The texts of the ACBI Constitution, Bylaws and Amendments are found in the following section.
For questions regarding these documents, contact John Huffman at (317) 228-0496 as the organization's parliamentarian and best student of these works.
The American Council of the Blind
of Indiana. (ACBI)
Constitution & Bylaws
Amended: 1973, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1986, 1987, 1991, 1992, 1993, 2001,
2002, 2004, 2015, 2016
Article I: Name
The name of this organization shall be the American Council of the Blind of
Article II: Purpose
The purpose of the American Council of the Blind of Indiana is to strive for
the betterment of our total community.
A. Through a representative state organization primarily of blind people.
B. By providing a forum for the views of the blind from all corners of the
state and from all walks of life.
C. By elevating the social, economic, and cultural levels of the blind.
D. By improving educational and rehabilitation facilities.
E. By broadening vocational opportunities.
F. By encouraging and assisting the blind, especially the newly blinded, to
develop their abilities and potentialities and to assume their responsible
place in the community.
G. By cooperating with the public and private institutions of and for the
H. By providing for the free exchange of ideas, opinions, and information
relating to matters of concern to blind people.
I. By conducting a program of public education aimed toward improving the
understanding of the problems of blindness and of the capabilities of blind
Article III: Membership, Voting and Dues
A. Any person who is at least eighteen (18) years old is eligible to become a
member of this organization upon complying with the provisions hereinafter
contained. A majority of the members of this organization must be blind or
B. Each member in good standing attending a regular convention shall be
entitled to one vote.
C. Dues shall be paid on a calendar year basis, the amount to be set forth in
D. There shall also be provision for non-voting associate membership by
organizations and individuals who wish to support our efforts. Annual dues for
associate membership shall be set by the Board of Directors.
Article IV: Officers
A. The officers of this organization shall consist of a president, a
vice-president, a secretary, and a treasurer, and their terms of office shall
be two years beginning January 1 of even numbered years, immediately following
the annual convention.
B. In addition to the officers, this organization shall have nine directors to
be elected by the convention for terms of three years. At the first election
three shall be elected for three years, three shall be elected for two years,
and three shall be elected for one year.
C. Officers elected after the adoption of this amendment shall not be elected
for more than three (3) consecutive terms to the same office, and no director
shall be elected to more than two (2) consecutive terms. Twelve (12) months or
more shall be counted as a full two-year term for officers. Eighteen (18) months
or more shall be counted as a full three-year term for directors.
D. Officers and directors shall be elected by a majority vote cast at any
E. Vacancies of offices occurring between conventions shall be filled by
temporary appointment of the board of directors. An election will be held at
the next regular convention to fill the vacancy for the duration of the term.
F. The immediate past president shall be automatically a voting member of the
board of directors.
G. A chapter president or a chapter designee who is not an elected member of
the board may participate at Board meetings with voting privileges.
H. The executive committee shall consist of the president, vice-president,
secretary, treasurer, and immediate past president to carry out assignments of
Article V: Powers and Duties of Convention, the Officers, the Board of
Directors, and of Committees.
A. Any voting member of the organization may make or second motions, propose
nominations, serve on committees, and be elected to office. The convention
shall determine the time and place of its meetings.
B. Officers of this organization shall perform the usual functions of the
offices as prescribed by Robert's Rules of Order Revised, unless provided for
in the By-Laws.
C. The Board of Directors shall be the governing body of this organization
between conventions provided that it shall make no policy decisions and take
no official action in conflict with existing decisions or actions of the
D. A nominating committee consisting of no less than three and no more than
five members shall be appointed by the president not later than ninety days
prior to the convention.
