Society of Historians of Scandinavia

Constitution
of
The Society of
Historians of Scandinavia

ARTICLE 1: Name

The name of the organization shall be the Society of Historians of Scandinavia [in North America] (SHS).

ARTICLE 2: Objectives

The Society shall have as its object:

  1. the promotion of the histories of Scandinavia (Norden), the Baltic region, and Scandinavians abroad, as well as their study, research, and instruction in North America;
  2. the encouragement of original research in those fields of Scandinavian history which fall within the purview of the Society, and to facilitate the exchange of such research through conferences and publications; and
  3. the fostering of closer relations between persons interested in the study of Scandinavian history, the Baltic region, and Scandinavians abroad, in North America and elsewhere.
  4. Said 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) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code.

ARTICLE 3: Officers

The Officers of the Society shall be a President, Vice-President, and a Secretary-Treasurer.

ARTICLE 4: Executive Committee

  1. The Executive Committee of the Society shall consist of the Society's Officers (see Article 3) and four additional members, elected by the membership of the Society.
  2. The President of the Society shall serve as the Chair of the Executive Committee.
  3. The Executive Committee is empowered to make all decisions for the Society except those which in the following articles are designated as being incumbent on individual officers or on groups of officers or on the membership.
  4. Propositions or measures to be voted on by the Executive Committee may be submitted to it by any member of the Executive Committee or by the membership as prescribed in Article 8.
  5. A simple majority shall be sufficient in all decisions made by the Executive Committee, except where in the following articles a two-thirds or three-fourths majority voted is specifically indicated.
  6. The Executive Committee shall appoint a Newsletter Editor and a Webmaster for the Society who will serve as non-voting members of the Executive Committee.

ARTICLE 5: Elections

  1. The Vice-President (President-Elect) shall be elected for a two-year term, and the Secretary-Treasurer shall be elected for a four-year term by the majority of votes from the membership of the Society which reaches the Secretary-Treasurer within twenty-one days of the dissemination of the ballots, candidates for each post having been nominated by a majority vote of the Executive Committee. In the event of more than two candidates for a position, a member of the Executive Committee shall be elected by a plurality of the votes from the membership of the Society which reaches the Secretary-Treasurer within twenty-one days of the dissemination of the ballots.
  2. The Vice-President shall succeed automatically to the Presidency for a two-year term.
  3. The President of the Society may not be nominated for the position of Vice-President.
  4. Members elected directly to the Executive Committee shall hold office for four years, except for those elected at the establishment of the Society when one member will be elected for four years, one for three years, one for two years and one for one year. The terms shall be staggered so that one member is elected every year. Outgoing members are eligible for re-election. The Executive Committee shall nominate candidates for all elective positions of the Society.
  5. Members of the Executive Committee shall be elected by a majority of votes from the membership of the Society which reaches the Secretary-Treasurer within twenty-one days of the dissemination of the ballots. In the event of more than two candidates for a position, a member of the Executive committee shall be elected by a plurality of the votes from the membership of the Society which reaches the Secretary-Treasurer within twenty-one days of the dissemination of the ballots.
  6. Those thus elected shall take office at the close of the Society's annual business meeting in the year in which they were elected.

