In the following text, "Society" shall signify the American Physical Society, "Council" and "Executive Board" shall signify the Council and the Executive Board of the Society, respectively; "Executive Officer" shall signify that Officer of the Society; and "Annual Meeting" shall signify the principal meeting held once each calendar year by the Section, normally the first meeting of a calendar year.

Article I - Name

This Section of the American Physical Society shall be called the Prairie Section of the Society.

Article II - Objective

The objective of the Section shall be the advancement and diffusion of knowledge of physics.

Article III - Enabling Constitutional Provision

Article IX of the Constitution of the Society, in its current or subsequently revised form, is incorporated in these Bylaws by reference.

Article IV - Membership

  1. Geographical Region: The members of the Section shall primarily consist of members of the Society residing in Illinois, western Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Wisconsin and neighboring regions to the west.

  2. Eligibility: Members of the Society who indicate their desire to join the Section following procedures established by Council, and who retain their Society membership, shall become members of the Section.

Article V - Executive Committee

  1. Governance: The Section shall be governed by an Executive Committee, which shall have general charge of the affairs of the Section.

  2. Composition: The Executive Committee shall consist of the Officers of the Section, the most recent Past-Chair, between four and six Members-at-Large elected to three-year terms and one student member of the Section, elected to a one-year term.

  3. Executive Committee Meetings: The Executive Committee shall meet at least once each year during the Annual Meeting of the Section. Any member of the Executive Committee unable to attend a meeting may name a non-voting alternate, subject to the prior approval of the Chair. A majority of the voting members, including at least two Officers, shall constitute a quorum.

Article VI - Officers and Section Councillor

  1. Officers: The Officers of the Section shall be a Chair, a Chair-Elect, a Vice-Chair, a Secretary and a Treasurer.

  2. Duties of the Chair: The Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Executive Committee and Business Sessions of the Section at which his or her attendance is possible, and shall perform other duties normally associated with the Office of Chair.

  3. Duties of the Chair-Elect: The Chair-Elect shall act in place of the Chair if the latter cannot perform his or her duties. The Chair-Elect shall serve as Chair of the Program Committee and perform such other functions as may be explicitly provided in the Bylaws.

  4. Duties of the Vice-Chair: The Vice-Chair shall act in place of the Chair-Elect if the latter cannot perform his or her duties. The Vice-Chair shall perform such other functions as may be explicitly provided in the Bylaws.

  5. Duties of the Secretary: The Secretary shall maintain the records of the Section including minutes of Executive Committee meetings and Business Sessions, Section activities, and membership lists. The Secretary shall notify the Executive Committee of matters requiring the decision of said Committee. The Secretary shall conduct all elections as specified in Article VII of these Bylaws. The Secretary shall prepare minutes of Executive Committee meetings and Business Sessions and shall submit these minutes to each member of the Executive Committee and to the Executive Officer within a time following the meetings and Sessions as set by the Chair. Following elections, such minutes are to include the results of the election and a roster of the current Executive Committee membership.

    The Secretary shall keep the Council and Executive Officer of the Society informed of the activities and needs of the Section.

  6. Duties of the Treasurer: The Treasurer shall have responsibility for all funds in the custody of or placed at the disposal of the Section and shall authorize disbursements from such funds for expenses in a manner that is consistent with the general policies of the Society and the Section. Financial records shall be kept on an annual basis consistent with the fiscal policies of the Society. The Treasurer shall present a financial report at each meeting of the Executive Committee and at the annual Business Session of the Section.

  7. Duties of the Section Councilor: When the Section has its turn in the rotation among Sections, as established by the Council, a Section Councilor will be elected as prescribed below. The Section Councilor shall serve as liaison between the Council of the Society and the Executive Committee of the Section. Following each Council meeting, the Section Councilor shall report to the Chair and the Secretary regarding Council actions that affect the status and operations of the Section. Reports shall be made to the entire Executive Committee during their regularly scheduled meetings.

  8. Duties of the Council Observer: During years in which the Section does not have an elected Councilor, the Executive Committee will elect a Council Observer. This person will attend Council meetings and will perform the duties described in Article VI.6 of these Bylaws.

Article VII - Election and Tenure of the Officers, Executive Committee Members, and Section Councilor

  1. Qualifications: Officers, Section Councilor, Council Observer, and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee must be members of the Section.

  2. Ballot: The Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Section Councilor, Council Observer and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall be elected by electronic means or paper mail ballot.

