The name of the organization shall be Clemson University Commission on Latino Affairs. The organization may also refer to itself as the “Commission on Latino Affairs” or the “Commission.” Demographic designations, such as Latino, are dynamic in nature and may take into consideration many factors, including personal identity. Therefore, the term Latino is meant to be inclusive and encompasses other identifications, including Hispanic, LatinX, and Chicano.
By-Laws & Minutes
- Article I-Organization Name
- Article II-Vision Statement and Purpose
Section II-1: Vision Statement
The Commission is attentive to the socio-economic impact of the increasing Latino population in South Carolina, nation, and the Clemson community. We will:
- 2.1.1 Serve as tactical forecasters to the Office of Inclusion and Equity;
- 2.1.2 Act as a bridge to identify opportunities within our internal and external communities to bring success for the Clemson Latino population and the broader Clemson community.
- 2.1.3 Align university resources with our growing Latino population, with an intended focus on our responsibilities to the well-being of students, faculty, and staff at Clemson University. We support partnerships with those who share common visions for ensuring success for all.
Section II-2: Purpose
- 2.2.1 To advise on the planning, implementation, and evaluation of university programs, policies, and services designed to improve the status of Latinos on campus.
- 2.2.2 To communicate to the President and the Diversity Council of Clemson University specific recommendations intended to enhance the Clemson experience for Latino faculty, staff, and students.
- i. To develop strategic university, community, industrial, and P-12 school partnerships to expand understanding of Latino issues. The Commission shall clearly outline matters of urgency regarding the education of Latinos across the P-20 spectrum.
- ii. To foster a deeper understanding of the Latino community to the general population.
- Article III. Membership
Membership shall be maintained at fifteen (15) and composed of seven (7) faculty, six (6) staff, with two from either of the following representatives: undergraduate students or graduate students.
Section III-1: Commission Members
Commission members may recruit and recommend nominees for all committees, including the Executive Board. All Commission members may vote.
- 3.1.1 Terms
- i. Faculty and Staff shall be appointed to three-year (3) terms that begin in August of the first year and end in July of the last year of membership. At the completion of a three-year (3) term, a member may be reappointed to another three-year (3) term. This excludes the initial Executive Board terms, which should be either two or three-year terms, so the turnover of the board is staggered.
- ii. Students and community members shall be appointed for one-year terms that begin on the first day of the Fall semester and end on July 1st.
- 3.1.2 Elections and Appointments
Members of the Commission can be self-nominated or nominated by commissioners and approved by the current Chair or designee.
Section III-2: Officers
The officers of the Commission shall be the Chair, the Vice Chair, who shall be the Chair-Elect, and the Secretary of the Commission and the members of the Executive Board.
- 3.2.1 Terms
- i. The Chair and the Vice-Chair shall serve two-year terms. The Secretary shall serve a one-year term and Board members will serve two-year terms staggered.
- 3.2.2 Elections and Appointments
- i. Selection of a new Chair shall be initiated by the Commission. This selection will be accomplished through a nominating and voting process conducted by the Commission.
- ii. The Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect shall succeed the Chair in the third-year. The Vice-Chair and the Secretary shall be elected from the 15-member team. The Vice-Chair will serve as Chair following their second year as Vice-Chair. The Secretary is a one-year term.
Section III-3: Executive Board
The Executive Board shall be comprised of the Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary of the Commission, and two (2) Commission members.
- 3.3.1 Terms Executive Board members shall be elected to either two (2) or three-year (3) terms that begin in August of the first year and end in July of the last year of membership.
- 3.3.2 Elections and AppointmentsThe Executive Board members are nominated and elected by the full Commission.
Section III-4: Ex Officio Members
Ex Officio members are non-voting members of the Commission, may serve on committees.
- 3.4.1 Terms
Ex Officio members may serve indefinitely and may resign if they become a full voting member of the Commission or are no longer affiliated with the University.
- 3.4.2 Appointments
Ex Officio members may be appointed by the Chief Inclusion and Equity Officer. The immediate past Chair, not serving as an active member of the Commission may serve as an Ex Officio.
