IndexSNU Existing - IssuesThe ChargeStructure ConsiderationsChangesThe Proposal - The discussion is underway. Pass your thoughts, ideas, suggestions, and critiques to hq (at) to join in!

Current governance documents of the SNU as reviewed and approved by the membership in 2007 after discussion and review of the issues on these pages.

Additional Reviews and vote of acceptance of the bylaws by the full membership of the SNU occurred in May 2011, June 2011 and March 2013.

SNU Governance Document Review 2007


of the Constitution and Bylaws of the Sierra Nevada Unit of the Wally Byam Caravan Club, International

For its first twenty five years, the Sierra Nevada Unit of the Wally Byam Caravan Club, International (SNU) used the templates of its parent organization for its governance documents nearly as-is. In 2002 changes were adopted (see September 2002 suggested changes) that removed many of the sections and phrases that were not appropriate to the size of the SNU and its manner of operation. This was the first step of a simplification effort. That effort reduced the officer list and executive board to the minimum necessary for an effective organization and reduced the requirements for organizational bureaucracy.

A 2007 SNU review is requested by the Wally Byam Caravan Club, International (WBCCI) as needed to comply with Ohio Law where WBCCI is chartered as a nonprofit organization. This review is an opportunity to take a second step towards simplification of the basic governance documents. This simplification would have goals of minimizing the constitution to an appropriate essence, moving less important operational issues out of bylaws into policies, and organizing topics so that there is less potential for confusion or conflicting provisions.

The components of the review

The SNU Existing Bylaws and Constitution are the currently implemented documents to serve as a reference for comment and contrast to proposed changes. One result of this review would be to re-submit these to WBCCI without any further considerations of changes or issues.

The Charge explains what is needed by the WBCCI and the pertinent issues involved.

Issues provides a discussion of difficulties and potential concerns that are encountered in meeting the requests of the WBCCI and in preparing a solid set of governance documents.

Structure Considerations – describes the purpose and intent of the various governance documents and discusses why provisions and sections in the current SNU documents could benefit from re-structuring.

Changes – discusses the proposed changes in wording to the existing SNU bylaws and constitution and why they are suggested.

The Proposal – Is the proposed new set of SNU governance documents with the structure and word changes implemented.

Why do this?

The rationale behind the Ohio law is to support good governance practice. A review of governance documents not only stimulates keeping them current with practice but also encourages cleaning up ambiguities and educating the membership.

The SNU can contribute to the WBCCI by providing several ideas to help it strengthen its Units. One of these is to show by example how the governance of a Unit can be simplified and made more understandable and flexible. The WBCCI needs to be able to provide its support in a manner that supports and encourages the many different types, styles, and flavors of Units. This means careful structuring and clear communication of requirements coupled with a solid base in providing guidance for Unit governance documents . Defining what is necessary to comply with WBCCI Bylaws is a first step. The next would be to show how that is fleshed out for a complete basic organization governance definition. Finally, the additions for extended function or larger organizations could be described.

All of these efforts need more than just a 'here it is.' The WBCCI could create a handbook that explains the reason for its requirements, the factors involved in organization governance, and how these things work and why they work that way. This discussion is an attempt to promote and seed an effort towards creating such a handbook.


NONPROFIT ORGANIZATIONS (PDF) Legal Guide for nonprofit organization published in partnership with the Columbus Bar Association

Leader orientation

The WBCCI Constitution, Bylaws, and Policies – Here is where you can find the requirements for Unit Bylaws and the samples provided by the WBCCI. They are quoted extensively in these pages as well.

The September 2002 Bylaws Recommendations for the SNU – This explains step one of the simplification effort for the SNU Bylaws and Constitution.

IndexSNU Existing - IssuesThe ChargeStructure ConsiderationsChangesThe Proposal -

The next step

The discussion will continue through the March 2007 Rally up until April. The current plan is to present a proposal to the membership in time for a vote at the April Rally. If the revisions are accepted, 4 printed copies (1 column, 6pt text, all on one page?) to pass along to Max Charmichael of the WBCCI and see if anyone notices. If is decided not to revise the SNU Documents, the existing documents will be sent to the WBCCI as-is

Please let Bryan at hq (at) know if you want to be notified of changes in these pages as the discussion continues.