UF Constitution and Bylaws




LAST UPDATED – January 2016


Article I
The name of this Association shall be UNI ­ United Faculty hereinafter referred to as United Faculty or UF.

Article II

This Association may affiliate with any organization that supports collective bargaining units. Any such affiliation must be approved by a majority vote at a General Meeting. A duly approved affiliation shall continue until changed by a majority vote at a General Meeting.

Article III

The primary purposes of the United Faculty shall be:

  1. To represent members of the faculty bargaining unit at the University of Northern Iowa in their employment relations.
  1. To work with other organizations of public employees and educators in pursuit of common goals.
  1. To work for the improvement of university conditions and to seek solutions to community problems relating to the universities.
  1. To improve the professional, economic and civic status of its members.
  1. To work for the welfare of university students, the advancement of education, and the improvement of instructional opportunities for all.
  1. To support and strengthen the state and national associations with which United Faculty is affiliated.

Article IV

  1. Active Membership

A. Active membership in United Faculty shall be open to all persons engaged in educational work of a professional nature at the University of Northern Iowa, and who are eligible for representation by United Faculty in collective bargaining.

B. Active membership is also open to anyone who does not otherwise qualify as stated above but has been approved for membership by the Executive Board on a year­-by­-year basis.

  1. General Provisions

B. Membership shall not be denied any employee of the University of Northern Iowa who is otherwise eligible, because of race, religion, nationality, age, sex, marital status, physical disability, or sexual orientation.

C. Membership shall be continuous until the member’s employment causes his membership eligibility to change, or until he leaves the employment of the University, or resigns in writing from United Faculty, or fails to pay membership dues within 90 days of being duly notified by the Treasurer that payment of the dues is due, or membership is revoked after due process. Those who quality for membership under Article IV.1.B must have their membership reviewed and renewed annually by the Executive Board in order to continue as a member.

  1. Revocation of Membership

A. The Executive Board may suspend from membership rights or expel any member who they find in willful violation of the Constitution and Bylaws after a full and fair investigation.

B. Any member in good standing has the right to file a complaint alleging such violations of the Constitution and Bylaws. Such complaints shall be in writing and submitted to the President of the United Faculty. If a complaint alleges a violation by the president it shall be submitted in writing to the vice president.

C. Any member charged with violations of said Constitution and Bylaws shall be notified in writing of the time and place when the Executive Board shall hear the charges. The member shall also be notified of the right to be present with counsel of choice during such meeting, shall have the right to cross ­examine witnesses, and offer other testimony judged beneficial to the member’s defense.

D. Any member currently holding office must first be removed from office by a two-thirds vote of the Executive Board, as described in Article V., before being suspended or expelled by the Executive Board

E. The Executive Board hearing shall not be sooner than five (5) working days following notification of charges to the accused. Such notice shall include a copy of the submitted charges.

F. Any decision of the Executive Board is final.

Article V

  1. The officers of United Faculty shall consist of a President, a Vice President, a Secretary, and a Treasurer.
  1. All officers must be active members of United Faculty.
  1. All officers shall be elected by secret ballot of the Membership at times and for terms provided for in the Bylaws.
  1. Whenever a two-thirds (2/3) majority of the Executive Board votes that an officer has been grossly negligent of the duties defined in the Bylaws or is incapacitated or voluntarily resigns, they shall declare the office occupied by that person to be vacant.
  1. An office may be declared vacant by two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the Executive Board. Any officer whose office will be so voted on shall be notified in writing of the time and the place where the Executive Board will conduct the vote. The member shall also be notified of the right to be present with counsel of choice during such meeting, shall have the right to cross-examine witnesses, and offer other testimony.

Article VI

  1. Membership ­ The Executive Board shall consist of the officers, the immediate past president, and one (1) member elected from each of the following: Rod Library, each of the Academic Colleges, and non-tenure track faculty.
  1. Authority ­ The Executive Board shall be the decision making authority for United Faculty, subject to review of the membership.
  1. When a position on the Executive Board is vacated for reasons other than those discussed in Article IV, the President of United Faculty shall select a replacement to complete the term of office for that position. The president’s selection shall be approved by a majority vote of the Executive Board. When the office of president is vacated for reasons other than those discussed in Article IV, the vice president shall become president and select a new vice president in accordance with the provisions of this paragraph.
  1. Any member of United Faculty who is not a member of the Executive Board may attend board meetings and participate in proceedings upon recognition of the Chair, but shall not have the right to vote.

