America's Oldest Continuously Operating American Legion Post

Constitution

(2010 version, currently under revision)

CARSON – WILSON – RIGNEY – FORRESTER

POST ONE, THE AMERICAN LEGION 1120 EAST EIGHTH STREET TULSA, OKLAHOMA 74120

CONSTITUTION AND BY – LAWS

PREAMBLE TO THE CONSTITUTION OF THE AMERICAN LEGION

For God and Country, we associate ourselves together for the following purposes;

To uphold and defend the Constitution of The United States of America; To Maintain Law and order;

To foster and perpetuate a one hundred percent Americanism;

To preserve the memories and incidents of our association in the Great Wars;

To inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, state and nation;

To combat the autocracy of both the classes and the masses; To make right the Master of Might;

To promote peace and good will on earth;

To safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy;

To consecrate and sanctify our comradeship by our devotion to mutual helpfulness.

The Constitution and By-Laws of Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester, Post One, The American Legion, and Department of Oklahoma was voted on by the General Membership June 1st, 2010 and approved. Forwarded to The Department Adjutant and Judge Advocate of The American Legion of Oklahoma on June 8th, 2010. In accordance with the Department Constitution and By-Laws, approved July 12th, 2010 and delivered to Post by Department Adjutant July 20th, 2010.

That the word “membership” as referred to in this document means and refers to the general membership of this Post, who are present when a vote is taken on any business that comes before the Post.

That the words “member in good standing” as referred to in this document means and refers to dues of a member are current for the succeeding year (i.e. 2004 – 2005).

That the word “Quorum” as referred to in this document means and refers to the number of members required to hold a meeting. In the case of the Post Executive Committee that number is seven (7). In the case of the Regular Post Meeting that number is fifteen (15).

ARTICLE I

Name

The name of this organization shall be Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester, Post One, The American Legion.

ARTICLE II

Allegiance

The purpose of this Post shall be to promote the principles and policies as set forth in preamble to the Constitution of The American Legion. Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester Post One is an inseparable part of the American Legion, Department of Oklahoma and therefore the Constitution and By- Laws of the American Legion, Department of Oklahoma, adopted in compliance with the National Constitution and By – Laws are the supreme law of this Post.

ARTICLE III

Nature

Section 1.

This Post is a civilian organization; membership therein does not affect nor increase liability for military or police service. Rank does not exist in the American Legion; no member shall be addresses by his military or naval title in any meeting of this Post.

Section 2.

This Post shall be absolutely nonpolitical and shall not be used for the dissemination of partisan principles nor for the promotion of the candidacy of any person seeking public office or preferment. No candidate for, or incumbent, of a salaried elected public office shall hold any office in this Post. The declaration of candidacy for public office by any officer of this

Post shall be automatically vacate his office in the Post and the same shall be filled as hereinafter provided.

ARTICLE IV

Membership and Discipline

Section 1.

The same eligibility rules for membership in this Post shall exist as is prescribed by the Department and National Constitutions and By – Laws of the American Legion.

Section 2.

Members shall be subjected to discipline, suspension and discharge as provided by the Department and National Constitutions and By – Laws of the American Legion.

Section 3.

All members shall provide the Post with a copy of their military discharge papers. If a member is still on active duty, a copy of their DD Form 2 (ID card). If the member does not have a discharge to file the Post Service Officer will take the appropriate steps to secure a copy from the National Personal Records Center in St. Louis, MO.

ARTICLE V

Convention Delegates

Section 1.

Delegates and Alternates to a National or Department Convention shall be selected by the Post at a regular meeting of the Post to be held at least twenty (20) days prior to the date of the Department Convention, at which time the delegates shall be named.

Section 2.

The delegation of Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester Post One will not pledge will not pledge to support any member aspiring for District, Department or National Office, until such candidate’s name has been submitted in the form of a resolution and read at two general membership meetings preceding the meeting at which the votes are taken. Any procedure carried out in compliance with this section must be reported to the Post and Posted at least one (1) Week in advance of the voting to give all members an equal opportunity to be informed.

