Policies and Procedures

 

ACBL Unit 253

Policies and Procedures

Table of Contents

 

     I.   Definitions                                                   

     II.  Pverview                                                     

     III. Programs                                                    

      COMPETIION

               A  Sectional Tournaments                        

               B  Championship Event/Trophies              

               C  Regional Tournament                          

               D  North American Bridge

                   Championships (NABC's)                     

               E  Non-Life Master Sectional                    

               F  DBAA Cub Game                                 

               G  Unit Special Games                            

       RECOGNITION

               H  Sportsperson of the Year (SPOTY)       

               I   Hall of Fame (HOF)                            

               J   Change of Rank (COR) Party               

               K   Goodwill Committees                         

               L   New LIfe Masters                               

              M   Grand Life Master                               

       EDUCATION

              N   Mentoring Program                            

              O   Beginning Bridge Lessons                   

        MEMBER SERVICES

              P   New Members                                   

              Q   Web Site **                                     

              R   Newsletter                                        

              S    Membership Directory **                  

   II  Administration                                              

              A  Volunteer Positions                             

              B  Meetings                                           

             C Elections                                                                                                                        

             D  Disciplinary Actions                            

             E  Financial                                            

                 1  Accounting **                                

                 2  Annual Review                               

                 3  Investment Policy                           

                 4  Insurance **                                  

                 5  Monetary Grants                             

    III  Maintenance Agreement                             

 

    ** To be added at a later date

 

EXHIBITS

                 Exhibit A - Calendar of Kedy Dates        

                 Exhibit B - Free Play Certificate            

                 Exhibit C - New Life Master Email         

  

          I.          Definitions      Unless otherwise stated, here are the meanings of commonly used terms and abbreviations:

 

 

“AJB”

Atlanta Junior Bridge, an independent non-profit promoting the play of bridge by children not yet in college.

 

“Board”

The twelve members of the Board of Directors of the Duplicate Bridge Association of Atlanta.

 

“Bylaws”

The bylaws of the DBAA, available on our web site at http://dbaa.us on the Governance tab

 

“Committee Heads”

Volunteers who are in charge of specific activities of the DBAA, including those with similar responsibilities as outlined in Section II.A.2 below.

 

“D7”

District 7 of the ACBL, of which Unit 253 is one of the members.

 

“DBAA”

Duplicate Bridge Association of Atlanta, which is the legal name of Unit 253 of the ACBL.  See also “Unit” below.

 

“Member”

Any member of the DBAA/Unit 253 as defined in Article IV of our Bylaws.

 

“P&P”

This Policies and Procedures Manual, including our Elections Policy in a separate document.

 

“Policies” /

“Procedures”

Policies are the principlesrules, and guidelines adopted by the Board to achieve our goals.

 

Procedures are the specific methods employed to implement our policies.

“Unit”

Unit 253 of the ACBL, whose legal name is “Duplicate Bridge Association of Atlanta”.  In this document, the term unit is generally used for activities prescribed by the ACBL whereas “DBAA” is used for all other activities, especially those involved with marketing.

 

Note:  Some abbreviations are defined in the Table of Contents.

         II.         Overview

                          A.         This Policies and Procedures (P&P) Manual defines the policies approved by our Board.  The primary purpose is to document our policies for the benefit of all of our members.  Procedures for implementing those policies are included here only if they are considered to be a significant part of the policy.

 

                          B.         Separately, each Officer and Committee Chair is expected to maintain separate procedures for administering their responsibilities and, most importantly, assuring continuity as incoming volunteers assume their new responsibilities.  Such procedures are not included here but are available to any member upon request.

 

                          C.         DBAA policies can be changed only by majority vote of the Board.  Procedures can be changed by the appropriate Officer or Committee Chair responsible for the applicable activity.

 

                          D.         As a unit of the ACBL, we are subject to their rules and regulations as defined in the ACBL Handbook and other documents.  Any conflict between these procedures and those of the ACBL shall be resolved in favor of ACBL policies.  Similarly any conflict between these procedures and our bylaws shall be resolved in favor of the bylaws.

 

        III.        Programs

                          A.         Sectional Tournaments

In most years we run three open sectional tournaments, normally in February; May, June or July; and November/December, subject to the vagaries of the District 7 tournament schedule and site availability.  The overriding goal is to have sectionals with the look and feel of regionals.

 

We also have one or more Non-Life Master Sectionals each year.

