UTAA Annual Meeting Rules of Order



In the year 2000, the University of Toronto Alumni Association (UTAA) celebrated its centennial, but in fact, the organization has existed in various forms since 1856. The Alumni Federation of the University of Toronto was formally incorporated in 1921 and has been known as the University of Toronto Alumni Association since 1948. As defined in the University of Toronto Act (1972), alumni members of the University of Toronto Alumni Association include graduates, diploma and certificate holders and former students who have completed the equivalent of four courses or one full year of study.

Historically, the Association has sought to encourage participation of alumni in the university through events, governance and membership on alumni volunteer boards at both the constituency and the central level.

We welcome your active participation in the life of our university through alumni involvement in your faculty, college or department. Through your campus alumni association, you are automatically a member of the UTAA. As members of the Association, alumni are invited to attend, participate and vote at the UTAA’S Annual Meeting as well as to participate in the range of programs and services offered in conjunction with the University’s offices of alumni advancement.

In carrying out its fiduciary responsibilities, the UTAA relies on the governing legislation and its by-law.

Annual Meeting
The following principles will apply with respect to the conduct of meetings of its members, including the Annual Meeting.

The usual items of business at the Annual Meeting include:

• Approval of minutes from previous year’s Annual Meeting
• President's Report
• Financial Statements for the current fiscal year ended April 30
• Appointment of Auditors
• Nominating Committee Report
• Presentation of Proposed Slate of Directors

Should members wish to submit additional agenda items for consideration they must do so no later than three weeks before the date of scheduled Annual Meeting.

The Chair will determine if the proposal presents a legitimate item of business for the meeting. Members may contact the UTAA via email utaa.secretariat@utoronto.ca or by mail: UTAA, c/o University Advancement, 21 King’s College Circle, Toronto, Ontario M5S 3J3 and must clearly indicate their name, mailing address, phone number, college or faculty affiliation, year of graduation (if applicable) and email address. Alumni status must be verified in order for any proposed agenda items to be considered.

The Annual Meeting agenda will be posted on the UTAA’s web site in advance of the meeting. If additional items are proposed at the Annual Meeting, and, in the opinion of the Chair, any of them are of a minor or of a routine nature, and the constitution, by-law or applicable law does not require prior notice, then the proposed item may be added to the agenda if no one objects or if a motion to add the item to the agenda is passed by a simple majority of members present in person or represented by proxy.

If the item proposed to be added is, in the opinion of the Chair, neither minor nor routine, or if the constitution by-law or the applicable law requires prior notice, the Chair will not add the item to the agenda. However, the Chair may ask for a motion to refer such an item to the board of directors or to a committee of the board to consider the proposed item and report back at a subsequent meeting.

Conduct of Meetings
Unless a poll by ballot is required, voting at the meeting will be conducted by show of hands. Ordinary resolutions will be passed by a simple majority of the votes cast. In case of an equality of votes at any meeting, the motion will not pass. As provided in the by-law, the Chair may vote on any motion, but in the case of an equality of votes, may not vote a second time.

Discussion can only take place on a debatable motion or amendment. Discussion is carried on under the supervision of the Chair in accordance with the rules of order (as stated in Wainberg’s Society Meetings Including Rules of Order) and must be relevant to the subject. Discussion must be impersonal and always directed to the Chair.

If speakers fail to adhere to the subject under discussion in a courteous and expeditious manner, or otherwise fail to comply with the rules of order, they will be warned. If they persist, the Chair may rule them out of order in which case they will lose the floor.

If necessary, the Chair shall take a vote to ascertain the view of the meeting. The opinion of a majority of members present in person or represented by proxy is sufficient. The Chair may make a ruling on any of these matters. In the alternative, the Chair may ask for a motion to make such determination.

The Chair at all times controls the meeting, and his/her final decision has to be respected and must prevail to avoid confusion and maintain order at the meeting.

Only the mover of a motion (or amendment) may speak to the motion (or amendment) before it has been seconded. Every member and proxy holder has the right to speak once on each motion and once on each amendment. With the consent of the meeting, the Chair may grant every member and proxy holder including the mover and seconder, wishing to comment on the motion, another opportunity to speak.

At the Chair’s discretion, the mover may speak a second time to explain his or her motion, answer questions, and close the discussion (reply) on his or her motion. He or she may not speak against the motion, but he or she may vote against it.

While the rights of the minority to be heard will be respected, the time allowed for discussion and length of speeches will be subject to reasonable limitation. The Chair will make a determination of such reasonable time limitation, or in the alternative the Chair may ask the meeting to make such determination.

When discussion has ended the Chair may ask for a motion to terminate the discussion and call for a vote on the motion.

Proxies will be provided to members via a link from the UTAA website (please click here). In order to be considered valid, all proxies must be received at the UTAA’s offices at least 48 hours (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays) preceding the Annual Meeting, as specified by the UTAA by-law. In addition, all proxies must be complete and include sufficient information to verify alumni status of the person granting the proxy. A proxy holder does not have to be a member of UTAA, however, the person granting the proxy must be a member.


Nathan, Hartley, Hone, J. Gylde and Minden Gross Grafstein & Greenstein LLP (ed.).  Wainberg's Society Meetings including Rules of Order.  CCH Canadian Limited.  Toronto, 2001.

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