By-Laws Association of Virgin Islands Psychologists
Bylaws of the Association of Virgin Islands Psychologists

Article I: Name and mission
Article II: Membership
Article III: Officers
Article IV: Meetings
Article V: The Executive Board
Article VI: Committees
Article VII: Parliamentary Authority
Article VIII: Amendment of Bylaws

Article I - Name and mission

Section 1. Name. The name of the Association shall be the ASSOCIATION OF VIRGIN ISLANDS PSYCHOLOGISTS, and it shall be known by the acronym, AVIP

Section 2. Mission. The mission of AVIP is to be an association of responsible professional psychologists who will

    a) Promote the interests of psychology in the Territory of the Virgin Islands of the United States, by fostering the education and awareness of the community on mental health issues; promoting culturally sensitive social policy that would enhance the mental emotional and social well-being of the community and its members; supporting legislation that meets these goals; and engaging in such other activities that may be necessary and proper to accomplish the forgoing mission.

     b)
Advance the Profession of Psychology by influencing educational standards; promoting ethical and responsible professional practice; demanding high standards of professional conduct; conducting professional education programs; promoting research; supporting legislation that is compatible with association goals and tax status; and by engaging in such other activities as may be necessary and proper to accomplish the foregoing mission. The AVIP shall adopt the Ethical Principles promulgated by the American Psychological Association.

 

Article II: Membership

Section 1. Types of Membership.

      a) Regular membership.

          i. Eligibility. Any person who holds a Masters or Doctoral degree in Psychology, or in a related field from a program primarily psychological in content, from a regionally accredited institution in the United States shall be eligible for Regular membership. Membership shall not be limited or restricted by any discrimination based on race, religion, color, creed, age, sex, or otherwise. But the person must reside in the Virgin Islands the majority of the year. The degree must be from a regionally accredited graduate or professional school, or one that has achieved accreditation within five years of the year that the degree was granted. Degrees from outside the United States, which are of equivalent standing, will also be accepted .

          iii. A regionally accredited school is defined as one that is fully accredited by the appropriate regional accrediting body in the Directory of Postsecondary Education or one that is listed in the APA Graduate Study of Psychology and Associated Fields. Non-US degrees must be listed in an equivalent international directory.

      b) Associate membership

         You may qualify for election as a non-voting Associate member if you hold a Masters or Doctorate degree in psychology or a program which is in a related field to psychology in content and you do not reside in the Virgin Islands. The degree must be from a regionally accredited graduate or professional school or one that has achieved accreditation within five years of the year that the degree was granted. Degrees from outside the United States, which are of equivalent standing, will also be accepted .

     c) Affiliate membership

          You may qualify for election as a non-voting Affiliate member if have an interest in psychology and you hold a degree in an area related to psychology. Residency is not required.

    

          d) Student membership.

          Any student enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program leading to a degree in psychology or a person who has achieved a B.A. in Psychology, will be eligible for non-voting membership in the Association.

 

Section 2. Procedure for application.

a) An applicant shall submit an application form including one of the following documents to the President-elect acting as Membership Coordinator:

     1. Proof of membership (member or associate) in the American Psychological Association (APA)

     2. A photocopy of the Master’s or Doctoral degree

     3. An official transcript.

b) Payment of a non-refundable application fee as determined by the Executive Board.

c) All applications will be reviewed by the Ethics and Membership Committee to determine that the applicant’s credentials are valid, that he or she is a member in good standing of applicable professional groups, and that there are no outstanding ethical or legal complaints against the individual that would affect membership in AVIP. The Past-president acting chairperson of the committee will make a recommendation to the Executive Board.

d) The Executive Board will approve membership by a majority vote.

 

Section 3. Dues.

Association dues for members shall be established by action of the Executive Board and ratified by a majority of the membership, and shall be payable annually by January 30 th of each year.

Section 4. Rights of membership.