Section 3.

Certified delegates of the Post and present at any properly called caucus at any convention, and instructed on the question or the endorsing of a candidate involved, must have a majority vote of the delegates present, except as otherwise provided by the Department and National Constitutions and By – Laws.

Section 4.

A properly called caucus is defined as one announced for the platform during sessions of the convention, or one that is called by posting a notice on the bulletin board at Post Administrative Office at least three (3) hours previous to the caucus. Both methods shall announce both time and place of said caucus.

ARTICLE VI

Post Officers

Section 1.

The officers of this Post shall be: Commander, Adjutant, Three (3) Vice- Commanders, Chaplain, Sergeant at Arms, Historian. All officers of the Post must be members in good standing for the current membership year.

Section 2.

All officers, except the Adjutant shall be elected annually and shall hold office until their successors are duly elected and qualified. The Adjutant shall be appointed by the Post Commander, subject to approval by the Post Executive Committee.

Section 3.

Any member in good standing shall be eligible to hold any office.

Section 4.

Duties of the Post Commander: It shall be the duty of the Post Commander to preside at all meetings of the Post and be the Chairman of all Committee’s within the post and have a voice at said meetings without vote except in the case of a tie. The Commander will have general supervision over the business and affairs of the Post and as such be the Chief Executive Officer of the Post. The Commander shall approve all orders directing disbursement of funds and shall make an annual report covering the business of the Post for the year, with recommendations for the upcoming year which shall be read at the annual meeting (last general meting) before the call of the Department Convention. A copy of said report will be forwarded to Department Headquarters for inclusion in the Department’s Post file. The Commander will perform any other such duties as the Post may direct.

Section 5.

The Vice – Commanders shall do and perform those things as provided below as a minimum and any other duties as may be directed by the Post Commander. In the absence of the Commander, the First Vice – Commander shall preside, assume and discharge the duties of the Commander:

  • First Vice – Commander Membership
  • Second Vice – Commander Entertainment
  • Third Vice – Commander Buildings and Grounds

Section 6.

The Post Chaplain shall be charged with the spiritual welfare of the Post members and will offer divine; but non – -sectarian service in the event of dedications, funerals, public functions, etc., and shall provided with such ceremonial rituals as are recommended by the Department and National Headquarters. He shall be charged with conducting at least one service yearly in February for the special benefit of the Post.

Section 7.

Duties of the Sergeant at Arms: The Sergeant at Arms shall preserve order at meetings and shall perform other such duties as may be directed by the Post Commander and Post Executive Committee. He/she shall keep a record of members present at each meeting and from time to time check for current membership cards. (See Article IX Post Election, sub-paragraph “t” for authorize cards)

Section 8.

Duties of the Post Adjutant: The Post Adjutant shall be responsible to the Post Commander. The Adjutant shall have charge of and keep a full and correct record of all proceedings of the meetings of the Post and the Executive Committee and the reading of such minutes when called upon to do so (all minutes shall be recorded and transcribed and completed within Ten (10) business days). The Adjutant shall do and perform all those duties provided by the Post Executive Committee and perform any other such duties as the Post Commander may direct.

Section 9.

Duties of the Post Historian: The Post Historian shall be charged with the individual records and incidents of the Post and its members. He shall perform any other such duties of his office as the Post Executive Committee or Commander may direct.

ARTICLE VII

Post Executive Committee

Section 1.

The administrative affairs of the Post shall be under the direction of the Post Executive Committee; said committee is responsible to the membership at all times and may not any legal documents or put the Post in jeopardy or debt without the membership approval.

Post Executive Committee shall consist of the following:

Post Commander Who shall be the Chairman with voice and no vote, except in the case of a tie?

