• Dartmouth Alumni Leadership Proposes to Simplify Trustee Elections

    Friday, November 7, 2008

In advance of the Dartmouth Alumni Council's December meeting, the leadership of the Association of Alumni and Alumni Council has proposed an amendment to the association constitution aimed at clarifying and simplifying alumni-nominated trustee election procedures.
The proposal is detailed in the following letter, which will be mailed and emailed to all Dartmouth alumni this week.

November 10, 2008

Dear Dartmouth Alumnus/a:

The number of members of the Board of Trustees nominated through alumni elections and the manner in which elections are conducted are matters of great importance to all concerned. Working together over the past several months, the combined leadership of the Association of Alumni and the Alumni Council has developed a proposed amendment to the constitution of the Association of Alumni. We sincerely believe the amendment will both (1) simplify, clarify, and strengthen the election process; and (2) help to advance our continuing discussions with the Board of Trustees about the prospect of increasing the number of alumni-nominated trustees.

The amendment we are proposing will:

  • simplify voting by adopting a one person/one vote procedure
  • preserve unchanged the ability of petitioners to run in alumni trustee elections
  • assure that the winner receives a majority of the total votes cast

With this amendment, the Alumni Council will first nominate either one or two candidates for each vacancy. Assuming, based on consistent recent history, that at least one petition candidate will thereafter also be nominated, we expect that this procedure will promote head to head elections. Alumni will cast only one vote for each vacancy according to the familiar, well-understood one person/one vote procedure. If there are three or more candidates for any one vacancy and no one receives an absolute majority of the votes cast, there will be a runoff election between the top two vote getters, thereby assuring that the winner will receive a majority of the votes cast. Click here to view a full copy of the amendment.

In recent trustee elections, only 28 percent of alumni have voted. We believe that by simplifying and clarifying election procedures so that everyone understands them, we can achieve a broader participation in these vitally important elections.

Your Alumni Council representatives will be happy to respond to any questions or comments you may have about this proposal.

Find your representatives.

The Council will discuss the amendment at its December 4, 2008, biannual meeting.

It is our goal to promote an atmosphere of collegiality and mutual respect among all of us who want to see Dartmouth endure and prosper. We believe that our proposed amendment will advance this worthy objective. The amendment will appear on the Association of Alumni ballot in the spring of 2009.

We would be grateful for your consideration and support.


John H. Mathias Jr. '69
Dartmouth Association of Alumni

John B. Daukas Jr. '84
Dartmouth Alumni Council