Bylaws

Article I - NAME
Section 1. The name of this Organization shall be the Organization for Research on Women and Communication (ORWAC).

Article II - PURPOSE
Section 1. The purpose of this Organization, a non-profit organization, shall be to further scholarly inquiry and other professional activity of special interest to women in communication, and related disciplines, and to promote the purposes and activities of the Western States Communication Association (WSCA).

Article III - STRUCTURE
Section 1. ORWAC consists of individual members (see Article IV, Membership).

Section 2. ORWAC is an affiliate organization with WSCA. To maintain this relationship we require ORWAC officers and encourage ORWAC members to hold simultaneous membership in WSCA.

  1. Benefits of affiliation include:
    • Sponsorship of panels and workshops at WSCA's annual conference at a number following the same guidelines used for WSCA interest groups.
    • Space and time to hold an annual business meeting during the WSCA conference.
    • Representation (two voting members) at WSCA's Legislative Assembly.
    • The opportunity to announce awards at the annual conference luncheon.
  2. Responsibilities of affiliation include:
    • Updated bylaws shall be submitted to Executive Director as needed.
    • ORWAC shall participate in program planning for the annual convention under the direction of the main program planner/President-Elect.
    • Business meeting minutes shall be submitted to the WSCA Executive Director.
    • Distribute papers to the WSCA Executive Committee for the Top Debut Paper Award

Section 3. ORWAC assets and debts are independent of WSCA. If ORWAC disbands or otherwise ceases to exist, any remaining assets will be donated to the Women's Caucus of the National Communication Association.

Section 4. ORWAC liabilities, legal, financial, or otherwise are independent of WSCA.

Section 5. Additional relationships and responsibilities are detailed in the remainder of this document.

Article IV - MEMBERSHIP
Section 1. Membership in this organization is open to any individual concerned with the interests and challenges women in communication and related fields face.

Section 2. Annual membership shall be effected upon payment of dues as determined by the individual membership coordinator.

Section 3. Membership is a full calendar year

  1. The types of memberships available are:
    1. Individual
    2. Student
    3. Lifetime

Two year memberships can be purchased.

Section 4. Student memberships shall be offered at a lesser rate than individual memberships.

Section 5. Individual memberships shall be offered at a lesser rate than lifetime memberships.

Section 6. Any change in membership dues must be accepted by vote by a majority of the membership at the annual meeting.

Article V - OFFICERS
Section 1. The officers of this Organization shall be: President, Vice-President, Treasurer, Membership Officer, Immediate Past-President, ex-officio Student Representative(s), and ex-officio WSIC Editor(s).

Section 2. The officers must be members of the Organization and WSCA; ORWAC dues are paid by the Organization for the duration of the officers' terms.

Section 3. The officers shall not hold a like position simultaneously in WSCA's interest groups.

Section 4. All officers can be re-elected to serve multiple terms.

Section 5. The President shall serve for two years. The term begins at the end of the business meeting in which the new Vice President was elected. Duties shall be:

  1. Preside over all business meetings of this organization and shall assume primary administration responsibilities for the organization including making sure the Vice President submits the business meeting minutes to the Membership Officer and WSCA Executive Director.
  2. Submit names of the organization's representatives to WSCA Legislative Assembly.
  3. Represent ORWAC at the WSCA Legislative Assembly
  4. Submit the organization's resolutions to the WSCA Legislative Assembly.
  5. Serve as ex-officio member of all standing committees.
  6. Serve as representative of this organization to other related organizations.
  7. Solicit all awards from Executive Officers.
  8. Order awards for recipients of all top paper and Feminist Scholar awards.
  9. Conduct WSCA conference programming work, including:
    • Attend the program planning session for the preceding WSCA conference;
    • Receive competitive paper and panel submissions using the conference management system;
    • Create or update ratings sheet using the conference management system
    • Send submissions to reviewers using the conference management system within five days of submission deadline;
    • Receive referee ratings and determine acceptances and rejections;
    • Submit program recommendations to WSCA Program Planner/President Elect using conference management system;
    • Once WSCA Program Planner/President Elect confirms program, send acceptance/rejection of paper and panel proposals letters within five days of notification by WSCA Program Planner/President Elect;
    • Send letter and instructions to panel chairs and respondents;
    • Provide information to Vice President on competitive panels and thematic panels for the newsletter;
    • Submit papers to the WSCA Executive Committee for the Top Debut Paper Award;
  1. Submit documents to be archived. Archived documents include, but are not limited to, ORWAC newsletters, all business meeting minutes, annual individual membership records, and all reports given at the business meetings.