  • Immediate Past Commander Who shall be the Vice – Chairman and serve for one (1) year.
  • Three Vice – Commanders Who shall be members and serve for one year.
  • Eight Elected Members Who shall serve (see Section 3)

That the Post Executive Meeting is open to any member in good standing of Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester American Legion Post One, providing that the member understands that he/she has no voice and no vote. Only the Chairman may recognize a visitor and the members of said committee must vote to let them speak. Visitors are not allowed to attend Executive Session (Executive Session is defined as when a member of the committee feels the need to discuss a matter that in their opinion merits discussion, “i.e. hiring or firing of personal employed by the Post or discipline of a Post member” said member must make a motion and it be seconded and voted on to go into said session. Only the voting members of Executive Committee and those individuals specifically named by said committee shall be permitted presence in the meeting room.) *Visitors are designated as any member in good standing.

Section 2.

The Post Executive Committee shall meet for organization and such other business as may come before it on the date of installation; which is the first regular Post meeting following the Department Convention. Thereafter the Post Executive Committee shall meet at the call of the Commander or one hour prior to the regularly schedule Post Meetings; which are held on the first and third Tuesdays of each month, said meeting will be in the Ed Shields Room of the Post. The Post Commander or a majority of the executive committee shall have the power to call a special meeting at any time. Seven members of the Post Executive Committee shall constitute a Quorum of said committee.

Section 3.

The eight (8) elected members of the Post Executive Committee shall be elected and serve as follows:

3a. Eight (8) members of the Post Executive Committee shall be elected at the regular Post Election.

3b. The four (4) candidates receiving the highest number of votes shall serve for a period of two years. The four (4) candidates receiving the next highest number of votes shall serve for period of one (1) year. There, four (4) members of the Post Executive Committee shall be elected annually, beginning with the regular Post election in the following year and their election shall be determined on the basis of the four (4) candidates receiving the highest number of votes. They shall serve as members of the Post Executive Committee for a period of two (2) years, or until relieved by their successors.

Section 4.

In the event of a vacancy occurring in any manner other than expiration of term of office the vacancy shall be filled as follows:

Should the vacancy occur during the term of office of any one or more of the eight (8) elected members of the Post Executive Committee, the Post Commander shall recommend a member of the Post in good standing to the remaining members of the Post Executive Committee. Who shall appoint or ask for another recommendation from the Post Commander until the vacancy is filled by a majority vote of said committee; subject to the approval of the membership at the next regular meeting. Should the vacancy occur within the ranks of the other members of the Post Executive Committee, it shall be filled in the same manner for the full unexpired term.

Section 5.

The Post Executive Committee, subject to the regulation herein, shall hire and fire such employees as may be necessary; shall authorize and approve all expenditures, shall require adequate bonds from all persons having custody of Post funds; and generally have charge of and be responsible for the management of the affairs of this Post.

Section 6.

Every action of the Post Executive Committee shall be recorded in a record book that shall be kept, in writing, by the commander or such person as the Commander with the consent of the Post Executive Committee shall designate. No action shall be of any effect unless so recorded. Such record shall be the property of the Post and shall be permanently preserved in a safe place to be designated and provided for by the Post Executive Committee.

The record of each Executive meeting shall be read by the Commander or the Post Adjutant to the membership at the next regular Post meeting at which a quorum (15 members in good standing, constitutes a quorum) is present. If any such action recorded or read in such record be objected to by any Post member in good standing at such reading, he/she may move that such action be amended. If such motion be seconded, the same shall be open for discussion and shall then be put to a vote of the members present and if carried by Majority shall supersede the action of the Post Executive Committee to that extent.

ARTICLE VIII

Post Historian

Section 1.

The Post Historian shall be charged with making a collection of records, incidents, press clippings and anecdotes relating to the official and unofficial life of the Post and which might be interesting and illustrative in the future. These shall be entered by writing or gluing the same on the pages of a permanently bound ledger to be provided by the Executive Committee.