 

Key parties in running our tournaments are:

The Tournament Oversight Committee (TOC), which is responsible for the overall management of our sectionals.

The Tournament Oversight Committee Chair (Chair)

Various Tournament Chairs (TC’s) who are in charge of specific sectionals.

 

                                           1.     General policy

                                                       a.         To best balance players’ desires for sectional play with the financial needs of DBAA clubs in our area, we plan for no more than 15 days of open sectional play, typically organized in three 5-day sectionals.

 

                                                       b.         Sectional policies should to the extent practical follow those set by District 7 for regionals and by the ACBL.  This includes but is not limited to ACBL policy on phones and other electronic devices.

 

                                                       c.         Table fees (currently $11 per player) shall be determined by the Board.  An extra charge for Sunday Swiss may be added if lunch is included.

 

                                                       d.         At tournaments that include a food guarantee to the site, our practice is to give each player food and beverage tickets per event unless we are providing group meal/treats that day. The food and beverage tickets will have a limited life set by the TOC.

 

                                                       e.         Sectionals should over time produce a sufficient profit to fund other DBAA activities.  We recognize however that sectional expenses grow a bit each year due to inflation while our revenue will run relatively flat for years and then see a large increase when we raise table fees.  We therefore may choose to run small deficits in the latter years of a particular table fee period to give back to the tournament players what we made in the earlier years.

 

                                           2.     Tournament Oversight Committee

                                                       a.         The Tournament Oversight Committee (“TOC” – not to be confused with a D7 committee with similar initials) is responsible for the management of our sectional tournaments and implementing this policy.

 

                                                       b.         The TOC Chair shall be generally familiar with the ACBL Handbook, Chapter 6 tournaments ( Click here for index ) and more specifically with section 4 thereof ( Click here ) which includes Unit Tournament Coordinator duties.

 

                                                       c.         The Chair shall be designated to the ACBL as the unit’s Tournament Coordinator.  As such, the TOC Chair shall:

                                                                         i.       In conjunction with the District 7 Tournament Coordinator and DBAA President, select dates and locations for DBAA sectionals.  New locations and significant changes from historical times should be reviewed with the Board. 

 

To the extent practical, District 7 policy of approving sectionals at least one year in advance should be honored.  The District does, however, recognize the difficulty of scheduling tournaments in Atlanta and will grant additional time when necessary.

 

                                                                       ii.        Request individual sanctions for each date from ACBL and when approval is received, advise the web site liaison to update the appropriate pages on the DBAA web site.

 

                                                                      iii.       Approve and sign contracts with playing facilities and others as necessary.   Contracts shall be approved by the President or his appointee, preferably someone with tournament and/or contract experience.

 

                                                                      iv.       With the approval of the DBAA board, appoint a tournament chair (TC) for each sectional.  Co-chairs are advisable.

 

                                                                       v.        Assure that District and ACBL rules are followed, including timely entry of tournament data into the ACBL TourneyTrax program.

 

                                                                      vi.       Designate individual sectional events as DBAA Championship events once such championships have been authorized by the Board.

 

                                                                    vii.       Supervise and assist sectional TC’s in the running of sectionals.

 

                                                       d.         To the extent practical, it shall maintain consistent practices for all our sectionals so our players’ expectations are reasonably maintained.

 

                                           3.     Tournament Chair(s)

The responsibilities of the TC include:

                                                       a.         Be responsible for the management of their assigned sectionals.

                                                       b.         Prepare a tournament budget and submit it to the Unit Treasurer and President at least 30 days prior to the sectional.

                                                       c.         In conjunction with the District’s Advertising Committee, arrange for the preparation and distribution of flyers and other publicity as appropriate.  This may include articles in the DBAA newsletter and ACBL email blasts.

                                                       d.         In conjunction with the TOC Chair, determine the schedule of events for the sectional.

                                                       e.         Arrange for a partnership chair and other workers as necessary.

                                                        f.          Review ACBL director assignments with the Director-in-Charge to determine the appropriateness of the number of directors and their travel distance to site.

                                                       g.         Arrange for caddies and board duplication as necessary.

                                                       h.         Submit to the board a final report summarizing table counts, revenues and expenses as well as recommendations for future sectionals, within 30 days of the end of the sectional.  If there are still unresolved issues that preclude a final report within 30 days, a preliminary report within 30 days followed up later with the final report will suffice.

