Bylaws of the Queer Neuropsychological Society (QNS)
Article I: Name, Purpose, Objectives, & Offices
1.1 Name. The name of this organization is Queer Neuropsychological Society (QNS).
1.1a A Note on the Use of "Queer": Although we acknowledge the historically oppressive and pejorative nature of the word “queer,” we also strongly believe in its power and join in the global effort to reclaim the beauty of the term. It is inclusive of all those who have felt “othered” by dominant heteronormative and cisnormative expectations. Queerness is fluid, dynamic, and includes a myriad of identities, all of which are valued and celebrated in this organization.
1.2 Purpose. The purpose of QNS is to develop a platform from which research and clinical applications thereof may be disseminated to neuropsychologists, allied professionals, and the public at large in the service of Queer individuals’ neuropsychological health needs.
1.3 Objectives. QNS objectives include collaboration, research, treatment, clinical competency, diversity, and training and education within neuropsychology and allied fields.
1.3a Collaboration: To collaborate with individuals of diverse experiences, backgrounds, perspectives, and expertise in order to promote understanding of the varied intersectionalities within the Queer community.
1.3b Research: To promote clinicians’ access to existing research, encourage new directions for future studies, and provide both a digital resource library and a forum in which findings may be discussed.
1.3c Treatment: To inform affirmative Queer patient care in the form of understanding neuropsychological performance in unique groups, identifying appropriate recommendations, and linking patients to helpful resources.
1.3d Clinical Competency: To increase awareness in neuropsychologists and allied professionals regarding care decisions (interpretation, diagnoses, terminology, etc). QNS also seeks to support clinicians in developing a compassionate, excellent bedside manner for Queer individuals and their families.
1.3e Diversity: To increase visibility and inclusion of the variety of ways Queer people are born and live.
1.3f Training and Education: To ensure easy access to quality information in the form of resources, consultation, supervision, mentorship, and seminars with particular focus on Queer cultures.
1.4 Offices. The principal office for the transaction of the business of the Corporation may be established at any place or places within or without the State of California by resolution of the Executive Board.
1.4a Other Offices: The Executive Board may at any time establish branch or subordinate offices at any place or places where the QNS is qualified to transact business.
Article II: Membership and Voting
2.1 Granting Membership.
2.1a Admission to Membership. Those who seek membership in the Society shall complete a membership application, the contents of which are determined by the Membership Committee. The Membership Committee will review each complete application and determine eligibility based on standards determined by that committee. Membership status will be granted upon receipt of appropriate dues, if any, and will take effect for a one-year period. In the event that the Membership Committee rejects an application for membership, the candidate will be apprised in writing of the specific reason for the rejection; the application may appeal in writing to the Membership Committee for reconsideration. If the appeal is rejected, the applicant may submit a final appeal to the Executive Board. In this event, the Membership Committee will also issue a written summary of the issue to the Executive Board, which will issue a final decision on the matter during their regular meeting.
2.1b Membership Renewal. Membership shall be automatically continued annually. Members may resign membership and terminate participatory rights via direct written request to the Membership Committee. Dues paid for the year will not be refunded.
2.1c Classes of Membership. There shall be four classes of members based on qualifications: Professionals, Students, Associates, and Affiliates.
2.1c.i Professional Members. Licensed psychologists with specialized education and training in neuropsychology.
2.1c.ii Student Members. Students, interns, and unlicensed fellows with an interest in Queer neuropsychology. This category includes individuals who hold a doctorate in psychology or a related discipline but do not meet criteria to hold Professional-level membership.
2.1c.iii Associate Members. Professionals with a masters or doctorate in psychology or other related field. License for independent practice is not required.
2.1c.iv Affiliate Members. Anyone with an interest in neuropsychology who may not fit into any other membership category.
2.1d Removal of Members. The Membership Committee may revoke membership for violation of bylaws or professional standards; appeal inquiries may be escalated to the Executive Board. Members who are concerned about the conduct and potential for harm by another member may, in good faith, convey information directly to the Membership Committee.
2.2 Rights of Membership & Voting Privileges.
2.2a. The Membership Committee will oversee voting procedures for the general membership, which will be maintained in the QNS Procedural Manual; any changes will be subject to approval by the Executive Board.