Such ledger shall be the property of the Post and shall be permanently preserved in a safe place, to be designated and provided by the Executive

10

Committee. The ledger shall be known as the Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester Post One Historical Record.

Section 2.

The Post Historian shall make reports and submit to the Post all contributions and additions to such Historical Record for the first half of each administration. At the second regular meeting of the Post in January and for the second half at the second regular meeting of the Post in July, the whole Historical Record shall be kept on display and available for reading and inspection at each of said meetings.

Section 3.

The ledger shall be large enough to contain the Historical entries for several years and when full shall be kept permanently in a safe place, as aforesaid, a new ledger provided immediately in the same way and the Historical Record continues as before.

Section 4.

If any Post Historian shall fail to make and semi – annual report as herein required the Commander shall immediately declare the office of Post Historian vacant. Appoint with the approval of the Executive Committee a new Post Historian for the remainder of the administration who shall at the second meeting of the following month, prepare and submit the Historical Record for omitted half year.

ARTICLE IX

Post Elections

The method of election of all elected offices in this Post is as follows:

  1. Nominations shall be made at two regular meetings preceding the election.
  2. A nominee must be present or have a letter of acceptance to be nominated for office.
  3. The election shall be held on a regular meeting day of the Post and shall precede the Department Convention by at least ten(10) days and not more than forty (40) days.
  4. The election shall be by secret ballot.
  5. Hours of the election will be from 1 PM to 6 PM. No ballot will be valid if not marked by the material provided by the Post. The only official ballots authorized, are approved by the Post Executive Committee.
  6. There will be no “Write-In” on the ballot.
  7. A mistake in voting for a candidate for one office does not invalidate the vote for other offices on the same ballot.
  8. A torn or defaced ballot is valid if the intent of the voter is clear.
  9. Blank ballots or votes for ineligible persons will not be counted as legal ballots.
  10. If several nominees for equal offices are voted for in a group, a ballot containing fewer votes than the number of positions to be filled is valid. A ballot containing votes for more than the number of positions to be filled is illegal for those positions.
  11. When a candidate for a single office receives a majority, he/she is elected.
  12. Vice – Commanders will be voted on by their nomination. (i.e. First Vice, Second Vice, Third Vice)
  13. The Post Executive Committee will be the four (4) candidates receiving the highest number of votes.
  14. In the case of a tie vote for any position a secret ballot will be used by the members present at the regular scheduled meeting on Election Day to determine the winner.
  15. No elected officers or executive committee members may take office until the first regularly scheduled Post meeting after the Department Convention.
  16. The supervision of the election and tabulation of the votes shall be by a three (3) member committee. None of said committee shall be candidates for office; they shall be appointed by the Post Commander and approved by the Post Executive Committee.
  17. No member shall hold two elected offices at the same time.
  18. Any member elected to any office or appointed to any office has fifteen (15) days to provide a copy of his Discharge Papers to the Post Adjutant.
  19. The Sergeant at Arms or the Commanders designated representative shall check every members card (either paper or plastic in the case of a Paid-Up-For-Life “PUFL” and metal in the case of an Honorary Life Member) to insure that they are members in good standing before issuing the member a ballot to his/her vote.

ARTICLE X

Finance

Section 1.

The revenue of this Post shall be derived from the membership or initiation fees from annual membership dues and from such other sources as may be subject to the regulation herein and approved by the Post Executive Committee and membership.

Section 2.

The amount of such membership or Post dues shall be fixed and determined by this Post.

Section 3.

This Post shall pay to Department Headquarters the National and Department annual membership dues for every member of this Post.

Section 4.

It shall be the duty of the Post Executive Committee to make a financial report to the membership covering the operation of the Post and the Bar and all other subsidiaries; not later than the 3rd Tuesday following the close of each month’s business.

ARTICLE XI

Auxiliaries

Section 1.

This Post recognizes American Legion Auxiliary Unit One (Aux), Sons of the American Legion Squadron One (SAL), The American Legion Riders Post One (ALR).

