NICHIREN BUDDHIST ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA
February 27, 2001
Amended: September 11, 2013
Name and Object
SECTION 1. The name of this organization is Nichiren Buddhist Association of America. This corporation shall hereinafter be referred to as NBAA.
SECTION 2. NBAA is organized for the purpose of promoting the orthodox teachings of Nichiren Buddhism. The mission of NBAA is expressly stated in its charter.
SECTION 3. NBAA shall be nonpartisan, and shall therefore take no part in, or lend its support to, the election or appointment of any candidate for public office.
SECTION 1. Order of Membership
The Board of Directors shall have the authority to establish multiple categories of voting and non-voting membership along with requirements for entry into each category, provided that all voting membership categories require a commitment to the NBAA Charter. An Order of Membership document shall be maintained through a majority vote of the Board of Directors.
Voting members will herein after be referred to as "Jogyo members" (Jogyo: Bodhisattva Superior Practices). Non-voting members will herein after be referred to as "non-voting members." The complete body of both Jogyo and non-voting members will herein after be referred to as "members."
SECTION 2. Eligibility for membership.
Application for non-voting membership shall be open to any person that supports the NBAA Charter. Membership shall be granted by a majority vote of the Board of Directors following the applicant's completion of the following membership requirements:
- Completion and receipt of membership application
- Payment of membership dues
- Attendance at an NBAA meeting within the last three (3) months
- Addition of applicant name and other information, to be determined by the Board of Directors, to a membership list on NBAA's website
- Completion of any additional requirements for membership described in the Order of Membership
The category of membership to which a member is assigned shall be determined by the Order of Membership.
SECTION 3. Education Committee
The Education Committee is to be managed by a majority vote of the Board of Directors. It is responsible for developing and maintaining membership exams and their corresponding study curriculum as required by the Order of Membership.
SECTION 4. Membership Dues
The amount of dues required for membership shall be determined by majority vote of the Jogyo membership, providing that the amount remains greater than $0 per year.
SECTION 5. Resignation and Termination
Membership shall be automatically terminated by failure of payment of dues, failure to attend at least one (1) NBAA meeting in three (3) months, or failure to maintain current contact information with NBAA. If membership is lost in this manner, membership will automatically be reinstated as soon as the member corrects the issues that led to their termination of membership.
A member may be expelled by a two-thirds vote of the Jogyo members for acting in violation of the NBAA Charter. A member expelled in this manner may only reinstate membership by a majority vote by the Jogyo members.
Any member may resign by filing a written resignation with the secretary. A member who loses membership status in this manner may have their membership status reinstated by a majority vote of the Board of Directors. They may be required to fulfill the requirements of membership again or lose their status in the Order of Membership, according the discretion of the Board of Directors.
SECTION 6. Transference of Membership
Membership shall not be transferable to one’s heirs nor any other entity.
Board of Directors
SECTION 1. The government of NBAA and the direction of its work shall be vested in the Board of Directors consisting of not less than three (3) and not more than fifteen Jogyo (15) members to be elected every two years by a two-thirds vote of NBAA’s Jogyo membership. The term for each board member shall be two (2) years.
The Directors shall fill, by appointment, all vacancies on the Board within 90 days of said vacancy. They shall meet not less frequently than twice per year at such time and place as may be determined by them.
All meetings of the Directors shall be open to the Jogyo membership. Advance notice of all meetings shall be distributed to the Jogyo membership via mail, email, or fax. Two-thirds of the Board of Directors serving at the time shall constitute a quorum at a meeting of the Board of Directors.
Any meeting of the Board of Directors may be held in person or via phone, electronic instant message, email, video conference or any other means approved by the board. All Jogyo members shall be notified of the forum and given the opportunity to be heard at the meeting.
SECTION 2. The Board of Directors shall be elected by ballot every two years by the current NBAA Jogyo membership.
SECTION 3. Any Jogyo member has the right to nominate any Jogyo member for the Board of Directors. Nominations for the next election shall be accepted from Jogyo members immediately following elections. Approximately twice as many Jogyo members to be voted on for the Board of Directors as there are vacancies on the Board of Directors to be filled are encouraged to be nominated. If twice the number of nominees for vacancies is not reached within twelve (12) months of the start of the term of the current Board of Directors, the President shall appoint a nominating committee of not less than three (3) Jogyo members. It shall be their duty to nominate Jogyo members for the Board of Directors. Write-in votes shall be accepted on the ballot, as long as the write-in is for a Jogyo member.
SECTION 4. All voting shall be by ballot. If less than three (3) nominees receive a two-thirds vote, the minimum number of directors to be elected who received the highest number of votes shall be declared elected.
SECTION 5. Jogyo members shall annually elect three (3) judges who are not members of the Board of Directors or candidates for election who shall have supervision of the election until the results are ascertained and who shall supervise any issues put to a vote by the Jogyo membership. Any Jogyo member has the right to run for Election Judge. The three (3) candidates for Election Judges who received the highest number of votes shall be declared elected.
SECTION 6. The Board shall have the power to sue, hold, sell, lease or mortgage real estate, to incur debts, to borrow money, giving therefore notes of the corporation signed by one or more officials duly authorized by the Board for that purpose, and may enter into contracts of any kind furthering the purposes of NBAA.
SECTION 1. At the next regularly-scheduled Board meeting after the biennial election, the Directors shall meet and elect from among the Board members officers for the ensuing year: a President, a Vice President, a Secretary and a Treasurer.
