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Constitution
LSU Paul M. Hebert Law Center
Board of Advocates

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ARTICLE I—MISSION STATEMENT

The purpose of the Paul M. Hebert Law Center Board of Advocates at Louisiana State University shall be to promote the development of oral and written advocacy skills and to train in all fields and phases of appellate, trial, and alternative dispute resolution or negotiation advocacy. Toward these ends, the Board of Advocates shall sponsor internal and external appellate, trial, and alternative dispute resolution or negotiation competitions, and engage in such other activities as the Executive Committee deems appropriate.

 

ARTICLE II—MEMBERSHIP

Section 1. Eligibility

Any law student attending the Paul M. Hebert Law Center who has met the criteria for membership established by the Executive Committee and delineated in the Board of Advocates Bylaws is eligible for membership on the Board of Advocates.

Section 2. Duties

To maintain membership in good standing on the Board of Advocates, members must:

(i) Pay any required dues;

(ii) Meet attendance requirements for board meetings in accordance with the Bylaws;

(iii) Comply with the laws and codes of conduct for the State of Louisiana, Louisiana State University, the Paul M. Hebert Law Center, and the Board of Advocates;

(iv) Fulfill all required organizational duties as defined in the Board of Advocates Constitution and Bylaws. These duties include, but are not limited to:

  • Participating in the administration of First-Year Practice Oral Arguments;
  • Participating in the administration of all internal advocacy competitions sponsored by the Board of Advocates;
  • Participating in the administration of all external advocacy competitions hosted by the Board of Advocates and the Paul M. Hebert Law Center;
  • At the discretion and request of the Preis PLC Director of Advocacy & Professional Practice or any program coach, assisting with the preparation of Board of Advocates external competition teams;
  • Assisting with the recruitment of volunteer judges for all Board of Advocates programs; and
  • Performing all committee duties as assigned.

Section 3. Governance Under Bylaws

All conditions, requirements, regulations, and disciplinary actions as to membership shall be fixed and governed by the Bylaws of the Board of Advocates.

 

ARTICLE III—EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

Section 1. Membership

The Executive Committee shall consist of all elected officers.

Section 2. Purpose

The Executive Committee shall be the managing body of the Board of Advocates and shall direct its affairs.

Section 3. Meetings

The Executive Committee shall hold regularly scheduled meetings as described in the Bylaws of the Board of Advocates. Required meetings shall be held during each full semester of the academic year.

Section 4. Special Meetings

Special meetings of the Executive Committee may be called by the President or by a majority of the Executive Committee.

Section 5. Quorum

Attendance of a majority of the total membership of the Executive Committee shall constitute a quorum for Executive Committee meetings.

 

ARTICLE IV— ELECTED OFFICERS

Section 1. President

There shall be a President of the Board of Advocates, and the President shall act as chief executive officer of the Board of Advocates and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws. All other elected officers shall report to the President.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates President:

  • A member must have participated in at least two Board of Advocates sponsored activities in the second year,
  • The two activities mentioned above must fit within at least two of the three general advocacy categories (appellate advocacy, trial advocacy, alternative dispute resolution/negotiation), and
  • Except with the permission of the Preis PLC Director of Advocacy & Professional Practice, the member must not apply to or agree to serve as an executive board member of any other organization at the Paul M. Hebert Law Center in the third year.

Participation in an external competition team constitutes a Board of Advocates sponsored activity.

Section 2. Vice President of Internal Competitions

There shall be a Vice President of Internal Competitions of the Board of Advocates who shall oversee and assist in the organization all internal competitions hosted by the Board of Advocates and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws. The Director of Internal Appellate Competitions, the Director of Internal Trial Competitions, and the Director of Internal Alternative Dispute Resolution/Negotiation Competitions shall report to the Vice President of Internal Competitions. The Vice President of Internal Competitions shall report to the President.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Vice President of Internal Competitions:

  • A member must have participated in at least two Board of Advocates sponsored activities in the second year, and
  • At least one of the activities mentioned above must have been an internal competition.

Participation in an external competition team constitutes a Board of Advocates sponsored activity.

Section 3. Vice President of External Competitions

There shall be a Vice President of External Competitions of the Board of Advocates who shall oversee all teams sponsored by the Board of Advocates to external competitions and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws.  The Director of External Appellate Competitions, the Director of External Trial Competitions, and the Director of External Alternative Dispute Resolution/Negotiation Competitions shall report to the Vice President of External Competitions. The Vice President of External Competitions shall report to the President.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Vice President of External Competitions:

  • A member must have participated in at least two Board of Advocates sponsored activities in the second year, and
  • At least one of the activities mentioned above must have been an external competition team.

