Constitution and Bylaws of the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts
ARTICLE I–NAME OF THE ORGANIZATION
The organization is called The International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts; acronym: IAFA. It is a non-profit organization, incorporated as a 501(c)(3) under the laws of the State of Florida.
The purpose of the organization is to promote and recognize achievement in the study of the fantastic: in English and other literatures, in drama and film, in art and graphic design, and in related academic disciplines. The traditional venues for these activities include:
- Organization and management of an annual academic conference, The International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts (ICFA).
- Publication of a learned journal, The Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts (JFA).
- Editing and publishing in appropriate venues a selection of essays drawn from the annual conference.
- Sponsorship and administration of a series of awards for scholarship and for fiction writing, presented annually during the conference.
- Publication of a Newsletter and a Directory distributed electronically or in hardcopy to Active Members.
- Maintenance of a website on the Internet and an e-mail list to serve the interests of scholars in the field; and such other projects as may appear desirable from time to time.
ARTICLE III–MEMBERSHIP IN THE ORGANIZATION
Membership is open to all–including academics, editors, publishers, writers, artists, and fans–upon payment of the annual membership dues established by the Executive Board. Membership is required of all who present papers at the annual ICFA; benefits of membership include the IAFA Directory, JFA, and the right to vote in any election or other votes called by the IAFA.
Benefits do not include registration in annual conference.
Other benefits may be offered.
Membership runs from January 1st to December 31st.
All officers of the IAFA must be members in good standing. To be eligible for the office of President, a member must have served either as a Division Head or as a member of the Executive Board. All Executive Board officers, whether elected or appointed, will have equal vote on IAFA issues that come before the Executive Board.
- Section 1. Executive Board. Members of the Executive Board include the five elected officers: President, First Vice-President, Second Vice-President, Treasurer, and Public Information Coordinator; and appointed are limited to Conference Chair, Awards Director, JFA Editor, Registration Coordinator, and Chief Technical Officer. The Immediate Past President and Student Representative also sit on the Board with full voting rights, as does the Conference Founder. Appointments to the Board are made by the President, after formal discussion and majority vote of the other elected officers. Two thirds of the Board members, both those elected and those appointed, constitute a quorum for conducting business.
- Section 2. Terms of Office. The five elected officers customarily serve three year terms, staggered to prevent the rotation of all five officers at once. When unplanned vacancies occur, appointments to fill them for shorter terms may be made by the President after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board. (For election procedures, and job descriptions, see the accompanying Bylaws.) Terms are three years unless otherwise stipulated. Board assistants and on-site coordinators are generally assigned on a conference-to-conference basis.
- Section 3. Division Heads. Organization and refereeing of academic paper sessions at ICFA is under the direction of Division Heads, also appointed by the President after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board. At present there are seven Divisions: Fantastic Literature in English (FL); International Fantastic Literature (IF); Horror Literature (HL); Science Fiction Literature (SF); The Fantastic in Film and Television (FTV); The Fantastic in Visual and Performing Arts and Audiences (VPAA); The Fantastic in Children’s and Young-Adult Literature and Art (CYA).
General business meetings open to all members are conducted annually at the ICFA. In addition, Division Heads meet at least once annually under the leadership of the First Vice-President, usually at the ICFA. Board members meet at the ICFA and again at a special planning conference conducted by the President each year.
ARTICLE VI–BYLAWS AND AMENDMENTS
Details of governance are outlined in the accompanying Bylaws and Articles of Governance of The International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts; this document also establishes procedures for amending the constitution.
Bylaws and Articles of Governance
An active member is one whose annual dues are paid. Voting rights are held by members whose dues are paid for either the year in which the vote is held or the previous year.
The Election Committee for the IAFA will be chaired by the Immediate Past President and will include two other members chosen from the Executive Board by the Executive Board.
The election process will typically span several months, from the summer preceding the voting period through to the announcement of the results at the annual business meeting in the spring of the election year.
All notifications, announcements, and ballots will be distributed primarily through electronic means (via the Internet via e-mail or secure web-site), though print and surface mail distribution will be employed where necessary.
The Election Committee will announce upcoming elections with a call for nominations, including self-nominations. The opening date for nominations will be on 30 September. The closing date for nominations will be on 30 October of the year preceding the actual vote.
The Election Committee will notify each nominee of his or her nomination and will provide each with the names of everyone else nominated during that election cycle.
