Constitution & Bylaws

Article I: Name and Mission

Section 1: The name of this organization shall be the Ocean Research & Conservation Alliance of Lewis & Clark Law School (hereinafter ORCA).

Section 2: ORCA’s mission is to explore the complex and fascinating legal realm of oceanic affairs, as well as to facilitate volunteer efforts and encourage practical sustainability choices. Encompassing, among other fields, those of environmental, animal, and international law, ORCA will provide an opportunity for students with diverse interests and backgrounds to form an interdisciplinary alliance predicated on preserving the delicate ecosystems within the Earth’s oceans. ORCA seeks to form close relationships with other student groups, local nonprofits, NGOs, environmentally ethical companies, and Lewis & Clark staff and alumni to facilitate a growing awareness of both the history of oceanic legal issues and of the current state of oceanic litigation.

Article II: Membership

Section 1: General Membership in ORCA shall be open to all students currently enrolled at Lewis & Clark Law School and shall not be restricted on the basis of sex, gender, marital status, race, creed, age, national origin, physical disability, diet, or sexual orientation.

Section 2: Voting privileges are restricted to general members who regularly attend and participate in ORCA events/meetings; are on the ORCA contact list, and actively support the purposes (Art. 1 §2) of ORCA. All Officers and Coordinators are voting members of ORCA.

Section 3: General and Voting Memberships can be revoked if a member’s actions are deemed inappropriate and contrary to Art. 1 §2 of this Constitution by a two-thirds majority vote of the Executive Board.

Article III: Officers, Executive Board, Coordinators

Section 1: The ORCA Executive Board shall include one President (El Capitan) and one Vice President (Wave Commander) who will serve as Co-Directors or the organization, one Treasurer (Master of Coin), one Public Relations Chair (Media Czar), and one 1L representative, but may include additional positions at the Board’s discretion.

Section 2: The Executive Board shall be elected by the voting members of ORCA. Executive Board Member terms shall last for as long as the elected Board Member qualifies for the position as according to Article III § 3, except for the position of 1L representative or any subsequent positions that are by their nature one year positions, which shall be elected annually at the start of the fall semester.

Section 3: Qualifications required for holding office are as follows: A student with a voting membership in ORCA who agrees to uphold the purposes (Art. 1 §2) of ORCA and adequately performs the responsibilities of the position.

The 1L representative must be a member of the current 1L class.

Section 4: In the event that an Officer is unable to continue in the capacity of his or her office, or after elections, a board position is left vacant, the office can be filled at any time by an eligible student (Art. IV §3) in conformity with Art. V of this Constitution.

If there are no candidates to fill the vacant office, the duties of the vacant office shall be absorbed by the Executive Board.

Section 5: The elected officers of ORCA shall form the Executive Board.

Section 6: The Executive Board shall have the authority to create coordinator positions.

Section 7: At the Executive Board’s discretion, Coordinator positions may be created to facilitate specific programs, tasks, or events. Coordinators shall serve a term pre-determined by the Executive Board.

Article IV: Duties of Officers and Coordinators

Section 1: The Co-Director’s duties shall include, but shall not be limited to, the following: representing ORCA to the larger Lewis & Clark community and other groups outside ORCA; working with the Treasurer in creating an annual budget to obtain funding from the Lewis & Clark Law School’s Student Bar Association (hereinafter SBA) through the requisite SBA budget planning process; leading meetings; planning, organizing and promoting events and activities; encouraging participation in the National Animal Law Competitions; applying for grants when necessary to fund additional events and activities; ensuring that ORCA is represented at Law School events, such as the Spring Open House and Fall Orientation; maintaining the ORCA website; overseeing and ensuring that the other officers’ duties are being fulfilled; delegating ORCA responsibilities; coordinating the annual ORCA Speaker Series; coordinating the annual ORCA Film Series; coordinating the annual ORCA volunteer excursions and field trips; and sending out a regular member-wide email consisting of action alerts, news, and opportunities.

Section 2: The Treasurer’s duties shall include, but shall not be limited to, the following: being primarily responsible for creating an annual budget, following the SBA budget process to obtain ORCA’s annual budget; preparing and submitting to the President any audit information requests required by the SBA; applying for grants and/or outside funding, with direction from the President, when necessary to fund additional ORCA events and activities; facilitating reimbursements for ORCA events; maintaining appropriate receipts and records in accordance with the chapter’s budget, pursuant to SBA budget and treasury guidelines; and coordinating selection and pairing of ORCA mentors/mentees.

Section 3. The Public Relation Chair’s duties shall include, but shall not be limited to, the following: working with the Board to promote ORCA in the news, both locally and nationally; create posts and events on Facebook and other social media sites; manage social media sites; ensure the Grace Johnson (@gracejohnsondzn) is credited for her work on the ORCA logo on all ORCA social media; work with local organizations and the Outreach Chair to create on-going partnerships; be available for student and public questions and comments; be dedicated to making/maintaining ties with the undergraduate campus’ animal welfare groups; act as the liaison to outside communities as necessary.

Section 4: The 1L Representative will be responsible for ensuring all 1Ls are apprised of ORCA events and any other responsibilities agreed upon by the Executive Board.

Section 5: The Executive Board will establish the duties of any other Board Member or Coordinator prior to selecting a candidate.

