Duties of Unit Officers
Duties of the Unit President
The Unit President must be an able and qualified leader, for she represents the Auxiliary in her community, and its success or failure depends largely upon her. She should act in a supervisory capacity, be familiar with the duties of all officers and committee chairmen and encourage and inspire them in their work. It is the responsibility of the President to see that all
officers are supplied with all available information and material from Department and National Headquarters for efficient promotion of their various activities.
The Unit President has many duties. She should preside at all meetings of the Unit and the Unit Executive Committee; require strict adherence to the Constitution and Bylaws, and rules and regulations established by the National and Department Convention, National and Department Executive Committees and the Unit itself; appoint members of standing committees and create such other committees as are necessary; appoint all non-elected officers, and perform all duties which are assigned to her office.
Duties of the Unit Vice President
The Vice President is given the responsibility, with the President, for complete development of the Unit program. The Vice President should be prepared to preside at meetings in the absence of the President.
Duties of the Unit Secretary
The duties of the Unit Secretary are administrative, and she occupies a pivotal position around which all the activities of the Unit revolve. She should be efficient and well informed on all phases of Unit, Department and National activities and requirements and be capable of giving authentic information on organization matters. The Unit Secretary:
• Makes a record of all business transacted at each meeting, and of the executive board and presents her minutes for approval at the next meeting.
• Counts a rising vote when requested by the President.
• Prepares for the use of the presiding officer a statement of unfinished business to come before the meeting.
• Has on hand for reference at each meeting a list of the names of members of all standing committees, a copy of the local Bylaws, and correspondence sorted for reading.
• Is responsible for forwarding all name and address changes to Department Headquarters. Receipt of the national magazine
by Unit members is dependent upon her efficiency in keeping membership contact information current.
In writing the minutes, the following outline is generally used:
1. Kind of meeting - regular or special.
2. Name of Unit, etc.
3. Date, place and hours of meeting.
4. List of officers and committee chairmen (if applicable) present.
5. Statement concerning the minutes of the previous meeting - whether they were approved or corrected or their reading was
6. All motions (except those withdrawn); points of order, whether sustained or lost; and the name of the member who introduced the main motion.
7. Hour of adjournment.
8. Program topic; method of presentation; names of participants; and important points covered. Minutes may be neatly typewritten and then inserted in a binder. All officers’ reports and committee reports should be included in the minutes
to ensure that they are part of the permanent record.
Unit Permanent Records
It is the responsibility of the secretary to maintain a permanent file for the unit, which should include the following:
1. The Unit charter and charter roll.
2. Complete membership lists for every year.
3. Individual membership applications, filed alphabetically, for everyone who is or has ever been a member of the Unit.
4. Complete record of members lost by death, transfer, nonpayment of dues, resignation or expulsion.
5. Record of individual member identification numbers.
6. Complete file of the local Post and Unit’s publications should be saved for history purposes.
7. Complete file of Department’s current year bulletins arranged by subject.
8. Unit, Department and National Constitutions of both Legion and Auxiliary.
9. Latest edition of emblem catalog. Write directly to American Legion Emblem Sales, P.O. Box 1055, Indianapolis, IN 46206
10. Correspondence file, including all letters received and copies of replies. Units are responsible for retaining their own records. Supplies such as Unit Handbooks, individual membership applications, Member Data Forms, etc., may be secured through each Department Headquarters and should be kept on hand at all times.
Duties of the Unit Treasurer
An efficient Unit Treasurer is essential to the smooth functioning of the Unit and to ensure that proper accounting practices and internal controls are maintained.
The Unit Treasurer is responsible for handling all Unit funds, including the collection of dues from members and donations to special funds. Department and National dues, as well as special fund donations, should be remitted to Department Headquarters on a monthly basis. A receipt should be issued for all monies received. The Unit Constitution and Bylaws should include that the Treasurer is responsible for providing a monthly financial statement to the Unit, Finance Committee and others as required. Upon completion of an annual audit of the Treasurer’s books, the Unit Treasurer should provide the audited financial report. If the Bylaws do not state how the audit is to be conducted, the Unit may hire an outside auditor or appoint an audit committee of two or more persons. The Treasurer is to make available to the auditor or audit committee all financial records and related data which may include the following: cash receipts and disbursement ledgers, bank statements and reconciliations, itemized statements of disbursements, etc. The Unit Treasurer should be present to facilitate the audit. Once the
final audited financial report and Treasurer’s report are formally adopted by the Unit, these documents should become part of the Unit’s permanent records.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires all nonprofits to file a Form 990 annually. [Administered by the Post].
Donations to the American Legion Auxiliary at all levels of the organization are tax exempt to the donor under Section 501(c)(19) of the IRS Code. The American Legion Auxiliary Group Exemption Number (GEN) is 0964. The IRS also requires that an acknowledgement letter from the nonprofit organization be sent to donors.
By provision of the National Constitution and Bylaws, Unit officers having custody of organization funds shall be bonded. The National Organization maintains a blanket position bond whereby all Unit officers are bonded. Departments reimburse National for this coverage based upon the number of Units in the Department.
Duties of the Unit Historian
The Unit Historian is charged with the responsibility of recording the activities and accomplishments of her Unit during her terms of office. The writing of a Unit or Department history is a very important assignment. Through the years the recorded experiences of those women who served before us have guided the footsteps of those who followed.
Unit Historians are encouraged to present the factual running story of the accomplishments in each program. The description should be simple and concise.
The quality and artistic value of the work depends upon the enthusiasm of the individual historian. Upon the Unit records, the history of a Department is written; upon the Department records, that of the National Organization.
Duties of the Unit Chaplain
The Unit Chaplain will express, by word and action, our founding principal of service to God and Country. She will encourage the Unit to celebrate the diversity amongst its members and their faiths. She will provide spiritual and emotional guidance to members, or their families, as needed or requested and with respect, always maintaining confidentiality. The Unit Chaplain is responsible for pronouncing the invocation and the benediction at Auxiliary meetings, as well as performing such other acts as would fall within the realm of her office as the spiritual leader of the Unit including, but not limited to: installation,
initiation of new members, dedication of halls, monuments or colors, Four Chaplain Services, POW/MIA recognition programs and the memorial service of a member, always lending dignity and respect to the occasion. The Chaplain should stay in close contact with the President and other officers of the Unit and should attend all meetings of the Unit and the Unit Executive Committee.
Duties of the Sergeant-at-Arms
The Sergeant-at-Arms is responsible for keeping order at Unit meetings, for the advancement and retirement of the Unit colors and their proper care, and for such other duties as may be assigned to her by the Unit President.
Installation of Officers
Unit officers should be installed immediately following their election or as soon thereafter as possible.
While installations of officers are desirable, they are not mandatory. An officer takes possession of her office immediately upon her election unless the bylaws or other rules specify a later time.
Initiation of New Members
Initiation of new members is an important function of the officers of each Unit. Every new member should be invited and encouraged to participate in this ceremony. As important as the initiation is to demonstrate the responsibilities of membership, it is not mandatory; nor is it mandatory for a member to have been initiated before holding office.
Duties of the Assistant Sergeant-at-Arms
The Assistant Sergeant-at-Arms is given the responsibility of keeping order at Unit activities, and should be prepared to maintain order at meetings and activities in the absence of the Sergeant-at-Arms.
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