Article I: Name and Purpose
- Section 1. This organization shall be known as Individuals for Freethought, also known as IF.
- Section 2. The purposes of this organization shall be to 1) promote freethought -- thought unrestrained by religious dogma, "revelation," authoritarianism or tradition, instead using science, reason, skepticism and an open mind, 2) provide community for freethinkers through meetings, activities, etc., 3) organize public events that pertain to freethought, 4) foster acceptance of freethinkers, and 5) advocate the separation between church and state.
Article II: Membership
- Section 1. Membership shall be open to all KSU students, faculty, and staff, and interested community members. Students must compose at least 80% of membership.
- Section 2. To become a member, one need only inform an officer. To maintain being a member, one should attend at least three events (including social events) or meetings every school year. Before one is allowed to vote as a member, they should have already been at three meetings or events that the group has held in its history.
- Section 3. If the case arises that it is reasonable to believe that any given member is insincere in their desire to be a member (as in they want to intentionally stifle, not advance, the interests of IF), IF retains the right to hold a general vote on the legitimacy of any given memberís membership. Let it be noted that this is a measure reserved for only the most clear violations of the general good-faith IF wishes to extend to everyone who would be a legitimate potential member. Also, a roster of official members shall be maintained by the secretary.
- Section 4. Members may vote on any voting matter. Current members may vote by proxy if they can do so in a manner that can be verified and confirmed. Non-members may come to meetings, activities and events, but may not vote.
- Section 5. Membership ends upon 1) the member's request, 2) the member no longer being a student, faculty, staff or community member or 3) the inability to contact the member after a calendar year long lapse in meeting attendance and/or communication with the organization.
- Section 6. In certain cases, honorary membership can be granted to those who cannot qualify as members. Honorary membership is a symbolic way to show affiliation with IF for interested parties and to give IFís acknowledgement for the honorary memberís supportive sentiments for our group. Honorary members do not have the privilege of voting.
- Section 7. Alumni membership can be granted to members of the group that have graduated from Kansas State University. Graduates will be given the option to be Alumni members at their discretion. Students that transfer out of KSU but do not graduate from it cannot be Alumni members but can still be honorary members. Alumni members do not have the privilege of voting.
Article III: Officers
- Section 1. The offices of this organization shall be president, vice president, treasurer, secretary, public relations director, graphic designer, and events coordinator.
- Section 2. Officers shall be elected during the spring semester, sometime in Early March. Members shall be notified of a pending election at least one month in advance. An ad-hoc nominating committee shall recruit a slate of officers before the election, though nominations can also be taken from the floor. All student members are eligible to run; faculty and staff are not eligible. Election shall occur by secret ballot. The candidate with the most votes wins; uncontested candidates win by default. Terms shall begin at the next general meeting, and shall last approximately one year. There is no limit on the number of terms an individual may hold office.
- Section 3. If for any reason an officer is unable or unwilling to fulfill their commitments, they may resign and other members from the group may be proposed as interim officers until the next official elections. Whoever will fulfill the office will be officially determined by a vote of general membership as in a regular election. If a proposed interim candidate is unopposed, then a minimum of a 51% approval of a general vote is needed to ratify the candidate as the interim officer. Also, students knowingly graduating within a year after an election should not run for office.
- Section 4.
- The president shall 1) organize and preside over meetings, activities and events, 2) be the official representative for the organization, 3) maintain contact with related outside organizations, 4) ensure that the by-laws, as set out in the Constitution, are followed, 5) have the final word in all decisions except election or removal of officers, constitutional amendments, committee formation, or anything requiring large expenditures.
- The vice president shall 1) assist the president in any and all duties, 2) assume the duties of the president in the event of the president's absence, 3) maintain a roster of all current members 4) advise the president on policy matters.
- The treasurer shall 1) be responsible for all financial matters, 2) be responsible for keeping records and possession (on behalf of the group) of all merchandise, 3) assist and advise the president and vice president.
- The secretary shall 1) record the minutes for all meetings, 2) maintain a list of current members, officers, and their contact information, 3) assist and advise the president and vice president.
- The public relations director shall 1) coordinate the advertising and publicity of the group and its events, 2) maintain contact with local media outlets, 3) assist and advise the president and vice president.
- The graphics designer shall 1) design and create the graphics for t-shirts and flyers, 2) assist and advise the president and vice president.
- The events coordinator shall 1) help plan, organize, and coordinator events for the Individuals for Freethought, 2) assist and advise the president and vice president.
