Amended Constitution of the Southern American Studies Association
Article I. Name
The name of this interdisciplinary organization, the Southern American Studies Association, or “SASA,” reflects its status as an officially recognized regional chapter of the American Studies Association. Within that geographic arrangement, SASA includes the states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and West Virginia, and parts of Virginia. These boundaries are set at the national level by the American Studies Association, or “ASA,” and are subject to periodic change; the current geographic boundaries of SASA are on file at the ASA.
Article II. Purpose
SASA’s purpose is to encourage the interdisciplinary study of American culture and history, past, present, and future and in all its diversity and complexity, by bringing together American Studies professionals, scholars, and students both inside and outside the academy.
Article III. Membership
Membership in the American Studies Association includes, by default, membership in the regional chapter within which one lives or works. Each ASA member who prefers to be a member of another regional chapter may do so (and joining a second chapter is possible for a minimal charge). SASA has traditionally welcomed colleagues who live and work outside our geographic boundaries to become SASA members.
Article III. Officers and Board
SASA’s Board has twelve voting members, including the organization’s President, Vice President / President-Elect, and Secretary-Treasurer. Article V describes the possibility of having additional SASA members serving on the Board ex officio. Every two years SASA conducts an on-line election to choose nine of the Board’s voting members, who serve with the two appointed graduate student representatives and the immediate past president. Each current SASA member is eligible to vote.
Graduate student members are to serve staggered two-year terms: each autumn the President is to solicit recommendations for a graduate student whose term is to begin the following July 1. During November, having consulted with the other two officers and considered the distinct needs of students in M.A.-level and Ph.D.-level graduate programs, the President is to select a student to appoint.
The biennial on-line election for nine Board members, including SASA’s three officers, is to occur during the 90 days following the end of each biennial SASA conference. In advance of each conference, the immediate past president is to chair a nominating committee that solicits nominations for each of these nine positions, and that committee is to compile a ballot in time to appear as an integral part of the conference’s program along with directions for participating in an election during the 90-day period following the end of the conference. Election for each position is by a simple majority of those voting, and the two-year term of office for each member is to begin on the following July 1.
In the event a vacancy on the Board occurs less than six months before the next biennial conference, the President is to recommend a replacement and to call for a vote among the voting members of the Board. If less than three-fourths of those members vote to approve the replacement, the vacancy is then simply to be filled as part of the next on-line election.
Article IV. Budget
The Board shall adopt a budget that provides for awards for graduate students and for the expenses of the biennial conference should they exceed the revenue generated by registration fees and monies acquired from outside sources.
Article V. Ongoing activities
Each of the following four activities is an integral part of SASA, and the leader of each serves as an ex officio member of the Board unless she or he is an elected member.
SASA has a tradition of staging lively, substantive biennial conferences at locations throughout the region. At each conference’s business meeting, the Board is to confirm the location of the next biennial conference, and the President is then to appoint the chair of the biennial conference committee to oversee local arrangements and the program.
The President appoints the chair of the awards committee to manage awards for graduate students participating in SASA’s biennial conferences. Since 2001, SASA has awarded the Critoph Prize to recognize the best paper presented by a graduate student at each biennial conference.
The President is to recommend a SASA representative on the national ASA’s Regional Chapter Committee, and the ASA’s national office confirms the three-year appointment.
The President appoints a representative or representatives to maintain SASA’s website, southernamericanstudiesassociation.org, and to manage its social media presence.
Article VI. Amending the SASA Constitution
The SASA Constitution may be altered, amended, and repealed by a two-thirds majority of SASA members voting electronically on changes circulated to the membership at least third days prior to the opening of the election.
A special thank you to all of the people who worked on SASA’s Constitution over the last few years and made this document possible.
William Boelhower, Louisiana State University
Kathleen Brian, George Washington University
Leigh Anne Duck, University of Mississippi
Alisha Gaines, Florida State University
Tim Marr, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Tara McLellan Gilstrap. University of Mississippi
Krystyn Moon, University of Mary Washington
Dennis Moore, Florida State University
Christine Skwiot, Georgia State University