Serving Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Brevard, Volusia, & Lake Counties
ARTICLE I: Name of Organization.
Section 1 – The name of the organization shall be the Central Florida Association of Black Journalists. We are an affiliate chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists.
ARTICLE II: Purpose.
Section 1 – The objectives shall be to:
Section 2 – This constitution shall be in compliance with any local, state, and federal laws that govern the organization’s business.
Section 3 – The organization shall, after membership approval by majority vote, take stands and positions on issues of social concern. Also, by membership approval, the organization may defend its members in related grievances.
ARTICLE III: Membership.
Section 1 – Full Membership: Journalists employed full time at any daily, weekly, or monthly newspaper or magazine or on any radio or television program or digital media outlet in the Central Florida area (Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Brevard, Volusia, and Lake Counties) shall be eligible for full membership. Journalists are defined as reporters, radio stations or media outlets, who produce, gather, disseminate, and distribute news. Also considered eligible for full membership are anchors, news producers, cinematographers and engineers.
Full memberships will be offered to those free-lance journalists who can prove that they actively write, broadcast, or photograph on a free-lance basis. Full memberships also will be given to journalism professors at a college or university with a journalism department who have had at least five years’ previous newsroom experience before going into academia.
Section 2 – Affiliate Membership: Those employed full time or work full time or part time in the mass media in the Central Florida area, who work as intern (but not student) reporters, photographers, or copy editors, researchers, television and radio desk assistants, are eligible for affiliate memberships. Affiliate memberships also will be offered to journalism teachers or professors and public relations specialists responsible for writing and editing newsletters. Affiliate memberships also will be offered to public relations specialists and others involved in the production of a news product.
Section 3 – Student Membership: Student memberships shall be offered to any student who is presently a full-time student at an accredited college or university. The student’s course of study must be in the communications field, preferably journalism or broadcast journalism.
Section 4 – Persons shall become financial (full) members upon payment of annual dues. A financial membership entitles one to cast one (1) vote on issues brought forth in general business meetings and to participate in the general election of officers. Only full members of the organization shall be able to vote on matters concerning the organization, while associate and student members will be kept abreast of all matters concerning the organization. Termination of membership shall be immediate upon petitions the treasurer for a six-month hardship extension at the end of the year. The request must be made in writing, and at the end of the six-month period, if the member has taken another job in the media, his or full membership will be reinstated. Hardship requests, when accompanied by prorated dues, will be granted automatically.
Section 5 – Dues: Regular members shall be assessed forty dollars ($40) annually. Dues for affiliate members shall be twenty-five dollars ($25), and for students, fifteen dollars ($15). Dues are for a calendar year based on payment date.
ARTICLE IV: Officers.
Section 1 – The organization shall have a president, three vice presidents – one for digital media, print and broadcast, a secretary, a treasurer, and a parliamentarian. These officers, including the immediate past president, shall also be members of the organization’s executive committee. The president and the vice presidents shall be full members of the organization and they also shall be full members of the National Association of Black Journalists. The offices of secretary, treasurer, and parliamentarian may be filled by full or affiliate members of the Central Florida Association of Black Journalists. President shall serve a term of two (2) years. All other officers shall serve a term of one (1) year.
Section 2 – The executive committee shall establish subcommittees as necessary. A quorum of the executive committee – at least 4 – must be present at each meeting of the organization to conduct regular business. All executive committee members must be financial members.
Section 3 – Executive Board/Committee Code of Conduct. Any officer who has three (3) or more consecutive unexcused absences from board meetings, and general meetings may be removed by a majority of the directors and the president may appoint a successor to fill the vacancy until the next election cycle, at which time the members may elect a successor for the remainder of the term.
ARTICLE V: Election of Officers.
Section 1 – The election of officers shall be held at the regular meeting in November.
Section 2 – Officers shall be installed at the regular meeting in December.
ARTICLE VI: Manner of Voting.
Section 1 – At each meeting of the financial membership, each financial member having voting power and the right to vote shall be entitled to cast one (1) vote.
Section 2 – Voting shall be by secret ballot when electing the principal officers and executive committee members.
Section 3 – Election Rules: The chairperson of the nominating committee shall preside during the election of officers.
Section 4 – Voting shall be by voice vote or by show of hands when transacting the regular business of the organization, unless the chair deems that other voting methods must be used.
Section 5 – Non-financial members shall not be entitled to vote.
ARTICLE VII: Committees.
Section 1 – Standing committees (including, but not limited to membership, nominating, broadcast, fund-raising, scholarship, hospitality, special events, and special projects) shall be established by the executive committee.
Section 2 – Standing committee chairpersons shall be appointed by the president of the organization and shall be ratified by a majority of the membership. Full, affiliate, and student members may chair committees.