Article VII

  1. The Membership shall meet at least once a year and shall have power to transact any business of United Faculty. Membership meetings may only be held during academic year semesters. The academic year semesters are defined as commencing on the first day of classes and ending on the last day of classes during the fall and spring semesters.
  1. Upon receipt of a petition of ten per cent (10%) of the Membership, the President shall convene a Membership meeting no later that 15 days after the receipt of the petition subject to the above limitations.
  1. A quorum for Membership meetings shall consist of those members present and voting at the meeting.
  1. Upon a majority vote of the Executive Board in favor of doing so, the President of United Faculty may call for a Membership meeting. The meeting shall convene no later than 15 days following the Executive Board’s majority vote.

Article VIII

Collective bargaining negotiations for United Faculty shall take as a minimum standard of acceptable terms the provisions of the 1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure of the AAUP, and all provisions of the 1966 Statement of Government of Colleges and Universities of the AAUP not incompatible with the Iowa Public Employment Relations Act.

Article IX
Department Liaison

A. Within a month of the ratification of the contract, the members of United Faculty in each department may elect from among themselves a Department Liaison. The term of office of the Department Liaison shall correspond with the duration of the contract, unless recalled by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the members within the department. If for any reason a Department Liaison does not finish the term of office, the remainder of the term shall be completed by a new steward elected by the members within the department.

B. The duties of Department Liaisons shall be:

  1. To communicate with the Executive Board by:

a. attending Executive Board meetings in response to a request by the board; to covey information in person to the board; or to stay abreast of board activities. Liaisons are encouraged to attend Exceutive Board meetings.

b. working with the United Faculty Treasurer to keep an up-to-date list of the membership status of each faculty member in the steward’s department.

c. informing the United Faculty Treasurer of the names and current addresses of all new hires, retirees, terminations and any chages that might affect faculty members’ United Faculty membership status.

d. maintaining contact with UF Vice President regarding grievances from faculty, and informing the vice president of potential problems.

e. attending UF membership meetings and encouraging colleagues in the department to attend.

2.   to communicate with colleagues in the liaison’s department by:

a. contacting newly hired faculty and personally encouraging them to join United Faculty.

b. distributing UF information to faculty.

c. convening and presiding over department level meetings of UF members whenever necessary.

d. carrying out special projects in coordination with the Executive Board.

3. to monitor the Master Agreement and to identify problem areas through:

a. collecting ongoing evidence of contract compliance or noncompliance within the liaison’s assigned department.

4. to participate in contract negotiations through:

a. collecting suggestions for issues of concern to be included in contract negotiations.

Article X

United Faculty may adopt amendments to this Constitution by a majority vote of members voting by secret mail ballot as described in the most recent edition of Robert’s Rules of Order, provided that:

  1. the proposed amendments have been introduced at a regular meeting of the Executive Board, and referred to the Membership by a two-thirds vote of the Executive Board.
  1. after such a regular meeting of the Executive Board, copies of the proposed amendment have been promptly thereafter distributed to the members of the United Faculty at least five class days prior to a Membership meeting at which the amendment is moved and discussed, and
  1. after such Membership meeting, ballots have been distributed to the entire United Faculty Membership.

Article XI

  1. United Faculty may be dissolved by a two­-thirds vote of those present and entitled to vote at any Membership meeting, provided that notice of the motion to dissolve has been distributed according to the provision for distributing amendments to the Constitution. Such dissolution may not take effect during the term of a collective bargaining contract to which United Faculty is a party.
  1. Upon dissolution, the Executive Board shall make provisions for the payment of all liabilities of United Faculty, shall dispose of all the assets of United Faculty in accordance with the purposes stated in Article III above and distribute any remaining funds to the Membership on a prorated basis.

Bylaws of United Faculty

Article I

The current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall be the authority on all questions of procedure not otherwise specifically stated in these Bylaws.