Participation in an external competition team constitutes a Board of Advocates sponsored activity.

Section 4. Vice President of Judicial Relations

There shall be a Vice President of Judicial Relations of the Board of Advocates who shall oversee contacting and soliciting all volunteers for events hosted by the Board of Advocates and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws. The two Co-Coordinators of Judicial Relations shall report to the Vice President of Judicial Relations. The Vice President of Judicial Relations shall report to the President.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Vice President of Judicial Relations:

  • A member must have participated in at least two Board of Advocates sponsored activities in the second year, and
  • At least one of the activities mentioned above must have been an internal competition.

Participation in an external competition team constitutes a Board of Advocates sponsored activity.

Section 5. Vice President of Undergraduate Relations

There shall be a Vice President of Undergraduate Relations of the Board of Advocates who shall oversee and manage all tasks related to the Board of Advocates’s interactions with the Louisiana State University undergraduate mock trial team and any other LSU system organizations and all other duties described in the Bylaws. The Vice President of Undergraduate Relations shall report to the President.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Vice President of Undergraduate Relations:

  • A member must have participated in at least two Board of Advocates sponsored activities in the second year, and
  • At least one of the activities mentioned above must have been a trial advocacy activity.

Participation in an external competition team constitutes a Board of Advocates sponsored activity.

Section 6. Director of Internal Appellate Competitions.

There shall be a Director of Internal Appellate Competitions of the Board of Advocates who shall manage the organization of all appellate advocacy internal competitions hosted by the Board of Advocates and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws. The Director of Internal Appellate Competitions shall report to the Vice President of Internal Competitions.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Director of Internal Appellate Competitions:

  • A member must have participated in at least one internal appellate advocacy competition in the second year.

Section 7. Director of Internal Trial Competitions.

There shall be a Director of Internal Trial Competitions of the Board of Advocates who shall manage the organization of all trial advocacy internal competitions hosted by the Board of Advocates and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws. The Director of Internal Trial Competitions shall report to the Vice President of Internal Competitions.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Director of Internal Trial Competitions:

  • A member must have participated in at least one internal trial advocacy competition in the second year.

Section 8. Director of Internal Alternative Dispute Resolution/Negotiation Competitions.

There shall be a Director of Internal Alternative Dispute Resolution/Negotiation Competitions of the Board of Advocates who shall manage the organization of all ADR/negotiation advocacy internal competitions hosted by the Board of Advocates and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws. The Director of Internal Alternative Dispute Resolution/Negotiation Competitions shall report to the Vice President of Internal Competitions.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Director of Internal ADR/Negotiation Competitions:

  • A member must have participated in at least one internal ADR/negotiation advocacy competition in the second year.

Section 9. Director of External Appellate Competitions

There shall be a Director of External Appellate Competitions of the Board of Advocates who shall oversee all teams sponsored by the Board of Advocates to appellate advocacy external competitions and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws.  The Director of External Appellate Competitions shall report to the Vice President of External Competitions.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Director of External Appellate Competitions:

  • A member must have participated in at least one external appellate advocacy competition team in the second year.

Section 10. Director of External Trial Competitions

There shall be a Director of External Trial Competitions of the Board of Advocates who shall oversee all teams sponsored by the Board of Advocates to trial advocacy external competitions and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws.  The Director of External Trial Competitions shall report to the Vice President of External Competitions.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Director of External Trial Competitions:

  • A member must have participated in at least one external trial advocacy competition team in the second year.

Section 11. Director of External Alternative Dispute Resolution/Negotiation Competitions

There shall be a Director of External Alternative Dispute Resolution/Negotiation Competitions of the Board of Advocates who shall oversee all teams sponsored by the Board of Advocates to ADR/negotiation advocacy external competitions and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws.  The Director of External ADR/Negotiation Competitions shall report to the Vice President of External Competitions.

To be eligible to serve as Board of Advocates Director of External ADR/Negotiation Competitions:

  • A member must have participated in at least one external ADR/negotiation advocacy competition team in the second year.

Section 12. Co-Coordinators of Judicial Relations

There shall be two Co-Coordinators of Judicial Relations of the Board of Advocates who shall assist in contacting and soliciting all volunteers for events hosted by the Board of Advocates and perform all other duties described in the Bylaws. The two Co-Coordinators of Judicial Relations shall report to the Vice President of Judicial Relations.

To be eligible to serve as a Board of Advocates Co-Coordinator of Judicial Relations:

  • A member must have participated in at least one Board of Advocates sponsored internal competition in the second year.