Each regular member shall have one vote.

b) Regular members have the right to run for and serve in office positions and on committees.

c) Associate, affiliate and student members may participate in all activities of the organization and serve on committees

Section 5. Severance of membership.

a) A member may be dropped from membership for any conduct that is contrary or destructive to the mission of the Association according to the Bylaws and the Ethical Principles of the Association. Formal complaints must be brought before the Executive Board and severance will be accomplished by decision of the Executive Board ratified by a majority of the membership.

b) A member may be dropped from membership for the non-payment of dues. The Treasurer shall notify members 3 months in arrears, and those whose dues are not paid within 3 months thereafter shall be automatically dropped from membership in the Association.

 

Article III: Officers

Section 1. Officers and terms of office.

a) The officers of the Association shall be a President, the Past-president, the President-Elect, a Secretary Treasurer and the chairpersons of the Education and the Government Affairs committees.

b)
All officers shall be elected from among the general membership at the annual meeting and shall serve for one year terms and until their successors are elected. At least one of the officers shall be elected from among the members of the Association resident on St. Croix, and one from among members resident on St. Thomas / St. John.

c)
The term of office of any elected officer of the Association shall begin at the close of the annual meeting at which they are elected.

d)
Vacancies in any office occurring before the end of an officer’s term shall be filled by an appointment of the Executive Board.

e) No member shall hold more than one office at a time, and no member shall be eligible to serve more than two consecutive terms in the same office.

Section 2. Duties of officers.

a) The President shall preside at all meetings of the Association and shall be Chairperson and preside at meetings of the Executive Board. The president shall be an ex-officio member without vote on all other committees. The President shall perform the duties customary to that office and such additional duties as directed by the Executive Board and by the membership.

b) The President-elect shall perform the duties of the President in the absence or incapacity of the President, and shall perform other duties as directed by the Executive Board or by the membership.

c) For the purposes of communication with the American Psychological Association, in particular activities with the Practice Directorate and participation in the Leadership forum, the President of AVIP shall act as Executive Director of the organization and the President Elect will act as the Federal Advocacy Coordinator. When AVIP hires persons into either or both of those positions, this provision will then automatically be nullified.

d) The Secretary / Treasurer shall issue notices of all meetings, shall keep minutes of all meetings, shall maintain a list of all qualified members, shall represent the Association in assuring the receipt and expenditures of funds in accordance with the directives and policies established by the membership. The Secretary / Treasurer shall perform the duties customary to those offices and such other duties as the Executive Board and the membership may properly assign.

Section 3. Termination of officers.

a) Any officer of the association who misses three (3) consecutive Board meetings without good cause may be asked to resign from the Executive Board.

b) Vacancies created in this manner shall be filled by the procedure outlined in Article III Section 1(d)

 

Article IV: Meetings

Section 1. Regular meetings

a) The regular meetings of the Association shall be scheduled by the Executive Board, but meetings hall be held at least four (4) times per year. One of every four meetings shall be held on St. Croix and one of every four meetings shall be held on St. Thomas, and the President and Secretary / Treasurer shall be present at those meetings.

      i. Inter-island travel for this purpose will be reimbursed by the Association as necessary.

b) The regular meeting in May shall be a joint meeting of the full membership, held in alternate years on St. Thomas / St. John and on St. Croix.

c) To the extent possible, all other meetings will be held by audio or video conference call between the two islands.

Section 2. Annual meeting

a) The regular meeting in November shall be known as the annual meeting, and shall be for the purpose of electing officers and members of the Nominations Committee, receiving reports of officers and committees, and for any other business that may arise.

b) The annual meeting shall be held in alternate years on St. Thomas / St. John and St. Croix.

c) The Secretary / Treasurer shall give notice of the annual meeting to all members at least 30 days in advance of such meeting.

Section 3. Special meetings.

a) Special meetings may be called by the President or by the Executive Board and shall be called upon the written request of six (6) members of the Association. The purpose of the meeting shall be stated in the call.

b) Except in the case of emergencies, at least three days notice shall be given for the convening of a special meeting.

Section 4. Quorum.

Fifty percent (50%) of the current paid members of the Association plus one shall constitute a Quorum of any regular meeting.

Section 5. Absentee ballots.

If a member cannot attend the annual meeting, they must make this known to the nominations committee so that an absentee ballot can be mailed or faxed to them weeks prior to the general meeting. Their vote must be received by the chair of the nominations committee prior to the election so that they can be counted in the election held during the annual meeting.

 

Article V - The Executive Board.

