Bylaws

ARTICLE I—Name

The name of this organization shall be “APPELLATE LAWYERS ASSOCIATION.”

ARTICLE II—Object

The object of this Association is to foster and encourage a spirit of loyalty and fraternity consistent with the purposes hereinafter stated among appellate lawyers; to promote closer relationships between these lawyers to the end that they may become mutually helpful to one another and to further their common interests; to foster and encourage the highest professional and ethical standards in the prosecution of appeals.

ARTICLE III—Membership

Section 1. The membership of the Association shall be divided into two classes; (a) active members and (b) honorary members.

Section 2. Qualifications for Active Membership.

(a) Only persons with the following qualifications shall be eligible for active membership in the Association.

(i) Lawyers who have been licensed to practice law in any jurisdiction for at least one year and who have actively participated in, and had substantial responsibility for, the prosecution, defense, or disposition of at least three appeals, or

(ii) Lawyers who are licensed to practice law in any jurisdiction and have actively participated in, and have substantial responsibility for, the prosecution, defense, or disposition of at least five appeals.

(b) Nomination for membership shall be made in writing to the Board of Directors under such regulations as the Board of Directors may from time to time prescribe. The names of nominees shall be placed for consideration and possible election on the agenda of the next regular meeting of the Board of Directors. When elected by the Board of Directors, the names shall be placed on the membership list and reported to the Association at its next regular meeting. No person shall be elected a member of the Association except by two-thirds vote of the officers and directors (not less than five) present at a meeting of the Board of Directors.

(c) The Board of Directors shall satisfy itself as to the qualifications of the candidates for membership, including matters pertaining to their competency and integrity.

Section 3. Qualifications for Honorary Membership. Any lawyer who has been actively engaged in the prosecution of appeals and whose standing in the profession is pre-eminent, or who has distinguished himself or herself in the public service, may be elected an honorary member of the Association. All judges of the Illinois Supreme Court, the Illinois Appellate Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit are, by virtue of their judicial office or appointment, honorary members of the Association. Any person, whether or not a lawyer, whose occupation involves significant participation in the appellate process in state or federal courts may be elected an honorary member of the Association.

Section 4. Elected honorary members shall be elected to honorary membership by vote of the Board of Directors.

Section 5. Only active members shall be eligible to vote or hold office in the Association. Honorary members may attend and participate in all regular and special meetings of the Association, but shall be ineligible to vote or hold office.

ARTICLE IV—Management

Section 1. The affairs of the Association shall be managed, conducted, and controlled by its officers, who will consist of the President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer, together with eight Directors, four of whom shall be elected annually to hold office for a period of two years, and who, together with the four other directors and the officers, shall constitute the Board of Directors of the Association. At least one director shall be an active member who resides and practices in either the Second or Third Judicial District of the State of Illinois. At least one Director shall be an active member who resides and practices in either the Fourth or Fifth Judicial District of the State of Illinois. The retiring President shall serve as an ex-officio director for one year following the expiration of his or her term of office and shall have the right to vote.

Section 2. To be eligible to serve as a director of the Association, a person must be an active member in the Association for at least one year. To be eligible to serve as an officer of the Association, a person must be an active member in the Association for at least three years who:

(a) Has spent a substantial portion of his or her professional activities in the handling of appeals; and

(b) Has actively participated in, and has substantial responsibility for, the prosecution, defense, or disposition of at last fifteen appeals.

Section 3. No director shall be eligible for re-election until one year after the expiration of his or her two-year term.

Section 4. Any vacancies occurring on the Board of Directors shall be filled by the Board for the remaining term of the vacancy.

Section 5. The annual election shall be held at the June meeting of each year.

Section 6. The Board of Directors shall meet at any time at the call of the President, or by a petition signed by any three members of the Board.

Section 7. The President and any four members of the Board shall constitute a quorum. In the absence of the President, seven members of the Board shall be necessary for a quorum.

ARTICLE V—Official Year

The official year of the Association which shall govern the terms of the officers and directors and the fiscal affairs of the Association shall begin on July 1 of each year, except that the term of the office of President shall run from the date of installation until the date on which the next President is installed.

