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MEMO: Why We Don’t Need an IEEE Constitutional Amendment

Why We Don’t Need an IEEE Constitutional Amendment

The proposed Amendment to the IEEE Constitution on the election ballot isn’t needed, as the IEEE Board of Directors (BOD) could have already made any Bylaw and Policy changes needed to address the issues supposedly justifying the amendment.

The Amendment includes the following changes, followed by why it isn’t needed:

Separates the position of Delegates to the IEEE Assembly from Directors on the IEEE BOD, except for the President-Elect, President, & Past-President. There has never been an detailed explanation as to why the current Constitution isn’t flexible enough to deal with any problems in the future.

The Assembly members, elected by the members, will no longer elect as BOD members the IEEE Treasurer, Secretary, Vice-President Education, Vice-President Member and Geographic Activities, and Vice-President Publication Services and Products, and no explanation how those positions will be elected to the BOD.

It also provides guidance that the BOD says is important , “…eligibility requirements shall be specified in the Bylaws taking into consideration various diversity factors including, but not limited to, geographic and technical diversity.” This could have been included already in the Bylaws and/or Policies of the IEEE and any subordinate units months ago, vice having a Constitutional Amendment.

It adds, “IEEE Executive Director shall be an ex officio non-voting member of the Board of Directors.” This change gives the staff Executive Director the right to participate in all volunteer meetings, but no volunteer has the right to participate in staff meetings. The need for this is explained by saying the Staff Executive Director needs to participate in strategic planning efforts. But the Staff Executive Director has been participating in strategic planning for more than 10 years, and provides the staff that organizes it, so why this change?

We do not need an IEEE Constitutional Amendment; since we can’t easily go back, if we aren’t happy!

Marc T. Apter

2013 IEEE-USA President

2004-2005 IEEE Vice-President Regional Activities

2001-2002 Region 2 Director/Delegate

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