Chapter 2: Election of Division Officers and Council Representatives
The APA Bylaws (Article VI, Section 6) require that each division have a president and a secretary. Additional officers, qualifications for officers, and the means by which they are elected or appointed is left to the discretion of the division. The terms of each division's officers are established by the division and reflected in their bylaws.
Currently all divisions have a president-elect who succeeds to the presidency upon completion of his/her term as president-elect. Thirty-nine divisions have chosen to appoint or elect an individual to the office of Treasurer, while the remaining divisions combine the duties of secretary and treasurer into a single office.
Note: Throughout the remainder of this APA Handbook for Division Officers, the term secretary/treasurer indicates an individual secretary or treasurer, or the combined office, as appropriate to the division.
Eligibility to Serve as a Division Officer
The eligibility of candidates for divisional offices is determined by each division's bylaws. Unless specifically prohibited by divisional bylaws, a person may hold as many offices within divisions to which he/she is elected.
Click here for more information on apportionment.
As a result of the passage of the 2001 "Modified Wildcard Plan" Bylaw Amendments, Council's composition changed to include representation for most Divisions and State/Provincial Psychological Associations (SPPAs) on the Council of Representatives. Developed by the Task Force on Council Representation, the plan allows for the continuation of the apportionment ballot system to determine seats on Council, but sets a limit of 162 seats proportionally awarded to divisions and SPPAs.
Article V, Section 6 of the APA Bylaws describes the procedures for allocation of Council seats. All APA Fellows, Members and Voting Associates are sent an apportionment ballot on or before November 1. Each member is allotted ten votes which he/she can distribute among division(s) and/or state/provincial association(s) according to the individual's interests.
Article V.6: The number of Representatives from Divisions and State/Provincial Associations shall be 162. The 162 Representatives will be divided into 2 pools, one for State/Provincial Associations and one for Divisions. The percentage of the 162 seats for State/Provincial Associations shall correspond to the percentage of total apportionment votes allocated to State/Provincial Associations and the percentage of the 162 seats for Divisions shall correspond to the percentage of total apportionment votes allocated to Divisions.
Each Division shall be allocated one seat from the Division Pool and each State/Provincial Association shall be allocated one seat from the State/Provincial Pool. The awarding of additional seats allocated to each Pool shall be based on the percentage of allocated votes received by a Division or State/Provincial Association and calculated as follows:
1.5% to less than 2.5%…….1 additional seat
2.5% to less than 3.5%…….2 additional seats
3.5% to less than 4.5%…….3 additional seats
Additional seats will be allocated to those units in a Pool entitled to additional seats in the following manner. The unit with the highest percentage in the Pool will receive the first additional seat and an additional seat will be assigned to other units entitled to one or more additional seats in descending order of their percentages. If, after all units in a Pool entitled to one or more additional seats have received one additional seat, there remain units that are entitled to two or more additional seats, and if the seats allocated to the Pool have not been exhausted, the unit in the Pool with the highest percentage will receive a second additional seat and a second additional seat will be assigned to other units entitled to two or more additional seats in descending order of their percentages. This process shall be continued until either all additional seats allocated to the Pool have been assigned or until all units in the Pool entitled to additional seats have been assigned all of the seats to which their percentages of allocated votes entitle them.
If, after all units in a Pool have been assigned the additional seats to which they are entitled by virtue of their percentages, there remain seats allocated to a Pool which have not been assigned, those remaining seats shall be assigned to the units in the Pool in the order in which the units came closest to being awarded another seat as a result of the allocated votes.
In late December of each year as information is available, the APA Election Committee will announce the results of the apportionment ballot. This information, together with the current membership of Council, is the basis for the preparation of nomination and election ballots which are sent to members of Council's voting units.
A division or state/provincial association that is allocated fewer seats for one year than those allocated the previous year must recall the appropriate number of representatives. If the division has more than one representative serving on Council, it will be the division's responsibility to determine which representative will be recalled. Once a representative is recalled, the individual's term is over (APA Bylaws Article V, Section 4). Even if the division regains the lost seat on the next apportionment vote, a new election for Council representative must be held to fill the seat.
Eligibility to Serve as a Council Representative
Eligibility criteria and procedures governing election of representatives to APA Council are contained in the APA Bylaws (Article V) and the Association Rules (Sections 30 & 40). In summary:
The APA Council of Representatives urges divisions and state/provincial associations to keep in mind the need for ethnic minority representation when slates for Council membership are prepared.
Each Division determines the manner in which it will elect its officers and which of its membership categories will have voting privileges in the election of officers (with the exception of the division Council representative(s)) and on other divisional matters. Divisions which restrict their voting privileges to individuals who are also APA Members, Fellows or Voting Associates may find it convenient to combine the election of officers with the election of their Council representative(s). The ballot for Council representatives is mailed in mid-April by APA. It is important to note, however, that only APA Fellows, Members, or Voting Associates who are members of divisions or state/provincial associations are allowed to nominate and elect their Council representatives (APA Bylaws, Article V, Section 5).
Provision of Lists of Candidates to Central Office
Although nominations for division officers and Council representatives may be secured in any manner the division chooses, the APA Bylaws require that Council representatives be nominated by APA Members, Fellows, or Voting Associates who belong to the division. In addition, Association Rule (40-1.11) specifies that, unless it is an ex officio appointment, two candidates should appear on the final election ballot for each office of Council representative.
The results of the annual apportionment ballot provide the basis for the election ballots that APA sends to members of divisions who are eligible to vote for their divisions' Council representative. Under the APA Bylaws, only APA Members, Fellows, or Voting Associates who also belong to the division are allowed to vote for the division's representative to Council.
In order to comply with deadlines prescribed in the Association Rules, each division should submit a list of its candidates for each office to be included on the APA election ballot by February 15. The slate of nominees should be sent to the attention of the Elections Office.
Final Election Ballot
The final election ballot must present at least two candidates for each vacancy for a division's or state or provincial association's representative(s) to the Council. If the divisional bylaws do not specify the number of candidates to be placed on the ballot for other division offices, the chair of the nominating committee or secretary/treasurer of the division is responsible for determining the number of candidates needed and the preparation and submission of the slate of candidates.
Divisions will determine eligibility and ask each nominee about his/her willingness to serve. The list of candidates for each office should be submitted in alphabetical order. When the slates are complete (around March 1), a sample ballot, listing the names to appear on the ballot, is sent to each division elections/nominations chair or secretary/treasurer for confirmation.
The final election ballot is then prepared for division representatives to the Council and any other division officers requested by the division. The ballot is mailed to APA Fellows, Members, and Voting Associates, who are members of a division or state/provincial psychological association on or about April 15. The balloting period is 45 days.
Counting and Reporting of Election Results
The results are counted in accordance with a preferential system. No later than July 1, each election committee chair or individual who submitted the slates will be sent a copy of the tabulation for his/her division. In addition, the Election Office sends out letters to all participants in the elections informing them of the results. Newly elected Council Representatives will also receive such materials as Making APA Work for You, Association Rules, and the APA Council Representatives Manual.
The division secretary/treasurer should confirm the officers for the following year by sending to the APA Division Services Office, by early September, a complete list of all division officers with the terms of office indicated.
Newly elected Council representatives from divisions receive a letter from the APA Chief Executive Officer and President sometime in August informing them of their election. They will also receive such materials as the Making APA Work for You, Association Rules, APA Bylaws and the APA Council Representatives Manual.