ARTICLE VI—Duties of the Officers

Section 1. It shall be the duty of the President to preside at all meetings of the Association and to perform such other duties as usually belong to the office of the President. The President shall be ex-officio a member of all committees.

Section 2. It shall be the duty of the Vice-President to preside in the absence of the President and to perform all the duties appropriate to the office of the Vice-President.

Section 3. The Secretary or Executive Secretary shall keep minutes of the Association. The Executive Secretary shall have the custody of all books and papers of the Association.

Section 4. The Treasurer shall collect all dues of the members and all monies due or coming to the Association and shall disburse the funds of the Association under the direction of the President.

ARTICLE VII—Nominations and Elections

Section 1—Elections

Section 1.1. At the June meeting of the Association in every year, the Association shall elect a Vice-President, a Secretary, and a Treasurer, each for a one –year term;

Section 1.2. At the June meeting of the Association in every year, the Association shall elect four members of the Board of Directors, each for a two-year term.

Section 2—Nominating Committee

Section 2.1. Prior to March 1 of each year, the President shall appoint a Nominating Committee of five members. Two members of the Nominating Committee shall be selected from among the members of the Association at large, and the remaining three shall be selected from among the members of the Board of Directors. The immediate past President shall serve as the Chair of the Nominating Committee.

Section 2.2. Not later than March 15 of each year, the Secretary shall publish the names of the Nominating Committee Chair and members to all Association members.

Section 3—Nominations

Section 3.1. Nominations for the office of Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, the expiring terms of the directors, and for any vacancies on the Board may be submitted by any member thereof, provided that the nomination is in writing, signed by the nominator, and expressly warrants that the candidate will serve if elected.

Section 3.2. Nominations will open with receipt of the notice appointing the Nominating Committee and close on April 1, regardless of whether this date falls on a Sunday or a holiday.

Section 3.3. The Nominating Committee shall consider all nominations received from the members and other candidates, if any, proposed by members of the Nominating Committee. Following due deliberations, the Nominating Committee shall nominate one candidate for each office of Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, and subject to the requirements of Section 3.4, one candidate for each of the four Board of Directors positions and for each Board of Director vacancy, if any.

Section 3.4. In each year, the Board of Directors shall include at least one director from each of (a) the Second or Third Judicial Districts; and (b) the Fourth or Fifth Judicial Districts. The Nominating Committee shall select nominees for Board of Director positions that allow this requirement to be fulfilled.

Section 3.5. The Nominating Committee shall publish a written report of its nominations on or before April 15.

Section 3.6. Nominees of the Nominating Committee are automatically candidates for election.

Section 3A—Additional Officer and Board Candidates

Section 3A.1. Any qualifying active member is also eligible to run for the offices of Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, or, subject to the requirements of Section 3.4, member of the Board of Directors.

Section 3A.2. To run for any office, the qualifying active member must file with the Nominating Committee on or before May 15 a candidacy petition signed by the member, designating the office sought, and containing the signature of five other active members.

Section 3A.3. The Nominating Committee shall file all candidacy petitions with the Secretary on or before May 20, and the Secretary shall publish the candidates’ names and the offices sought in the notice of the June meeting.

Section 4

In the event of a contest for any elective office, a secret ballot shall be taken. Ballots shall be mailed out on or before June 1 and must be received on or before June 10 or five days before the June meeting if the June meeting is held before June 14. A majority of the vote cast shall be decisive. In the event no elective office is contested, the slate shall be formally proposed at the June meeting and elected by a majority of those members present at the June meeting.

Section 5

No proxy voting shall be allowed.

Section 6

The immediate past Vice-President shall become President. The President is to be installed at the June meeting of the Association. In the event the immediate past Vice-President declines to or cannot become President, the office of President shall be added to the election set forth in Section 1 and nominations and petitions for the office of President shall be received as set forth in Sections 3 and 3A.

Section 7—Additional Officer and Board Candidates

Section 7.1. The Board of Directors shall appoint a qualifying active member, who is willing to serve, to fill any mid-term vacancies.

Section 7.2. Members currently serving as Officers or Directors are eligible for appointment to fill vacancies in other offices.

Section 7.3. The appointed member shall serve for the remainder of the term of the office in which the vacancy occurred.

Section 7.4. A member appointed to fill a mid-term vacancy shall be eligible to run for a full term following the expiration of the term of the office to which the member has been appointed.

