The South Asian Journalists Association (SAJA) is a non-profit organization that provides a networking and resource forum for journalists of South Asian origin and journalists interested in South Asia or the South Asian Diaspora. SAJA's mission also includes acting as a resource to facilitate and promote accurate coverage of South Asia and South Asians in North America.
SAJA is a membership-based organization. Full membership in SAJA is open to all journalists resident in North America or working for a North American journalism organization. Student membership is open to those attending higher-education institutions or high schools in North America. Associate membership is open to all other individuals, including non-journalists in North America and journalists living abroad. All memberships are subject to the approval of the membership committee.
All of SAJA's membership categories and fees are determined by the Board and are subject to revision at the discretion of the Board.
Board members are primarily responsible for carrying out the mission statement and for framing the organization's direction and policy. Board members are elected to the Board for two-year terms. The term of each Board member runs from the date of the Board meeting immediately following their election until, but not including, the date of the first Board meeting after the second subsequent Board election.
Section 1.The Board has five officers: a President, a Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary and an At-large Director. Officers must be current Board members. Officers are appointed by a majority vote of the sitting Board members at the Board meeting immediately following the Board election. Officers serve for a term of one year, from the Board meeting at which they’re appointed officers until, but not including, the first Board meeting after the subsequent elections. Vacancies may be filled during the year for the duration of the term. The Board meets at least FOUR times each year. In order to be a member in good standing, Board members are required to attend at least three of the four meetings, unless otherwise approved by the full board. A Board meeting is considered in order if there is a quorum of at least half the Board members, plus one. Each Board member has one vote.
Section 2.Board members who cannot fulfill their duties may be removed by an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the sitting members of the Board. The membership at large may also instigate action to remove one or more members from the Board, according to the following procedure: one-third of all full, paid members must petition to hold a referendum for the removal of the Board member(s) in question. The Board member(s) shall be removed if the referendum for removal wins by a two-thirds majority of those voting.
Section 3.Any full, paid SAJA member is eligible to run for the Board. Officers must have served on the Board for at least one full year prior to their appointment as an officer, unless the Board deems otherwise. The President and Vice President are allowed to serve no more than four consecutive terms in the same position.
Section 4.Candidates for the Board are required to submit a statement describing their journalistic backgrounds and reasons for running by the deadline determined by the Board. Once elections are held, the results will be announced as soon as practicable thereafter. Election ballots must be submitted by mail.
Section 5.Any vacancies that occur during a term of office may be filled by the action of the Board for the remainder of the unexpired term. If the number of Board members then in office is less than a quorum, a vacancy on the Board may be filled by approval of a majority of the Board members then in office or by a sole remaining Board member.
Day-to-day decisions for SAJA are made by an Executive Committee composed of: (1) the President (2) the Vice President (3) the Secretary (4) the Treasurer and (5) an at-large director designated by the Board from among the remaining Board members. The at-large member must be designated during the same meeting at which Board officers are elected, and also serves for a term of one year. A vacancy in this position may be filled during the year for the duration of the term. Other decisions of the Executive Committee must be approved by a simple majority of the full Board. Executive Committee members function at the discretion of the Board. Only Executive Committee members are empowered to speak publicly on behalf of SAJA.
SAJA's Board is empowered to form and disband committees in charge of specific organizational and functional areas, as deemed necessary. These committees must work in close cooperation with the Executive Committee. Each committee must be chaired by a Board member and may include only members of SAJA. The Board is empowered to name SAJA members to the committees. The committee chairs must provide regular reports to the Executive Committee on their work and may make recommendations at Board meetings that require the action of the Board.
SAJA's Board has the authority to form Chapters in different cities within North America that are intended to act as a local resource for SAJA members and others who work or live within that region. Chapters are formed at the discretion of the Board. Chapters must abide by the mission of SAJA and its Bylaws. Chapters may be disbanded by a two-thirds majority vote of the SAJA Board. Any public statements issued by a SAJA Chapter must be of a local nature and must be approved by the SAJA Executive Committee. SAJA Chapters are not authorized to issue press releases or make other public statements on behalf of SAJA. All Chapter coordinators must be paid SAJA members and must be approved by the SAJA Board. Participation in a SAJA Chapter does not constitute SAJA membership.
SAJA intends to trademark its name and logo.
These bylaws are subject to and may be amended from time to time by a majority vote of the members of the Board at a meeting of the Board of Directors.