2.2b. Professionals & Associates. Professional and Associate members will be granted automatic voting privileges for actions and elections.
2.2c. Students & Affiliates. We encourage societal involvement by Student & Affiliate members, while also creating a minimum standard to ensure votes are representative of those with vested interests in Queer neuropsychology. Student & Affiliate members may be granted voting privileges by the Membership Committee based on several factors. The most recently approved protocols regarding this process shall be maintained by the Membership Committee.
2.3 Membership Standards. Members understand and agree to abide by the Bylaws of the Society, and expectations of professional decency:
2.3a Decorum & comportment: Members will hold themselves to a high standard of respectful communication and behavior.
2.3b Judgment & nonmaleficence: Members will express curiosity in a nonjudgmental way and the reasonable assumption of nonmaleficence will be afforded to all.
2.3c Additional standards: There are times when involvement in specific activities in QNS may require adherence to more specific guidelines (e.g., listserv participation); in these cases, please refer to the most recently approved document produced by the relevant committee, which will be linked from the Membership page on our website.
Article III: Meetings of the Society
3.1 Annual Meeting. The Executive Board will host an Annual Societal Meeting each year at one of the major neuropsychology professional conferences (e.g., the International Neuropsychological Society, American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology, National Academy of Neuropsychology) that will be attended by the Executive Board, Committee Chairs, and any members who wish to attend; though all members of the Executive Board are expected to attend, they may do so virtually if they are unable to attend in-person. The date of the following annual meeting will be determined by the Executive Board at the annual meeting. The annual meeting may occur via virtual audio/video platform if an in-person meeting is not feasible.
3.2 Executive Board Meetings. The Executive Board will hold a meeting every quarter on the third Friday of the following months: January, April, July, October.
3.2a Quorum. The presence in person or by other synchronous means (e.g., phone conference, Zoom) of the majority of the members of the Executive Board will constitute a Quorum.
3.2b Voting. Unless otherwise required by the Bylaws, Federal/State law, or standard rules of order, the votes of a majority of those present shall be sufficient to pass upon business of the Society. Voting by proxy or in absentia shall not be permitted without prior approval by majority vote of the Executive Board; if approved, proxy or in absentia votes must be submitted in writing prior to the meeting.
3.3 Action Without a Meeting. The Executive Board shall be authorized to carry on the business of the Society between their formal meetings, and actions that require a vote may be conducted by electronic or regular mail ballot.
3.3a Email Voting. Actions requiring a vote that are completed via email may be taken without a meeting if the action is taken by all members of the Board or the committee (i.e., unanimous consent). See the QNS Procedures document for specific details regarding the most current operating procedure for email voting approved by the Executive Board.
3.4 Parliamentary Authority. Meetings will be conducted in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order and enforced by the Parliamentarian.
Article IV: Governance
4.1 Executive Board. The Executive Board shall serve as the Board of Directors and consist of the following officers: President, Past-President, President-Elect, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Parliamentarian, Member-at-Large, and Student Representative. This structure will apply to all Executive Boards except the Inaugural Executive Board. The Board will be composed of an odd-number of Professional Members, except for the Student Representative who is not required to hold a Professional membership.
4.1a Qualifications. The Executive Board will consist of Professional Members, except for the Student Representative who is not required to hold a Professional membership. All Board members are elected to their positions by QNS membership.
4.1b Term. The terms of each member of the Executive Board will be two years with the exception of the President-Elect, who serves a one-year term and subsequently serves for one year in each of the following positions: President and Past-President.
4.1c Governance of Executive Board. QNS shall be governed by the Executive Board composed of the above elected officers. The Board will be responsible for representing the QNS to external persons and institutions and for conducting the business of the organization during the period of time between annual meetings. The Executive Board will be jointly responsible to the membership for the conduct of the organization’s affairs, and will make an annual report to the membership during the annual business meeting.
4.1d Prerogative to Intervene. If significant concerns are brought to the attention of the Executive Board, especially those pertaining to issues and behaviors that may not best represent QNS’s values and/or the Queer community, the Board shall review concerns and decide appropriate courses of action to address the issue(s).