Section 6. The Vice President shall serve for two years with an expectation of becoming President. The term begins at the end of the business meeting in which the Vice President was elected. Duties shall be:

  1. Act on behalf of the President in the event of the President's unavailability, illness, or incapacity.
  2. Attend WSCA program planner meeting in the term preceding the move to President.
  3. Prepare the ORWAC newsletter.
  4. Serve as a reviewer for papers and programs.
  5. Take minutes at the executive officers' business meeting and the general member business meeting.
  6. Send draft of minutes to executive officers for editorial review.
  7. Distribute minutes of the previous year's business meeting to the members present at the general member meeting.
  8. Communicate with the organization's Membership Officer to make sure the website is updated, accurate, etc.
  9. Once the minutes are approved by the members, submit a copy to the Membership Officer and WSCA Executive Director.
  10. Ensure current bylaws are distributed to the WSCA Executive Director, members, and posted on the website.
  11. Coordinate reception for business meeting attendees; reception to be held during or immediately after the ORWAC business meeting.
  12. Represent ORWAC at the WSCA Legislative Assembly.
  13. Mentor elected Student Representative(s).

Section 7. The Treasurer shall serve for four years. The term begins at the end of the business meeting in which the Treasurer was elected. Duties shall be:

  1. Receive membership dues.
  1. Manage all payments on behalf of ORWAC.
  2. Keep a financial journal of all ORWAC income and expenses.
  3. Submit a semi-annual financial report to the President and maintain consistent communication on financial matters.
  4. Prepare an annual financial report and participate in officers' meeting and general meeting at the Western States Communication Association convention.
  5. Balance the accounts monthly.
  6. File taxes annually.
  7. Maintain the organizations' investments following consultation with Executive Officers.
  8. Update and maintain the website domain name.

Section 8. The Membership Officer shall serve for four years. The term begins at the end of the business meeting in which the Membership Officer was elected. Duties shall be:

  1. Maintain the organization's website (www.orwac.org) that promotes the interest, activities, and membership of the organization.
  2. Update information on the website and archive meeting minutes.
  3. Post information that could be useful to the membership on the website.
  4. Process new members and membership renewals through website.
  5. Maintain a record of memberships.
  6. Download and send membership list to journal publisher for WSIC distribution.
  7. Ensure members receive renewal email when memberships expire
  8. Create semi-annual reports regarding membership and website-use statistics.

Section 9. The Immediate Past-President shall serve a two year term. The term follows fulfillment as President and upon the election of an incoming President.

  1. Serve as advisor to the incoming President on matters related to the organization.
  2. Oversee the Research Development Grant committee. This includes publicizing the grant, receiving and notifying applicants, forwarding submitted grant applications to the committee for review, and fielding inquiries about the grant.

Section 10. The WSIC Editor shall serve for four years. The term commences at the beginning of the current editor's third year (Also see Article IX)

  1. The editor's main responsibility shall be overseeing publication of three volumes of Women's Studies in Communication. Most volumes shall consist of four issues. With the approval of the Executive Committee, the editor may prepare special issues.

To meet this responsibility, the editor shall:

    • Establish an editorial board composed of scholars with a wide range of expertise in the areas of women, gender, feminisms, and communication;
    • If appropriate, appoint an associate editor to process manuscripts outside editor's areas of expertise;
    • Appoint a book review editor and ensure timely processing of book reviews;
    • Invite submissions to the journal;
    • Send submitted essays to appropriate reviewers for blind review. Set a deadline by which reviews must be completed;
    • Track review process in an effort to promote timely responses;
    • Consider reviewers' suggestions and determine whether submissions should be accepted, rejected, or revised and resubmitted;
    • Inform author(s) of decision through a formal letter. If the author(s) is (are) invited to revise and resubmit, provide specific guidance for revisions;
    • Obtain copyright permission from authors whose manuscripts are accepted for publication;
    • Copy edit accepted manuscripts for grammar and style compliance;
    • Submit accepted manuscripts, book reviews, and introductory pages, and any advertisements to the printing press for typesetting;
    • Receive proofs from the printer; send to authors for their review;
    • Submit final proofs to the printer for publication;

Submit relevant information, including editorial board membership to the Membership Officer on a regular basis.

