The 2021 American Mensa, Ltd. (AML) Elections are now underway, and any member who renewed prior to April 1 is eligible to vote. You should have received your ballot instructions either via email or by postal mail if you opted out of the electronic process. There are four contested National positions (Chair, First Vice Chair, Second Vice Chair, and Treasurer), as well as one Bylaws referendum to change the frequency of AML elections. Information on the candidates and the referendum (including pro and con statements) have been disseminated via email and mail, and are also available at the AML website.
The Mensa International election is also underway, but is entirely electronic, and election information has been distributed via email.
Balloting is open through May 15 for both elections. For detailed information and instructions, please visit https://www.us.mensa.org/lead/amc/elections/2021-election-portal/voting-instructions/. You will be asked to log in to view this page.
The quarterly meeting of the American Mensa Committee (AMC) was held on March 20, 2021 via videoconference and was simulcast via YouTube for members who wished to observe. While a video recording was not retained, the audio recording is available at the meeting reports link below. It was a long agenda, though the major actions taken during the meeting were:
— Approval of the minutes from the December 2020 and January 2021 meetings, which can now be viewed under their respective meeting reports links
— Approval of updated Minimum Standard Bylaws and Model Bylaws for Local Groups, which had not been updated since Spring 2017
— Adoption of the 2021-2022 AML Budget
— Updates of the Conduct of Regional and National Hearings
— Adoption of Event Safety Standards
— Adoption of the AML Advocate’s job desctiption
An additional motion to require scheduling parameters for Regional Meet-and-Greets at the Annual Gathering was rejected.
There were three presentations to the AMC: Education by the Treasurer (an explanation of liabilities), a Membership report on the 2021 Membership Survey, and a Leadership Development report on the 2021 Volunteer Survey.
All of these presentations, along with the mini-minutes and a recording of the meeting, are available via the AMC Meeting Reports at https://www.us.mensa.org/lead/amc/meeting-reports/ under the 2021-03-20 dropdown. Details for the motions can be found in the Agenda at the same link.
After the year of the pandemic, local groups are starting to look forward to opening up in-person activities again. Some of the practices that arose during this time may be retained, such as video conferences (via Zoom, Discord, etc.) for local group Executive Committees (ExComms), since it made it easier for members in widely spread-out chapters to attend without driving long distances. It remains the case that all official meetings such as business meetings must be open to all members.
However, AML policies allow unofficial events, such as social gatherings, to set their own rules, which may include requiring masks in private homes if the host so chooses. For that matter, a host may exclude any individual for any reason, as long as the event is not an official Mensa function. So as local groups begin to have in-person events, be sure to check the calendars to see what rules the host may have put in place.
Until next month (or until I see you online),
Thomas George Thomas