Constitution for the Society for Philosophy and Disability

[Ratified August 1, 2012; Amended May 23, 2020]

Article I:  Name

The name of this organization shall be: “Society for Philosophy and Disability.”

Article II: Purpose

The Society for Philosophy and Disability, or SPD, is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to furthering research and teaching on philosophical issues related to disability and to promoting inclusiveness and support for people with disabilities in philosophical education and in the profession of philosophy. SPD aims to provide a forum for philosophical discussion of disability by arranging meetings, maintaining an online presence, organizing academic projects, and supporting the Journal of Philosophy of Disability (JPD).

Article III: Membership

Section 1. Membership shall not be restricted by disability, nationality, age, sex, gender, race, ethnicity, political affiliation, religion, or in any other discriminator manner.

Section 2. Membership is open to anyone who is interested in philosophical engagement with disability and to philosophy students, researchers and teachers who are disabled.

Section 3. Membership criteria shall otherwise be determined by the Board of Directors.

Section 4. Members shall conduct themselves in a civil and respectful manner when using any SPD email list or website and during official meetings, conferences, events and correspondence with the SPD Board of Directors.

Section 5. The Board of Directors shall have the power to suspend or expel any Member if that person behaves in a manner that is uncivil, disrespectful or likely to impair the mission and operations of SPD.

Article IV: Board of Directors

Section 1. SPD is directed by the Board of Directors, which has the following responsibilities:

  1. Planning and organizing academic activities, which may include appointing committees and coordinators as needed.
  2. Supporting and coordinating with JPD.
  3. Selecting and applying membership criteria.
  4. Reporting on important SPD developments to Members.
  5. Representing SPD to other organizations or individuals.
  6. Overseeing the election of new Board members and any revisions of the Constitution.

Section 2. The Board of Directors shall consist of the Officers, namely a President, a Vice-President and a Secretary-Treasurer, three Members-at-Large, and the Editor(s) of JPD (ex officio).

Section 3. The President is the head of the Board of Directors and of SPD and has general charge of the Society’s affairs on all matters not otherwise specified in the Constitution. The primary responsibilities of the President include, but are not limited to, overseeing the operations of SPD, organizing its academic activities, publicizing SPD and serving as its spokesperson.

Section 4. The Vice-President shall assist the President and the Secretary-Treasurer in their responsibilities.

Section 5. The Secretary-Treasurer shall bear primary responsibility for receiving and disbursing funds as directed by the Board and for maintaining a record of the financial transactions of SPD.  He or she shall also maintain an up-to-date membership list.

Section 6. Officers shall serve three year terms; ONE Member-at-Large shall serve the same term as the Officers while the other two Members-at-Large shall serve terms that begin a year after those of the Officers. The ex officio member or members shall serve for as long as they are the Editor or Editors of JPD. If an Officer or Member-at-Large resigns or ceases to perform the duties of his or her office then the Board may appoint a replacement to finish that term. If he or she wishes to continue on the Board, that person must stand for normal election.

Article V: Elections

Section 1. The Board of Directors shall organize and administer the election of its members.

Section 2. The Board shall solicit nominations from Members near the end of a three-year term.  Nominations must be approved by the Board.

Section 3. Candidates must be Members of SPD and members of the American Philosophical Association at the time they would take office.  Candidates for one Member-at-Large position, as designated by the Board, must have received their Ph.D. or equivalent within ten years of the time their term on the Board would begin.

Section 3. At the request and approval of the candidates, the Board may convey relevant information about those candidates to the members.

Section 4. The Officers and Members-at-Large shall be elected by ballot, all members are eligible to vote, and a candidate for an Office or a Member-at-Large seat is elected if he or she receives a simple majority of the votes cast.

Section 5. Upon initial approval of the Constitution and of an Executive Committee, that Committee shall conduct the election of the first Board of Directors by soliciting and approving nominations from members and administering a ballot to all members. A candidate for an Office or Member-at-Large seat who receives a simple majority of the votes cast is elected. At the time the first Board is seated, the Executive Committee shall be dissolved.

Article VI: Amendments to the Constitution

Section 1. Members may propose amendments to the Constitution, which must be submitted to and approved by the Board of Directors.

Section 2. If a proposed amendment is approved by the Board of Directors, the Board will administer a ballot on the proposed amendment.

Section 3. The proposed amendment passes if more than 2/3 of the votes cast are in its favor.

Article VII: Finances

Section 1. No part of the net earnings of the Association shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable to, its members, Board of Directors, or other private persons except that SPD shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered.

Section 2. Notwithstanding any other provisions of these articles, SPD shall not engage in any activities not permitted by an Association exempt from Federal Income Tax under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Law) or by an Association contributions to which are deductible under section 170 (c) (2) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Law).

Section 3. Upon the dissolution of SPD, the Society shall, at the discretion of the Board and after paying or making provisions for the payment of all of its liabilities, dispose of all the assets of the Society exclusively for the purposes of the Society in such manner, or to such organization or organizations organized and operated exclusively for charitable, educational, religious, or scientific purposes as shall at the time qualify as an exempt organization or organizations under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Law).  Any such assets not so disposed of shall be disposed of by the Court of Common Pleas of the county in which the principal office of the Society is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organization or organizations, as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.