  1. Work with incoming editor to ensure smooth transition.
  2. Serve as an ex-officio member of the Executive Committee. In this capacity, prepare an annual report outlining the business of the journal, including acceptance rates for the past year and the editor's entire tenure.

Section 10. The Student Representative(s) shall serve a two year term. Up to two students may be elected for this position. The Student Representative(s) is a non-voting member of the executive board (ex-officio). Duties shall be:

  1. Serve as an ex-officio member of the Executive Committee.
  2. Attend officer and business meetings, if possible. 
  3. Consult with student members to represent their interests.
  4. Maintain ORWAC social media outreach.
  5. Publicize ORWAC members' presentations at NCA and WSCA.
  6. Contribute to the newsletter, as needed. 

Section 11. Replacement of Officers

  1. In the event the President or Vice President is unable to fulfill their responsibilities for whatever reason, the Vice President or President of the organization shall step in to complete the vacant position. For instance, if the President leaves post, the Vice President will assume the responsibilities. A meeting may be called with the remaining officers to replace vacancy for the officer position, through nominations and votes, to serve the remainder of the term.
  2. In the event the Treasurer is unable to fulfill their responsibilities for whatever reason, the Executive Officers will call a meeting to replace the vacancy for the position, through nominations and votes, to serve the remainder of the term.
  3. In the event the Membership Officer is unable to fulfill their responsibilities for whatever reason the Executive Committee will call a meeting to replace the vacancy for the position, through nominations and votes, to serve the remainder of the term.
  4. In the event the WSIC editor is unable to fulfill their responsibilities for whatever reason the Executive Committee replace the vacancy for the position by soliciting nominations from immediate past WSIC editors to serve until the following February when a new editor may be selected.

Article VI - EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
Section 1. The Executive Committee of ORWAC shall be comprised of the officers of ORWAC as outlined in Article V, the editor(s) of Women's Studies in Communication, and any standing committee chairs.

Section 2. It shall be the duty of the Executive Committee to carry out directives of the membership, to coordinate the Committees and Standing Committees for the special duties and projects of the Organization, and to act on behalf of the Organization between annual meetings.

Article VII - ELECTION PROCEDURES
Section 1. Elections shall take place at the annual business meeting.

Section 2. The nominations for officer positions shall be solicited in advance by the Executive Committee and taken from the floor at the organization's annual meeting. All nominees shall indicate their willingness to serve.

Section 3. Balloting (either on paper or with a show of hands) shall be conducted at the annual meeting with ballots counted by two members of the Executive Committee.

Section 4. A majority vote of those members in attendance at the annual business meeting shall be sufficient to elect an officer for the vacant position. If only one candidate is being considered, a motion can come from the floor to serve the position by acclamation. The results will be announced at that time.

Article VIII - COMMITTEES
Section 1. Committees, as needed, shall be appointed by the President, or by a majority vote of the Organization.

Section 2. Special committees shall be given specific duties and a specific date for a final report.

Article IX - JOURNAL
Section 1. ORWAC is sole owner and producer of a journal called Women's Studies in Communication (aka WSIC) devoted to research pertaining to women and communication.

  1. ORWAC maintains a licensing agreement with Taylor & Francis, effective November 3, 2009, who serves as publisher of the journal.
  2. ORWAC maintains third-party licensing agreements, who distribute journal content in electronic format.
  3. All copyright and permission requests for the journal are to be directed to Taylor & Francis.
  1. Section 2. The journal shall be published four times a year. With the approval of the Executive Committee, the editor may prepare special issues.

Section 3. Editor(s) of Women's Studies in Communication shall be selected by the Executive Committee and shall oversee three volumes of the journal.

