The following bylaws were approved by the members in November, 2004; amended November, 2011; amended June, 2015
BYLAWS OF THE DEMOCRATIC WOMEN OF THE DESERT
ARTICLE I. NAME AND STATEMENT OF PURPOSE
The name of this organization shall be the Democratic Women of the
Desert. The Democratic Women of the Desert (“DWD”) is a chartered
Democratic Club recognized by the Riverside County Democratic Central
Committee (“Central Committee”) and the California Democratic Party (the
ARTICLE II. MISSION STATEMENT
Democratic Women of the Desert is dedicated to promoting social,
economic and political policies that reflect the priorities of women. We do
this by: educating members on women’s issues; increasing members’
political awareness; increasing political participation of women in the
community; actively recruiting women of all ages to become DWD members;
and raising campaign contributions for candidates who support DWD’s
ARTICLE III. MEMBERSHIP
Section I. Membership
All members of the club shall be registered Democrats. If under the age of
eighteen (18) years, or otherwise ineligible, they shall declare their intention
of so registering. A member shall be considered in good standing, if their dues are current, or have been waived due to economic hardship, their
voting rights being subject to compliance with the other provisions of these
Section II. Categories of Membership
a. Regular Membership. Any Democrat registered in the State of California
who subscribes to the DWD Mission Statement in Article II, completes a
DWD membership application, and pays membership dues is eligible for
Regular Membership. All DWD members, including members of the Board
of Directors (the “Board”), shall be subject to the rules, regulations, and
jurisdiction of the Central Committee as set forth in its Bylaws and in the
standing orders of the Central Committee.
b. Young Democrat Membership. Young Democrats, individuals under
age 35, shall be eligible for Regular Membership at a reduced fee set by the
c. Family Membership. Any two or more individuals in the same household
who qualify may become full Regular Members at a reduced fee set by the
d. Associate Membership. An Associate Membership is available to those
interested in joining DWD who are not able to meet the membership criteria
defined in Article III, Section II. a. above (e.g. part-time residents). Associate
Members shall have all the privileges of membership except the right to
vote, hold office, or be a Representative to the California Democratic
Party (CDP) Pre-Endorsing Conference.
e. Honorary Membership. Any registered Democrat who has given
outstanding and noteworthy service to the community or the Democratic
Party may be elected unanimously by the Board to become an Honorary
Member of DWD. Honorary Members shall have all the privileges of
membership except the right to vote, hold office, or be a Representative
to the CDP Pre-Endorsing Conference and shall be exempt from the
payment of dues.
Section III. Privileges of Membership
Members in good standing shall have the following membership privileges
based on their membership classification:
a. To vote on all matters submitted to the vote of the DWD membership.
b. To serve on the Board if all qualifications for office are met.
c. To attend meetings and functions of DWD
d. To exercise the rights and privileges granted to members by these
Bylaws or otherwise fixed by the membership or the Board.
Section IV. Resignation
Any member may resign from membership in DWD by written notification to
the Secretary or the President of DWD. Said resignation shall be effective
upon the date of such written notification. Such resignation shall not entitle
the member to a refund of any previously paid dues.
Section V. Removal
a. Removal for Cause.
(i) A member who is not or ceases to be registered as a Democrat shall
automatically be removed from membership of DWD with no action required
other than written notification to the member by the Secretary.
(ii) Subject to the procedure defined at Section V. b., a member may be
removed for such reasons as: the member has given active and public
support to one or more candidates of an opposing political party in a
partisan election; has affiliated or registered as a member of another party;
has publicly advocated that the electorate should not vote for the nominee of
the Democratic Party for any partisan office; has publicly given support or
avowed a preference for a candidate of another party or a candidate who is
opposed to a candidate nominated by the Democratic Party; has seriously
interfered with the operations of DWD or the Party; has refused to comply
with the rules and procedures (including these Bylaws) of DWD; has interfered with the ability of other members to participate in activities of DWD, including by threatening members with retaliatory action; or generally engages in conduct unbecoming a member of the Democratic Party.
b. Removal by a Member. Removal of an official member of DWD shall be
subject to the following procedure:
(i) At a regular meeting of DWD, any voting member, as defined in these
Bylaws, may move that any other member of DWD be removed from DWD
for reasons set forth in this Section V. Such motion shall be accompanied by
a written account of the act(s) or omission(s) which the person making the
motion asserts warrant the removal of the member who is the subject of the
motion. The written account shall be read aloud at the time the motion is
(ii) A motion made by a voting member of DWD, as described herein shall
automatically be deemed postponed until the next regular meeting of DWD
and shall automatically be taken up for action as an item of old or unfinished
business at that meeting.