 

ARTICLE V—MEETINGS and VOTING

Section 1. Scheduling

The Board of Advocates shall hold regularly scheduled meetings as described in the Board of Advocates Bylaws. The President shall be present at all regularly scheduled meetings.

Section 2. Notification

Notification of general board meetings shall be provided to members at least five (5) days prior to the meeting as described in the Bylaws.

Section 3. Special Meetings

Special meetings of the Board of Advocates may be called by the President or by a majority of the Executive Committee. Notification shall be at the earliest possible date.

Section 4. Quorum

A majority of the current membership of the Board of Advocates shall constitute a quorum.

Section 5. Voting

A quorum is required to take a vote on any Board of Advocates matter at any meeting.

Section 6. Threshold for an Affirmative Vote

The number of votes necessary for a certain Board of Advocates matter to pass shall be set by the remaining sections of this Constitution and the Bylaws. Whether a certain voting threshold is met shall be determined from those members present and voting (e.g. If a 2/3 vote is required, 2/3 of the members present at the meeting and eligible to vote must vote in the affirmative for the matter to pass). Members early voting in accordance with Section 8 shall be considered present and voting for the purpose of meeting a particular vote threshold.

Section 7. Voting Eligibility

Any Board of Advocates member who is in good standing may vote on any Board of Advocates matter.

Section 8. Early Voting

If a member is unable to attend a meeting in which a vote is to be taken, that member may vote in advance of the meeting in accordance with a procedure to be set by the President. The member must indicate in writing how his vote is to be cast (e.g. in the affirmative or negative or for a particular candidate). The member may not authorize someone to vote on his behalf (vote by proxy).

 

ARTICLE VI—ELECTIONS

Section 1. Time for Election

At the close of the current academic year, election of officers for the following academic year shall be held at the first official general board meeting for the new board. The President of the outgoing board shall attend this first general board meeting of the incoming board to facilitate the new elections.

Section 2. Candidate Profiles

Any member wishing to run for a Board of Advocates elected position must timely submit a Candidate Profile Form. A member must submit a separate Candidate Profile Form for each position for which that member intends to run. The President of the outgoing board will distribute and coordinate the submission of all Candidate Profile Forms.

The President of the outgoing board shall create a committee of outgoing board members to review all timely-submitted Candidate Profile Forms so as to confirm that each member is eligible to run for the position(s) identified.

The President of the outgoing board shall make all timely-submitted and eligible Candidate Profile Forms available for review to all members of the new board within three (3) days of elections.

Section 3. Procedure

Board of Advocates elections shall be executed in accordance with procedures set in the Bylaws.

Section 3. Voting

Election of each elected officer requires a majority vote of the Board of Advocates.

Section 4. Impeachment

A Board of Advocates elected officer may be removed for failing to uphold or execute his or her duties as defined in the Board of Advocates Constitution and Bylaws. Removal of an elected officer requires a two-thirds vote of the Board of Advocates. For impeachment purposes alone, early voting will not be allowed.

 

ARTICLE VII—AMENDMENTS

Section 1. Proposed Amendments

An amendment to the Constitution must be proposed to the President and the Executive Committee, in writing, not less than five (5) days prior to a general meeting. Notification shall include the language of the proposed amendment.

Section 2. Adoption

The Executive Committee shall entertain a motion for amendment to the Constitution. Adoption shall be by a majority of the Executive Committee.

Section 3. Ratification

Adopted amendments to the Constitution shall be read into the minutes of the next Board of Advocates meeting and the proposed language shall be circulated amongst the general membership in written form at that meeting. Adopted amendments must be ratified by a two-thirds vote.

 

ARTICLE VIII—BYLAWS

Section 1. Promulgation

The President shall promulgate Bylaws as necessary and/or appropriate with the advice and consent of a majority of the Executive Committee.

Section 2. Notification

An amendment to the Bylaws must be proposed to the President and the Executive Committee, in writing, not less than five (5) days prior to a general meeting. Notification shall include the language of the proposed amendment.

Section 3. Adoption

The Executive Committee shall entertain a motion for amendment. Adoption shall be by a majority of the Executive Committee.

Section 4. Ratification

Adopted amendments shall be read into the minutes of the next Board of Advocates meeting and the proposed language shall be circulated amongst the general membership in written form at that meeting. Adopted amendments must be ratified by a majority vote.

 

ARTICLE IX—PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY

The rules contained in Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall govern this organization in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with this Constitution and any special rules of order the Board may adopt.

This Constitution was created and adopted by the 2018 Constitutional Convention Committee, created for the specific purpose of outlining the original governing documentation for the Board of Advocates.