 

                          B.         Championship Events/Trophies

The DBAA has created seven championship events to be held each year in connection with its sectional tournaments.  In addition, the DBAA works with AJB in promoting and scheduling its two annual trophy events.  These events are all open to any player without regard to membership in the DBAA. 

The DBAA maintains a trophy case and assorted trophies that recognized members of its prior affiliation, ACBL Unit 114.

 

                                           1.     The normal schedule for championship events is as follows:

Winter Sectional

      Late February / Early March

Open Pairs – 2 sessions on Saturday

Flight B Pairs (0-3000)– 2 sessions on Saturday

NLM Pairs  - 2 session on Friday (daytime)

Youth Swiss Teams (AJB)

 

Summer Sectional

      Late May / June / Early July

KO teams – 3 sessions on Saturday

Friendship Game – 2 sessions on Friday  (See below)

 

Fall Sectional

      November

Open Swiss Teams – 2 sessions on Sunday

NLM Swiss Teams – 2 sessions on Sunday

Youth Pairs (AJB)

 

                                           2.     The president, subject to approval of the board, shall appoint an Awards Coordinator (“AC”).

 

                                           3.     The AC shall be responsible for:

                                                       a.         The overall enforcement of this policy. 

                                                       b.         Maintaining the various trophies and plaques

                                                       c.         Adding brass plates to the eight existing plaques as needed and maintaining a list of the winners of championship events to be posted on the website.  The DBAA maintains plaques for the following:

Open Pairs Championship                   NLM Pairs Championship

Flight B Pairs Championship               Friendship Pairs Championship

Open KO Championship                      Open Swiss Teams Championship

NLM Swiss Teams Championship       Sportsperson of the Year

Hall of Fame                                       

(Note:  The HOF and SPOTY Chairs share the responsibility for maintaining those honored in their respective areas.)

                                                       d.         Ensuring that all seven Championship events are held at the appropriate time and place, working with tournament chairs of each sectional.

 

                                                       e.         Ensuring that all nine plaques are properly displayed.  This may be at any area club that requests them if that club has room to hang them all in close proximity.  All eight plaques will travel together at all times and it is expected that they will be hung for a minimum of one year in any location before they are relocated.  If more than one club wishes to display the plaques, the AC shall arrange for a reasonable rotation schedule.

 

                                                        f.          Promotion of the championship games in coordination with the Tournament Chair.  This includes utilizing our newsletter and web site for articles promoting the events as well as recognizing those who have won them.  The AC shall have a complete list of all winners listed on our web site,

 

                                           4.     Additional events or honors, which may be added in the future, shall be included in this policy.

 

                                           5.     The Friendship Game

                                                       a.         The event will be held as a 2-session pair contest during the Summer Sectional and is intended to be the culmination of a one-month Mentor Program sponsored by the DBAA and held in area clubs.   Therefore, we encourage pairs who have participated together in the Mentor Program to enter.  However, we welcome everyone meeting the criteria, without regard to Unit registry.

 

                                                       b.         Pairs consist of one NLM (sitting East or South) and one LM (sitting West or North). 

 

                                                       c.         If there is an insufficient number of pairs to provide meaningful competition (as determined by the DIC, TC and AC), the event may be held as part of the open sectional game with only those qualifying above for the Championship.

 

                                                       d.         The Education Chair shall work with the AC in promoting and advertising this event.

 

                                           6.     Qualification as to being a NLM shall use the same masterpoint cut-off date as is used for the sectional, normally as of the most recent ACBL update.

 

                                           7.     Open Pairs, Open KO and Open Swiss Championships shall NOT be handicapped.  The AC shall ensure that the TC’s (or DIC, if appropriate) are aware of this provision.

 

                          C.         Regional Tournament

Atlanta hosts a Regional Tournament each year (other perhaps than years in which we hold a national tournament), normally ending on Labor Day.  The event is sponsored and run by District 7 (D7) in accordance with its own policies.  Under these policies D7 appoints the DBAA as the Host Organization.

 

D7 policy provides that the DBAA designate the Tournament Chair and Co-Chair, subject to D7 approval.  D7 is not however proactive in soliciting this approval.

 

As the Host, we act as paymaster for the Prizes and Entertainment costs for the regional.  We are merely a pass-through organization in this respect, as D7 repays us for all costs.  D7 allows us to hold $2,000 from each regional to cove early expenses of the following one.  D7 also sends the DBAA an advance about one month before to cover the balance of the costs.