(iii) Within seven (7) days after the making of such a motion for removal, the
Secretary of DWD shall send a certified letter (“Notice”) to the member who
is the subject of the motion for removal (the “Cited Member”) notifying the
Cited Member that at the next regular meeting of DWD a motion will be
taken up concerning the Cited Member’s removal. The Notice shall advise
the Cited Member of the names of the members who made and seconded
the motion, advise the Cited member that at the next regular meeting the
Cited Member will be given an opportunity to challenge the allegation, and
shall inform the Cited Member of the date, time, and location of the next
(iv) At the next regular meeting where the removal of the Cited Member is
taken up, the Cited Member, if present, shall be given an opportunity to
admit, deny, and/or to explain the charges lodged against her/him. An
equivalent amount of time shall be made available to the maker of the
motion and/or his/her spokesperson(s) to substantiate the charges. In all
removal situations, the burden of introducing evidence justifying removal shall be upon the person or persons urging the removal, who shall be
required to prove the case for removal by clear and convincing evidence.
Immediately thereafter, a vote shall be taken on the motion to remove the
charged member from DWD. A two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the
members present and voting shall be required to pass such a motion.
Section VI. Annual Dues
Annual dues are determined by the Board and approved by the
membership. They are payable upon joining DWD. Thereafter dues are paid
annually at the beginning of each calendar year. Anyone joining DWD in the
months of October, November or December will be considered as a paid-up
member until December 31 of the following calendar year.
ARTICLE IV. OFFICERS AND BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Section I. Officers
The Officers of DWD are elected annually by the membership and shall
consist of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary. These
Officers shall automatically be Directors and shall constitute the Executive
Section II. Executive Board
a. The Officers of DWD, as referred to in Article IV, Section 1 of these
Bylaws, shall constitute the Executive Board. Except for the power to amend
these Bylaws, the Executive Board shall have the authority and power of the
Board in the intervals between meetings.
b. Actions of the Executive Board shall be subject to ratification by the full
Board at its next regular meeting.
Section III. Board of Directors
a. The authorized number of Directors, unless otherwise determined by the
members, shall be no fewer than three (3) nor more than eleven (11).
b. The Officers as referred to in Article IV, Section I shall serve on the
c. The immediate Past-President shall automatically be entitled to be a
member of the Board, and serve as Advisor to the Board with the same
voting rights as other Board members.
d. The following Committee Chairs shall also serve as Directors, all of whom
will be elected annually by the membership.
(ii) Political Action
e. Directors shall serve without compensation and must be active dues-
paying members of DWD.
Section IV. Duties of the Officers and Directors
a. President. As Chief Executive Officer, the President presides over all
meetings of DWD, the Board and the Executive Board; provides leadership
and has in-depth knowledge of DWD’s Mission and its governing
documents; and is an ex-officio member of all Committees of DWD.
b. Vice President. Works closely with the President and understands the
responsibilities of the President; fulfills other responsibilities and carries out
special assignments as assigned by the President; and in the President’s
absence performs the President’s responsibilities. The Vice President
assumes the office of President if the President cannot serve out a term.
c. Secretary. Records and transcribes all Board Minutes and ensures
Minutes are distributed to Board members after each meeting; and
manages and maintains all official records and Board Minutes, ensuring
their accuracy and safety. Fulfills other duties as assigned by the President.
d. Treasurer. Manages the financial matters of DWD, including maintaining
all financial records, filing required documents and reports relating to DWD’s
activities. Working with the President, the Treasurer ensures that
appropriate financial reports are made available to the Board on a timely
basis; regularly reports to the Board on key financial events, trends, and
fiscal health; and ensures sound management and maximization of cash
and investments. Fulfills other duties as assigned by the President.
e. Chair, Membership. Appoints a Membership Committee; is responsible
for growing the membership of DWD, and manages membership retention
efforts; and maintains current membership records. Fulfills other duties as
assigned by the President
f. Chair, Political Action. Appoints Political Action Group. Advises the
Board of political action needed to promote Democratic women candidates
and issues that impact women, consistent with DWD’s Mission Statement.