Candidates declining nomination must notify the Elections Committee immediately upon notification of their nomination.
Candidates eligible for the offices to which they have been nominated and willing to run for those offices will be asked to submit position statements by 20 November of the year preceding the vote.
The Election Committee will distribute position statements and ballots to the membership on or about 10 December, and ballots must be returned by 10 January of the election year.
The Election Committee will count the ballots immediately after the 10 January deadline, and if no candidate has a clear majority (51% or more), a run-off election will be held between the two candidates who have received the most votes. The run-off election will be conducted promptly, with appropriate announcements, and with ballots being distributed by 10 February, and with a final vote deadline of 1 March of the election year.
The Election Committee will announce results of the election at the IAFA business meeting during the annual conference of the election year, with additional announcements in appropriate IAFA venues thereafter.
The elections’ calendar described here serves as a guideline rather than as a table of fixed deadlines: when circumstances require it, the Elections Committee will adjust the calendar for the elections process as needed to insure an orderly, open, and fair process.
Elected Officers are automatically members of the Executive Board, as are the Immediate Past President and the Conference Founder. Other members are limited to the Conference Chair, Awards Director, JFA Editor, Registration Coordinator, and Chief Technology Officer. The latter members are appointed by the President, after formal discussion and majority vote of the other elected officers. Terms are three years unless otherwise stipulated. The Board may also appoint people to specific non-voting ad hoc positions as needed, and these may be converted to voting positions through normal constitutional processes.
IV: Duties of the Officers of the Association
The President is the chief executive officer, responsible for directing and coordinating all functions of the organization, including the annual conference, the quarterly journal, other sponsored publications, the Awards Program, and public relations of all kinds. The President sets the agenda for, and presides at, all meetings of the Executive Board and the annual Business meeting at the ICFA. The President is also the chief planning officer, responsible for setting agendas in all Association projects. The President oversees the work of the other officers, recruits special guests, seeks institutional support, confirms non-elected Board members, etc. The President is elected by majority vote of the membership of IAFA.
The First Vice-President coordinates the ICFA Program, overseeing the work of the Division Heads and scheduling paper sessions, and the Annual Conference Program. The First Vice-President also consults with the President concerning appearances by special guests in panels, readings, and lectures, and with the Conference Chair about physical arrangements such as AV equipment, room assignments, etc. The First Vice-President substitutes for the President when necessary. The First Vice-President also oversees the IAFA Graduate Student Award including: advertising the award, organizing and chairing the prize committee, and collecting and forwarding submissions to the committee for a blind reading process. The First Vice-President is elected by majority vote of the membership of the IAFA.
The Second Vice-President oversees and develops the programming track of published creative writers, maintaining a current email list, contacting writers to solicit proposals, organizing sessions, and consulting with the First Vice-President to schedule the creative track. The Second Vice-President is elected by majority vote of the membership of the IAFA.
The Treasurer maintains a bank account for the Association and handles accounts for all monies received or disbursed by the organization. The Treasurer also represents the Association in filing returns with the IRS and in other legal matters. The Treasurer’s Annual Report is presented at the Annual Business Meeting of the ICFA and becomes basic data for future budgets; thus the Treasurer works closely with the President. The Treasurer is elected by majority vote of the membership of the IAFA. Candidates for the position of Treasurer must demonstrate appropriate money management skills and fiscal knowledge in order to stand for election.
Public Information Officer
This officer edits and distributes promotional materials and forms publicity liaisons with other organizations where appropriate. The Public Information Coordinator maintains and regularly updates the website and weblog, creates and distributes information from the Board such as the Call for Papers and election material, and contributes photos and promotional copy to the IAFA website. The Public Information Coordinator takes Executive Board minutes, disseminates them, archives them, and makes them available for archival use. The Public Information Coordinator is the recorder of motions and amendments at official meetings. The Public Information Coordinator is elected by majority vote of the membership of the IAFA.
The Conference Chair handles the physical and financial arrangements for staging the annual conference, representing the conference in negotiations with the hotel staff and working with the other officers in assigning spaces and times for various functions. Room rates and luncheon/banquet ticket prices are negotiated by the Conference Chair, in consultation with the President and the hotel staff. Room Reservations for IAFA officers and Conference Guests are handled by the Conference Chair, who also makes hotel arrangements for the annual Board Meeting. The Conference Chair supervises arrangements with the hotel during the conference in concert with the Chief Technology Officer. The Conference Chair is appointed by the President, after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board.