 

As the regional is a major benefit for our members, the DBAA assists in publicity through our newsletter and web site.

 

The DBAA endeavors to hold one major event in conjunction with the Regional, space and time permitting.  Possible events include Learn Bridge in a Day® (LBIAD), Duplicate Game for Social Bridge Players, ACBL Directors Course or Directors Refresher Course.

                                           1.     DBAA volunteers utilizing a grant from the ACBL Educational Foundation have prepare a guide to running a Duplicate Game for Social Bridge Players.  See https://sites.google.com/site/acbleducationfoundationorg/home/social-bridge.

                                           2.     LBIAD is a commercial project developed by Whirlwind Bridge.  A license from that company is required.

 

                         D.         North American Bridge Championships (NABC’s)

The ACBL awards NABC’s, more commonly known as “Nationals”, to districts.  For an NABC held in Atlanta, District 7 will thereby appoint the local chair(s), who in turn will create the Local Committee to plan much of hospitality.  The ACBL has an extensive NABC Tournament Operations Manual that provides guidance for the Local Committee.

 

The DBAA has no direct role in NABC’s but may be asked for assistance from the Local Committee for newsletter publicity, our mailing list, web site, etc.

 

The DBAA maintains funds that are restricted for use at future NABC’s held in Atlanta.  See Investment Policy in Section II.E.3.  In approving funds for a specific NABC, the role of the DBAA board is to balance the needs of that current NABC with known and/or probable future NABC’s.  The Board must recognize however that the budget and operations of any NABC are the jurisdiction of the ACBL and the Local Committee.

 

                          E.         Non-Life Master Sectional

The DBAA has one NLM sectional tournament each year, normally held at Ruff ‘n Sluff Bridge Cub in June or July.  The DBAA will allow any other club or organization to run a NLM sectional under these same policies.

                                           1.     Policies

                                                       a.         The DBAA will be the tournament sponsor, just as it is for any sectional held in the DBAA area.

 

                                                       b.         The DBAA will sponsor up to two NLM tournaments in the DBAA area per calendar year.  If more than two club owners submit requests to hold a NLM tournament in a calendar year, the DBAA will vote to decide the rotation between clubs, or if an exception can be made.  While it is expected that only club owners would be interested in running a NLM tournament, the opportunity is open to anyone.

 

                                                       c.         The DBAA will accrue any profit and absorb any loss from a NLM tournament held in the DBAA area.

 

                                                       d.         A club owner or individual who wishes to conduct a NLM tournament will submit a request to the DBAA Tournament Chair at least 12 months prior to the scheduled tournament.  Such request should include the tournament schedule and prospective Tournament Chair.

 

                                                       e.         The entry fee for NLM tournaments held will be $1 below the local Sectional tournament rate, per ACBL rules for NLM tournaments. 

 

                                                        f.          A separate open game may be run concurrently with the NLM tournament if there is sufficient space to allow both games without overcrowding the players, subject to approval by the DBAA Tournament Chair.

 

                                                       g.         The DBAA will reimburse the club for the following tournament expenses:

 

                                                                         i.       Food, beverages and paper products at a rate of $2-$2.50 per table.  Additional food costs are subject to approval by the DBAA Tournament Chair.

 

                                                                       ii.        Free plays to the Partnership Committee and Food Committee members.

 

                                                                      iii.       Hand records, pre-dealt boards, electronic scorers and bridge supplies (bidding boxes, convention cards, pencils, etc.) at the D7 rate in effect at the time of the tournament.

 

                                                                      iv.       $75 per session to the designated Tournament Assistant.

 

                                                                       v.        $600 rent to the club.  In addition, the DBAA will pay $3 per table for the table count that exceeds 125.  This bonus rent provision is based on a maximum of 8 sessions for a 3-day tournament.

 

                                           2.     Responsibilities of the NLM Tournament Chair:

                                                       a.         Submit a schedule to the DBAA Tournament Chair for approval at least 12 months prior to the scheduled tournament.

 

                                                       b.         Submit a tournament budget to the DBAA Tournament Chair for approval within three months of the scheduled tournament.

 

                                                       c.         Oversee all tournament operations, including publicity and promotion, prizes (if any) and refreshments.

 

                                                       d.         Prepare tournament Balance Sheet and related tournament reports, essentially in the form provided by ACBLScore.

 

                                                       e.         Adhere to DBAA, District 7 and ACBL policies.