4.2 Duties of the Officers. The duties of all QNS officers are as outlined below. The officers may also exercise and perform such other powers and duties as may from time to time be assigned to them by the Board:
President: The President shall be the principal executive officer and, with the approval of the Executive Board, shall in general supervise and control all the business and affairs of the society. The President may sign, with the President-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer or any other appropriate officer of the society thereunto authorized by the Executive Board, any deeds, mortgages, bonds, contracts or other instruments that the Board of Directors has authorized to be executed, except in cases where the signing and execution thereof shall be expressed and delegated by the Board of Directors or by these bylaws to some other officer or agent of the Society, or shall be required by law to be otherwise signed or executed; and in other duties as may be prescribed by the
Executive Board from time to time. The President shall be a Member Ex-Officio of all committees and a voting member of the Board of Directors.
President-Elect: The President-Elect shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors.
Vice-President: The President-Elect shall assume all of the duties of the President in their temporary absence or disability. The President-Elect may also take the office of President in case the President cannot fulfill the duties of their office for the remaining term of office. In such case, a suitable replacement for the position of President-Elect will be elected by the Executive Board by majority vote.
Treasurer: The Treasurer shall be responsible for the funds of the Society. They shall maintain an accurate account of these funds and accurate records of any financial transactions and status of the Society. Financial status and record of any and all financial transactions shall be made available to the Executive Board at any time and shall be reported to the membership during the official annual business meeting of the Society. Financial status and recorded transactions shall also be made available within a reasonable amount of time to any member of QNS who makes such request in writing to the Executive Board. The Treasurer shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors.
Secretary: The Secretary shall keep record of all proceedings of meetings of the Society and of the Executive Board. Summaries shall be presented to the Executive Board and to any Member of the Society who requests such summary. The Secretary is also responsible for safekeeping or cause to be kept all documents and papers which come to their possession as may be necessary. The Secretary shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors.
Past-President: The Past-President will be present at the meetings of the Executive Board and will provide support to the newly elected members of the Executive Board. The Past-President shall be the person who served as President during the most recent election term and will be a voting member of the Board of Directors.
Parliamentarian: The Parliamentarian will be present at the meetings of the Executive Board and will serve as the Chairperson of the Board during Board meetings and advise on parliamentary procedure. They are also responsible for maintaining the Bylaws and Procedural Manual and ensuring that those guiding documents are being followed by the Membership and Officers as outlined. The Parliamentarian shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors.
Members-at-Large: The Members-at-Large will be present at the meetings of the Executive Board. They will assist in the general operation of the Society and its business and affairs with duties including, but not limited to, the coordination and execution of the activities of Committees. The Members-at-Large shall be voting members of the Board of Directors.
Student Representative: The Student Representative will be present at the meetings of the Executive Board and is responsible for providing perspectives unique to the QNS student/trainee membership. The Student Representative shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors.
4.3 Project-based Committees. Project-based Committees have specific and actionable goals to address the strategic plan and shall conduct such business as is appropriate to their respective areas of responsibility, as determined by the Executive Board, members of each individual Committee and/or the members of the Society. All action recommendations by committees are to be approved by the Executive Board. All Committees will keep a written record available to Members detailing their priorities, methods, and progress, as well as clear financial logs, if relevant. Committee Chairs will liaise with and regularly meet with the Executive Board.
4.3a Temporary Committees. The Executive Board may establish temporary committees to address current issues within the organization. Additionally, voting members may submit formal proposals to the Executive Board for the development of a temporary committee, which will be debated and voted on by the Executive Board. Establishing a temporary committee as a permanent committee shall require an amendment to the bylaws.
4.3b Membership Committee. The purposes of this committee are recruitment of members and management of membership. The committee is also tasked with responding to potentially harmful exchanges, statements, and conflicts between or among members.
4.3c Research Committee. The purposes of this committee are to initiate and support new research, track new publications, and disseminate research and academic resources to all members.
4.3d Student and Education Committee. The purposes of this committee are to provide support to student members and organize educational and outreach opportunities for members and broader communities. Mentorship will be a priority of this committee.
