Appalachian Ohio Geospatial Data Partnership
Appalachian Ohio Geospatial Data Partnership



I. Organization Name

The name of the organization shall be Appalachian Ohio Geospatial Data Partnership (AOGDP)

II. Objectives

Organized as a voluntary cooperative organization of geographic information system (GIS) professionals, the Appalachian Ohio Geospatial Data Partnership (AOGDP, also referred to as the “Partnership”) is created for the overarching purpose of providing the underserved political subdivisions of Appalachian Ohio with educational opportunities in geospatial technologies.  Appalachian Ohio has been widely regarded as an area that is behind in organization, technical capacity, and potential in several professional areas, including GIS.  For these reasons, the Partnership’s objectives are

(a) to provide an objective educational forum without political, social, financial or national bias, that is tailored to the specific needs of Appalachian Ohio

(b) to foster the exchange of ideas and studies focused on the planning, operation, and consequences of such information systems,

(c) to promote and encourage the ethical use of geospatial technology, and

(d) to promote professional interaction, stimulate research, encourage publication, and generally aid the advancement of its members and other organizations having related objectives.

To this end, the AOGDP is focused on nurturing an environment of training, collaboration, adoption, promotion, and sharing of geospatial data, technology, information, and techniques that will produce tangible benefits for members, and for the Appalachian region of Ohio in its entirety. Through these actions we seek to significantly increase the geospatial capacity of the region. The Partnership is an avenue for organizations that have traditionally participated in a cooperative manner to formalize those partnerships in order to bring the power of shared services and resources to bear on geospatial related issues facing Appalachian Ohio.

The AOGDP intends to pursue both public and private funding opportunities to continue working on vital projects that will provide direct benefit to the whole Appalachian Ohio community. It is our intention that the completion of collaborative projects will benefit the economic development and public safety interests of our region, as well as local governments and decision makers.

Political Activity

The AOGDP will not support or oppose candidates in political campaigns in any way and will not attempt to influence legislation. It is the responsibility of individual members and officers participating in any legislative process to be aware of this AOGDP’s position related to political activity and they shall not use the AOGDP or any likeness thereof to support or influence any political activity.

Equal Opportunity

Being mindful of the undesirable effects of institutionalized discrimination, the AOGDP shall conduct its activities on a fair and equitable basis without bias toward age, race, gender, ethnicity, religious affiliation or sexual preference. Further, the Partnership shall encourage and promote equal opportunity participation in all AOGDP activities.

III. Membership

Membership in AOGDP is defined by three categories; Charter Members Agencies, Charter Members and At-Large Members.  

(a) Charter Members Agencies are defined as agencies within the area of the AOGDP who are interested in advancing the mission of the AOGDP. These agencies consist of: the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District (MWCD), the Ohio University, Buckeye Hills–Hocking Valley Regional Development District [Including the counties of Athens, Hocking, Meigs, Monroe, Morgan, Noble, Perry, and Washington], Eastgate Regional Council of Governments [Including the counties of Ashtabula, Mahoning, and Trumbull], Ohio Mid-Eastern Governments Association [Including the counties of Belmont, Carroll, Columbiana, Coshocton, Guernsey, Harrison, Holmes, Jefferson, Muskingum, and Tuscarawas], Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission [Including the counties of Adams, Brown, Clermont, Gallia, Highland, Jackson, Lawrence, Pike, Ross, Scioto, and Vinton]. Political subdivisions and not-for-profits located within the area of the AOGDP may apply for Charter Membership.

An application for membership is required.  This application will designate the Charter Member Agencies’ single voting “Charter Member”.  A Charter Member Agency may have additional representatives employed by the agency who are considered At-Large Members and must apply separately for membership.  At-Large Member designation is also available to any interested individuals or organization.  Full disclosure of “for-profit” affiliation is required and will exclude any person from representing any government, non-profit or academic organization.  Persons with “for-profit” affiliations may apply for At-Large membership.  At-Large membership is subject to approval by Charter Members.

As per by-law Section VI Meetings (e), Charter Membership is subject to a consistent attendance record.

IV. Officers

The officers of the AOGDP shall include a President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer and Immediate Past-President. The President and Vice President shall consist of, and be nominated by Charter Members.  The Secretary and Treasurer shall consist of either Charter Members or At-Large Members of a Charter Member Agency, and be nominated by Charter Members.  The Immediate Past-President shall be the person who held the Presidency the prior term.

Elected officers will serve a term of one year from June 1 of one year to May 31 of the following year, and may not hold more that (1) one elective office during a term. Elected officers can serve no more than two (2) consecutive one (1) year terms in the same office.  

(a)The President shall be the chief elected officer and official spokesperson for the AOGDP.  He/she will preside at all meetings. The President shall appoint committee members, and shall be an ex-officio member of all committees.  The President serves as the official tie-breaker on all AOGDP votes and may make and sign contracts and agreements, in the name of the AOGDP, with approval of the Officers and in accordance with guidelines set forth by the AOGDP. The President shall perform all other duties as associated with the office and will automatically succeed to the office of Immediate Past-President.

(b)The Vice-President shall assume the duties of the President in case of the President’s absence and performs other duties as may be recommended by the AOGDP membership.  

(c)The Secretary shall be responsible for preparing the accurate minutes of all the Membership’s proceedings and meetings, keep all approved minutes in a minute book, submit all required reports, give notice of all AOGDP meetings, and send out copies of minutes to all.

(d) The Treasurer shall keep a full and accurate record of the organization’s receipts and disbursements.  He/she shall be responsible for the verification and filing of an Annual AOGDP Report and shall be responsible for all other reports and filings as required by other agencies.