  3. Nomination and Election of the Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Section Councilor, Council Observer, and Executive Committee Members: Each year the Nominating Committee shall nominate at least two candidates for the Office of Vice-Chair and for each open Members-at-Large position on the Executive Committee. The Nominating Committee shall make every reasonable effort to propose a slate of nominees to include representation from the small colleges as well as from the larger institutions, industry, and government laboratories. During the final year of the terms of the current Secretary or Treasurer, the Nominating Committee shall nominate at least one candidate for this position. The Nominating Committee shall notify the Secretary of the slate of nominees not later than sixty days before the Annual Meeting, except under extraordinary circumstances. The Nominating Committee shall also nominate at least two names of student-member candidates.

    The Secretary shall make known to the membership the vacancies that will be filled by upcoming elections, solicit suggestions for nominees, and announce an opportunity for nominations from the membership. The Secretary shall poll the Section membership by ballot containing the names of candidates proposed by the Nominating Committee along with means by which the voter may enter other names. The Secretary shall ensure that communication and voting are carried out in such a manner that no members cannot participate due to the techniques used. To be valid, each ballot must be returned in a manner specified by the Secretary and received by the Secretary or his or her designate at least three weeks before the Annual Meeting. During the first two full years after the formation of the Section, the ballots shall be counted by the Secretary or by his or her designate. During later years the ballots will be counted by a Past Chair designated by the current chair or, if necessary, by another person designated by the Chair. An election shall be decided by a plurality of those voting. If there is a tie for any office, the Executive Committee shall decide the election for that Office, with the Chair voting only in case of a tie among the other Executive Committee members. The Secretary shall communicate the results of the election to the Chair at least two weeks before the Annual Meeting.

  4. Vice-Chair, Chair-Elect, and Chair: The member elected as Vice-Chair shall serve in that office for one year, then for one year as Chair-Elect, and then for one year as Chair. The Past-Chair shall not be eligible for the Office of Vice-Chair in the year following his or her term of office.

  5. Section Councilor and Council Observer: Two years before the first year of the Sections turn in the rotation established by the Council, the Section will elect a Section Councilor. The nominating committee shall nominate at least two candidates for this position, following the same procedure as that for election of Officers of the Section and Members-at-large of the Executive Committee. The Section Councilor shall serve for one year as a non-voting Council Observer and then for a term of four years as a voting member of the Council. In any other case, a Council Observer shall be elected for a one-year term.

  6. Official Year: The official year shall be according to the calendar year.

  7. Terms of Office: The terms of Office of the Officers and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall begin with the calendar year immediately following their election. The Secretary and Treasurer shall each serve for a term of three years and may not serve more than two consecutive terms. The terms of these two Officers shall be staggered by one year. The tenure of a Member-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall terminate if his or her assumption of a post as an elected Officer of the Section, and the unexpired portion of his or her term shall be filled as hereinafter provided for a vacancy. The elected student member of the Executive Committee shall serve for one year.

  8. Vacancies in Offices: If a vacancy occurs in the Office of Chair, the Chair-Elect shall succeed and complete the term and shall serve as Chair in the following year. The Vice-Chair shall serve simultaneously as Chair-Elect during the remainder of the term and shall continue to serve as Chair-Elect in the following term.

    If a vacancy occurs in the Office of Chair-Elect otherwise than through advancement to Chair, the Vice-Chair shall become Chair-Elect. In this case, and if the Office of Vice-Chair becomes vacant for other reasons, the Office of Vice-Chair shall remain vacant for the remainder of the term. For the next scheduled election, candidates for both Chair-Elect and Vice-Chair shall be nominated.

    If vacancies occur in the Offices of both the Chair and the Chair-Elect, the Vice-Chair shall become Chair and shall complete the term. In this case, a special election shall be held to fill the Offices of Chair-Elect and Vice-Chair. The members so elected shall continue to serve as Officers in the normal succession order.

    If a vacancy occurs in the Office of the Secretary, Treasurer, the Section Councilor, Council Observer, a Member-at-Large, or Student member, the Executive Committee may elect a replacement to serve until the membership of the Section fill the vacancy by a regular election.

Article VIII - Appointed Committees

  1. Nominating Committee: The Nominating Committee shall consist of four members appointed by the Chair and one member appointed by the Council, each for a one-year term. The Chair shall ascertain from the Executive Officer the identity of this member. The Nominating Committee shall prepare a slate of candidates for the positions of Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee, and Section Councilor or Council Observer, when appropriate. The Nominating Committee shall advise the Chair on suitable candidates for Society committees, including relevant Society Prize and Award committees, and on candidates for Society Offices. The Nominating Committee shall perform such other duties as described in the Bylaws.