ARTICLE 6: Vacancies

  1. In the event of the death, resignation, or removal from office of the President, the Vice-President shall assume the office of President.
  2. In the event of the succession of the Vice-President to the presidency as a result of the death, resignation, or impeachment of the President, the Executive Committee shall appoint as soon as possible a member of the Society to complete the vacated term. A majority vote of the membership present at the Society's next annual business meeting is required to confirm the appointment.
  3. In the event of the death, resignation, or impeachment of the Secretary-Treasurer, the Executive Committee shall appoint as soon as possible a member of the Society to complete the vacated term. A majority vote of the membership present at the next annual business meeting is required to confirm the appointment.
  4. If an Executive Committee member is absent without excuse from two consecutive annual meetings of the Society, the member shall forfeit his or her position on the Committee. In this case, or in the event of the death, resignation, or removal from office of an Executive Committee member, the Executive Committee shall appoint a member of the Society to complete the vacated term at the Society's next annual meeting. A majority vote of the membership present at the Society's next annual business meeting is required to confirm the appointment.
  5. The Executive Committee is empowered to recommend to the membership the removal of an elected officer of the Society for malfeasance or neglect of duties. A three-fourths vote of the Executive Committee is required to bring the issue before the membership at the Society's next annual business meeting. The recommendation of the Executive Committee must be endorsed by a two-thirds vote of the membership present at the Society's next annual business meeting. The individual shall be removed from office by a majority of votes of the membership of the Society which reach the Secretary-Treasurer, or other appropriate officer coordinating the dissemination of ballots, within twenty-one days of the dissemination of ballots.

ARTICLE 7: Membership and Rights of Membership

  1. Any person shall be a member of the Society upon the payment of dues and by retaining membership in good-standing. Categories of membership may be determined by the Executive Committee.
  2. All members shall receive all publications of the Society.
  3. Each member shall have one vote at the annual business meeting and in general elections.
  4. Only members in good-standing are eligible for election, or may serve as officers of the Society, or as members of the Executive Committee.

ARTICLE 8: Annual Meeting

  1. The annual meeting of the Executive Committee and the Society's annual business meeting shall be held in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study, normally on the first Friday and Saturday in May or on two consecutive Friday and Saturday dates in April and (or) May.
  2. The Society shall encourage the organization of sessions at this meeting devoted to the reading and discussion of learned papers presented by the members, the discussion of methods and materials for the teaching Scandinavian history, and, in general, for the discussion of means to promote the aims and purposes of the Society. Should the Society become an affiliate organization of the American Historical Association (AHA), the Society shall encourage its members to coordinate the organization of scholarly sessions on Scandinavian history at the annual meeting of the AHA for the purpose of reading and discussing learned papers presented by members of the Society.
  3. The annual business meeting shall be held at which time reports by officers of the Society shall be presented.
    1. The President shall report on the state of the Society and on the activities and actions of the Executive Committee, measures adopted by the Executive Committee shall be briefly summarized by the President.
    2. The Secretary Treasurer shall make a complete report of the financial situation of the Society for the fiscal year, which is April 1 to March 31.
    3. A separate financial report and the minutes of the annual business meeting shall be published by the Society in the Newsletter and or on the Society's webpage.
    4. The business meeting shall be open to all registrants of the annual meeting of SASS.
    5. Only members in good-standing of the Society are entitled to vote (see Article 7).
    6. Recommendations to the Executive Committee may be made by a simple majority of the membership present at the annual business meeting. A two-thirds majority of the membership present at the annual business meeting may vote to submit decisions made by the Executive Committee to the membership of the Society in the form of a referendum, which will be decided by a simple majority of the votes which reach the Secretary-Treasurer within twenty-one days of the dissemination of the ballots. A decision made in this manner can be altered only by another vote of the general membership.
    7. By-laws to this Constitution must be proposed by the Executive Committee and must be approved by a simple majority of members present at the annual business meeting.

ARTICLE 9: Endowment Fund

  1. The Society is empowered to have an endowment fund. Monies may be deposited in secured accounts or low risk and stable securities.
  2. The decision to make such deposits or investments shall have the approval of the officers of the Society.
  3. The Endowment fund shall remain intact or be increased; only the interest received may be spent(as income in accordance with the provisions of Article 11).
  4. Normally, all gifts and bequests which were not given for specifically designated purposes shall be added to the Endowment fund.

ARTICLE 10: Expenditures

  1. The Society shall not expend funds to engage in any activities or exercise any powers that are not in furtherance of the purposes of this Society.
  2. No officers shall receive salaries.
  3. Expenditures in support of the Secretary-Treasurer, the Newsletter, and the Web page, shall be subject to guidelines established by the Executive Committee.
  4. The Society shall pay no travel expenses from dues and Endowment Fund income. No part of the dues and Endowment Fund income of the Society shall incur to the benefit of, or be distributed to, its members, officers, or other private persons, except that the Society may pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth above.
  5. The Society may establish separate funds or seek extramural support for activities that benefit the Society.
  6. The Executive Committee may expend funds to bond the Secretary-Treasurer to an amount determined by a two-thirds majority vote of the Executive Committee and to conduct an annual audit of the Society's accounts.

