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Proposed Changes to ANSI Constitution and By-Laws Submitted to Members

January 13, 2005 set as response deadline

New York, Dec 13, 2004

At its meeting on December 9, 2004, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Board of Directors considered a proposal to update the Institute’s Constitution and By-Laws. The current policy document, which was approved in June 2002 and became effective January 1, 2003, ushered in more streamlined governance processes, provided opportunities for greater member participation in policy-making and related activities, and made ANSI more productive and efficient.

"...The goal was to see if ANSI could streamline its processes to do things more efficiently and more productively" while allowing members "to participate directly in the policy development processes that are so critical to fulfilling [the organization's] mission," explained Dr. Mark W. Hurwitz, ANSI president and CEO.

A year after these new changes were put into effect, a Board-appointed task force was formed to examine whether additional By-Laws revisions were warranted in order to complete the implementation of the governance structure. The task force looked at a number of diverse issues, such as whether the terms of certain chairperson positions should be aligned, whether the role and structure of the existing patent group should be reexamined and whether process-related requirements should be added to the section on Forums. The work of that task force resulted in proposed textual changes to the By-Laws that were presented to and approved by the Board. As required by the Institute’s governance procedures, the proposed updates have now been issued to the ANSI membership for letter ballot; responses are requested by January 13, 2005.

The kind of changes contemplated in the attached materials generally fall into four discreet categories:

  1. revisions to sections concerning certain chairperson terms;
  2. clarifications to language regarding policy committee members and the addition of an entirely new section that will implement a new Intellectual Property Rights Policy Committee;
  3. additions to the “Forum” provisions, including language regarding Forum procedures, officers, committees and meetings; and
  4. corrections to a number of late-discovered ambiguities contained in the current version of the By-Laws.

A letter ballot was issued to all ANSI members earlier today. Accompanying this ballot was a mark-up version of the Constitution and By-Laws showing all changes, as well as a "clean" version of the proposed new text.

Questions or comments on the proposed revisions can be directed to Patricia A. Griffin, ANSI vice president and general counsel.

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