Article II

  1. The Executive Board shall meet on a regular basis at least once each month during the academic year. Additional board meetings will be held at the call of the President or at the request of three (3) members of the Executive Board. A meeting must be held within two (2) weeks whenever three (3) members of the Executive Board request a meeting.
  1. The presence of six (6) board members shall constitute a quorum for all Executive Board meetings.

Article III

The annual dues of United Faculty will be determined annually by the Executive Board after the adoption of the budget for the upcoming year.

Article IV

The fiscal year shall end on the thirtieth (30th) day of June each year.

Article V

  1. Nominations

A. During an election year, any active member of United Faculty may nominate a candidate or declare his/her own candidacy for any Executive Board position. Nominations shall take place during February of an election year.

B. Names of persons nominated shall be submitted to the Committee for Elections who shall report such nominations to the Membership prior to the March meeting of the Executive Board.

C. Every effort will be made to encourage participation of members of underrepresented groups in the governance and committee structure of the union.

D. After the March Executive Board meeting has concluded, the nomination process is closed, and the Committee for Elections shall make the preparations for balloting described below.

  1. Balloting

A. During the first part of April (by April 10), all active United Faculty members in good standing shall have full opportunity to vote for candidates nominated.

B. Voting shall be by secret ballot in accordance with procedures developed by the Committee for Elections and approved by the Executive Board.

C. Officers or members ­at ­large may be elected by a write-­in vote.

D. A majority shall be required for election. A runoff election shall be held for positions in which no candidate has received more than 50 percent of the vote. Runoff elections must be concluded with a report from the Elections Committee to the Executive Board, no later than the last Friday of April.

E. The Committee for Elections shall report the results of the election to the President, who shall report the results to the Membership.

Article VI

  1. Members of the Executive Board serve for a term of two years starting on May 1 of the year in which they were elected.

Article VII

  1. President

A. The President shall have the executive authority to sign contracts on behalf of United Faculty with the advice and consent of the Executive Board. The President shall preside over meetings of the Executive Board and the Membership; appoint special committees; appoint all standing committees upon approval of the Executive Board; and serve as an ex officio member of all standing committee

B. The President shall represent United Faculty before the public, either in person or through delegates, and shall perform all other functions usually attributed to this office.

C. The President shall regularly apprise the Executive Board of significant developments and shall make sure that the other officers of United Faculty carry out their duties.

D. The President will strive to communicate regularly with Department Liasions.

  1. Vice President ­-  The Vice­ President of United Faculty shall perform those duties usually attributed to this office. The Vice­ President shall work closely with one or more standing committees as the President may direct. The Vice­ President shall chair the Grievance committee and be responsible for carrying out the United Faculty policies and procedures on grievances. The Vice President reports to the President and communicates with the Executive Board as his/her duties require.
  2. Secretary – ­ The Secretary shall keep accurate minutes of all meetings of the Executive Board and General Membership. In addition, the Secretary shall maintain official files, assist the President with correspondence, and help ensure the agendas for each meeting are distributed in advance of the meeting. The Secretary shall send copies of appropriate material to the University Archives and shall maintain in the United Faculty office a record of materials so deposited. The secretary will in a timely fashion arrange for the location of Executive Board meetings and Membership meetings. If the secretary is not able to be present for a meeting of the Executive Board or the Membership s/he shall arrange, prior to the meeting, for another member of the Executive Board to take the minutes for that meeting. The Secretary reports to the President and communicates with the Executive Board as his/her duties require
  3. Treasurer

A. The Treasurer shall monitor the funds of United Faculty and ensure proper disbursement as authorized by the Executive Board. The Treasurer reports to the President and communicates with the Executive Board as his/her duties require. The Treasurer should be contacted in reference to Article XII 3.

B. The Treasurer shall bill the members for their annual dues, supervise the collection of dues, and transmit amounts due to the organizations with which United Faculty is affiliated.

C. The Treasurer shall maintain a bookkeeping system adequate to keep accurate accounts of receipts and disbursements and shall submit financial reports to each meeting of the Executive Board. The Treasurer shall always act in such a way as to protect the financial integrity of United Faculty and bring any concerns regarding the financial integrity of United Faculty to the immediate attention of the President.