Fulfills other responsibilities as assigned by the President.
g. Chair, Programs. Appoints Program Committee to provide educational
and political programs for the membership; and arranges and manages
regular membership meetings. Fulfills other responsibilities as assigned by
h. Chair, Communications. Appoints a Communications Committee;
develops a public relations strategy to positively represent DWD to the
public; establishes and maintains cooperative relationships with
representatives of community, political, media, and public interest groups;
coordinates communications with members; and oversees the DWD
website. Fulfills other duties as assigned by the President.
i. Chair, Fundraising. Appoints a Fundraising Committee; raises funds for
the use of DWD. Fulfills other duties as assigned by the President.
Section V. Terms of Office
Terms of Directors shall be for one (1) year. Directors shall hold office from
the January Annual Meeting at which they are elected until their duly elected
successors take office.
Section VI. Removal, Recall, or Resignation of Officers and Directors
a. The office of any Officer or Director shall be vacated:
(i) In the event of the officeholder’s death.
(ii) If the officeholder submits a resignation, either orally or in writing, to the
Secretary or the President of DWD.
(iii) If the Board by majority vote declares the office vacated after the
officeholder fails to be a member of DWD in good standing at any time
during the officeholder’s term of office.
(iv) If the officeholder fails to attend three (3) consecutive regularly
scheduled Board meetings in any given calendar year.
(v) If the officeholder is removed from office by motion duly adopted by two-
thirds (2/3) of those voting members present and voting at a duly called
regular meeting of DWD. Notice of the proposed removal must be given to
the office-holder and all members at least twenty-one (21) days in advance
of the meeting at which the removal will be voted upon. The results of such
a vote shall be communicated in writing to the individual concerned.
b. The Board may appoint a successor to fill the remainder of any unexpired
term of a vacated office. Such appointment shall remain in effect until a
replacement can be duly elected by the procedure set forth at Section VII
c. The presiding officer may announce a vacated office at a regular meeting
and call immediately for nomination(s) and election of a qualified member to
fill that vacancy. The election to fill that vacancy shall be announced to the
membership to be held at the next regular meeting, by ballot by a
majority vote of the qualified members present and voting, or by
Section VII. Nominations and Elections
a. Selection of DWD Board
(i) Candidates for the Board to be elected annually shall be recommended
by a Nominating Committee appointed by the President.
(ii) The Nominating Committee shall consist of five (5) members. A minimum
of three (3) members who are not Directors shall be appointed to the
(iii) The Nominating Committee shall recommend one candidate for each
elective office, and give a report of the slate of candidates to the
membership annually at the November meeting. Nominations may be made
from the floor, with the consent of the nominee, at the regular annual
meeting in January, before voting takes place. Any qualified members may
offer themselves for self-nomination.
b. Selection of Representatives to the CDP Pre-Endorsing Conference:
(i) Club representatives shall be allocated as follows: one representative,
resident in the Assembly District and duly registered as a member of the
Democratic Party of California, for each full (not a fraction thereof) 20
members in good standing registered to vote in the Assembly District who
were listed on the roster submitted to Riverside County Democratic Party
and to the appropriate Regional Director of the CDP no later than July 1 of
the year immediately prior to the endorsing process.
(ii) For purposes of this Section:
(1) Only members in good standing as of the July 1 deadline shall be
included on the roster;
(2) “Members in Good Standing” shall mean a member who’s dues are
current, or have been waived due to economic hardship;
(3) The status of such members shall be certified by the Club’s President,
Secretary, or Treasurer; and,
(4) The Club’s representatives to any particular pre-endorsing conference
be from the roster described above and that the overall list of
representatives to all conferences be equally apportioned between men and
women, to the extent possible.
(iii) Said representatives shall be selected by majority vote of a Selection
Committee comprised of the President, Vice-President, Secretary and
Treasurer, a quorum being present. The Selection Committee shall not
select one of its own members unless it first determines that no other viable
option is available. If such determination is made, they shall inform the
membership of their decision, and the reasons therefor, at the next General
(iv) No later than October 1, of each odd number year, This Club shall
inform its membership, of the process for selection as a Representative to
the CDP Pre-Endorsing Conference, via both WEB Posting on its site and
email to those members who have provided email addresses for notice
(v) In order for a member’s name to be submitted as one of This Club’s
representatives to the CDP Pre-Endorsing Conferences, the member must
submit a signed written declaration of intent to the Selection Committee
declaring their intent to support This Club’s endorsed candidates at the Pre-
Endorsing Conferences by voting for them thereat.