 

                          F.         DBAA Club Game

The DBAA holds a weekly sanctioned club game on Wednesday evenings.  Historically this has provided strong competition for its players.  The game has helped many advancing players improve their game as evidenced by the strong showing of its players in limited NABC events.

                                           1.     The DBAA Game Committee  shall plan for and oversee the Wednesday night DBAA Club Game under general guidelines established by the DBAA Board of Directors. The Treasurer shall be the “club manager” (as defined by the ACBL) unless the board decides otherwise and shall be the chair of the Committee.

                                           2.     The principal goals of the game are:

                                                       a.         To provide an opportunity for advancing players to compete against and learn from top players in the area.  This goal does not preclude having a limited game in conjunction with the open game.

                                                       b.         To provide an additional evening opportunity for players who work.

                                           3.     The game shall be self-sustaining and not-subsidized by the general revenues of the DBAA on an ongoing basis.

                                           4.     To the extent practical, the Game shall be run under the policies and practices that are used in DBAA sectionals and the Atlanta Regional.

                                           5.     The table fee (currently set at $10) shall be determined by the Board.  The Committee may choose to charge more (but no more than the added cost) for extra point games but is not required to do so.

                                           6.     The schedule including special games shall be set by the Committee or its delegate and shall be published on our web site.  Charity games may be run in accordance with ACBL policy and the name of the tax-qualified recipient of local charity games shall be included on the web site schedule.  AJB is the default beneficiary but the Committee may choose otherwise.

                                           7.     As the game attracts players who generally play in tournaments, game policies should to the extent practical follow those set by District 7 for regionals and the ACBL.  This includes but is not limited to ACBL policy on phones and other electronic devices.

                                           8.     The Committee shall engage the services of a certified director(s) at competitive rates.

                                           9.     Unless unusual circumstances, the Director shall not play in a game he is directing. Some exceptions are:

                                                       a.         A newcomer or a player from out of the area arrives without a partner

                                                       b.         Someone gets sick or has to leave

                                                       c.         To avoid a half table or a movement that would result in an unusual sit out pattern for the players.

                                                       d.         Certainly the should not have to play with someone who consistently shows up without a partner in hopes of playing with the Director.

                                         10.   Free plays:

                                                       a.         One free play (plus reimbursement of out-of-pocket cost) shall be awarded to the player who provides refreshments.

                                                       b.         Fill-in players (including the director if necessary) may be awarded a free play if need to avoid a half table or as otherwise deemed appropriate.

 

                         G.         Unit Special Games

The ACBL allows Units to authorize Unit Championships (currently 24 per year) and Unit Charity Games (currently 4 per year) to be run in clubs within our area.   Players get extra points and the clubs are not charged higher fees by the ACBL.  Everyone wins!

                                           1.     The Special Games Coordinator (SGC) is responsible for scheduling these games for the DBAA, usually in November or December of the prior year.  This shall be done early enough to allow clubs to include games, if any, in their January schedule.

 

                                           2.     The overall goal is to maximize participation at clubs.

                                                       a.         The SGC shall avoid unit games in months that the ACBL designates for Junior Fund, Charity Funds, Grass Root Funds and International Fund Games.  (Clubs can already run as many extra point games as they choose is such months.

                                                       b.         The SGC shall avoid conflicts with local sectionals/regionals as well as other nearby sites, with ST@C games, with GNT/NAP finals, with ACBL-wide special games and with Nationals.

                                                       c.         The SGC shall not schedule games on major holidays when club attendance may be reduced.

                                                       d.         The SGC shall schedule both day and evening games giving appropriate consideration to when most members play.

 

                         H.         Sportsperson of the Year (SPOTY)

The DBAA has establish an annual award to recognize the Sportsperson of the Year (SPOTY).   This person is honored for their admirable ethical behavior and strong sense of fair play over an extended period of time and for their outstandingly pleasant and gracious comportment at the table.  It is available to any member of the DBAA regardless of their level of achievement in bridge.

                                           1.     SPOTY Committee

The President shall appoint a SPOTY Committee Chair and committee members, all subject to approval by the Board.  The Committee responsibilities include:

                                                       a.         Advertising the award to clubs and players, both to solicit nominations and to announce the winner. 

                                                       b.         Receiving nominations from members and review them for completeness

                                                       c.         Recommending if it so chooses one or more top candidates to the Board for selection.

                                                       d.         Maintaining a plaque with the names of each year’s winner engraved thereon.

