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ByLaws

(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 the Officer of the Society; and Regular Meeting shall signify the principal meeting held once a year by the Division.)

Article I - Name

This Division of the American Physical Society shall be called the Division of Plasma Physics.

Article II - Objective

The objective of the Division shall be the advancement and dissemination of the knowledge, understanding and applications of plasmas-assemblages of charged particles of natural and laboratory origin.

Article III - Enabling Constitutional Provision

Article VIII.1 of the Constitution of the Society, as said Article may be subsequently revised or amended, is hereby incorporated in these Bylaws by reference.

Article IV - Membership

The members of the Division shall consist of members of the Society who have indicated in accordance with procedures established by Council their desire to join the Division and who retain membership from year to year by the payment of designated dues or by other method established by Council.

Article V - Executive Committee

1. Governance.

The Division shall be governed by an Executive Committee, which shall have general charge of the affairs of the Division.

2. Composition.

The Executive Committee shall consist of the Officers of the Division, the most recent Past Chair, the Division Councilor, and nine Members-at-Large elected to staggered three-year terms.

3. Executive Committee Meetings.

The Executive Committee shall meet at least twice each year. One meeting shall be held during the Regular Meeting of the Division, and the Alternate Meeting shall be held approximately half way between Regular Meetings. Any member of the Executive Committee unable to attend a meeting may name a nonvoting alternate to represent him or her, subject to the approval of the Chair. The Chair of the Division shall preside over the Executive Committee meetings. A majority of the voting members, including at least two Officers, shall constitute a quorum. At the discretion of the Chair, subject to approval by a majority vote of the Executive Committee, the Alternate Meeting may be held via teleconference.

Article VI - Officers and Division Councilor(s)

1. Officers.

The Officers of the Division are the Chair, the Chair Elect, the Vice Chair, and the Secretary/Treasurer. They shall be elected by the division membership as specified in the Bylaws.

2. Duties of the Chair.

  • The Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Executive Committee and Business Meeting of the Division.
  • The Chair shall prepare the agenda of Executive Committee meetings and the annual Business Meeting.

3. Duties of the Chair-Elect.

  • The Chair Elect shall act in place of the Chair if the latter is unable to perform his or her duties.
  • The Chair Elect shall 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 is unable to 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/Treasurer.

  • The Secretary/Treasurer shall be responsible for and oversee the financial affairs of the Division.
  • The Secretary/Treasurer shall notify the Executive Committee of matters requiring its decision.
  • The Secretary/Treasurer shall prepare minutes of Executive Committee meetings and the annual Business Meeting and shall submit these minutes to each Executive Committee member no later than six weeks after each meeting. Following elections, such minutes are to include the results of the election and a roster of the current Executive Committee membership.
  • The Secretary/Treasurer shall have responsibility for all funds in the custody of or placed at the disposal of the Division and may authorize disbursement of funds by the Treasurer of the Society for expenses consistent with the general policies of the Division. Financial records shall be kept on an annual basis consistent with the fiscal policies of the Society.
  • The Secretary/Treasurer shall present a financial report at each meeting of the Executive Committee and at the annual Business Meeting of the Division.

6. Duties of the Division Councilor.

  • The Division Councilor shall be elected by the Division membership as specified in the Bylaws and shall serve as liaison between the Council of the Society and the Executive Committee of the Division. Following each Council meeting, the Division Councilor shall report to the Chair and the Secretary/Treasurer regarding Council actions that affect the status and operations of the Division. A report shall be made at each meeting of the Executive Committee and at the annual Business Meeting of the Division.

Article VII - Election and Tenure of the Officers, Executive Committee Members, and Division Councilor(s)

1. Qualifications.

Officers, Division Councilor, and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee must be members of the Division for at least two years prior to nomination.

2. Ballot.

The Vice Chair, Secretary/Treasurer, Division Councilor, and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall be elected by ballots cast electronically or by mail as hereinafter provided.

3. Nomination and Election Schedule.

The Nominating Committee shall be formed within twelve weeks after the Regular Meeting of the Executive Committee. The Chair shall inform the Executive Officer of the composition of this committee. Any member proposed as a candidate for a position by at least one percent of the Division members shall be deemed nominated, provided he or she agrees to serve if elected. Not later than May 31, the Nominating Committee shall submit to the Executive Committee nominations of at least two candidates of each position on the Executive Committee that will become vacant following the next Regular Meeting of the Division. The Executive Committee shall establish a schedule for the nomination and election of officers, the Divisional Councilor, and the Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee. This schedule shall be keyed to a date, determined by Council, by which the Divisional Councilor must be elected. This date is presently September 1, but it may be changed without further amendment of these Bylaws.