Section 3 – Standing committees shall have a quorum in order to conduct business, and a majority vote of the quorum present shall constitute acceptable action of the committee. The committee shall give regular reports to all organizations and/or at each regular meeting.
ARTICLE VIII: Meetings.
Section 1 – A regular meeting of the membership shall be held each month or twelve (12) times a year. Meetings shall be scheduled for the 2nd Saturday of every month.
Section 2 – Special meetings of the organization may be called for any purpose by the president and in his/her absence, the vice presidents.
Section 3 – A quorum of the executive committee – at least 4 – must be present at each meeting of the organization for the transaction of business.
Section 4 – The executive committee of the organization shall meet monthly, or as needed, to conduct the business of the organization.
ARTICLE IX: General Provisions.
Section 1 – Vacancies in any office due to death, resignations, removal, or any other cause shall be filled for the expired portion of the term.
Section 2 – Removal: Any principle officer, committee chairman or member may be removed by the financial membership whenever evidenced in its judgment, the best interest of the organization may be served by this action, but this removal shall be without prejudice.
Section 3 – Procedures for removal: Procedures for removal of an officer, chairperson or member shall be commenced by the filing of a petition with the organization’s secretary, with a copy sent to the person charged. The petition shall specify the grounds for removal and have at least two other signatures.
Section 4 – Appeal After Removal: Any officer, chairperson, or member so removed shall have the right to appeal to the executive committee within fifteen (15) days after receiving notice of the removal by filing a notice of appeal before the committee. The person charged and those bringing charges shall have the right to present evidence and witnesses in the same manner as at the original hearing before the financial membership.
Section 5 – Fiscal Year Terms of Office: The fiscal year of the organization shall commence on the first (1st) day of January and end on the thirty-first (31st) day of December.
Section 6 – Qualifications of Nominees and Voters:
Section 7 – Qualifications of Appointees: Appointees shall be financial members of the organization.
Section 8 – Contracts and Finances: No officer or member except the president (or in his/her absence, the vice presidents) shall have the power or authority, except with approval of a quorum of the executive committee, to create contractual obligations or pledge the credit of the organization or to render it liable for any purpose or to any amount.
Section 9 – Depositing, savings and spending of income. Sixty percent (60%) of income from donations and fundraising efforts goes to scholarships and assisting the student chapters, with the remaining 40% to be spent on general operating purposes of the organization.
One hundred percent (100%) of all membership dues goes to operating expenses.
The executive board may present to the general membership recommendations for transferring funds to either account for special purposes when funds are needed.
ARTICLE X: Digital Media Policy.
Section 1 – The Vice President of Digital Media and President have exclusive administrative rights to all social media websites and passwords. It is at their discretion to appoint other administrators, and determine the removal of comments or posts. The Vice President of Digital Media will have administrative access and ownership purposes, and reserves the right to remove any comments made on the CFABJ ‘Facebook’ and ‘Twitter’ sites. The Vice President of Digital Media and President reserve the right to post official chapter business on all social networking sites, and the chapter’s website (www.cfabj.org). All posts relating to official CFABJ business must have prior approval from the President of the chapter and Vice President of Digital Media. The President will review and respond to mail received through the CFABJ e-mail account (firstname.lastname@example.org).
ARTICLE XI: Non-profit Organizational Status.
Section 1 – This organization is organized exclusively for “charitable, religious, educational, and scientific purposes, including, for such purposes, the making of distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under section 501(c)(3) the Internal Revenue Service Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code.
Section 2 – No part of the net earnings of the organization shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable to its members, trustees, officers, or other private persons, except that the organization shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in the purpose clause hereof. No substantial part of the activities of the organization shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and the organization shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements) any political campaign on behalf of any candidate for public office. Notwithstanding any other provision of this document, the organization shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried on (a) by an organization exempt from federal income tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or (b) by an organization, contributions to which are deductible under section 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code.
Section 3 – Upon the dissolution of the organization, financial assets shall be distributed equally between the student chapters at Bethune Cookman University, University of Central Florida, and any future or subsequent student chapters, which the organization nominates, assists and supports. The National Association of Black Journalists must recognize the student chapter. In the event there is no active student chapter, recognized by the national organization, the funds shall be distributed to the nearest active professional chapter.
ARTICLE XII: Amendments to the By-Laws.
Section 1 – These by-laws may be altered, amended, or appealed by a two-thirds (2/3rds) majority vote at the meeting held to elect officers or at such time the executive committee deems it necessary to alter, amend, or repeal the by-laws in the interest of the organization. This is providing notice of intention to alter, amend, or repeal any provisions of these rules shall have been given in writing to each financial member fifteen (15) days in advance of the meeting.
By-laws adopted by majority vote Jan. 4, 1986; revised June 1990; revised April 1992; revised July 2004; revised April 2011; revised December 2011; revised September 2012; revised May 2013.