The Press Club of Long Island board has voted to support an effort to change the way SPJ elects its national officers.
Under the current system, officers are elected by a vote of chapters at the national convention.
So members of SPJ who are not members of a local chapter are disenfranchised, having no say in national elections.
Some members are hundreds of miles away from their closest local chapter and we agree it would be impractical for them to join just to have a vote. We agree with a “one member, one vote” proposal that would allow every member to vote, whether they were a chapter member or not.
This requires a change in the SPJ bylaws.
The national board voted 15-8 against letting this proposed bylaw amendment be considered at this year’s national convention in New Orleans, which starts Sept. 25. However, if 10 SPJ chapters agree, the proposal still can be considered at the convention.
The deadline to submit the proposal, with the backing of 10 chapters, is 60 days before the convention, or July 26. The organizers are still seeking chapter support to meet the minimum requirement.