The ABoR Bylaws provide the complete detail of the nominating and board election process in addition to outlining the opportunity for members to propose additional nominees through a petition process. Below are some frequently asked questions about these processes.
How do people get onto ABoR’s Board of Directors and what is the length of their terms?
Anyone who is a primary or secondary REALTOR® member of the Austin Board of REALTORS® for at least three consecutive years immediately prior to election, with ABoR committee or task force experience or have been the Chair or Vice Chair of a local council/society sanctioned by NAR (for example WCR, CCIM, CRS, Commercial Overlay Boards, etc.) and, beginning with the next annual election in 2018, has not been removed from the Board of Directors or a Committee within the past 3 years, is eligible to apply to be a Director.
The Nominating Process officially launches May 15th of each year, when ABoR publishes the positions to be filled and the candidate application. Applicants are thoroughly vetted through an application and interview process in addition to vetting conducted by checking the professional references provided by each candidate. Directors are nominated to serve a 3-year term. They may serve up to 2 consecutive 3-year terms.
How are candidates vetted by the Nominating Committee?
Each candidate submits an extensive application, including information about professional designations, professional references from within the real estate community, service to the industry by way of ABoR or an NAR affiliated real estate organization (ie. Women’s Council of REALTORS®), and a professional resume. Professional references are interviewed by two separate members of the Nominating Committee, ethical and legal violations designations are checked on the TREC website and with TAR and NAR. The candidates then participated in an interview with a panel of their peers. The process is extensive and ensures the candidates moved forward are highly qualified leaders that represent a diverse set of Board members.
Who is on the Nominating Committee and how are they chosen?
The Bylaws dictate that the Nominating Committee consists of nine (9) members chaired by the once removed most recent Past President, two (2) sitting directors, and five (5) non-Director REALTORS. The Bylaws also indicate that the committee is appointed by the President with approval by the Board of Directors.
Why doesn’t ABoR always have the full membership vote on who is added to the Board of Directors?
ABoR uses the Nominating committee environment to thoroughly vet all candidates for the best possible leadership to represent the entire membership. Once the slate is announced to the Membership, there is an opportunity to petition the slate to add additional names to the slate. In that case, and if the petition is valid, a ballot vote of the entire membership is conducted. If no petition is submitted, the slate of the Nominating Committee is elected.
If you’re not advanced by the Nominating Committee as a Board Candidate, how can you get on the ballot?
Following the report of the Nominating Committee to the membership before August 31st, a member not nominated may add their name to the slate by filing a petition.
How does a candidate petition the membership to run outside of the Nominating process?
Following the report of the Nominating Committee to the membership before August 31st, a member not nominated may add their name to the slate by filing a petition. The candidate should notify the CEO if they wish to file a petition. ABoR provides the Board-approved petition form and a current membership count to determine the number of signatures needed at that time. The petition must be signed by 5% of the membership with no more than 25% of the signatures from any one company. The petition must be filed with the CEO before October 1st (i.e. by September 30th).
If you petition the membership, do you run as a slate or as separate individuals?
A petition allows a candidate’s name to be added to the slate, thus one (1) petition per candidate is allowed and the candidate is added to the list of candidates. Members can then vote for their five choices, and the five candidates receiving the most votes are elected.
When a seat on the Board of Directors is vacated, how and when is it filled?
The Bylaws indicate that “vacancies among the Officers and the Board of Directors may be filled by a simple majority vote of the Board of Directors until the next annual election.” Note “may be filled” not “must be filled.” The Board of Directors could elect to leave those seats vacant until the next annual election. The “annual election” begins May 15th, when the applications for Board leadership are made available to the membership.