E. The Board of Directors by a two-thirds vote may recognize and designate any
group consisting primarily of five or more visually impaired individuals
within the state of Indiana as a local chapter of the American Council of the
Blind of Indiana providing that the constitution, by-laws, and statements of
purpose of the group are not in conflict with the constitution and by-laws of
the American Council of the Blind or of the American Council of the Blind of
Indiana and providing that members of the local chapter shall not be eligible
to continue such membership longer than one year without holding simultaneous
membership in the American Council of the Blind of Indiana. Any financial
agreement between the American Council of the Blind of Indiana and a local
chapter shall be subject to a two-thirds vote of approval by the Board of
Examples of such agreements may include: Appropriations to a local chapter, a
sharing of profits in a fund raising project, a sharing of expenses in a program
to advance the welfare of the blind, or cooperative involvement in any financial
venture in which the American Council of the Blind of Indiana may properly
Article VI: Meetings
A. A regular meeting of this organization shall be held once each year to be known
as the annual convention. A majority of all votes certified and seated at the
convention shall constitute a quorum to do business.
B. The bord of directors shall hold four (4) meetings each year. Additional
meetings may be held at the call of the president or at the request of any five (5) voting
members of the board. A quorum to conduct routine business shall consist of a
majority of the voting members. Executive actions shall require a quorum
consisting of two-thirds of the voting members of the board.
Article VII: Dissolution
The American Council of the Blind of Indiana, Inc. will in case of dissolution
pay all liabilities from the assets of the organization and any remaining funds
will be given to a nonprofit organization designated by a majority of the
Article VIII: Amendments
This constitution may be amended at any regular convention of this organization
by a two-thirds vote, and by-laws by a simple majority vote of those present and
voting according to voting procedures contained herein.
1. Any person eighteen years or older shall be eligible to apply for membership
in this organization.
2. The dues of this organization shall be seven dollars ($7.00) annually
effective 2003. .To be a member in good standing and eligible to vote at the
annual convention, the dues must be paid not less than thirty days prior to the
3. Duties Of Officers.
A. The president shall be responsible for the supervision of all employees of
this organization and for the selection and dismissal of all employees of this
organization except for professional staff subject to the approval of the
Board of Directors.
B. The secretary shall keep an accurate record of all Board meetings and
conventions of the organization.
C. The treasurer of this organization, in addition to the usual duties of such
office, shall forward to the secretary the names of all voting members as
received. The treasurer shall furnish a financial report at each meeting of
the Board of Directors.
4. Powers and Duties of the Board of Directors.
A. All appointments of professional staff shall be submitted to the Board of
Directors within thirty days. Such appointments shall not be final until
approved by an affirmative vote of the majority of the Board of Directors.
B. Dismissal of professional staff shall be the sole responsibility of the
Board of Directors. Such dismissal shall require a majority vote of the Board
of Directors and only after the employee in question has been offered an
opportunity for a hearing.
C. The Board of Directors shall elect a committee of three which shall
recommend a budget to the Board of Directors for the ensuing calendar year.
Once a budget has been adopted by the Board of Directors it cannot be altered
except by a two-thirds vote by the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors
may be polled by mail or e-mail.
D. All elected members of the Board of Directors, including officers, shall
have as a duty regular attendance at all Board meetings. Any member who fails
to attend more than three (3) consecutive meetings without good cause, as
determined by the Board, shall cease to be a member, and the unexpired term
shall be filled as set forth in Article IV, Section E. of the Constitution."
5. Standing Committees.
A. The president shall appoint a state membership chairman.
B. The president, within sixty days after the close of each state convention,
shall appoint a chairman and not less than four additional members as a
resolutions committee. This committee shall receive and prepare resolutions to
be considered at its opening meeting in conjunction with the ensuing state
convention. All resolutions submitted to the committee shall be reported upon
with or without committee recommendations.
C. An auditing committee of three individual American Council of the Blind of
Indiana members shall be elected annually by the board of directors. Members
of this committee shall not be members of the board of directors and shall serve
until their successors have been elected.
6. Special Groups.
The Board of Directors, by majority vote, may appoint persons to serve as
members of a volunteer liaison panel not to exceed nine in number and with no
more than one per organization with which liaison is desired. Each appointment
shall be subject to endorsement by the organization with which the appointee is
identified. Appointments shall be annual, and for no more than five consecutive
terms. Appointees need not be American Council of the Blind of Indiana members.
Members of the liaison panel shall be invited to attend all regularly scheduled
meetings of the Board of Directors and shall be eligible to participate in Board
discussions without voting rights.
Constitution and bylaws updated: October 9, 2016