  2. Program Committee: The Program Committee shall consist of the Chair-Elect and at least three other members, including one student, appointed by the Chair, upon recommendation of the Chair-Elect, to one-year terms, commencing at the close of an Annual Meeting of the Section. The Chair-Elect shall serve as Chair of the Program Committee. The Program Committee shall be responsible for the solicitation and selection of invited and contributed papers and for the arrangement of the programs for the Annual and regular meetings of the Section.

  3. Terms of Office of Appointed Committee Members: The term of a committee member appointed by an incoming Chair shall be the official year, as defined in Article VII.6 of these Bylaws, in which the Chair assumes Office.

  4. Ad Hoc Committees: The Chair shall appoint other ad hoc committees as necessary, which shall serve only during the term of Office of the Chair, or a one-year term, whichever is longer.

Article IX - Meetings

  1. Annual Meeting: At least one meeting of the Section, to be known as the Annual Meeting, shall be held annually at the time and place as shall be determined by the Executive Committee, subject to approval by the Executive Board. Whenever it shall be feasible and not to the disadvantage of the members of the Section, the Executive Committee may decide that this or any other meeting shall be held jointly with a meeting of the Society or of another society, conference, or group, so long this joint meeting does not conflict importantly with the schedule of meetings of the Society as determined by the Executive Board. The registration fee for a regular meeting, when not held jointly with a meeting of the Society, shall be fixed after consultation with the Executive Officer. Those who are not members of the Society shall pay a surcharge to be set each year by the Executive Committee.

  2. Annual Business Session: Each year the Section shall hold a Business Session that shall be a session of the Annual Meeting. This Business Session shall be devoted exclusively to the reports of officers and committees, election results, and the transaction of business affairs. No scientific program of the Section shall be presented simultaneously with the Business Session. The Secretary shall notify the Section members of the agenda for the Business Session no later than three weeks before the Annual Meeting. A quorum for the transaction of business shall be three percent of the membership of the Section.

  3. Other Meetings: Besides Annual Meetings, the Executive Committee may initiate meetings of the Section, or by petition of twenty percent of the Section members to the Executive Officer, subject to the Executive Board approval. The Section, subject to the rules and regulations specified in the Society Constitution and Bylaws, may sponsor special conferences in whole or in part.

  4. Papers at Meetings: Programs of meetings of the Section may provide for the inclusion of both invited and contributed papers. When a meeting of the Section is held in conjunction with a meeting of the Society, the rules of the Society shall apply to submitted papers. When a meeting of the Section is not held in conjunction with a meeting of the Society, the Executive Committee shall prescribe the subject and/or character of the meeting. The Secretary shall fix the deadline date for receipt of titles and abstracts in consultation with the Executive Officer, and shall designate the place whereto they should be sent and the manner(s) in which they shall be delivered. The amount of time to be allowed for the presentation of a paper at a meeting shall be determined by the Program Committee, except as otherwise directed by the Executive Committee. These allotments of time shall be consistent with the Constitution and Bylaws of the Society and with regulations of Council. All members of the Section shall be allowed to present one contributed paper at each Section meeting. The Program Committee may designate this paper as either oral or poster.

Article X - Dues

The Society Council shall establish dues for maintenance of membership in the Section.

Article XI - Newsletter and Official Announcements 

The Newsletter of the Section shall be managed and edited by an Editor, who shall be elected by the Executive Committee for a term of three years. The Editor shall oversee the preparation and distribution of the Newsletter. There shall be at least one issue per year. The frequency and timing of each issue shall be determined by the Editor in consultation with the Chair, subject to approval of the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee may direct the Secretary to distribute complimentary copies of the Newsletter to specified non-members of the Section. The Executive Committee shall assist the Editor in policy decisions. Official announcements shall be made in the APS News, the Section Newsletter, and other publications as the Executive Committee may direct.

Article XII - Procedure For Amendment Of Bylaws

A proposal of an Amendment to these Bylaws may be made by the Council, by the Executive Committee, or by a petition to the Chair signed by not less than ten percent of the members of the Section. If the proposed amendment originates within the Section, the Council must approve the amendment, or must propose an alternative amendment, before further action can be taken. Following Council approval, the Secretary shall distribute the proposed amendment to all members of the Section not less than three weeks before an Annual Meeting and opportunity shall be given for discussion during the Business Session. The voting on the proposed Amendment shall be as follows. Not later than twelve weeks after said Annual Meeting, the Secretary shall again distribute the proposed Amendment, including a ballot and directions for voting. The adoption of the Amendment shall require a two-thirds positive vote by those voting and this shall not be less than ten percent of the current membership of the Section.