Section 2.

Eligibility for membership in these organizations shall be provided for in the Department and National Constitutions of The American Legion and The American Legion Auxiliary.

Section 3.

These organizations shall be governed in each Department of The American Legion by such rules and regulations as may be prescribed by the National Executive Committee and thereafter approved by such Department of The American Legion.

Section 4.

Any subordinate or Auxiliary body of Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester, American Legion Post 1 or anybody affiliating itself with or claiming affiliating with this Post, using the name or any insignia of The American Legion under the auspices of this Post, shall in all of its dealings with the general public be subject to the direction, rules and regulations of the Post Commander and Executive Committee, subject to approval of the membership.

Section 5.

Affairs of such bodies within themselves are to be administered by the duly elected/constituted officers thereof, subject to supervision and direction of the Post.

Section 6.

Any such subordinate, affiliate or Auxiliary body entering into any program, money raising venture; which involves contact with or solicitation of the general public, must receive the permission of the Post Commander and Executive Committee or forfeit the right to use the name or insignia of The American Legion. Members and officers thereof shall be subject to such disciplinary action as the Post Executive may direct.

ARTICLE XII

Meetings

Section 1.

The regular meetings of this Post shall be held on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of each month. Said meeting will be held at the Post Home located at 1120 East 8th Street, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74120 with a quorum being present. Any meeting may be converted into an entertainment or social function as may be deemed advisable by the Post Executive Committee, subject to the membership approval.

Section 2.

Every action of the Post at any regular or special meting shall be recorded and a record book kept in writing by the Post Commander or his designated representative, with the approval of the Post Executive Committee. No action shall be of any effect unless so recorded. Such record shall be the property of the Post and shall be permanently preserved in a safe place. Said place to be designated and provided for by the Post Executive Committee.

Section 3.

The record of each regular or special meeting of the Post shall be read by the Post Commander or Adjutant at the next regular Post meting at which a quorum is present. Every action so recorded or read shall be subject to reconsideration or amendment on motion of any member present, if the same were duly seconded. Such motion shall be put to a vote of the members present and if carried shall supersede the prior action of the Post to that extent.

ARTICLE XIII

Expenditures

Section 1.

No expenditure by this Post shall be made, nor any obligation incurred by it, or by any person in the name of it or on its behalf to bind it, unless said expenditure shall have been approved by the Post Executive Committee and presented to the floor of the Post for a vote of approval before any expenditure are allowed and the following procedures are meet:

  • No purchase order shall be approved, or liability created unless and until funds are available to meet the proposed obligation.
  • Disbursement shall be made only by voucher check. Each invoice paid shall bear the approval of the person receiving material or approval of the person having the work done.
  • All checks of the Post shall be signed by the Post Commander or Post Financial Officer or responsible individual designated by the Post Executive Committee.

Section 2.

All contracts entered into for the purpose of expanding or altering the facilities of the building or premises shall be in writing and shall be approved by the Post floor and submitted to the building corporation for approval. A copy of such contracts shall be filed with the Post Adjutant. The Post Adjutant shall bring any business of this nature before the regular Post meeting and see that it is properly reported in the Post News under the heading of “IMPORTANT BUSINESS” one week in advance of the voting.

ARTICLE XIV

Real Estate

Section 1.

The title to all real estate owned by Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester Post 1, The American Legion, shall be vested and held in and by the Joe Carson Building Corporation, in trust, however, for the exclusive use and benefit of Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester Post 1, The American Legion and its lessees, successors and assigns and such use and benefit shall be subject to the direction and discretion of Carson – Wilson – Rigney Forrester Post 1, The American Legion.

