University of Memphis Libraries Friends of the University Libraries
University of Memphis Photo
Constitution and Bylaws


View PDF File




The official name of the organization shall be:  Friends of the University Libraries (hereinafter “the Friends”).


The purposes of the Friends shall be as follows: n conjunction with the Dean of Libraries, The University of Memphis Office of Development, and the administration of the University of Memphis, the Friends shall seek

To assist in fund-raising both on campus and beyond, so that the resources and facilities of the  Libraries may be maintained and expanded;

To develop public awareness and appreciation for the contribution the Libraries make to the University and its communities;

To assist in the further development of the Libraries’ collection of books and material;

To promote the proper use of the Libraries’ facilities by students, faculty and other qualified persons so as to enrich the cultural and intellectual life of the area;

To serve in an advisory capacity when requested by the Dean of Libraries and the administration of The University of Memphis


The Friends is first of all an integral component of The University of Memphis.  However, it is in the best interests of the University and the Friends to become associated with other local chapters of library friends and affiliated with the Friends of Tennessee Libraries and the Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations (ALTAFF)


There shall be two major classes of membership, regular and honorary.

Section 1:  Non-Discrimination

The University of Memphis is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action university.  Regular membership in the Friends will be available without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, or veteran status to those who make a contribution to qualify for admission under one of the categories listed in the Friends By-Laws.  Prospective members may be invited to join by any current member in good standing, or by the Dean of Libraries.

Section 2:  Honorary Memberships

Honorary membership may be awarded by the Friends to any individual who makes an extraordinary contribution of funds, services, equipment, or resource materials to the Libraries. Honorary memberships are for life.

Section 3:  Membership Term

Each year of a regular membership shall commence on January 1 and end on December 31.


Section 1:  Year Limits

Each year of operation for the Friends shall coincide with the year at the University of Memphis, that is, from July first through June thirtieth. Annual reports shall conform to the same format.

Section 2:  Elections

In May of each year the president in office shall appoint three members in good standing to serve as a nomination committee.  These three persons will prepare a slate of officers, obtaining the permission of the candidates, and present these recommendations to the Executive Council and notify the general membership by August.  They will present these recommendations to the membership at the annual meeting each year.  Additional nominations may be made from the floor by any member in good standing.  Election shall be by a plurality vote by all members present and voting. The new officers will assume their duties on the first of January of the following membership year. Officers may succeed themselves, but no person may hold two elected offices simultaneously except with approval of the majority of the members of the Executive Council.

Section 3:  Officers

The following four officers of the Friends shall be elected and serve until their successors are elected and qualified:  President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer.

In addition, representative(s) to state and national meetings shall be elected in keeping with the constitutions and by-laws of those organizations.

Section 4:  Executive Council

The governance of the Friends shall be vested in the Executive Council, which shall consist of the four elected officers, the immediate past president, the Dean of Libraries or her designee, one other Libraries staff member to be named by the Dean of Libraries, and the at-large members.  The presence of a majority of the members of the Executive Council shall constitute a quorum.

In addition to the presently elected officers, the Dean, designated library staff representatives and appointed chairs of Friends’ committees, the Friends will elect by a majority vote two or more at-large members to the Executive Council, these to come from various campus and community organizations.

Terms of office of at-large members shall be for two years unless the Friends Executive Council deems a change is necessary.  If more than two at-large members are added, terms may be staggered so all do not end at once.  At-large members must be Friends of Libraries members in good standing.

If a vacancy occurs during the academic year, the Executive Council shall elect the needed replacement(s) to serve until the next Friends General Meeting, at which time they may be elected to full term of office following regular election procedures.

Section 5:  Meetings

Regular and special meetings of the Friends and also of the Executive Council may be called by the president or by the Dean of Libraries or her official designee.

There shall be a minimum of two meetings per year of the Executive Council and at least one Friends membership meeting held in the fall between September first and November thirtieth. The fall meeting will be the annual meeting and the time for elections.  The exact date of all meetings will be selected by the officer calling that meeting.

The rules in ROBERT’S RULES OF ORDER, latest edition, shall govern the Friends in all cases to which they are applicable, and in which they are not inconsistent with the rules of order of this organization.