Immediate Past President
The Immediate Past President continues as a Board member for the duration of the subsequent president’s term. The Immediate Past President chairs the elections committee and serves as the onsite liaison for conference special guests. Other assignments, at the discretion of the President and the Board, may be arranged from time to time.
The Awards Director develops and directs procedures for selecting annual Crawford Award winner and shortlist; arranges for the engraving and delivery of award plaques for Crawford, Distinguished Scholarship, Collins, Donaldson, Bishop, and Miller Awards; presents or arranges for presentation of awards at annual banquet; performs other duties as assigned by the President. The Awards Director is appointed by the President after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board.
This officer oversees the operation of the IAFA membership and the ICFA registrations, corresponding with members regarding their membership dues and payments, taking in membership and registration fees, collecting and verifying accurate membership and registration statistics and accounts of tickets, and distributing registration packets and badges as well as tickets for luncheon and banquet programs at the conference. Fee structures and forms for membership, established by the Executive Board, are administered by the Registration/Membership Coordinator. This officer also oversees the maintenance of membership mailing lists, and preparation of copy for the annual Directory. The Registration Coordinator is appointed by the President after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board.
The editor-in-chief of the Association’s learned journal, The Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts (JFA), presents an annual report of the journal’s activities at the annual business meeting of the ICFA and transmits a detailed report on the status of the journal’s editorial projects at the Board meeting following the conference. The JFA Editor is appointed by the President to a five year term, after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board. Members of JFA’s Editorial Board and Editorial Staff are appointed by the JFA Editor.
Local Liaison Officer
The Local Liaison Officer works with Executive Board members to provide support services essential to the conference best provided by the local area, such as managing shipments of conference materials to the local site; working with local institutions for additional conference support (e.g., printing); and other duties as assigned. The Liaison Officer is appointed by the President after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board.
Chief Technology Officer
The Chief Technology Officer works with the Conference Chair to manage conference AV needs on-site and will provide primary support and maintenance for the IAFA’s online resources, such as the registered domain name (IAFA.ORG), the websites (IAFA, JFA, etc.), and the organization’s email discussion lists (IAFA-L, DIV-HEADS, IAFA-BOARD, JFA-STAFF, etc.). The Chief Technology Officer is responsible for technology acquisitions and advises the President and Executive Board on policy matters relating to information technology. The Chief Technology Officer is appointed by the President after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board.
Each Division Head organizes and supervises all conference activity within a subdivision of fantastic scholarship. Division Heads work under the guidance of the First Vice-President. Division Heads are responsible for recruiting session proposals and papers and are responsible for formatting these to the requirements of the First Vice-President. Division Heads are responsible for forwarding all information to the First Vice-President in a timely fashion. Division Heads have the responsibility to check the draft program for accuracy and AV needs. Division Heads are expected to liaise with other Division Heads and the First Vice-President. The First Vice-President is the final arbiter of the program under the aegis of the Executive Board. At the conference the Division Heads oversee sessions in their respective Divisions and collect suggestions for future topics, special guests, etc.
The seven Divisions of the Conference Program are: Fantastic Literature in English (FL); International Fantastic Literature (IF); Horror Literature (HL); Science Fiction Literature (SF); The Fantastic in Film and Television (FTV); The Fantastic in Visual and Performing Arts and Audiences (VPAA); The Fantastic in Children’s and Young-Adult Literature and Art (CYA). These may be altered by a decision of the Executive Board. Division Heads are appointed by the President, on the recommendation of the First Vice-President, who chairs the Council of Division Heads, after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board.
V: Amendments to Constitution and Bylaws
Procedural Amendments to the Constitution and Bylaws may be initiated by any association member or conference officer, and ratified by a two-thirds vote of the Executive Board, and may be overturned by a two-thirds vote of the full membership of the IAFA following a petition to the Board by 25% of said membership.
VI: Action by Petition
Any action of the Board may be challenged through a petition signed by 25% of the total membership of the IAFA and overturned by a two-thirds vote of the full membership of the IAFA.
Any member of the Executive Board may be challenged through a petition signed by 25% of the total membership of the IAFA and recalled by a two-thirds vote of the full membership of the IAFA.
Any active member may initiate an action through a petition signed by 25% of the total membership of the IAFA and enacted by a two-thirds vote of the full membership of the IAFA.
Updated July 2016