  • There shall be five (5) members or trustees of said corporation who shall each be appointed by the Post Commander and must be members in good standing of Carson – Wilson – Rigney Forrester Post 1, The American Legion. Said term of one trustee shall end on February 15th of each year. A new trustee shall on that date be appointed by the Post Commander, subject to the approval of the Post Executive Committee and Membership at the second regular scheduled meeting. Such newly appointed trustee shall hold office for five (5) years. Said minutes of The Joe Carson Building Corporation shall be available in the Post Administrative Office.
  • If there be other vacancies due to other causes than expiration of term, they shall be filled by appointment as described in the preceding section in the same way for the unexpired term of the respective vacancies.
  • No sale or indebtedness shall be done without the express approval of The Post Executive Committee and the Membership.

By-Laws

Section 1.

Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester Post 1, The American Legion will operate a “Clubroom in the Post for its members. It shall be governed at the Post Commanders discretion by either a Club Room Chairman or by a Committee of three (3) members, to be known as the Club Room Committee (CRC), who shall serve for a period of three years and be accountable to the Post Executive Committee and the membership. Said Chairman/Committee will publish a Standard Operating Procedure Manual (SOP) that establishes policies and procedures for the Clubroom. Furthermore, the Post Commander may also appoint the Post Executive Committee to govern the Clubroom at any time if he feels it necessary in his judgment.

Section 2.

The Chairman/CRC with the Post Executive Committee’s approval will hire or appoint a Clubroom Manager, who shall be accountable to said committee for all monies and stock. The Chairman/CRC will meet with the Clubroom Manager at least twice monthly and a report of said meeting will be presented to the Post Executive Committee and membership for approval.

Section 3.

Clubroom hours are Monday – Thursday 3 P.M. until 12 P.M., Friday 3 P.M. until 12 A.M., Saturday 2 P.M. until 12 A.M., Sunday 2 P.M. until 10 P.M… These hours may be extended or shortened at the discretion of the Post Executive Committee and Clubroom Committee.

Section 4.

That a fiscal inventory of stock be taken on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month and end of month (ABLE) inventory by the Clubroom Manager and a disinterested party, (Designated by the Post Commander) said individual may not be the Chairman or CRC member. Said inventory of stock will be reported to the Post Administrative Office

Section 5.

The stock and inventories of the Clubroom are for the exclusive use and benefit of the membership of Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester Post 1, The American Legion. Furthermore, only members of The American Legion, Auxiliary, SAL, ALR and their guest may use the Clubroom. When a member leaves the Clubroom who has a guest signed in, that guest must also leave.

Section 6.

The Post Executive Committee shall have the power to bar an unruly member from the Clubroom for a period; said period will be determined by the committee. Appeals made, are made in writing to the Post Commander and Executive Committee.

Improper Conduct

Section 1.

Any member in good standing of the Post may present to the Post Executive Committee informal evidence in writing, tending to show that any other member has been guilty of improper conduct on Post premises. That tends to amount to a nuisance or to bring ill repute or damage to the Post or any of its members or to any activity of the Post, or its subordinate affiliate or auxiliary organizations.

Section 2.

If, after consideration a majority of the Post Executive Committee shall find that the informal evidence is true and that an offense or offenses within the above description has been committed by the member complained against. Said Post Executive Committee may make an order suspending the privilege of the offending member to come upon the premises of the Post and notify such offender in writing.

Section 3.

If such offender desires to have such informal evidence or order reviewed, he/she may make written record to the Post Commander. His/her return address clearly shown thereon and the Commander shall fix a time and place for review and give notice to the offender at such return address.

Section 4.

The offender shall be heard at such a review; but on his personal appearance at the time and place thereat and, upon consideration, the Post Executive Committee may either affirm or dismiss the suspension of the offender.

The Constitution and By – Laws of Carson – Wilson – Rigney – Forrester Post 1, The American Legion, Department of Oklahoma were voted on by the General Membership on June 1st, 2010 and forwarded to the Department Adjutant and Judge Advocate of The American Legion of Oklahoma on June 8th, 2010. In accordance with the Department Constitution and By-Laws, approved July 12th, 2010 and delivered to the Post by The Department Adjutant July 20th, 2010.