Not later than six weeks before September 1, the Secretary-Treasurer shall distribute election ballots to all members. Each member shall cast not more than one vote for each open position and shall return the election ballot by mail or electronically as designated not later than September 1. The Tellers shall count the votes and certify the tally to the Chair. No ballot shall be counted unless unambiguously filled out by a qualified voter. Election shall be by plurality of votes cast for each post. Not later than two weeks after September 1, the Chair shall inform the other members of the Executive Committee and all the candidates of the results of the election. The election results shall be announced at the Regular Meeting, and the Chair shall report to the Executive Officer the names of the newly elected Executive Committee, Divisional Councilor, and Officers of the Division.

4. Official Year.

The official year shall extend from the close of one Regular Meeting to the close of the next Regular Meeting.

5. 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 Chair shall not be eligible for the office of Vice Chair in the year following his or her term of office.

6. Terms of Office.

The terms of office of the Officers and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall begin at the close of the Regular Meeting of the Division following their election. The Secretary/Treasurer shall serve for a term of three years and may not serve more than two consecutive terms. The tenure of an Officer, Division Councilor, or Member-at-Large of the Executive Committee shall terminate in the event of his or her assumption of any additional elected position of the Division as listed in Article VII.2, and the unexpired portion of his or her original term shall be filled as hereinafter provided for a vacancy.

The term of office of a Division Councilor shall begin at the beginning of the calendar year following his or her election. The Divisional Councilor shall serve for a term of four years and may not serve more than two consecutive terms unless otherwise specified by Council.

7. 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 also in the following year. The Vice Chair shall become Chair Elect during the remainder of the term and shall continue to serve as Chair Elect in the following term. The office of Vice Chair shall remain vacant for the remainder of the term.

If a vacancy occurs in the office of Chair Elect other than through advancement to Chair, the Vice Chair shall become Chair Elect. In this case, and also 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. In 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 and continue to serve as Chair in the following 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.

Other elected office vacancies shall be filled by regular election procedures or left unfilled.

Article VIII - Standing Committees

1. Nominating Committee.

The Nominating Committee shall consist of five members. Each year, within twelve weeks after the Regular Meeting, the Chair shall nominate two new members for the Nominating Committee, subject to approval by the Executive Committee. Each of these members shall serve a two-year term. Not more than one of them shall be a member of the Executive Committee. The fifth member of the Nominating Committee shall be appointed by the Executive Officer for a one-year term. The Chair shall submit to the Executive Officer the names of at least two candidates for the post to be filled. The Nominating Committee shall prepare a slate of candidates for the positions of Vice Chair, Councilor, Secretary/Treasurer, and Members-at-Large of the Executive Committee according to Article VII.3 of these Bylaws. 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. Each term of the Nominating Committee shall be from February 1 to January 31 of the following year.

2. Program Committee.

The Program Committee shall consist of the Chair, the Chair Elect, the Vice Chair, the Secretary/Treasurer, the Local Arrangement Chair and at least twelve additional members. The Chair Elect shall normally serve as a Chair of the Program Committee. The additional members shall be appointed by the Chair to one-year terms, upon nomination of the Chair Elect and approval by the Executive Committee. Not more than two of them shall be members of the Executive Committee. If the Chair Elect assumes the office of the Chair under Article VII.7, he or she shall remain Chair of the Program Committee.

The Program Committee shall have the responsibility of organizing the Regular Meeting program of the Division. This activity shall include the solicitation, selection, and scheduling of contributed papers within the topics of interest of this Division, as well as arranging sessions of invited, review, and tutorial papers.

3. Fellowship Committee.

The Fellowship Committee shall consist of the Vice Chair and at least eight additional members. The Chair of the Fellowship Committee must be a Fellow of the Society, normally the Vice Chair. If the Vice Chair is not a Fellow or if the Office of the Vice Chair is vacant, the Chair shall appoint a Fellow of the Division to be Chair of the Fellowship Committee. The additional members shall be appointed by the Chair to one-year terms, upon recommendation of the Vice Chair and approval by the Executive Committee, and no more than two shall be members of the Executive Committee. The Fellowship Committee shall promote the nomination of candidates for Fellowship, shall solicit nominations and review the qualifications of such candidates, and shall report its recommendations to the Executive Committee for approval before submission is made to the Executive Officer of the Society.

4. Marshall N. Rosenbluth Outstanding Doctoral Thesis Award Committee.

The membership of this committee shall consist of five members appointed-by the Chair. Two members are appointed each year to staggered two-year terms; one member is the thesis advisor of the previous year recipient. The Dissertation Committee shall promote the nomination of candidates, solicit nominations of qualified candidates, select young scientists of exceptional, outstanding scientific quality and achievement in plasma physics, and shall report its recommendations to the Executive Committee for approval before submission is made to the Executive Officer of the Society.

