board, the time that you spend working on NPA activities will sometimes be intense and challenging, but it will always be very rewarding. Serving the NPA will provide opportunities to further develop your skills in committee work, leadership, networking, strategic planning, team building, public speaking, writing, and many other areas that will be valuable to you in the future no matter what your career path may be. It is very rewarding to be one of the leaders of this organization and serve the scientific community in meaningful ways.
For those needing numbers, time commitments vary from 2-10 hours per week. This is based on a Board member’s level of responsibility within the organization, the number of committees served on, and most importantly project workload. You should expect to devote between 10-20 hours per month to your Board duties, as well as be prepared for some travel to the Board retreat and Annual Meeting for example. Much of the time commitment involves participation in teleconferences that are held during work hours.
Board of Directors members are required to:
Positions on the NPA Board of Directors are open to all eligible NPA members (see eligibility). We encourage all Full, Individual Members with an interest in leading the mission of the NPA to consider service on the Board of Directors. This year, four positions are available on the Board of Directors, which can be filled by either postdoc or nonpostdoc members of the NPA. Ideally, the Board of Directors will be representative of its postdoc constituency, and include a dynamic mix of individuals representing a broad spectrum of research disciplines, institutional settings, geographic regions, demographic groups, and professional experiences.
All applications will be reviewed in full by the NPA Nominating Committee, and each individual’s unique merits and potential contributions to the NPA will be considered when the membership votes. Experience in science advocacy, past NPA experience and/or any other skills/knowledge/experience that will benefit the NPA have been important factors in previous elections. It should be clear that while the NPA Board of Directors has identified organizational needs with respect to skill sets, demographics and discipline, members may vote for any candidate on the ballot.
Application and Nomination Process:
The final ballot will be distributed to all eligible voting members, who may vote for up to four candidates on the ballot.
As a candidate for the NPA Board of Directors, the following rules are to be observed to ensure that fair, open, and honest elections occur. The purpose of these rules is to provide candidates with the ability to educate the electorate without overburdening the constituency with inappropriate conduct or unsolicited information.
We, as members of the NPA Board of Directors, dedicate ourselves to carrying out the mission of the NPA. We strive to adhere to the following ideals:
Any real or perceived non-adherence to the Code of Ethics that may negatively affect the mission of the NPA should be discussed with the Board chair (or vice chair, if the chair is the Board member in question). The Board chair (vice chair) may discuss the situation with the Board member in question and may choose to manage the situation using the procedure for a Board member’s failure to adhere to the Board of Directors' Pledge. In the case of a severe violation of the Code of Ethics, the Board chair (vice chair) may choose to ask for a vote of the Board to remove the member in question from the Board.
As a member of the NPA Board of Directors, I pledge the following:
The Board of Directors of the NPA is expected to avoid any actual or apparent conflict between its members' individual personal or professional interests, and the interests of the NPA. Board members shall act at all times in the best interests of the NPA. This means setting aside personal self-interests and performing their duties in the transaction of the affairs of the NPA in such a manner that promotes confidence and trust in the integrity, objectivity, and impartiality of the Board.
The NPA's Conflict of Interest (COI) policy is in place to protect both the individual and the NPA from accusations of improper conduct. As such, all Board members and staff need to respect the COI policy and should feel personal responsibility for self-monitoring.
For questions not covered in this FAQ, or if you need further information about the NPA elections, please contact Barbara J. Natalizio, Ph.D., Oversight Governance Committee chair and Electoral Officer, at email@example.com.
Q. How can I apply to be on the Board of Directors elections ballot?
A. Complete and submit the Board of Directors Application Package by July 11, 2016.
Q. What are the eligibility requirements?
A. All Full, Individual Members and Sustaining Member designated voting representatives of the NPA are eligible to submit an application package for the Board of Directors provided that:
1. Their dues are currently paid.
2. The member pledges to adhere to the Candidate Code of Conduct.
3. The member pledges to adhere to the Code of Ethics.
4. The member agrees to sign the Board Pledge upon election to the Board.
5. The member signs the Conflict of Interest statement.
Q. What is the timetable for the 2016 election?
A. The full timetable is listed as part of the 2016 Application and Election Procedures.
Q. What can I expect from service on the Board of Directors?
A. A full schedule and a rich and rewarding experience. Read what some of our Board members have to say in the NPA Board Testimonials. Board of Directors responsibilities and anticipated time commitments are covered in the 2016 Board of Directors Service Details and Time Commitments. Specifically, those considering service on the Board should be aware they will have full governing, legal, and financial responsibility over a nationally-recognized 501(c)3 status nonprofit organization.
Q. Do I have to be a postdoc to be elected?
A. No. Of the eleven seats on the Board of Directors, up to five may be filled by nonpostdoc members of the NPA. For the 2016 elections, one seat must be filled by postdocs, and three seats can be filled by either a nonpostdoc or postdoc.
Q. I am no longer a postdoctoral fellow. How long after I've completed my postdoc am I considered a postdoc for NPA membership and election purposes?
A. You qualify as a postdoctoral fellow for five years after you have left your postdoctoral position (starting January 1st of the year after your transition; Bylaws, Section 2.2).
Q. How long is the term of service for the NPA Board of Directors?
A. Terms are for three years, although individuals can hold two consecutive terms in office, as stipulated in the NPA Bylaws, Section 4.1.
Q. If elected, when does my term of service begin?
A. Candidates will be notified on Saturday, October 8, 2016. Election results will be announced on Monday, October 10, 2016, and it is expected that those elected will participate in Board activities (including a leadership retreat tentatively scheduled for early November 2016) prior to the official start of their term of office. Newly elected Board members officially begin their duties on January 1, 2017.
Q. Who is eligible to vote?
A. Voting privileges apply to all Full, Individual Members and Sustaining Member representatives of the association. Membership regulations are covered in section 2.5 of the NPA Bylaws. Each Full, Individual or Sustaining Member is entitled to vote in the election and may cast a vote for up to four candidates.
Q. How many Board of Directors seats will the 2016 election fill?
A. Four seats are to be filled. Outgoing Board members whose terms or appointments are ending include Kristene Henne, Darwin Operario, Marina Ramon, and Yvette Seger.
Q. If elected, whom would I be joining on the Board of Directors?
A. You will be joining Tracy Costello, Josh Henkin, Juliet Moncaster, Barbara Natalizio, Chris Pickett, Kate Sleeth, and Jana Stone.
Q. Would I be responsible for my Board of Directors-related expenses?
A. The NPA may support approved Board of Directors expenses including travel arrangements to the Annual Meeting and any Board of Directors retreats. However, Board members are strongly encouraged to make in-kind donations to travel if possible.
Q. Will travel be a large part of my NPA service?
A. Attendance at the NPA Annual Meeting is required for all Board members. The Annual Meetings typically take place in March of each year. For 2017, the Annual Meeting will be held in San Francisco, CA, March 17-19. The current and elected Board of Directors will also meet annually for a leadership retreat tentatively scheduled for early November. Other travel opportunities may arise, and Board members travel more or less based on the organization’s needs, Board member expertise, proximity to events and availability.
Q. Once elected, what if I find that I cannot fulfill my term?
A. The Bylaws make provisions in case this happens (Sections 4.10, 4.11 and 4.12).