Section 7.5. Where necessary to fulfill the requirement of Section 3.4, the member appointed to fill a Board of Director vacancy shall be from the Second or Third Districts or from the Fourth or Fifth Districts, as the case may be.

ARTICLE VIII—Dues and Funds

Section 1

(a) All members of the Association are required to pay initiation fees, dues, and charges as determined by the Board of Directors from time to time.

(b) A dues statement shall be mailed or emailed by the Association on or before the thirty-first day of August of each year to every member at his or her last known office address or email address. All dues are payable on the thirtieth day of September of each year (the “due date”).

(c) The annual dues of the active members of the Association shall be as determined by the Board of Directors, by a two-thirds majority of those present and voting at a meeting of said Board.

(d) Each newly elected member will be billed an initiation fee set by the Board of Directors, which must be paid along with membership dues within two months of election to membership.

(e) Members who are elected to membership during the last quarter of the Association’s fiscal year, April 1 through June 30, will be billed the full amount of the annual dues to be applied to the next fiscal year.

Section 2

The receipts from dues and miscellaneous sources shall be known as the current fund and shall be used for the current expenses of the Association.

Section 3

The Treasurer shall report in writing annually to the Association, the financial condition of the Association.

ARTICLE IX—Inactive Membership

Section 1

Failure of any new member to pay his or her initiation fee and membership dues within two months from date of his or her election to membership shall automatically terminate his or her provisional membership and his or her name shall not be placed on the membership roll.

Section 2

Any member who fails to pay his or her yearly membership dues or charges as provided elsewhere herein, within two months from the due date will become an inactive member immediately upon the expiration of the two-month period.

Section 3

The Association shall notify a member of a prospective inactive status of his or her membership for non-payment of membership dues and charges by written notice mailed or emailed to him or her at his or her last known office address or email address, no less than fifteen days prior to the date of the prospective inactive status.

Section 4

The Board of Directors, at its discretion and upon terms, may reinstate an inactive member to active membership. Each inactive member will be billed a reinstatement fee, set by the Board, in addition to his or her membership dues.

Section 5

An inactive member may not hold office or any position in the Association, serve as a member of any committee, attend any meeting or event of the Association at the member rate, have any vote, or exercise any of the privileges of membership, nor shall his or her name be included in any roster of members published while he or she is inactive.

ARTICLE X—Quorum and Meetings

Section 1. A quorum shall consist of fifteen members.

Section 2. Meetings of the Association shall be held once each month from September through June, except for December or May which may be scheduled at the discretion of the Board of Directors.

ARTICLE XI—Censure, Expulsion and Discipline of Members

Section 1. The right to censure, expel, call for the resignation of, or otherwise discipline any member of the Association shall be vested in the Board of Directors.

Section 2. Any member may be censured, expelled, or otherwise disciplined for misconduct in his or her relations to the Association, or for conduct discreditable to the Association or profession, or injurious or derogatory to the good order, dignity, peace, reputation, or interest of the Association, or inconsistent with its purposes.

ARTICLE XII—By-Laws

These By-Laws may be amended from time to time by a vote of two-thirds of the members present at any regular meeting of the Association, provided that the proposed change or amendment to the said By-Laws shall have been mailed or emailed to all active members at least thirty days prior to the meeting upon which the vote of the change or amendment is to be taken.

ARTICLE XIII—Statement of Purpose

  1. To be an organization of lawyers concentrating in practice before the courts of review.
  2. To review systematically all pertinent legislation and rules of court affecting jurisdiction and procedure in the appeal of cases with the aim of achieving greater clarity, fairness, and comprehensiveness.
  3. To facilitate closer and more effective liaison between and among lawyers concentrating in the appeal of cases, the appellate bench, and the legislature.
  4. To improve the standards of quality and competence in the preparation of cases on appeal.
  5. To exchange ideas and techniques, to resolve common problems, and to discuss matters of mutual interest to those concentrating in this field.

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Contact Us

Christine Teed

Program Administrator

Appellate Lawyers Association

1717 N. Naper Blvd., Suite 102

Naperville, IL 60563

P: (630) 416-1166, ext. #303

F: (630) 596-1418

cteed@wmrhq.com

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