At the last meeting of the Board, on June 13, a new set of Bylaws were discussed, modified, and approved as a replacement for the minimal set of Bylaws under which the Chapter had operated since its inception. They are as follows.
Slow Food Columbus
Vision. Slow Food Columbus envisions a world in which all people can eat food that is good for them, good for the people who grow it and good for the planet—that is, food that is good, clean and fair.
Mission. Slow Food Columbus seeks to create dramatic and lasting change toward a more sustainable food system by establishing and strengthening the foundations of pleasurable eating. Those foundations include developing an appreciation for food quality to balance our appreciation for price, defending biodiversity in our food supply, and enhancing our ability to savor one another’s company as we savor our food. We seek to strengthen these values in ourselves and in generations to come, as well as to represent them well to the political and market forces that govern the food system.
Preamble Slow Food Columbus (SFC), as an integral element of Slow Food USA (SFUSA) and hence of Slow Food International (SFI), is a membership organization guided by values, principles, structures, and processes as embodied in the Slow Food USA Vision, Mission & Strategic Plan; the National Statute; the International Statute; and the Code of Use for Slow Food Logos.
Members recognize the difficulty in running a complex organization using a directly democratic process. Thus, Slow Food Columbus’ governance rests on the concept of representation. Members elect or select through consensus leaders who shall represent the membership as they develop policies, priorities and programs to fulfill the mission.
Article 1. The Chapter
The purpose of a local Chapter is (1) to inspire people to practice Slow Food values and invite them into the Slow Food community, (2) to formulate and execute events consistent with our Mission, and (3) to serve as a local anchor and organizer for regional, national and global Slow Food initiatives and alliances.
ARTICLE 1 A. Chapter Officers
The Chapter Board will include a minimum of five members who fill the general officer positions of Chair, Leader, Treasurer, Secretary, and Membership. Elections for these positions will take place every two years, at the Annual Meeting in January; nominations must be emailed to the Chair no later than December 1 prior to the Annual Meeting. Additional offices may be created or dissolved either by a majority vote of the members present at a regular Board meeting or by a majority vote of members present at the Annual Meeting. Additions that would create a Board with more than 10 members will require a two-thirds majority of members present and voting.
The Chair is empowered to convene and run regular Board meetings and is expected, along with the Leader, to take the lead in inspiring the membership and representing the Chapter to the community at large. The Leader is empowered to run Board meetings in the absence of the Chair. The Treasurer monitors Chapter finances and processes Chapter-related disbursements, which must be authorized by the Board in the form of a majority present and voting (at a regular Board meeting) or a majority responding in the affirmative by email (during interim periods). The Secretary records the minutes at regular Board meetings and disseminates them to the Board in a timely manner, as well as being responsible for the Chapter’s newsletter and social media presence. The Membership chair monitors and reports on Chapter membership and coordinates initiatives to increase membership.
ARTICLE 1 B. Standing Committees
The Chapter leadership may also include any number of standing or temporary Committees, created by the Board as described below in Article 1. C. Committees are tasked with soliciting, creating, developing, and implementing local projects designed to fulfill the mission of the Chapter, as well as inspiring people to practice Slow Food values and inviting them into the Slow Food community. Toward those ends they may form ad hoc subcommittees and enlist the resources of the Board or another Committee.
ARTICLE 1 C. The Chapter Board
The Chapter Board is entrusted with the power to conduct the business of the Chapter, which includes events, communications, participation in national programs, fundraising, community outreach and recruitment of leaders and volunteers.
The Chapter Board comprises the Officers described in Article 1. A. as well as the heads of the Committees described in Article 1. B. Requirements for Board membership comprise current membership, 75% attendance at Board meetings, active engagement in Chapter activities, and promotion of membership.
The Chapter Board is empowered to create standing or temporary Committees and to advise those committees with respect to how regularly they should meet given the nature of their work. The Chapter Board may, for just cause, remove a Board member or dissolve or reconstitute a committee or subcommittee by two-thirds vote at a regular Board meeting. Just cause is defined as violating the bylaws of Slow Food Columbus as stated in this document and any other guidelines provided to chapters by Slow Food USA; not meeting the duties of the committee, outlined in Article 1 B, or of Board members, defined in this Article; or violating the principles or acting outside the mission of Slow Food Columbus or Slow Food USA.
The Chapter Board will meet a minimum of four times per year to review the work of the Chapter. A quorum, defined as two-thirds of all active Board members, will be required to convene the meeting; as the first item of business, the minutes from the previous meeting will be approved. Board members are expected to attend all meetings; a low attendance rate (consistently below 75%) constitutes just cause for the Board to request a Board member’s resignation or, if such a request is ignored and by two-thirds vote at a regular Board meeting, removal and replacement by a member in good standing of Slow Food USA.
ARTICLE 1 D. The Annual Meeting
The Board will convene an Annual Meeting open to all members of the chapter once a year, in January. At these meetings, the Chair and other members of the Board will report on the activities of the Chapter and entertain questions, comments, and motions from the floor. Votes may be taken at any time during the meeting to convey the sense of the membership on any issue; votes are also taken for the purpose of election of Officers and modification of bylaws, if relevant. If any vote is taken at the Annual Meeting, current membership in Slow Food USA, as gauged by the most recent list obtainable by the Membership chair, determines eligibility to vote.
ARTICLE 1 E. Modification of the Bylaws
Modification of these Bylaws requires both a written proposal, prepared and disseminated prior to the vote, and a two-thirds vote, either of those Board members present and voting at a regular Board meeting or of those Chapter members present and voting at the Annual Meeting.
Approved by all Board members present and voting, June 13, 2012.