SECTION 2. The President shall preside at all meetings of the Board of Directors, and perform all duties incident to this office. He shall, subject to the approval of the Board of Directors, appoint all committees and he shall be an ex-officio member of all committees.
SECTION 3. The Vice President shall act in absence of the President. In the absence of both the President and the Vice President, a Board member of the Board of Directors shall be chosen to act temporarily.
SECTION 4. The Treasurer shall receive and disperse the funds of NBAA. No disbursements shall be made unless they shall have been authorized and ordered by the majority of the Board of Directors. At frequent intervals, the Treasurer shall make reports to the Board of Directors. In the absence of the Treasurer, checks shall be signed by the President or Vice President.
SECTION 5. The Secretary shall maintain a record of the proceedings of all the meetings of the Board of Directors and of NBAA meetings pertaining to issues of organizational administration.
SECTION 6. At such time as the Board of Directors shall determine that finances permit, it may hire a full-time General Director who shall be responsible to the Board of Directors and the President. He/she shall carry out the policies of the Board and the Jogyo membership. He/she shall coordinate and manage the affairs of NBAA so as to promote the objectives of said organization. Under policies, plans and projects approved by the Board, and at the direction of the President, he/she shall provide information, guidance and stimulation to the various committees.
SECTION 1. The Board of Directors shall authorize and define the powers and duties of the committees.
SECTION 2. The President shall appoint all committees, subject to confirmation by the Board of Directors.
SECTION 3. A Finance Committee shall be appointed to prepare an annual budget. The annual budget shall be submitted to the Board of Directors during the fourth quarter of the fiscal year. The budget must be adopted by the Board of Directors prior to the end of the fiscal year.
SECTION 4. The Directors shall conduct an annual financial review of NBAA.
SECTION 1. The Board of Directors may provide for holding meetings of the general Jogyo membership whenever it may be considered necessary or desirable; provided not less than one (1) meeting shall be held each fiscal year. Such a meeting may be held in person, by phone, simulcast, instant message, or email forum, provided that Jogyo members have equal access to such a forum of discussion.
SECTION 2. The Board of Directors shall call a Jogyo membership meeting upon petition signed by not less than two (2) percent of the Jogyo membership.
SECTION 3. The annual meeting of NBAA shall be held at such a place, or using a form of communication as may be designated by the Board of Directors during the fourth quarter of the fiscal year.
SECTION 4. Ten (10) percent of the Jogyo members in good standing shall constitute a quorum at all Jogyo membership meetings. Issues that affect the entire organization shall not be voted on at a Jogyo membership meeting. The purpose of such a meeting is to bring certain issues to the attention of the other Jogyo members and call for a vote on such issues by the entire Jogyo membership. The secretary shall take minutes of such meetings and submit the minutes to the rest of the Board of Directors.
SECTION 5. Any issue of concern to any member may be brought up at any membership meeting, regardless of the stated purpose of the meeting contained in the notice of the meeting, provided that the previously announced purpose(s) of the meeting is (are) addressed first.
SECTION 6. All controversies brought up by members at a membership meeting shall be put to a vote by the entire Jogyo membership, provided that a simple majority of Jogyo members at the meeting choose to do so. A ballot vote of the entire Jogyo membership shall be conducted within three (3) months of the meeting. Such controversies shall be resolved by a majority vote of the entire Jogyo membership.
SECTION 7. The Board of Directors shall comply with the will of the Jogyo members as expressed in any vote by the Jogyo members as described in Section 6.
SECTION 8. Any Board member or all Board members may be removed from the Board of Directors by a two-thirds vote of the Jogyo membership for any or no reason. In the event that all Board members are removed or that the Board is reduced to less than three (3) by the vote of the Jogyo members, an election to fill the remaining vacancies on the board shall be held no less than thirty (30) days after said removal.
SECTION 1. At such time as the Board of Directors shall determine that finances permit and need arises, it may hire an unlimited number of employees as required to maintain the organization (e.g. accountants, attorneys, ministers, deacons, preachers, missionaries, etc.). NBAA employees will be responsible to the Board of Directors.
SECTION 1. The fiscal year shall begin on January 1 and end on December 31 of each year.
SECTION 1. All questions of parliamentary procedure shall be determined according to the latest edition of Robert’s “Rules of Order.”
SECTION 1. NBAA shall not directly or indirectly refuse, withhold from, or deny to an individual because of disability, race, creed, color, sex, marital status, national origin, ancestry, or age, the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, or advantages of NBAA membership. Nor will NBAA publish, circulate, issue, display, post, or mail any written or printed communication, notice, or advertisement which indicates that the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages of NBAA will be refused, withheld from, or denied an individual because of disability, race, creed, color, sex, marital status, national origin, ancestry, or age.
SECTION 2. Any person ten (10) years of age or older shall not be denied membership based on age. Any person ten (10) years of age or older shall not be denied any membership category or status described on the Order of Members document, provided that they have met the requirements for that category or status. At the discretion of the Board of Directors, any person younger than ten (10) years of age may be permitted to become a member of NBAA or to occupy any category or status described in the Order of Members document, provided that they have met the membership requirements listed in Article II Section 2 and the requirements for the category or status they wish to occupy described by the Order of Members document.
SECTION 1. These by-laws may be amended by a two-thirds vote by ballot of the Jogyo membership.
SECTION 2. The NBAA Charter may be amended by a two-thirds vote by ballot of the Jogyo membership, provided that such amendments do not violate the intent of NBAA’s original purpose.