 

                                           2.     Nomination and Selection

                                                       a.         Nominations should be received no later than October 1 of each year in a manner designated by the Committee.  Upon submission to the Board, it shall select the honoree at a board meeting as soon as practical after this deadline.   (This is preferably be early enough in October preceding the deadlines for the November newsletter.  No member of the Board or the SPOTY Committee is eligible for this award as long as they may serve.  No member may be selected more than once. 

 

                                                       b.         Voting by the Board will be by secret ballot.  Nominations will not be made from the floor of any meeting.   All nominations will be presented to the Board who will then vote on each nominee individually.  All nominees who receive at least half ‘yea’ votes will advance to the round of balloting.  If no worthy candidate advances, the Unit is not required to make a selection. (This is to ensure that the final choice has the support of at least half of the Board.)

 

                                                       c.         After the individual voting, if there is only one nominee remaining, (s)he will be elected.  If there are two or more nominees remaining on the ballot, the Board will vote and the candidate with the largest vote tally is elected so long as they garner at least a majority vote.   If there remains a tie or there is no majority selection, the bottom candidates are dropped from the ballot and another round of voting is taken. 

 

                                           3.     Other

                                                       a.         Current Unit 253 members who have been selected AS SPOTY while members of Unit 114 are included in the list of DBAA SPOTY Winners.  This shall apply to those who are no longer members but whose service to bridge occurred while living in the DBAA area.

 

                                                       b.         Each year the SPOTY will be awarded free plays for all of the DBAA Sectional tournaments in the following calendar year and a certificate so stating.  

 

                                                       c.         See also Section III.B regarding the Awards Chair’s responsibility for maintaining the plaque recognizing all SPOTY honorees.

 

                           I.          Hall of Fame (HOF)

This section covers the nomination and selection of new inductees into the Unit 253/Duplicate Bridge Association of Atlanta Hall of Fame.  All former Unit 114 Hall of Fame members from the Unit 253 geographical area (both living and deceased) have been incorporated into the HOF by vote of the DBAA Board.  

                                           1.     Committee Appointment

                                                       a.         The President of the DBAA, with the approval of the Board, appoints a HOF Committee which shall consist of a chairman and two other DBAA members. No HOF Committee member may also be a member of the DBAA Board.

 

                                                       b.         If a HOF Committee member should be recommended by another DBAA member for HOF consideration, then that Committee member shall recuse himself or herself during the pendency of such consideration.  A substitute to serve during that recusal shall be appointed by the DBAA President, and approved by the DBAA Board.

 

                                           2.     Frequency of Nomination:  There is no requirement that someone be nominated for induction each year.  On the other hand, more than one person may be chosen in a particular year.

 

                                           3.     Committee Responsibilities

                                                       a.         The HOF Committee will solicit (on an ongoing basis) recommendations for potential membership in the HOF from other members of the DBAA, and will independently identify potential candidates on its own as well. Each HOF Committee member shall have one vote, and an affirmative vote by two of three committee members shall be necessary to nominate a candidate for full consideration by the DBAA Board.

 

                                                       b.         The HOF Committee shall be specifically charged with filtering out any issues arising from potential conflicts of interest.  Therefore, no recommendation of a candidate may be made either directly to the DBAA Board, or any induction approved by the DBAA Board, without prior submission of the recommendation to the HOF Committee, and approval by two of its three Committee members in the normal course of consideration for nomination.  Any circumvention of this requirement shall be a nullity.

 

                                           4.     Eligibility Requirements

                                                       a.         The appropriate standard for consideration of a candidate for the HOF is that a considerable and persuasive body of the candidate’s participation in bridge activities has been performed while a member of the DBAA, or subject to the grandfathering provisions set out in paragraph I.A.4.bbelow.  Therefore, a potential candidate need not necessarily reside in the DBAA geographical area at the date of consideration.  As examples, the following candidates could all be considered:  1) A longtime DBAA member who has recently moved to another area,  2) a decedent, whether or not a member of the DBAA at his or her date-of-death, or 3) a disabled person, whether or not presently a member of the DBAA.  In all three of these examples, a considerable and persuasive body of the candidate’s participation in bridge activities would have been performed while a member of the DBAA, or subject to the grandfathering provisions.

 

                                                       b.         Because the DBAA was formed from a portion of Unit 114, certain “grandfathering” provisions are necessary to ensure fairness in the selection process. 