4.3e Advocacy Committee. The purposes of this committee are promoting policy and other public changes that support the advancement of neuropsychological service provision, especially where it pertains to Queer wellness, in accordance with all rules and guidelines associated with 501(c)(3) status. These advocacy efforts may be within local, regional, national, and international committees, including advocacy efforts with primary neuropsychological organizations, state and provincial licensing boards, and government officials.
4.3f Communications Committee. The purpose of this committee is interfacing with other organizations, the broader neuropsychological community, and the public about QNS. Social media and the QNS website will be managed by this committee.
4.4 Processes for Installing Committee Positions. Committee chairs shall be selected by the Executive Board to serve one-year terms. Professional Members will be given preference; other Members who are well-qualified, as vetted by the Executive Board, may serve in Chair positions.
4.4a Committee Membership. The respective committee chairs, in consultation with the Executive Board will determine additional membership for each committee.
4.5 Processes for Removal of Committee Members. Members may be removed from committee positions due to a) resignation submitted to the Committee Chair, or in the event the Committee Chair is resigning, to the Executive Board b) majority agreement of the Executive Board, as determined by quorum, and for the best interests of QNS. In the event that a committee chair is unable to serve out the remainder of their term, leadership will vote on elevating an existing member or review new applications for service of the remainder of the term.
4.6 Committee Restructuring. As demands of the organization change, the Executive Board may expand committee roles and/or add or collapse committees, as determined by majority agreement. Committee chairs may also submit proposals to the Executive Board for committee restructuring, as needed, which will be debated and voted upon by the Executive Board.
4.7 Conflict of Interest. No Officer of the association shall deal with themselves or any other Officer in a manner which represents a conflict or potential conflict with the interests of the association. Officers may recuse themselves from voting or any discussions that may cause a potential conflict of interest. Conflict of Interests statements will be gathered by the Secretary at the start of a calendar year for all Officers and committee chairs. These statements are reviewed and approved by the Members of the Executive Board, or at the first Executive Meeting or conference call there after.
Article V: Financial Management
5.1 Financial Oversight. The Treasurer will maintain responsibility for managing all financial matters. Additional oversight will be provided by the President and President Elect, who shall each have access to all of the Society’s financial documents and records. Annual accounting of the finances will be presented to the Executive Board and made public to the membership after the annual meeting of the Society.
5.1a Issuing Payments The Treasurer shall issue payments to individuals receiving payment or compensation from the Society. Any payments surpassing $500 will require written approval from the Treasurer and either the President or President Elect. Any payment made to the Treasurer, President, or President Elect themselves shall require the approval of the Executive Board and documented in the Executive Board meeting minutes.
5.2 Annual Dues. The Society may institute annual membership dues for all levels of membership to fund all legitimate organizational expenses. The amount of dues will be determined by the Membership and Executive Board at each annual conference. Any increase in dues must be approved by a ⅔ majority of the Executive Board, and a notice of dues increase must be distributed to the membership 60 days prior to implementation.
5.2a Refunds. Dues shall not be refunded.
5.2b Delinquency. Any member of the Society who is delinquent in dues or fees may have their membership suspended or terminated. The Membership Committee shall oversee revocation of membership due to dues delinquency. Members may submit appeals regarding membership revocation to the Executive Board for review.
5.3 Fiscal Year. The Society’s fiscal year will be from January 1st to December 31st.
5.4 Dissolution of the Society. In the event that the Society is dissolved, any remaining funds are to be dispersed to a cause/organization that promotes the specific objectives of the Society, or as voted by the majority of the membership and ratified by the Executive Board at the time of dissolution.
Article VI: Matters of Future Development
6.1 Right to Amend. In the interest of transparency and purposeful planning for the future, the QNS bylaws were created during its infancy. As we grow, the Executive Board reserves the right to amend, modify, and otherwise update any aspect of this document. This includes but is not limited to: establishing new systems, developing responsible financial policies, and creating new member or organization functions. Proposed modifications will be put to a vote by the Executive Board 60 days after informing the Membership of the proposed changes and allowing for written concerns from members to be brought to the Board to be reviewed prior to voting.