The Friends in cooperation with the Dean of Libraries, the administration of the University of Memphis, and the Office of Development shall formulate and sponsor activities that will serve the purposes set out in the constitution.  These activities may be forums, exhibits, book fairs, lectures, reception, award ceremonies, public announcements, and related events.


The expenses incurred by the Friends in connection with approved activities shall be met through a University of Memphis Foundation account dedicated to the Friends and administered by the Executive Council with the approval of the membership.


Any provision of this constitution may be amended by a majority vote of members of the Friends who are in attendance at any official meeting of the Friends. All members must be notified in advance of any proposed change in the constitution and be provided with the proposed changes in writing.  This constitution and bylaws will go into effect immediately upon favorable vote of the majority of the members of the Friends present and voting.






Major Classes of Membership: Regular, honorary, lifetime, and corporate (See Constitution, Article IV). All gifts are tax-deductible and entitle the donor to one vote during regular and special meetings. Donations made anytime in the calendar year would be considered a membership for that year.




Gifts of varying amounts are recognized at different levels:

Friend: $10-34

Donor: $35-74

Contributor: $75-99

Sponsor: $100-499

Associate: $500+


HONORARY MEMBERSHIP (See Constitution, Article IV.)




Lifetime may be from a previously established group of contributors and Honorary Lifetime.



Any corporation donating to the Friends is given membership within the year of the gift. A corporate membership entitles the corporation to one vote during regular and special meetings and one copy of the Friends mailings. Memberships may also be awarded to corporations who sponsor special Friends’ projects or programs. Corporate memberships are recognized in the following categories:

Corporate Friend $2,000-5,000

Corporate Patron $5.001-10,000

Les Amis Extraordinaires $10,001+


The president shall preside at all meetings of the Friends and of the Executive Council, appoint committees as needed, add additional officers (e. g., parliamentarian, historian) with the approval of the Executive Council, exert leadership in carrying out the approved activities of the Friends, and cooperate with the Dean of Libraries or her designee, the Office of Development, and other members of the administration of The University of Memphis.

The vice president shall assist the president when requested to do so, and perform the duties of the president in the absence or incapacity of the president.

The secretary shall keep an accurate and written record of all the minutes and activities of the Friends, edit material for publication and maintain an up-to-date list of all members by category, prospective members, and shall perform other duties as requested by the president or the Executive Council.

The treasurer shall maintain an accurate and written record of all monies, gifts and grants of any kind which become resources of The University of Memphis Libraries as a result of the activities of the Friends.  The treasurer shall initiate and maintain U of M Foundation, U of M Grants and Contracts, and other accounts as needed to facilitate Friends business.  The treasurer will prepare an annual report for presentation at the annual meeting and other such reports as the president or the Executive Council may request.

Representatives elected by the membership shall attend state and/or national meetings of the Friends organization and report to the Executive Council and to the local chapter concerning developments at those levels.

Any elected officer may be removed from office for failure to perform the assigned duties and by the majority vote of the members of the Executive Council at any meeting.


Membership in the Friends of the University Libraries confers the right to speak at Friends meetings, the right to vote, to hold office, and to represent the local chapter at state and national meetings when chosen.

A semi-annual newsletter, either as a separate entity or as part of the Libraries’ present newsletter, shall be sent to all members of the Friends.

All Friends members shall have access to the resources of The University of Memphis Libraries in accord with Libraries policy.

Members of the Friends shall have their names listed in The University of Memphis annual publications as appropriate.

Members of the Friends shall receive invitations to Libraries activities under Libraries staff auspices, such as tours, award ceremonies, affairs honoring major contributors, lectures, and book reviews.


Any provision of the Bylaws may be amended by simple majority vote of the members of the Friends present and voting in any official election.

Constitution and Bylaws
Executive Council

For more information, please contact:

Jennifer Schnabel


Text Only | Print | Got a Question? Ask TOM | Contact Us | Memphis, TN 38152 | 901/678-2000 | Copyright 2015 University of Memphis | Important Notice | Last Updated: 
Last Updated: 1/13/12