ARTICLE 11: Amendment of the Constitution

This Constitution may be amended by the following process:

  1. An amendment may be proposed by any member of the Executive Committee or by joint action of at least ten members of the Society.
  2. Ratification of the amendment requires, in the following order, a two-thirds majority vote of the Executive Committee, a two-thirds majority vote of the members present at the Society's annual business meeting, and a two-thirds majority of the votes of the membership which reach the Secretary-Treasurer within twenty-one days of the disseminatioin of ballots.

ARTICLE 12: Dissolution of the Society

Upon the dissolution of the Society, the principal officers of the Society (President, Vice-President, and Secretary-Treasurer) shall, after paying or making provisions for the payment of all the liabilities of the society, dispose of all of the assets of the Society exclusively for the purposes of the Society in such manner, or to such organization or organizations organized and operated exclusively for charitable, educational, or scientific purposes as shall at the time qualify as an exempt organization or organizations under section 501 c (3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Law), as the principal officers shall determine. Any such assets not so disposed of shall be disposed of by the Court of Common Pleas or other appropriate court of the county in which the principal office of the Society is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organization or organizations as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.

ARTICLE 13: Implementation of the Constitution

This Constitution shall become effective and be considered the official constitution of the Society of Historians of Scandinavia (SHS) in the following manner:

  1. A two-thirds majority vote of those present at the organizing business meeting of the Society called for this purpose by the organizing committee.
  2. Membership in the Society and eligibility to participate in this election shall be based on the payment of dues to the interim Secretary-Treasurer during or before the organizing meeting of the Society thereby making the member a charter member of the Society.


Acceptance of this Constitution and charter membership in the Society of Historians of Scandinavia is attested by the signatures of the following members present at the organizing business meeting of the Society, held this day May 6, 2000.

Madison, Wisconsin

Charter Members signing Constitution, May 6, 2000:
Mary Beth AilesJennifer AtteberyJohn Austin
Roger S. Booker Jesse ByockJohn Christianson
Jo Anna Chu Carol Gold Arne Hassing
Oddvar K. Hoidal Karen Møller IrvingBrita Kraglund
Ivar Kraglund Glenn E. Kranking Roger Kvist
Bruce L. Larson Jason LaveryPaul Douglas Lockhart
Terje I. LeirenMichael F. MetcalfChristian D. Nokkentved
Byron NordstromInger OlsenNils Olav Østrem
Lee SatherMarvin G. SlindPeter Vinten-Johansen
Nancy L. Wicker


Bylaws
of
The Society of
Historians of Scandinavia

I. Dues

1. Initial membership dues shall be $15 but categories and rates of membership shall be determined by the Executive Committee.
II. Elections
1. The Executive Committee shall determine the procedures to be followed in the elections held by the Society.
III. SHS Graduate Student Prize
1. The Society of Historians of Scandinavia makes available an award to the best graduate student paper on a historical topic presented at the annual conference of the Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study. This award will be for the paper as presented at the conference.

2. The award committee will consist of the current President of SHS, the immediate past president and the current Vice President. The President will serve as the chair of the award committee and be responsible for collecting papers, either at the conference or within the month immediately following the conference.

3. The award will consist of a cash prize in an amount to be determined by the Executive Committee of SHS, but not less than $150. The Executive Committee may also grant a second prize of no more than $75. Award winners will be offered lunch at the Historians' Lunch at the SASS conference following the Executive Committee's decision.

4. The Executive Committee may agree not to award a prize in any one year.


This page maintained by Glenn Kranking
Department of History
Gustavus Adolphus College
kranking@gustavus.edu