Resolution:Publication of proposed Bylaws changes, 2020
|←Resolutions||Resolution: Publication of proposed Bylaws changes, 2020||Errors?→|
|This resolution was approved on September 24, 2020.|
Whereas, the Board of Trustees has resolved to increase the number of trustees from 10 to 16 total, in order to better enable it to meet the needs of the Board and the Wikimedia Foundation;
Whereas, informed by its 2019 governance review, the Board is considering what methods of selecting Trustees would best enable the Board to effectively fulfill its duties and functions as the Wikimedia Foundation’s governing body;
Whereas, enacting changes to the size of the Board and the methods used to select Trustees requires a change to the Wikimedia Foundation’s Bylaws; and
Whereas, the Board wishes to make some additional adjustments to the Bylaws at the same time, such as to reflect the revision of the title of the Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer;
Now, therefore, it is:
RESOLVED, that the Board approves of the proposed Bylaws changes as an improvement to the Board’s methods of governance;
- [Changes from the current Bylaws are highlighted in yellow]
RESOLVED, that the Board of Trustees proposes to amend Article IV, Sections 2 & 3 of the Bylaws, following a period for community comments and suggested improvements, to read as follows:
- Section 2. Number, Terms, and Term Limits.
- (A) Number.
- The authorized number of Trustees of the Foundation shall be at least nine (9) and, at most, sixteen (16), as the Board may from time to time determine. Trustees are selected according to the process specified in Article IV, Section 3 below.
- (B) Term.
- Except as herein provided, the term of office for a Trustee shall be three years and the Trustee seats shall be distributed so that, as nearly as practicable, the terms of a roughly equal number of Trustees shall expire each year, allowing the Foundation to benefit from having continuity of experienced Trustees. Each Trustee will serve until the expiration of their term and until their successor has been appointed and qualified, or until their earlier resignation, removal from office, or death.
- (C) Term limit.
- Trustees, excluding the Community Founder Trustee Position, may serve a maximum of three consecutive full terms (that is, nine years). After having served any consecutive nine years, a Trustee shall not be eligible for appointment to the Board again until a period of at least 18 months has expired.
- Section 3. Selection and Appointment.
- (A) Governance priorities.
- (i) The Board shall be composed of Trustees with a diverse set of talents, experience, backgrounds, and competencies that will best fulfill the mission and needs of the Foundation, as determined by the Board. The Board is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion both in terms of trustee composition and in other aspects of its work.
- (ii) The Board and its Trustees must act as fiduciaries with regard to the Foundation, and their duties include, but are not limited to, the fiduciary duty of care and the fiduciary duty of loyalty, as described in Sections 617.0830 and 617.0832 of the Florida Not For Profit Corporation Act (the Act). It is the responsibility of the Board to ensure that the selection of Trustees furthers these governance priorities and complies with the Board’s fiduciary duties.
- (iii) All Trustees must resign from any other board, governance, or paid positions at the Foundation, Chapters, Thematic Organizations, and User Groups for the duration of their terms as Trustees, but may serve Chapters, Thematic Organizations, and User Groups in informal or advisory capacities.
- (B) Governance definitions.
- (i) "Community," as used in the Bylaws, shall be defined by the Board, consistent with the Foundation’s Statement of Purpose as defined in Article II above.
- (ii) "Chapters", “Thematic Organizations”, and “User Groups”, or other groups as used in these Bylaws, shall be defined by the Board, consistent with the Foundation’s Statement of Purpose as defined in Article II above, and will function as independent groups or legal entities that operate in coordination with the Foundation to implement the mission statement. Chapters, Thematic Organizations, and User Groups must have a written agreement with the Foundation. In no instance will a Chapter, Thematic Organization, or User Group be an agent or member of the Wikimedia Foundation.
- (C) Community-sourced Trustees.
- (i) As many as eight (8) Trustees will be sourced from candidates vetted through a community nomination process. This process will be held according to a schedule determined by the Board of Trustees to fill open Community-sourced Trustee seats. Off-cycle vacancies may be filled normally as described in Article IV, Section 6 below.
- (ii) The Board of Trustees shall convey its priorities and requirements for members, as set forth in Article IV, Section 3(A) above, and shall determine the dates, rules and regulation of the approval procedures. The Board shall determine who is qualified to participate in the approval process for community-sourced Trustees.
- (iii) The Board will appoint candidates who are nominated through this process, subject to Article IV, Section 3(A), and other provisions of these Bylaws. In the event that a candidate is selected who does not meet the requirements of Article IV, Section 3(A) or other requirements of these Bylaws, or of applicable state or federal law, the Board will (a) not appoint the candidate, (b) declare a vacancy on the Board, and (c) fill the resulting vacancy, subject to this Section 3 and to Article IV, Section 6 below.
