Recommendations for Special Interest Group Elections

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Below is a list of recommendations about how to conduct an election for ACBS Chapter or Special Interest Group (SIG) boards.

Note: ACBS is willing to run the actual voting of your first election to ensure that the first board is created impartially (and to give you some time to get organized). We indicate in bold text below how this will work. In the future, it may be useful for your board to identify one of your board members as responsible for running the election. Alternatively, you could appoint an election committee consisting of board members and/or other group members to manage the election process.

  1. First, you will need to have an updated membership list with email contact information for everyone in your group. If you have this already, that’s great. If your group is a chapter, ACBS could provide you with a list of ACBS members living in your chapter’s geographic area. If your group is a SIG, identifying members can be a little more complicated, since they are organized by interest rather than geography, but there may be some ways we could assist with that as well. As of 2013, we have begun collecting SIG membership information on our ACBS membership forms.
  2. Once you have that list, you will send an email to your group asking for nominations. You will want to note that self-nominations are accepted and encouraged. Be sure to list out the position titles in the email, and set a clear deadline for receiving nominations.
  3. Once nominations have been made, contact each nominee to determine their willingness to run (except for the self-nominated individuals). Sometimes, you may have too many nominees for one position and not enough for others. For example, you may have six nominees for president and only one for treasurer. In such a case, you may ask people if they would be willing to consider running for another position. In addition to assessing people’s willingness to run, you may also want to request from them a brief biographical statement and platform statement that will be used to inform your group of the nominees (this is not always required... it depends on the group). If you do this, be sure to give people clear word limit guidelines, and set a deadline for their response.
  4. Next you will want to compose your ballot. It can be useful to do this with a free online service (such as surveymonkey.com) in which you can create online voting forms. (NOTE: If this is your group’s first election, ACBS will complete this step for you if you let us know the nominees).
  5. Once this is done, compose an email to notify your membership that the election is occurring. It can be useful to list the candidates in this email, along with their bios/platform statements. Be sure to give a clear deadline for voting, and send this email only to those individuals who are eligible to vote. We recommend a voting window of 7-10 days. (NOTE: If this is your group’s first election, ACBS will send the email for you if you let us know the nominees, the voting deadline, and email addresses of eligible voters).
  6. When voting is complete, the nominees should be notified of the results first. Then, email your group members with the results. (NOTE: If this is your group’s first election, ACBS will notify the you of the results).

Please contact ACBS staff through the "contact us" link above if you have any questions.