(e) The Immediate Past-President shall be a Charter Member who has just completed a term as President.  He/she shall advise the President and the other Officers and perform any duties which may be assigned by the AOGDP.

If an officer is unable to fulfill his or her term, the President has the power to appoint an eligible member to fill that position until a quorum of charter members can vote on an official replacement.

All Officers elected to serve the AOGDP will do so without monetary compensation.

V. Committees

The Officers may appoint standing and ad hoc committees as needed. Standing committees consist of a Communications Committee, a Membership/Marketing Committee and a Sponsorship/Funding Committee.

(a) The Communications Committee Chair shall be responsible for making sure that meetings are set up as needed and the website and publicly accessible web documents are up to date and adequately represent AOGDP. The committee also handles marketing and communications activities and initiatives and administration and maintenance of AOGDP mailing list(s). The committee shall work with Membership/Marketing and Sponsorship Committee to coordinate efforts around public relations, website, social media communications, newsletters, annual brochure and other marketing projects. The committee shall connect with all committee members and presents communications needs and outcomes to the AOGDP Officers.

(b) The Membership/Marketing Committee Chair shall recommend strategies for enhancing the Appalachian Ohio Geospatial Data Partnership (AOGDP) membership. The membership/marketing committee monitors all aspects of membership, including invitations and retention—bringing in new members, teaching them about Appalachian Ohio Geospatial Data Partnership and then fostering current members to participate in active promotion of AOGDP projects and membership. The membership/marketing committee also handles public relations to promote geospatial data standards in Appalachian Ohio between Federal, State, Regional & Local Governments, Academia, Non‐ Profits and Private Industry. The committee will work with the Communications and Sponsorship Committee to coordinate efforts around public relations, website, social media communications, newsletters, annual brochure and other marketing projects. The committee sets priorities for marketing efforts; evaluate plans and strategies; and present outcomes to the AOGDP officers.

(c) The Sponsorship/Fundraising Committee Chair is responsible for reaching out on behalf of the Appalachian Ohio Geospatial Data Partnership (AOGDP) and its members to secure donations in the form of cash, office space, skills, training, other services, and/or gifts.  This committee chair will help to identify potential sponsors and fundraising opportunities, as well as build/maintain a rapport with those entities. In addition this position is tasked with conveying to Sponsors the benefits of supporting the AOGDP organization. As chair of this committee one will also make certain that proper recognition is given to our supporters.

VI. Meetings

(a) Regular meetings shall be held bi-monthly.

(b) Special meetings may be held at any time when called for by the President or a majority of the Charter Membership five business days prior to the meeting.

(c) Agendas shall be provided at least four days in advance.

(d) Robert’s Rules of Order shall be adhered to during all formal AOGDP proceedings.

(e) An absence of three consecutive meetings without prior written or verbal notification to an active Charter Member shall result in an email to be sent from the Secretary asking the Charter Member to affirm their status as an active Charter Member. Failing a response, a letter on AOGDP letterhead will be mailed to the Charter Member Agency. The purpose of this letter is to determine the status of the Charter Member and the Charter Member Agency within the organization.  If there is still no response, a member of AOGDP leadership will be nominated to place a phone call to the Charter Member Agency. The Charter Member in question has until the next meeting to respond to the attempts at contact.

(f) If the Charter Member affirms their status, he/she will be required to attend the next meeting of the AOGDP or be removed from Charter Members.  If the Charter Member requests their removal from the list of Charter Members, their name will be immediately removed from Charter Members, will not count toward a qualifying quorum, and a letter from the Secretary will be sent to the Charter Member Agency allowing them to assign a new Charter Member from their Agency. No response will be considered a negative response.

VII. Voting

(a) A quorum of Charter Members is a minimum of fifty-percent (50%) of the total number of Charter members.

(b) In absence of a quorum, no formal action shall be taken except to adjourn the meeting and postpone any action to a subsequent date.

(c) Passage of a motion requires a simple majority of Charter Members (ie, one more than half the Charter Members must be present).

(d) Attendance through teleconference qualifies the Charter Member as “in attendance” for the purposes of voting.

VIII. Conflict of Interest

Completion and submission of the AOGDP Conflict of Interest Form is required with membership application.  Any Charter Member or Elected Official of the AOGDP who has a financial, personal, or official interest in, or conflict (or appearance of a conflict) with any matter pending before the Membership, of such nature that it prevents or may prevent that member from acting on the matter in an impartial manner, will offer to the Officers and Charter Members to voluntarily excuse him/herself and will vacate his/her seat and refrain from discussion and voting on said item.  

IX. Fiscal Policies

The fiscal year of the AOGDP shall be January 1st to December 31st.

X. Amendments

These by-laws may be amended by a two-third vote of the Charter Membership present at any meeting, provided a quorum is present and a copy of the proposed amendment(s) are provided to each Charter Member Representative at least one week prior to said meeting.

XI. Dissolution of AOGDP

If at any time the AOGDP membership drops to a level deemed to be insufficient for the AOGDP to either sustain itself or provide any viable benefit to its members, the AOGDP may be dissolved as follows:

(a) A motion to dissolve must be presented to the AOGDP at a regular meeting by the Officers following a unanimous vote of all Officers listed above.  

(b) This motion shall be voted upon by all members of the AOGDP present at said meeting.  A simple majority vote of all members present is necessary to pass a dissolution vote.

(c) Upon dissolution of the AOGDP, any assets of the AOGDP remaining thereafter shall be conveyed to such organization(s) then existent, dedicated to the perpetuation of the objectives similar to AOGDP, so long as whichever organization(s) is/are selected by the membership of the AOGDP at the time of dissolution shall be exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code as amended or under such successor provision of the Code as may be in effect at the time of the AOGDP’s dissolution.