Section III-5: Associate Members
Associate members are non-voting representatives from university organizations or other collaborative groups. Associate members are eligible to serve on committees.
- 3.5.1 Terms
Associate Members retain their status for 2 years and reappointment is possible for 3 number of times.
- 3.5.2 Appointments
Respective Clemson University organizations or other collaborative groups may nominate individuals to the Commission Chair. In 300 words or less, nominations must include name, position, and reason for nomination. Nominations will be reviewed and approved by the Commission Executive Board. Individuals will be appointed by the Commission Chair.
Section III-6: Quorum and Adjournments
Meetings with 51% of the voting membership shall be necessary and sufficient to constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. Members may submit a proxy vote to be counted towards reaching a quorum. Additionally, members can cast their vote by proxy online for any of the items needing approval. In the absence of a quorum, the meeting will be held to provide informational updates only. Following the updates, the meeting will be adjourned.
Section III-7: Resignations and Removal
- 3.7.1 Resignation
Any member may resign from the Commission at any time by giving written notice to the Chair. Resignation shall take effect upon receipt of letter by the Chair of Commission. Acceptance of resignation shall not be necessary to make it effective.
- 3.7.2 Removal
Any member may be removed from the Commission for malfeasance of conduct detrimental to the interests of the Commission or for refusal to render ongoing involvement or participation in carrying out the mission, goals and work of the Commission.
- 3.7.3 Replacement
When a Commission member’s resignation has been received by the Chair, a replacement for such Commission member shall be requested by the Chair to the full Commission. In the event that the Chair-Elect resigns, then the Commission will invoke an emergency meeting to conduct an election to replace the Chair-Elect. More than seven (7) vacancies without designated replacements shall constitute the absence of a quorum for the transaction of business.
- 3.1.1 Terms
- Article IV. Officers
Officers shall consist of Chair, and Chair-Elect.
Section IV-1: Chair
Chair shall be the principle executive officer of the Commission and shall supervise all the business and affairs of the Commission.
- 4.1.1 Preside at all meetings of the members and executive board;
- 4.1.2 Develop the meeting agenda, with input from members;
- 4.1.3 Be an official voice of the Commission;
- 4.1.4 Maintain an informational exchange with the Chief Inclusion & Equity Officer;
- 4.1.5 Develop and annual communique calendar that will be shared with all board members and committee chairs.
- 4.1.6 Preside over Commission elections and voting procedures.
Section IV-2: Vice Chair / Chair-Elect
The Vice Chair assumes the responsibilities of the Chair in the absence of the Chair at meetings. The Vice-Chair shall:
- 4.2.1 Work closely with the Chair to assure a smooth transfer to the Chair position;
- 4.2.2 Develop plans and projects for the term of office that provide continuity with current Commission goals;
- 4.2.3 Assist the Chair in the daily business of the Commission;
- 4.2.4 Perform other duties as assigned by the Chair or the Executive Board.
Section IV-3: Secretary
The Secretary records the minutes of the Commission meetings and maintains official Commission documents in a designated shared storage platform:
- 4.2.1 Maintains the membership roster;
- 4.2.2 Uploads Commission minutes and other Commission documents in a shared storage platform;
- 4.2.3 Perform other duties as assigned by the Chair or Vice-Chair.
- Article V. Executive Board
Members of the Executive Board are composed of the Chair, Chair Elect, and three elected Commission members. Executive Board members are nominated and elected, by Commission members, to serve for a (1) year term for the chair and three (3) year term other. Retiring Executive Board members end their term in April of their final year of service and new officers shall take office in May. An Executive Board, consisting of the Commission Chair, Chair-Elect, and three (3) elected Commission members shall be responsible for setting the agenda and for daily business between meetings.
- Article VI. Standing Committees
The Commission may create standing committees or select committees. Membership on committees may include members of the general faculty, staff, students, and community. The Chair will solicit the Commission to make committee appointments on committees.
The basic function of committees shall be to consider matters of concern to Clemson University Latinos faculty, staff, and students and to make recommendations to the Commission. Written committee reports are to be submitted to the Chair for distribution to the members at least one week prior to commission meetings. Committee Chairs shall present their reports at Commission meetings.