5. Local Arrangements Committee.

The incoming Vice Chair, soon after taking office, shall appoint the Chair of the Local Arrangements Committee for the Regular Meeting in which he or she shall chair the Program Committee. The Chair of the Local Arrangements Committee shall serve on the Program Committee and on the Education and Outreach Committee.

6. Committee on Women in Plasma Physics.

The membership of this committee shall consist of nine members appointed by the Chair to staggered three-year terms. The Division Chair shall appoint a committee Chair from among the members. This Committee shall promote the recruitment, participation, and advancement of women in plasma physics.

7. Education and Outreach Committee.

The membership of this committee shall consist of seven members appointed by the chair. The Division Chair shall appoint a committee Chair from among the members. The Committee shall be responsible for activities in the area of plasma physics education designated to it in part by the Executive Committee. It shall report at the Regular and Alternate Meetings on science education. It shall organize annual outreach programs to increase public knowledge and awareness of plasma physics.

8. Board of Tellers.

The counting of the ballots shall be entrusted to Tellers, appointed by the Chair. No Teller shall be a candidate in the election being tallied.

9. Terms of Office of Appointed Committee Members.

Except as specified above, all committee appointments shall be for one year, and the terms of all appointed committee members shall be considered automatically discharged at the close of the Regular Meeting, that occurs at the end of term.

10. Other Committees.

The Chair shall appoint such other committees annually as necessary.

Article IX - Meetings

1. Regular Meeting.

One meeting of the Division, to be known as the Regular Meeting, shall be held annually at such time and place as shall be ordered 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 Division, the Executive Committee may order this or any other meeting to be held conjointly with a Meeting of the Society or of another society, conference, or group, so long as such joint meeting does not conflict importantly with the schedule of Meetings of the Society as determined by the Executive Board. The Society Meetings Department shall recommend to the Executive Committee appropriate sites for future meetings of the Division.

2. Annual Business Meeting.

Each year the Division shall hold a Business Meeting, which shall be a session of the Regular Meeting. This Business Meeting shall be devoted exclusively to the reports of officers and committees, election results, and the transaction of business affairs. All actions voted on at the Business Meeting are to be taken as advisory to the Executive Committee. No scientific program of the Division shall be presented simultaneously with the Business Meeting.

3. Other Meetings.

Meetings of the Division, other than the Regular Meeting, may be initiated by the Executive Committee or by petition of twenty percent of the members of the Division, subject to approval by the Executive Board. The Division, 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 Division may provide for the inclusion of both invited and contributed papers. When a meeting of the Division 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 Division is not held in conjunction with a meeting of the Society, the Executive Committee shall prescribe the subject and character of the meeting, which may include limitations on the subject matter of submitted papers. The Program Chair and the Society Meetings Department shall fix the deadline date for receipt of abstracts and shall designate the place to which they should be sent and the method by which they should be submitted. The amount of time to be allowed for the presentation of a paper at the Regular 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.

Article X - E-mail Deliberations and Voting

Whenever it is deemed to be feasible, necessary because of time urgency, and not to the disadvantage of any member of the Executive Committee, the Chair may initiate e-mail deliberations and voting on Division matters in between Division Meetings. The deadline for deliberations and voting shall be communicated clearly to all members. Discussions on such matters shall be addressed to all members of the Executive Committee. The Secretary/Treasurer and the Division Administrator shall tabulate the voting. The e-mails shall constitute a record of discussion, and shall be summarized in the Minutes of the subsequent Executive Committee Meeting.

Article XI - Dues

Council shall establish dues for maintenance of membership in the Division.

Article XII - Official Announcements

Official announcements shall be made in the APS News, in the Division's website, and in such other publications as the Executive Committee may direct.

Article XIII - Procedure of Amendment of Bylaws

Amendments to these Bylaws must be reviewed and approved or disapproved by the Council. Council may require amendment of these Bylaws to bring them into conformance with the Constitution and Bylaws of the Society. A proposed amendment may be introduced by the Council, by the Executive Committee, or by petition to the Chair signed by at least one percent of the Division members. The voting on the proposed Amendment by Division members shall be as follows. Not later than May 31 the Secretary/Treasurer shall distribute the new Bylaw or amendment to the Executive Committee to review and approve or disapprove. Following an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the members of the Executive Committee, the amended Bylaws shall be published for electronic balloting or otherwise distributed to all members. Adoption of the proposed amendments shall require the affirmative votes of at least two-thirds of the members voting. The amended Bylaws shall then be presented to Council for final consideration. An affirmative vote of two-thirds of the members of Council present at a council meeting shall serve to adopt the amended Bylaws. The complete text of the Bylaws and their date of adoption by Council shall be published on the Division's website.