TO: Membership, American Society for Public Administration
FROM: Kendra Stewart, ASPA President
SUBJECT: Proposed Bylaws Amendment
DATE: November 2, 2020

This year, the National Council is working on five priority areas related to ASPA’s long-term programmatic, financial and reputational health. One Council workgroup is charged with identifying ways to strengthen ASPA’s unrestricted revenue stream.

At the workgroup’s recommendation, the National Council unanimously approved the establishment of a development committee as a standing (permanent) committee within ASPA. Our bylaws provide for standing committees, so creating a new one requires a bylaws amendment on which the membership must vote.

For your consideration is the following proposed amendment related to the committee, its membership and its responsibilities. The workgroup’s rationale is provided below, as well.

Proposed Amendment

Article V-3-G.    Development Committee

  1. There shall be a Development Committee that consists of at least six (6) members, no more than two (2) of whom shall be members of the National Council, one (1) of whom shall be a member of the ASPA Endowment Board, and the remainder shall be from the world at large. The Endowment representative shall be appointed by that Board’s Chair; all others shall be appointed by the Council’s President, who shall select the Chair from the National Council members on the committee.  All members should have demonstrable fundraising expertise.
  2. Each member shall serve a two-year term, with the possibility of two additional terms. Terms shall be staggered, to provide continuity of operations.
  3. The Development Committee has the following responsibilities:
    • Support the President and Chair in promoting annual contributions from Council and Endowment Board members.
    • Develop an annual and multi-year plan to solicit funds from individuals, as well as corporations and foundations.
    • Explore naming possibilities and develop and implement plans to seek donors.
    • Develop and maintain a file of potential donors, along with their preferences and schedules for donations.
    • Collaborate across Council/Endowment lines to develop and implement mutually beneficial fundraising efforts.
    • Develop proposals and other solicitation materials, both as a group and with appropriate staff resources.
    • Work closely with the Financial Management Committee to determine areas of greatest need and potential.
    • Work closely with staff, consultants, and Advisory Board members, as appropriate for development purposes.


Ensuring ASPA’s financial stability, and its both short- and long-term health, is a continuing responsibility of ASPA’s elected leadership—including members of its National Council and Endowment Board.

Given the continuing crises in our external environment, ASPA’s workgroup focused on fundraising and unrestricted revenue streams believes that is it vitally important for a dedicated body to engage in the work of strengthening ASPA’s financial health. The proposed amendment would allow for a Committee to focus on improving ASPA’s financial position and serving as a focal point for the Society’s fundraising efforts into the future.

Additional Information

Please review an updated version of ASPA’s bylaws, should the changes be approved. The voting period will begin November 9. All votes—whether for elected leadership or for the amendment to ASPA’s bylaws—are due online or must be postmarked by December 4, 2020.

If you have questions about the National Council election, proposed amendment, or voting process in general, contact ASPA’s Phillip Carlisle.