- (D) Board-selected Trustees.
- (i) As many as seven (7) Trustees may be sourced, selected and appointed directly by the Board.
- (ii) The appointment of Board-selected Trustees shall be conducted consistent with the provisions of Article IV, Section 3(A) and with applicable state and federal law.
- (E) Community Founder Trustee Position.
- The Board may appoint Jimmy Wales as Community Founder Trustee for a three-year term. The Board may reappoint Wales as Community Founder Trustee for successive three-year terms (without a term limit). In the event that Wales is not appointed as Community Founder Trustee, the position will remain vacant, and the Board shall not fill the vacancy.
RESOLVED, that the Board of Trustees proposes to amend Article V, Section 1 of the Bylaws, following a period for community comments and suggested improvements, as follows:
- The Board of Trustees shall elect from among the Trustees the following officers: a Chair, Vice Chair, and Board committee chairs. The Board of Trustees shall also appoint the following non-Trustee officer positions: a Chief Executive Officer, Secretary, Treasurer, and such other officers as the Board from time to time may appoint.
- (A) Chair.
- The Chair shall, when present, preside at all meetings of the Board of Trustees. The Chair shall have general supervision of the affairs of the corporation and shall make reports to the Board of Trustees at meetings and other times as necessary to keep Trustees informed of corporation activities. The Chair may sign, with the secretary or any other proper officer of the Foundation thereunto authorized by the Board of Trustees, any deeds, mortgages, bonds, contracts, or other instruments which the Board of Trustees has authorized to be executed, except in cases where the signing and execution thereof shall be expressly delegated by the Board of Trustees or by these Bylaws to some other officer or agent of the Foundation, or shall be required by law to be otherwise signed or executed. The Chair shall in general perform all duties as from time to time may be assigned to them by the Board of Trustees.
- (B) Vice Chair.
- The Vice Chair shall perform the duties and have the powers of the Chair when the Chair is absent or unable to perform their duties. Other duties of the Vice Chair may be designated by the Board of Trustees or the Chair.
- (C) Board Committee Chairs.
- Board committee chairs shall perform the duties and have the powers set forth in the charters of the committees of which they are the chair and as determined by the Board from time to time.
- (D) Chief Executive Officer.
- The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) is the chief executive officer of the Foundation. Except where there is a conflict of interest, they shall attend all Board meetings, including executive sessions, and receive all communications and information in the same manner as all members of the Board. They shall have charge of the business and affairs of the Foundation, subject to the direction and control of the Board of Trustees, and shall see that the resolutions and directives of the Board of Trustees are carried into effect except in those instances in which responsibility is assigned to some other person by the Board of Trustees. The CEO may execute on behalf of the Foundation any contracts or other instruments that the Board of Trustees has authorized to be executed through a delegation of authority, which the CEO may further delegate in writing.
- (E) Secretary.
- The Secretary shall act as secretary of each meeting of the Board of Trustees. In the absence of the Secretary, the presiding officer of the meeting or the CEO will appoint a secretary of the meeting. In addition, the Secretary shall coordinate with other staff to give notices of all meetings of the Board of Directors, keep minutes of such meetings, maintain corporate records, and in general, perform all duties incident to the office of Secretary and such other duties as the Board may from time to time assign to the Secretary. The Secretary may delegate certain duties as necessary.
- (F) Treasurer.
- The Treasurer shall present to the Board of Trustees an annual budget, as well as such other operating budgets and income estimates as may be requested. The Treasurer shall also present a complete financial report of the Foundation at least annually. The Treasurer shall be available at reasonable times for consultation with the Board Chair and the Chair of the Audit Committee. The Treasurer shall have charge and custody of and be responsible for all funds and securities of the Foundation; receive and give receipts for monies due and payable to the Foundation from any source whatsoever, and deposit all such monies in the name of the Foundation in such banks, trust companies, or other depositories as shall be selected in accordance with the provisions of these Bylaws; review the financial operations of the organization and advise with the Secretary on financial matters, including audits; make financial reports to the Board of Trustees at regular and special meetings; and perform such other duties as assigned by the Chair or the Board of Trustees. The Treasurer may delegate in writing certain day-to-day duties, as the Treasurer and Board of Trustees deem appropriate.
- María Sefidari (Chair), Esra'a Al Shafei, Shani Evenstein Sigalov, Tanya Capuano, Dariusz Jemielniak, Lisa Lewin, Raju Narisetti, Jimmy Wales
- Not approve
- James Heilman
- Not present
- Nataliia Tymkiv (Vice Chair)