There shall be four (4) standing committees to address specific constituency issues. The standing committees shall be the Faculty & Staff Concerns Committee, the Student Engagement Committee, the Programming & Budget Committee, and the Communications and Marketing Committee.
Section VI-1: Faculty & Staff Concerns
The Faculty & Staff Concerns Committee shall gather and disseminate concerns and information from Clemson University Latino faculty and staff on the following aspects:
- 6.1.1 Latino faculty and staff representation, increasing the number of Latino faculty and staff;
- 6.1.2 Latino faculty and staff satisfaction, retention and promotion;
- 6.1.3 Faculty satisfaction and retention for other diverse populations, described by Clemson’s inclusion statement as “people of different races, cultures, ages, genders, sexual orientation, religions, socioeconomic levels, political perspectives, abilities, opinions, values and experiences.” (CU Office of Inclusion and Equity, 2018);
- 6.1.4 Collaboration with Clemson University Office of Human Resources to enhance the development and implementation of affirmative action and diversity plans and to develop strategies that affect underutilization and under-representation of Latino faculty and staff.
Section VI-2: Student Engagement Committee
The Student Engagement Committee shall gather and disseminate concerns and information from Clemson University Latino students on the following aspects:
- 6.2.1 Diversity, inclusion, and climate issues that affect retention, graduation, academic and student life;
- 6.2.2 Collaboration with Clemson University Office of Student Affairs and academic units to enhance the development and implementation of affirmative action and/or inclusion plans which enhance student well-being; promote the development of multicultural fluency and leadership, work to develop strategies that affect underutilization and under-representation of Latino students as developing role models for the Clemson student community;
- 6.2.3 Collaboration with Clemson University Office of Student Affairs and academic units to enhance student life for other diverse student populations, as defined in section 7.1.3;
- 6.2.4 Collaboration with students and student-related organizations to provide support for student initiatives that reflect an inclusive academic environment.
Section VI-3: Programming & Budget Committee
The Programming & Budget Committee shall hold responsibility for identifying and providing support to programming that enhances the well-being of the Clemson Latino community. This support can be accomplished by:
- 6.3.1 Assuring all information concerning the operating budget, resource allocation, and processes are used to support the programming identified;
- 6.3.2 Collaborating with other Commission standing committees, as well as other Clemson commissions, committees and organizations to help accomplish their tasks;
- 6.3.3 Preparing reports for the Commission Chair on the status of programmatic efforts and the budget.
- 6.3.4 Preparing a budget for Commission members to review, discuss, and approve.
Section VI-4: Communications and Marketing Committee
The Communications and Marketing Committee is responsible for the dissemination and publication of Commission information to membership and the Clemson University community. Items the committee develops and maintains can include, but are not limited to the following:
- 6.4.1 Commission website, newsletter and calendar;
- 6.4.2 Annual goals and report of accomplishments;
- 6.4.3 Nomination and membership information;
- 6.4.4 Orientation literature for new members; and
- 6.4.5 Commission sponsorships and events
Section VI-5: Standing Committee Chairs
All Chairs of identified Standing Committees shall be voting members of the Commission. Standing Committee Chairs may be appointed by the Commission for one-year (1) term. Chairs of Standing Committees may succeed themselves.
Section VI-6: Ad Hoc Committees and Task Forces
The Chair of the Commission and/or the Executive Board may establish ad Hoc committees and task forces to address issues as deemed necessary and appropriate; and to accomplish specific administrative tasks including but not limited to the following:
- 6.6.1 Latino Faculty Recruitment and Retention Task Force
- 6.6.2 Latino Staff Recruitment and Retention Task Force
- 6.6.3 Bylaws and Amendments
- Article VII. Procedures
Proposed changes shall be submitted in writing and distributed to the voting membership at least one week prior to consideration. Changes in the Bylaws will be made only upon approval of a quorum of the voting membership present at the meeting.
- Article VIII. Meetings
Section VIII-1: Time of the Meetings
The Commission shall meet at least monthly during the academic year and at the discretion of the Chair. The meeting shall be held on or near the campus of Clemson University. The Commission will preside over monthly meetings to hear matters and opinions of Latino faculty, staff, students, and community members to better understand areas of concern to be addressed by the Commission. The duration of the meeting shall be determined by the Chair of the Commission.