- Section 5. Officers may be removed by a two-thirds vote of a quorum. The decision to hold an impeachment vote shall be on a case-by-case basis. The officer and the members shall be notified of the impending vote before the meeting. Officers and members shall have the opportunity to present their sides at the meeting, before the vote. Voting shall be by secret ballot. If the officer is removed, a new officer shall be elected at the next meeting.
- Section 6. All officers are expected to attend as many meetings and events as is reasonable possible, hopefully all meetings and events (excluding social events). If officers are not able to attend any given meeting or event (excluding social events) and know this in advance, they should attempt to contact the president or vice president via email or phone to relate this.
Article IV: Meetings
- Section 1. General meetings shall be every two weeks.
- Section 2. Business meetings shall be every two weeks, in the off weeks of general meetings.
- Section 3. Officers may call special meetings at any time for important matters.
- Section 4. A quorum equaling the average meeting attendance by members is required for a vote to occur on election or removal of officers, constitutional amendments, committee formation, statements of affirmation or condemnation or anything requiring large expenditures of $30 or more. If a quorum isn't present, voting shall be postponed until next meeting. Average meeting attendance shall be determined at any given time by consensus of the officers. NOTE: Different criteria will be used to determine the average meeting attendance of a business meeting as compared to a general meeting. So a smaller number of people may need to be present at a business meeting in order to have a vote as compared to a general meeting. However, all major decisions will be presented to a general vote of the general membership.
- Section 5. Order of business at meetings shall vary; an agenda shall be distributed in most cases. Meeting minutes shall be distributed via e-mail or hard copy.
Article V: Committees
- Section 1. There are no standing committees.
- Section 2. Any member or officer may propose the formation of a committee. Committees can then form as interested individuals agree to serve on the committee. The main purposes of committees will be to 1) take care of distributing out work equally on any given issue that the committee is created to address, 2) brainstorm and create new ideas to present at IF business meetings 3) work through different ideas and issue and focus them so that they can be presented to the general membership in order to be voted on (i.e. the t-shirt committee creates and works through the different ideas for t-shirts and presents the ideas for a vote at a general meeting instead of having the brainstorming and work occurring at a general or business meeting). The committee chair shall be decided by majority vote of the committee members. Only IF members can be committee chairs.
Article VI: Amendments to the Constitution
- Section 1. Any member may propose a constitutional amendment. Members shall be notified at least two weeks in advance of a pending vote on an amendment. The amendment shall be read aloud and discussed on the day of the vote and at the meeting two weeks previous. The amendment must receive two-thirds of the vote for adoption.
Article VII: Statements of affirmation or condemnation
- Section 1. Statements of affirmation would be an official declaration made by the Individuals for Freethought that they support a certain issue or action being taken by another group or individual. Statements of condemnation would be an official declaration made by the Individuals for Freethought that they denounce or condemn a certain issue or action being taken by another group or individual.
- Section 2. Any official IF member can propose an official statement of affirmation or condemnation at a meeting. For discussion on the issue, another IF member must second the statement. If there is sufficient support or debate about the issue among the group, it will be put to a vote in the next meeting, where every IF member present will be allowed up to but no more than 90 seconds to state officially why they are for or against the statement of affirmation or condemnation. After all members are giving the proper opportunity to speak, members may vote to allow another round of discussion, with discussion continuing only if a majority of members present feels it is necessary. When discussion is finally done, a general secret ballot vote among the general membership will be taken.
- Section 3. A statement of affirmation or condemnation can pass only by a three-fourths majority vote of general membership.
Article VIII: Advisor
- Section 1. The advisor must be a full-time K-State faculty or administrative staff member.
- Section 2. The nature of the advisor's role shall basically be determined by the advisor. However, the authority of the general membership of IF trumps the authority of the advisor.
- Section 3. The advisor may be removed by a vote among the general membership. Also the advisor can voluntarily remove herself or himself. Prospects for a new advisor would then be contacted and a new advisor would be eventually decided upon by a general vote of general membership.
Drafted by John Franson, September, 1998
Ratified October 21, 1998
Amended September 9, 1999
Redrafted by 1st Constitution Committee*, October 10, 2001
Approved October 11, 2001
Amended March 14, 2002
*1st Constitution Committee consisted of Paul Youk (chair), Leslie Veesart, Stephanie Fox, Shaun Parkman, Traci Pinsent, Keiv Spare, and Derek Chiarelli.