MWCBS Constitution (as of September 26, 2015)


Name: The name of this organization is the Midwest Conference on British Studies, LLC.

Purpose: The purpose of this organization is to promote the study and appreciation of British history, literature, culture, and civilization. It is a non-profit corporation.

Officers: There is a President, a Vice-President, a Secretary-Treasurer, and a President Emeritus/Emerita. The President presides at the annual conference and business meeting. The Vice President is also President-elect. They serve terms of two years, the Vice President being nominated as President automatically when the term of office of the President expires. The Vice President is responsible for selecting conference sites for the annual conference.

In his/her second year, the President appoints a Nominating Committee to nominate one or more candidates for the Vice Presidency. The name or names are submitted to the membership for a vote at the next business meeting.

The nominating committee will ordinarily consist of the two most recent past presidents, the current president, vice-president, and secretary-treasurer, and two at-large members.

The Secretary-Treasurer keeps the records and mailing list, maintains the funds of the organization, pays the honoraria of speakers and other expenses. The Secretary-Treasurer provides, at the annual conference, a financial accounting to the members. The Secretary-Treasurer is nominated by the President subject to approval at the annual business meeting. The Secretary-Treasurer serves for a term of five years.

The Midwest Conference on British Studies LLC, also requires a Board of Directors. This will be made up of volunteers who have served on the executive in any capacity. Members of the board of directors have no financial or organizational duties, therefore they may serve as long as they are willing.

Membership: The membership consists of all current and former members of the executive and the organizations committees. All who have registered for the annual conference are members from the date of that conference until the next conference. All who share the purpose of the Midwest Conference on British Studies are eligible to register and attend its meetings. The Secretary-Treasurer maintains a mailing list of interested persons, which also serves as the membership list. This list will, whenever possible, include both postal mailing addresses and e-mail addresses. The primary sources for this list are the registration lists for the annual conference and the names of those who designate a portion of their NACBS dues for the Midwest Conference.

Funds: The Midwest Conference on British Studies has no dues, although members of the North American Conference on British Studies may designate a portion of their national dues for the Midwest Conference. The President and the Secretary-Treasurer are authorized to manage the finances of the organization.

The Registration fee for the annual conference is set at an amount sufficient to pay for the conference keynote speaker and other expenses of the organization.

Annual Conference and Business Meeting: The Midwest Conference meets once a year at a suitable site to conduct a conference, normally during the fall. Some time is reserved at each conference for a business meeting, a quorum consisting of those who come. The host institution determines the exact date of the conference after consultation with, and the approval of, the President.

Program Committee: The program Committee consists of a Committee Chairperson, and of four to six members appointed by the President for a two-year term. The chair of the program committee will be chosen by the president from among those who have already served at least one year of the two-year term. The Program Committee disseminates the Call for Papers, plans the annual conference, and selects one of the two keynote speakers (the other being selected by the host institution).

Prize: The Midwest Conference welcomes papers presented by advanced graduate students and will award The Walter L. Arnstein Prize for the best graduate student paper(s) given at the annual conference. The program committee will constitute the Arnstein Prize committee. Any member who has a student competing for the prize will recuse themselves from the consideration of that student’s paper.

Travel grants: The Midwest Conference will award travel grants based on need and the importance of the conference to a graduate student’s professional development. The 3 most recent ex-presidents of the MWCBS will serve as the committee. If one of these people is not available, then the current president will take one of the positions on the committee. The amount of the award will be the same for all recipients. The amount and number of awards each year will be at the discretion of the executive and determined by the financial health of the travel grant fund. Any member of the committee who has a student competing for the prize will recuse themselves from the consideration of that student’s paper.

Website: The Midwest Conference will maintain a website. The website will include the annual call for papers, announcement of the annual conference, list of officers, a history of the Midwest Conference, a copy of the constitution, and any other relevant material.

Related Organizations: The Midwest Conference on British Studies welcomes relationships with other organizations that share its purpose.

Amendment: These procedures have developed over the years and should not be changed materially without consulting the membership. The Secretary-Treasurer shall inform the membership of any proposed changes prior to the next conference.

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