Section VIII-2: Executive Board Meetings
Executive Board meetings are held at least a week prior to the scheduled monthly Commission meetings.
Section VIII-3: Special Meetings
Special meetings of the full Commission may be called by the Chair as deemed necessary with the approval of the Executive Board.
Section VIII-4: Attendance
Commission members have a duty to their constituent group(s) to attend Commission meetings, its Executive and standing committees of which they are members. After six (6) successive absences by a member, the Chair shall remind the member of the Commissioner’s obligation to attend and participate in meetings.
If the Commission member’s absences continue, the Chair shall ask the Commission member to reconsider his/her appointment and may ask for his/her resignation after meeting with the Executive Board.
A record of attendance shall be maintained in the minutes of all Commission and subcommittee meetings. Commission members unable to abide by the established attendance policies found in these Bylaws will be requested in writing by the Chair of the Commission and approved by the Executive Board to resign.
- Article IX. Elections and Voting Procedures
The Chair or their designee shall conduct all elections; elections normally will be held during the March meeting. The Chair or their designee shall be responsible for circulating at least 10 working days prior to elections. All nominees must be members of the Commission. Nominations for all elective positions submitted prior to the meeting must be written and submitted to the Chair at least seven days prior to the meeting. Names of those nominated shall be included in the agenda circulated to members for any meeting at which an election shall take place. Additional nominations may be made from the floor. All nominations must have the written agreement of those they nominate.
All elections will be held by secret ballot. A majority vote shall be required for election. If no candidate receives a majority of the ballots cast, members shall vote for the candidates who received a majority of the ballots cast, members shall vote for candidates who received the two largest numbers of votes on the previous ballot and shall repeat the balloting until one candidate receives a majority of the votes.
Written absentee ballots shall be accepted, provided they are placed in an envelope that is sealed, dated, signed, and delivered to the Chair prior to the meeting. Any Commission member who will not be present at said meeting may submit an absentee ballot.
Service begins immediately for committees, with service beginning at the appropriate time as outlined under their respective articles. Commission and committee members who must withdraw from the Commission or committee must inform the Chair, so a replacement can be elected or nominated to fill their term of service.
All matters of non-elective business brought before the Commission that require a vote shall be resolved by a majority of those eligible voters present and voting unless otherwise specified in these Bylaws. A voice vote or show of hands shall be taken unless a secret ballot is requested. A secret ballot may be requested by any member of the Commission and is required when such a request is made. The Chair or their designee may call for elections by mail or electronically and conduct them on a shorter timeline if necessary.
- Article X. Reports
The Commission Chair will submit periodic reports to the Diversity Council. These reports shall incorporate the standing committee reports. Each standing committee chair shall submit a report of its activity to the Commission Chair.
- Article XI. Budget
Annually a financial budget shall be established to support the administration, initiatives, programs and activities of the Commission. Budget allocation shall be determined by the Programming & Budget Committee, in consultation with the Committee and with the approval of the Commission Chair.
- Article XII. Roberts Rules
The Commission shall conduct all proceedings in accordance with the most recent edition of Robert’s Rules of Order. These rules may be suspended by a majority vote of the Commission at any session, provided that the safeguards or rights as explained in Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised (11th Edition), under the heading “Suspension of the Rules” shall always be adhered to.
- Article XIII. Confidentiality
The Commission will serve as a vehicle of communication among the Clemson University Latino faculty, staff, students, and community and will respect matters of confidentiality to its utmost ability, in accordance with South Carolina State Law.
- Article XIV. Amendments and Revisions
These bylaws can be amended only by the full Commission and at any regularly scheduled meeting, provided that: (1) the amendment has been submitted in writing to the Executive Board for review, and (2) upon its recommendation has been forwarded to the full Commission. The proposed Bylaw amendment shall be submitted to the full Commission at a scheduled meeting and/or communication prior to the meeting at which the vote is scheduled. Approval shall require an affirmative vote of a quorum of the voting membership of the full Commission.
Last edited: April 18, 2019.
Adopted: April 18, 2019.