Article V: Officer Elections, Coordinator Selection Process

Section 1: Officers shall be elected by a majority vote of eligible voters. Eligible voters are those members who have voting privileges (Art. II § 2). In the event that no candidate attracts a majority number of votes for election, a run-off shall be held between the two candidates with the highest number of votes. In the event that a candidate runs uncontested, a majority of the vote (of voting members) is required.

Section 2: Any ORCA voting member interested in running for office shall, during the election application period, provide a written statement via e-mail summarizing why he or she would qualify to fulfill the duties of the office for which he or she is running.

Section 3: At the request of the Center for Animal Law Studies and the Animal Legal Defense Fund, ORCA will select a Conference Coordinator (hereinafter CC) to assist CALS and ALDF in preparing for the annual Animal Law Conference. All L&C Law students are eligible to apply for the CC position. The CC will hold the position for a term of one year, according to a timeline determined by CALS and ALDF. CALS and ALDF are responsible for and have authority over the CC’s duties and obligations, including its job description.

The selection process will consist of an application submission period beginning no later than November 5 and ending no later than November 30, or as otherwise requested by CALS and ALDF. By a two-thirds majority vote of the Board, the application period can be extended or shortened if deemed necessary but must last at least two weeks. To apply, applicants must submit a cover letter, resume, and answers to a questionnaire written by the previous CC to the President at and to the previous CC at their given email address. Prior to the application submission period, the Board, through email and regular group meetings, will announce all required application materials and the specific dates of the application submission period. Within one week after the final day for submissions, the President will present all the applicants’ materials to the Board, along with their recommendation, and a final selection will be made by a two-thirds majority vote of the Executive Board. The previous CC will also give their recommendation to be included before the vote. The selected candidate will assume the duties and responsibilities of the CC on a timeline determined by CALS and ALDF.

Section 4: All other Coordinators shall be selected by a two-thirds majority vote of the Executive Board.

Section 5: Officers or Coordinators may be removed from their position for poor conduct or failure to act in good faith upon their duties as described in Art. 4 or for actions deemed inappropriate and contrary to Art. 1 § 2.

Notice of a proposed removal will be given to the Officer or Coordinator suggested for removal in writing two weeks before a removal vote by the Executive Board. The Officer or Coordinator suggested for removal may request a special meeting to discuss his or her removal one week before a removal vote takes place; details of such a meeting will be determined in consultation with ORCA’s Faculty Advisor(s). A two-thirds majority vote by the Executive Board shall be required for removal of any Officer or Coordinator.

Article VI: Activities

Section 1: The activities of ORCA shall include, but are not limited to the following: hosting the ORCA Speaker Series, hosting the ORCA Film Series, sending out regular action alert emails; organizing an annual beach clean-up; maintaining a mentor/mentee program for ORCA members; working as part of the LC Human-Animal Studies project; and organizing off-campus events. Activities of ORCA may include, given sufficient interest: carrying out research and pro bono projects for attorneys and organizations involved in animal advocacy litigation, legislation, and policy; networking with students at other law schools, colleges, and universities who are pursuing interests in animal and environmental advocacy; conducting educational events such as information tables and video/DVD screenings on pertinent animal-related issues. Activities shall be agreed upon by the Executive Board and are subject to the discretion of the Board throughout the school year.

Section 2: ORCA is responsible for planning, organizing, and hosting the ORCA Speaker Series (hereinafter Speaker Series).

The purpose of the Speaker Series is to introduce LC community members to the issues outlined in Article I.

The Co-Directors are primarily responsible for the Speaker Series and shall delegate duties to ORCA members as necessary.

Session 3: ORCA is responsible for planning, organizing, and hosting the ORCA Film Series (hereinafter Film Series).

The purpose of the Film Series is to introduce LC community members to the films related to the issues outlined in Article I.

The Co-Directors are primarily responsible for the Film Series and shall delegate duties to ORCA members as necessary.

Section 4: ORCA is responsible for planning, organizing, and hosting an annual beach clean-up event.

Section 4: Each board member of ORCA will be responsible for creating at least one “news story” per year for the ORCA website as a means to expand visibility online and throughout the community.

Article VII: Meetings

Section 1: Regular meetings of ORCA shall be held at least once per month.

Section 2: Any member with voting privileges has the authority to call a special meeting. Notice of a special meeting will be communicated to the Co-Directors at least one week prior to the date of the proposed special meeting.

Section 3: The Executive Board shall hold at least one meeting per school month.

Article VIII: Parliamentary Authority

Section 1: The Executive Board and Officers shall have the power to promulgate rules, policies, and procedures necessary and proper for carrying into execution all foregoing powers vested by this Constitution in the Executive Board, or in any Coordinator or Officer of ORCA thereof.

Section 2: All rules, policies, and procedures promulgated by the Executive Board or Officers will require a two-thirds majority vote by the Executive Board.

Section 3: All rules, policies, and procedures promulgated consistent with Section 2 will be referred to, collectively as “the Bylaws.”

Article X: Amendments

Section 1: Any current member, coordinator, or officer shall be entitled to propose amendments. All proposed amendments must be submitted by email to the ORCA President for review, who will present the proposal along with its recommendation to the Executive Board. ORCA’s general membership will be notified of any proposed amendment through a posting in the ORCA office prior to an adoption vote. A two-thirds majority vote of the Executive Board shall be necessary to adopt any proposed amendment if all 4 required Executive Board positions are filled; otherwise, a two-thirds majority vote of the voting membership is required. Ratified amendments will be posted on the ORCA webpage immediately after adoption.