ARTICLE V. MEETINGS
Section I. Executive Board
a. Executive Board meetings shall be called by the President if the need
arises in the intervals between monthly Board meetings. Meetings of the
Executive Board shall be held at such times and places and in such manner
as the President shall determine.
b. Any person holding more than one position on the Executive Board shall
not have more than one (1) vote on the Executive Board.
c. Any votes taken on issues by the Executive Board between regularly
scheduled Board meetings must be ratified by the next regular Board
Section II. Board of Directors
a. A minimum of six (6) Board meetings will be held each year, at such
times as decided by a majority vote of the Board, and at such places as the
President shall determine. The Board may hold special meetings, as called by the
President, whenever the need arises.
b. Any person holding more than one position on the Board shall not have
more than one (1) vote on the Board.
c. The President may call the Board into session prior to any regular
meeting to confer on any issues that will be brought before the membership
for a vote.
d. The members of the Board of Directors may be contacted by the
President either by telephone or email.
e. In an emergency situation, or situation requiring immediate action, the
President may call for a vote or Board action to be taken by phone or email
f. Any votes taken on issues by the Board between regularly scheduled
Board meetings must be ratified at the next regular Board meeting.
Section III. General Membership Meetings
Meetings. A minimum of six (6) meetings will be held each year, with an
Annual Meeting held in January. General membership meetings shall be
called by the President or a majority of the Board, establishing meeting
formats, locations, dates and times.
Section IV. Meeting Notices
a. Seven (7) days’ notice by telephone or first class mail constitutes proper
notice for all general membership meetings, with the exception that notice
by email is permitted for those members with a current email address.
b. Said notices will specify the time, place, date, and time of the meeting
and describe any proposed resolutions, recommendations, elections, filling
of a vacancy in any office, and proposed amendments to the Bylaws to be
considered at the meeting (subject to any other notification provisions
Section V. Parliamentary Authority
Robert’s Rules of Order, Latest Revision, will govern the parliamentary rules
for all matters not provided by these By-laws.
ARTICLE VI. ENDORSEMENTS Section I: Endorsement of Candidates
a. DWD will not support any candidate who is not a registered Democrat for
a partisan or non-partisan office.
b. For partisan or non-partisan offices, until an endorsement decision is
reached by the Central Committee or the Party, DWD may only recommend
candidates for endorsement, and may only report it publicly as having been
c. If no endorsement is made by the Central Committee or the Party, or a
neutral position is taken, then DWD may endorse a candidate of its
choosing for that office and report it publicly as such.
Section II: Endorsement of State Ballot Propositions
a. DWD shall support the recommendation made by the Central Committee
and/or the Party regarding state ballot propositions.
b. Until a decision is reached to support, no support, or to remain neutral on
a state ballot proposition by the Central Committee and/or the Party, DWD
will not take a position.
c. If no decision is made to support or not support a given state proposition
by the Central Committee and/or the Party, and a neutral position is taken,
DWD may take a position on that state proposition.
Section III. Limitation of Guest Speakers
Since DWD may recommend for endorsement only Democratic candidates,
candidates from other political parties will not be permitted to be guest
speakers at any meetings of the DWD during the period that these
candidates are running for office.
ARTICLE VII. AMENDMENTS
These Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the members
present and voting at a regular meeting of DWD, provided that copies of the
proposed amendment(s) have been delivered to the members of DWD, with
the notice of the meeting at which the amendment(s) will be voted upon, no
less than twenty-one (21) days before the meeting.
ARTICLE VIII. GENERAL PROVISIONS
Section I. Conformance
In the event of any conflict between these Bylaws and those of the Central
Committee, the Party, or the Democratic National Committee, those of the
higher governing body shall prevail; provided, however, that any such
conflicts shall be brought to the attention of the President of DWD and
provided that sufficient time is given to DWD to cure the Bylaws conflict in order to complete the rechartering process.
Section II. Gaps in Coverage
Should a matter arise that is not covered by these Bylaws but that is
covered by any applicable bylaw of the Central Committee, the Party, or the
Democratic National Committee, those of the higher governing body shall
prevail. In the absence of any specific applicable Bylaws, Roberts Rules of
Order, Newly Revised, shall prevail.