History & Bylaws

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History

Evolving from the Legal Information Services to the Public Committee, LISP was officially established as an SIS at the 1988 AALL Annual Meeting in Atlanta. After the SIS was approved by the AALL Executive Board at its January 1988 meeting, 1987-1988 Committee Chair, Mary Beth Dunn saw to it that by-laws were written and approved, and that a slate of officers was presented to the membership approved, so that the SIS could begin work immediately.

The SIS continued the activities of the Committee which had been in existence since 1982. One long-standing project is the Clearinghouse which collects, organizes, and disseminates workshop and project materials prepared by AALL and the local chapters. The Clearinghouse is currently maintained at the Texas Tech Law School Library in Lubbock, Texas. Materials are loaned to interested chapters and individuals without charge. To assist in accessing the collection, an annotated bibliography of its holdings is available upon request.

While a committee, several programs were presented at annual meetings. The SIS has continued this practice. The first program sponsored by LISP as an SIS was at the 1990 Annual Meeting in Minneapolis.


Bylaws

(As amended July 14, 2008)

Article I: NAME

The name of this Special Interest Section of the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) shall be the Legal Information Services to the Public Special Interest Section.

Article II: OBJECT

Section 1.

The objects of the Legal Information Services to the Public Special Interest Section shall be:

  1. To provide a forum for the exchange of ideas and information on improving access to legal information and promoting legal information services to the public.
  2. To represent its members’ interests and concerns within AALL.

Section 2.

The special interest section shall conduct its affairs in conformity with the Bylaws of the American Association of Law Libraries.

Article III: MEMBERSHIP

Membership shall be open to any AALL member requesting affiliation with the Legal Information Services to the Public Special Interest Section as provided in the AALL Bylaws. Membership shall be renewable each year.

Article IV: MEETINGS

Section 1. Annual Meeting.

There shall be an annual meeting of the Legal Information Services to the Public Special Interest Section, preferably held in connection with, or during, the annual meeting of AALL. The scheduling of the annual meeting during the annual meeting of AALL shall be cleared with the annual meeting program chair, or as otherwise provided in the AALL Bylaws. Meetings shall be open to all members of AALL, but no person may vote in any meeting who is not a special interest section member in good standing.

Section 2. Quorum.

A quorum shall consist of the members present at the meeting.

Article V: OFFICERS AND COMMITTEES

Section 1. Officers.

The officers shall consist of a Chair, a Vice-Chair/Chair-elect, and a Secretary/Treasurer.

Section 2. Duties of Officers.

The Chair, Vice-Chair/Chair-elect, and Secretary/Treasurer shall perform the duties usually pertaining to their respective offices, and such other duties as may be assigned by the Executive Committee or the membership.

Section 3. Terms of Office.

The Vice-Chair/Chair-elect shall serve a two-year term, the first year as Vice-Chair, and the second year as Chair. A new Vice-Chair/Chair-elect shall be elected each year. The Secretary/Treasurer shall serve a one-year term. Officers shall serve until the adjournment of the annual business meeting.

Section 4. Executive Committee.

There shall be an Executive Committee consisting of the Officers named in Section 1, and the immediate past Chair.

Section 5. Committees.

There shall be such standing or special committees as the Executive Committee or the membership of the special interest section shall create.

Section 6. Nominating Committee.

There shall be a Nominating Committee, appointed by the Executive Committee, to consist of three members, none of whom shall be a member of the Executive Committee, and none of whom shall be a candidate for office at the succeeding election. Each member of the Committee shall serve a term of one year. The chair of the committee shall be designated by the Executive Committee.

Section 7. Nominations and Elections.

(a) The Nominating Committee shall nominate at least one candidate for each office.

(b) All candidates must be members in good standing of the special interest section.

(c) The Nominating Committee shall submit the names of candidates for the offices of Vice-Chair/Chair-elect and Secretary/Treasurer, together with their written acceptances, to the Chair in sufficient time to enable the Chair to inform the members of the special interest section of the nominations. The Chair shall provide the names of the candidates, by mail or electronically, to the special interest section’s members, or have them published in the special interest section’s newsletter.

(d) Further nominations may be made upon written petition of five (5) members of the special interest section. Such petitions, accompanied by written acceptance of the nominees, must be filed with the Secretary/Treasurer, who prepares an official ballot, including nominations by petition.

(e) The Secretary/Treasurer shall oversee the distribution of the official ballot to each member of the special interest section. The ballot shall be sent electronically. Members may receive a mail ballot upon request to the Secretary/Treasurer. Ballots shall be marked and returned to the Secretary/Treasurer by a specified deadline. The candidates receiving the largest number of votes for each office shall be elected, and shall be so reported to the candidates, and thereafter to the members of the special interest section, at the earliest possible time.

(f) All of the above procedures must be scheduled and executed so that elections are completed at least two (2) months prior to the date of the AALL annual meeting.

(g) In case of a tie vote, a run-off election shall be held at the business meeting of the special interest section. Run-off elections shall be by secret ballot. The ballots shall be immediately counted, and the candidate with the largest number of votes declared elected.

(h) If there are no challenges to the results of the election, the ballots may be destroyed after the annual meeting.

(i) All vacancies in offices shall be filled by the Executive Committee for an interim term until the next regular election of officers, at which time said vacancies shall be filled by election, except that the Vice-Chair/Chair-elect shall automatically become chair upon a vacancy in such office and shall continue in that office until the expiration of the term for which that person was originally elected to serve as chair.

Article VI: AMENDMENTS

Section 1.

These bylaws may be amended at the annual meeting of the special interest section by a majority vote of the members present and voting, or by a majority of the votes cast by a mail or electronic ballot conducted by the Secretary/Treasurer.

Section 2.

Notice of proposed amendments shall be provided, by mail or electronically, to the special interest section’s members, or be published in the special interest section’s newsletter, at least 30 days in advance of the meeting, or of the distribution of ballots.

Article VII: PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY

The Legal Information Services to the Public Special Interest Section shall conduct its affairs in conformity with the Bylaws of the American Association of Law Libraries. The rules of order mandated by the Association’s bylaws shall govern all deliberations of the special interest section.