D. The Treasurer shall present the financial records of United Faculty for an annual (fiscal year) audit to the Audit Committee on or before the last business day of July each year. The Treasurer shall not serve as a member of the Audit Committee, but will cooperate as needed.

E. The Treasurer shall assist the Budget Committee in the initial drafting of the annual proforma budget for the upcoming year. Said proforma budget shall be presented to the Executive Board for its consideration on or before the last meeting of the Executive Board during the academic year. The proforma budget shall also contain a recommendation for the dues structure for the upcoming year.

F. The Treasurer shall maintain an accurate roll of members and will periodically reconcile with the list of members submitted to the United Faculty national affiliate.

Article VIII

The Executive Board shall be responsible for the management of United Faculty, approve of all expenditures, carry out the policies of the United Faculty and approve appointments to standing committees.

Ideally, any communication between United Faculty and the university president, provost, executive director of the Board of Regents, University counsel, or Board of Regents counsel, will take place with at least two UF officers or representatives present. However, should it be required by circumstances for formal interaction to take place between a single UF officer or representative and one or more university administrators, then some form of report, oral or written describing the interaction shall be provided to the United Faculty Executive Board.

No single United Faculty member has the authority or ability to create agreements that bind or obligate UF in any form without the approval of the Executive Board, except as noted in the bylaws.

Article IX

  1. Structure – ­There shall be seven (7) standing committees. They are:

Audit: Responsible for annual independent review of UF finances required by Iowa PERB

Membership: Works to increase and maintain membership, recruitment activities.

Negotiations: Monitors campus issues and sets agenda for negotiations. Helps draft initial proposal during bargaining years.

Academic Freedom and Professional Rights: Takes active role in defending academic freedom both locally and nationally.

Grievances: Meets with faculty who contact United Faculty, shepherds the grievance process; works to enforce the Master Agreement.

Election: Sends calls for nominations, makes sure elections follow bylaws, runs elections, reminds members to conduct elections for Department Liaisons. The committee shall develop and submit to for approval by the Executive Board written election procedures.

Budget: Keeps track of spending by category and reports midyear to the Executive Board.

  1. Membership ­ – These committees shall have sufficient membership to carry out their assigned tasks. Care shall be exercised to see that each committee has representation from the various groups, which comprise United Faculty Membership. The President shall present his/her selections of members for all committees to the Executive Board for approval on or before the October meeting of the board. The President may make additional appointments, subject to approval of the Executive Board, to committees as needed during the year.
  1. Meetings – ­ Each committee shall meet as needed to insure completion of the tasks assigned to it by the Executive Board. Committee meetings, except those of the grievance committee, shall be open to all members of United Faculty. Committees, except the Grievance Committee, shall elect a chair from among its members at its first meeting.
  1. No officer may serve on the Election Committee or the Audit Committee.

Article X

  1. The President shall appoint committees as needed for expeditious handling of United Faculty business, and shall discharge them upon completion of their duties.

Article XI

  1. The Executive Board shall annually provide for the election of the allocated delegates and alternates to the various delegate assemblies of the state and national associations to which the United Faculty is affiliated.
  1. The election as President of United Faculty shall be considered election as one of the allocated delegates.
  1. All active members of United Faculty shall be eligible for election and shall have the right to vote in the election by secret ballot for any allocated delegate seat.
  1. Any vacancies which occur after the election shall be filled by the Executive Board.

Article XII

  1. Conflict of Interest. ­ There shall be no business or financial conflict of interest by any of the officers or agents of United Faculty or members of their immediate family.
  1. Preferential Loans. ­ United Faculty shall make no preferential loans of United Faculty money to officers or agents of United Faculty. Any officer of United Faculty who is more than 90 days in arrears of paying his/her cannot continue to serve in his/her office.
  1. Open Records. ­ All financial records shall be open for inspections by any member in good standing of United Faculty upon written request and reasonable notice.
  1. Bonding of Agents of United Faculty. ­ All officers and agents of United Faculty shall be bonded according to regulations developed by the Iowa Public Employment Relations Board.
  1. Political Contributions. ­ United Faculty shall not make any monetary contributions to any political party, organization, or individual candidate.

Article XIII

These Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote at any regular meeting of the Executive Board.