Section 1. Composition.

The officers of the Association, as specified in Article III, Section 1, paragraph a shall constitute the Executive Board.

Section 2. Powers and functions.

a) The Executive Board shall have general supervision of the affairs of the Association between its business meetings, fix the hour and place of meetings, make recommendations on policy to the Association, implement the goals and objectives of the Association, and shall perform other such duties as are specified in these Bylaws.

b) The Executive Board shall be subject to the orders of the Association, and none of its acts shall conflict with action taken by the Association.

Section 3. Meetings.

a) Regular meetings of the Executive Board shall be held at least every two months except for the months of August and September and at a time to be set by the Board.

b) Special meetings of the Board may be called by the President and shall be called upon the written request of three members of the Board.

Section 4. Executive Director.

a) The Association shall employ a qualified person, full or part time to be the Executive Director.

b) The job description of the Executive Director and terms of employment shall be the responsibility of the Executive Committee.

c) Direct Supervision of the Executive Director is provided by the President of the Association.

 

Article VI – Committees

Section 1. Standing Committees.

The standing committees of the Association shall be an Education and Programs Committee, an Ethics and Membership Committee, a Financial Affairs Committee, a Government Relations Committee, and a Nominations Committee. Committee appointments shall be made by the President and committee members shall serve a two-year term unless otherwise specified. Members of the Association who are not appointed members of a committee may voluntarily serve on a committee(s) of their choosing, except that the Committee on Ethics and Membership shall be a closed committee.

a) Education and Programs Committee
– The Education and Programs Committee shall be composed of one elected Director of the Association, and four members of the Association appointed by the President. It shall be the duty of this committee to plan educational and awareness activities directed towards the Virgin Islands community, as well as professional educational programs, meetings, awards and the like.

b) Ethics and Membership Committee – The Ethics and membership Committee shall be composed of the Past President, the president-elect and one appointed members. It shall be responsible for reviewing and approving the credentials of applicants for membership in the Association, educating the membership concerning the Ethical Principles adopted by the Association, monitoring and periodically upgrading the documents and procedures pertinent to the Ethical Principles, and receiving and processing complaints of alleged violations of the Ethical Principles of the Association.

c) Financial Affairs Committee -- The Financial Affairs Committee shall be composed of the Secretary / Treasurer and two appointed members. It shall be the duty of this committee to prepare an annual budget for the Association, and such supplements to the budget as may be necessary.

       i. This committee shall also be responsible for advising the Association on fund-raising activities.
       ii. This committee in conjunction with the Executive Committee will prepare CAPP grants annually and seek other funding as needed and appropriate.

d) Government Relations Committee
– The Government Relations Committee shall be composed of an elected Chairperson and one to four members of the Association appointed by the President. The Government Relations Committee shall be responsible for identifying and coordinating activities related to the Association’s interest in public policy and professional issues, and supporting legislation compatible with the professional and public policy goals of the Association, in a manner that is compatible with Association goals and tax status.

e) Nominations Committee
-- The Nominations Committee shall be composed of the Past president and two members of the Association elected from the membership. One member shall be resident on St. Thomas and one member shall be resident on St. Croix. The Nominations Committee shall be responsible for presenting and nominating for election at the annual meeting:

      i. a slate of officers to the Association.

      ii. recommendations to the Governor of the Territory for appointments to the Psychology Examining Board as vacancies occur

      iii. The term of office for members of the Nominations Committee is one year, and no member may be a candidate for President of the Association while serving on the Nominations Committee.

Section 2. Other committees.

a) Such other committees, standing or special, shall be appointed by the President of the Association or the Executive Board shall from time to time deem necessary to carry on the work of the Association.

b) Special committees shall remain active for a term of one year, unless renewed by the Executive Board.

Section 3. Reports.

Each committee shall transmit an annual written report to the President of the Association who hall report salient developments to the Executive Board and to the Association.


Article VII - Parliamentary authority.

The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the Association in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these bylaws and any special rules of order the Association may adopt.

 

Article VIII - Amendment of bylaws.

These bylaws may be amended at any regular meeting or special meeting of the Association by a two-thirds vote, provided that the amendment has been submitted in writing at the previous regular meeting.