Standing Rules

Society of American Archivists
Government Records Section



The membership of the Government Records Section is made up of individual Society of American Archivists (SAA) members who are concerned with the administration, organization, and care of the records of government.

I. Membership

Membership in the Government Records Section of the Society of American Archivists is open to any member of SAA who has an interest in government records issues.

II. Governance

These standing rules of the Government Records Section shall serve as a supplement to the SAA Section Bylaws, which govern all SAA sections. Please refer to Section IX. Sections of the SAA Governance Manual for information on membership, section election procedures, reporting requirements, and more. 

III. Officers

The section shall be led by a Chair and a Vice Chair who serve staggered two-year terms. The Vice Chair shall be elected annually for a two-year term, serving in year one as a Vice Chair and in year two as Chair. Only members of SAA and the Government Records Section may hold these positions.

After completion of the two-year term, the immediate past Chair will continue to serve for another year as a non-voting, ex officio Steering Committee member. 

A. Chair

The chair shall preside at all meetings of the Section and the Steering Committee; represent the Section in its relations with SAA in general and with the Council and other groups within SAA; serve on SAA committees, task forces, etc., as an ex officio member when required or appoint a representative to do so; appoint Section committees or working groups as needed; and submit an annual report of Section activities to the SAA executive office af the conclusion of his or her term.

B. Vice Chair

The Vice Chair will assist the Chair in leading the Section and will represent the Section in the ansence of the Chair.

IV. Steering Committee

The Steering Committee shall consist of the officers and four at-large members. The Steering Committee shall assist the officers in leading and organizing Section activities. They will serve in an advisory capacity to the Chair and members may be assigned specific responsibilities by the Chair. The Steering Committee shall assist in planning each GRS annual meeting. The at-large members shall serve staggered two-year terms, with elections held annually. The immediate past Chair, and the Chair of the Local Government Records Section, and the Chair of the Congressional Papers Sections shall serve on the Steering Committee as a non-voting ex officio member.

V. Election of Officers and Steering Committee

The Steering Committee shall solicit from the Section members the names of volunteers or persons recommended for the positions to be filled in the next election. Formal calls for nominations shall be collected by June 1.

Basic ballot information (e.g., introductory message to voters, listing of offices, number of vacancies for each, names of candidates, and links to candidate statements) shall be submitted to the SAA staff by June 15. Supplementary ballot information (e.g., candidate photos, biographies, and statements), if desired, shall be posted to the section website by July 1. 

Elections shall be conducted online with the assistance of the SAA staff and in accordance with guidelines for section elections as specified in Section IX. Sections of the SAA Governance Manual. Availability of the online ballot and deadline for voting shall be announced by the Chair to all section members via the Section’s official email discussion list and website.

The Steering Committee shall be responsible for ensuring that the number of nominees for membership is not less than the number of open positions.

Elected officers and Steering Committee members shall assume office at the conclusion of the Annual Meeting of the Section.

VI. Vacancies in Office

A. Steering Committee At-Large Members

In the event of a vacancy caused by an at-large member of the Section Steering Committee during a term of office, the Steering Committee shall appoint a replacement. The person designated shall hold the position until the conclusion of the unexpired term.

B. Chair

In the case of vacancy in the office of the Chair, the Chair-elect, when in office, shall assume the duties of the Chair. The Chair-elect shall complete the vacancy and thereafter shall assume his or her scheduled one-year term. When no Chair-elect is in office or if the Chair-elect declines to accept the appointment, the Steering Committee shall appoint someone to carry out the duties of the Chair until the next annual election of the Section.

C. Chair-elect

In the case of the vacancy in the office of the Chair-elect, the Steering Committee shall appoint someone to carry out the duties of the Chair-elect until the next annual election of the Section.

VII. Meetings

The Section shall meet once a year at the annual SAA meeting at the time and place scheduled by the SAA executive office and at other times as deemed appropriate by the Steering Committee. Additional meetings of the entire membership of the Steering Committee may be scheduled by the Chair if needed to carry out the business of the Section.

VIII. Amendments

To ensure alignment with SAA’s governance documents, any amendments to the Section’s standing rules should be reviewed by the executive director (or her/his designee) and the Section’s Council liaison by May 1, before they are put forward in a referendum for vote by the Section membership. Proposed amendments to the section’s standing rules will appear on the Section’s annual election ballot for a final approval by a simple majority of the Section’s membership. Any adopted amendments should be posted promptly to the Section’s official microsite and be noted in the Section’s next annual report to the Council. Any revisions to the Section’s name or mission/description must be submitted to the Council for final approval. For more information on amendment procedures, see Section IX. Sections of the SAA Governance Manual.

Adopted by the Government Records Section membership and the SAA Council, August 2014. Updated per the member affinity group transition approved by the Council, August 2016. Updated and approved by the Council, August 2022. 

GRS-bylaws-2014.pdf72.95 KB
2013-2014 GRS Bylaws Proposed Revisions.pdf80.85 KB
GRSbylaws2011rev.pdf14.32 KB
2011 Proposed Bylaws Revisions.pdf57.27 KB
missionandbylaw2005rev.pdf143.05 KB