Academy Governance Transition Update
Member Comment Period Survey Results and Comments
August 12, 2021
Academy Governance Transition Proposal
As you are aware from previous notification, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) has propsed changes to the governance of the association.
The proposed changes would eliminate the House of Delegates and transition to a “Strategic Council”. This council will be composed of elected and nominated members. This transition would take place over the next two years. This proposal indicates that the council would be made up of members from Academy DPG’s, MIG’s and other subject matter experts across the country.
More information is available and members are encouraged to submit a question or comment after review of this document: Proposed Governance Transition
Additionally, the Academy is proposing a change to its bylaws which would shift the responsibility to vote on bylaws changes from the House of Delegates to the Board of Directors. Additional information regarding this change is available for review here. Please take a moment to share you thoughts with the Academy regarding this proposed change through this Member Comment Survey. Your voice is invaluable! IAND delegate will share your member feedback to vote on our behalf.
In the July, 2021 Affiliate Newsletter, Academy President, Kevin Sauer shared the actions the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Board of Directors has taken toward reimagining the governance of the Academy for the 21st century.
You spoke, we listened. You want:
- More inclusion, diversity, equity and access in the Academy’s leadership
- The Academy to create a pipeline offering a diverse pool of members access to volunteer leadership opportunities
- To establish a competency-based organization that will reflect a diverse membership who bring essential perspectives and skills to the organization’s decision-making processes.
- 41% of members lack contact with delegate
- When asked how often they respond when House of Delegates members ask for their opinion
- 57% never or rarely respond
- 28% occasionally respond
- 73% of students never respond
Proposed Governance Board Recommendations:
- Reduce the size of the Board from 19 members to 14 to align with effective practices for association governance and include new pathways for diverse representation
- Enhance opportunities and accelerate inclusion, diversity, equity and access by appointing 2 of the 4 Directors-at-Large to the Board
- Membership will continue to elect Academy officers, President-elect and Treasurer-elect, as well as 2 of the 4 Director-at-Large positions through the current nominations process and cycle.
Proposed Governance House Recommendations:
- Transition House of Delegates to a Council of 15 supported by multiple, as needed, Subject Matter Expert groups, no limit imposed. For example, going from a 113-member body every 3 years to 15 Council members and approximately 150 Subject Matter Experts. Conservatively estimate 5 SME groups per year with up to 10 members; over 3 years, 165 members, including young careerists and diverse candidates, would be elected and selected to serve
- Create more short-term, flexible and focused opportunities for service that draw heavily upon the expertise and diversity of our unrivaled DPGs, MIGs and Affiliates.
What are the next steps?
The proposed model will take 2 to 3 years to completely transition. A Governance Steering Committee has been appointed to fine-tune the proposed transition details and provide support, guidance and oversight. We want and need to hear from you on the proposed governance structure. Please visit the governance proposal page on eatrightPRO, view my video, read the fact sheet and make your voice heard. The page will be updated regularly.
On behalf of the entire Board of Directors, thank you to all members who replied to the surveys, submitted questions and comments on the website, and have already reached out to us regarding future governance of the Academy. A special thank you to Academy volunteers who are serving and have given so significantly to the Academy and the profession. We truly appreciate your many contributions. Your voice has been and will continue to be heard.
Kevin L. Sauer, PhD, RDN, LD, FAND