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Credentials Desk

Getting ready to vote.

Before voting in a district election, a Toastmaster must register and receive his or her ballots at the credentials desk.

Preparing the credentials desk
If possible, the chairman in charge of the credentials desk should be a past district governor. The credentials chairman will need the following materials:

  • A list of eligible clubs in the district.
  • A list of current district council members (club presidents, vice presidents education and district leaders eligible to vote).
  • Ballots. Ballots must indicate the office being contested or be sequentially numbered for each contested election. Names of candidates nominated by the nominating committee may be printed on district ballots. Floor candidates’ names cannot appear on district ballots.

Who can be a proxy holder?

    Either the club president or the vice president education may designate, in writing, any active individual members of the club to act as proxy at any district council meeting.
  • In the event one of those officers is not in attendance at the meeting and has not designated a proxy:
  • The officer or proxy holder in attendance must be deemed to hold the proxy of the other and may therefore cast two votes at the meeting.
  • This assures that every club will be represented by two votes.
  • No other proxies are valid at a district council meeting.
  • District leaders must be in attendance to cast a vote.

Determining the validity of a proxy:

  • To be valid at a district council meeting, a proxy must:
  • Contain all of the elements described above
  • Be delivered personally, by mail, by fax, by email, by electronic transmission or by other reasonable means to the club member who will hold the proxy
  • Be presented by the proxy holder in paper form (i.e. printed email) to the credentials desk.
    • If the proxy does not bear a handwritten signature, it must have the typed name of the club officer(s) giving the proxy or some other indication that the club officer(s) authorized the proxy to be given.

A proxy that complies with these requirements is treated as valid so long as the credentials desk has no reason to believe that the proxy was not authorized.

In addition, the following rules must be observed:

  • A proxy holder cannot transfer or assign a proxy to someone else.
  • A valid proxy delivered to the proxy holder is revoked only if the club officer who gave the proxy does one of the following:
    • Destroys the proxy
    • Cancels the proxy in writing
    • Issues another proxy authorized at a later date
    • Actually attends the district council meeting.

Credentials desk rules
All workers at the credentials desk are not to wear or display any campaign paraphernalia, and are to do the following:

  • Ensure ballots are numbered sequentially, either on the stub or on a cover page, and that a list of those eligible to vote is available.
  • Cross reference all ballots issued with the current list of district council members.
  • Ensure all ballots issued are signed for upon receipt.

Unless the district governor has received official notification from World Headquarters that a club’s charter has been revoked, that club is entitled to voting privileges. Because clubs remain in good standing until November 30 and May 31, regardless of whether their current dues renewals are paid, all clubs may vote at a district conference. A newly chartered club that has been assigned a club number is entitled to voting privileges. A list of clubs eligible to vote is available upon request from WHQ by emailing: districts@toastmasters.org.

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