  1. The Executive Committee will notify the members of the selection process in writing three months before the selection process begins.
  2. Each applicant will be required to submit a letter outlining philosophy, experience, ability to set-up and work with a good editorial board, as well as time commitment, institutional commitment and research experience.
  3. The applicant must submit two (2) letters of recommendation and a letter detailing institutional support.
  4. The new Editor(s) selection will occur at the beginning of the current Editor(s)' third year to facilitate an easy transition between Editor(s).

Section 4. In the case that the Editor has an Editorial Assistant, the Editor will seek Executive Committee approval on appropriate compensation.

Article X - MEETINGS
Section 1. The regular meeting, which is the annual business meeting, shall be held at the decision of the President, with the approval of the Executive Committee at the time and place of the WSCA convention.

Section 2. Special meetings may be called by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee upon notification of all members of the Organization.

Section 3. A quorum shall consist of the members in attendance at the meeting.

Article XI - CONFERENCE PAPER AND PANEL REVIEW PROCESS
Section 1. The President selects at least three reviewers for each submission from a list generated at the annual business meeting asking for volunteers and from the general ORWAC membership.

Section 2. Papers are assigned to eliminate institutional and authorial bias. However, papers may indicate student paper or debut paper. Otherwise, papers are evaluated by a blind review process.

Section 3. The President may not submit a competitive paper to the organization.

Section 4. Reviewers shall be scholars with an institutional affiliation and may not be students.

Section 5. Reviewers shall be responsible for reviewing competitive paper submissions and for responding about the quality of submissions by the deadline given by the President.

Section 6. The organization does not accept works in progress for consideration.

Article XII - AWARDS
Section 1. Awards are acknowledged by ORWAC. They include the Top Student Paper Award, Top Debut Paper Award, Top Paper Award and the Feminist Scholarship Award.

Section 2. The Top Student Paper Award, Top Debut Paper Award, and the Top Paper Award are determined by the President as critiqued by the blind review process.

Section 3. The Feminist Scholarship Award is determined by a committee chaired by the WSIC editor and is drawn from any article published in WSIC the prior year.

Section 4. At the WSCA conference, a panel will be solely comprised of the Top Three/Four papers in the Organization, determined by the President as critiqued in the blind review process.

Section 5. At the annual ORWAC meeting, the President will recognize all awards.

  1. Recipient of the Top Student Paper receives a $500.00 award and one year membership to the organization.
  2. Recipient of the Top Paper receives a $500.00 award and one year membership to the organization.
  3. Recipient of the Top Debut Paper receives a $500.00 award and one year membership to the organization.
  4. Recipient of the Feminist Scholarship Award receives a $500.00 award and a one year membership to the organization.

Article XIII - GRANTS
Section 1. Grants are given by ORWAC to assist scholars in conducting research on or related to women and gender.

Section 2. Grants are awarded in five categories—undergraduate students, master's graduate students, doctoral graduate students, contingent faculty, and tenure-track/tenured faculty. Applicants must be an ORWAC member, submit an application along with budget form, and current curriculum vita. Applications are reviewed by the Executive Committee or by an appointed Committee.

Section 3. Executive officers are ineligible for the grants during their tenure in office.

Article XIV - FINANCIAL STATUS
Section 1. As of December 10, 1998 ORWAC was granted 501 (c) 3 status [nonprofit]. ORWAC's identification number is 27-3650099.

Article XV - AMENDMENTS
Section 1. Amendments to these Bylaws may be initiated by a majority of the officers, by a majority of the Organization's membership, or by a petition addressed to the President and signed by at least twenty-five members of the Organization.

Section 2. Proposed amendments shall be submitted to members present at the annual meeting.

Section 3. These bylaws shall become effective after ratification by a majority vote of the Organization at the annual meeting.

Article XVI - PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY
Section 1. All meetings of the Organization, its committee or other subsidiary bodies shall be governed by the parliamentary rules and usages contained in the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order, Newly Revised.

Amendments Accepted: February 2006
Revisions: August 12, 2008
Revised Amendments Accepted: February 2008
Proposed Update: February 2010

Revisions: February 2019