                                                                         i.       As an initial safeguard, all Unit 114 bridge activities conducted by a candidate prior to formation of Unit 253 on April 1, 2015 shall be considered for eligibility.

 

                                                                       ii.         In addition, metro Atlanta and its surrounding environs now have two separate Units which hinge on county of residence.  Many Unit 114 members participate in DBAA tournaments and local games on a regular basis, without regard to subtle geographical distinctions.  Therefore, all Unit 114 activities of a candidate subsequent to formation of Unit 253 shall be considered for eligibility, provided that this particular candidate must be a member of the DBAA at the date of recommendation for the award.

 

                                                       c.         If a member is deceased before he is nominated, at least one full year must elapse from his date-of-death to the date of nomination.  This limitation is to ensure a dispassionate consideration of the deceased member’s candidacy, and does not apply to someone who passes away after nomination.  The committee will take a leading role in identifying a decedent meeting eligibility requirements, since such a candidate might conceivably have fewer advocates than a living member.

 

                                                       d.         The HOF Committee and DBAA Board are authorized to consider extenuating circumstances in their evaluation of the candidate’s bridge career.  This may include, but is not limited to, physical or mental impairments or any other disability that may have limited the candidate’s participation in the game of bridge to a noticeable degree.  If the candidate’s bridge career is truncated due to extenuating circumstances, the HOF Committee and DBAA Board may consider that shortened career as emblematic of the player’s abilities.

 

                                                       e.         A candidate’s youth shall not be a limitation in his or her consideration for the award.  Although “a considerable and persuasive body of the candidate’s participation in bridge activities” is the standard to be considered, if the activities of a youthful member are impressive enough to fulfill this standard, then his or her age shall not be an impediment.    The HOF Committee shall be specifically charged with ensuring that a “minimum age” requirement is NOT in effect.  Nevertheless, even though events restricted to young players should be given some consideration, primary consideration should be given to the candidate’s performance in unrestricted ACBL events.  This award is NOT the appropriate vehicle for a youth’s performance in events limited to youth.

 

                                           5.     Recommendation: Any member of the DBAA may recommend for HOF nomination any other member meeting the requirements documented in Paragraph 4.  A written statement providing reasons for the recommendation shall be provided to the HOF Committee, although no formal vetting process need be conducted by the recommending member.

 

                                           6.     Criteria for nomination

                                                       a.         The award of HOF induction is primarily intended to be recognition of achievements by the candidate in playing in ACBL sanctioned bridge events.  This recognition should include accomplishments in Sectional, Regional, National, and International events.  Accomplishments in club and online play may also be considered, including Sectional Tournaments at Clubs results (“STAC”), ACBL Instant Matchpoint results, McKenney and Mini-McKenney award recognition, and Ace of Clubs recognition.  These achievements are intended as examples, and are by no means exclusive.  Activities in and relating to the DBAA should be given particular emphasis. Significant achievement playing in ACBL bridge events shall be considered integral to this award.  On the other hand, induction into the HOF is NOT to be considered a “lifetime achievement” award, and may occur at any time during or after a player’s career. 

 

                                                       b.         Award consideration should also include recognition of a level of service or contribution to the game of bridge within the DBAA.  Other awards, such as the ACBL and Unit Goodwill Committee selection have been developed to recognize outstanding service to the game of bridge, so this factor, although given considerable importance, shall be considered a criteria secondary to bridge accomplishment for purposes of this award.

 

                                                       c.         The candidate’s ethics and conduct (including both sportsmanship and general behavior) should also be considered in choosing a candidate.  Although this factor should be given due weight, a candidate’s conduct should not be confused with personality, and unless it is egregious in some respect, it should not be considered the exclusive or even central reason for rejecting a candidate.

 

                                           7.     Board Approval:  Induction into the Hall of Fame shall require a favorable vote of at least 75% of ALL voting members of the DBAA Board.  Voting shall be by secret ballot, with the results to be collated by the DBAA Secretary. Like the Baseball Hall of Fame, this difficult requirement will ensure that the award is considered very special, and that a recipient will be judged deserving by all.

 

                                           8.     Procedures

                                                       a.         Each year during the month of April, the HOF Committee shall solicit recommendations from DBAA members by publication in the spring DBAA newsletter or otherwise, as determined.  The period for submission of recommendations to the HOF Committee shall end on June 30.  The HOF committee shall conduct its consideration and due diligence during the month of July, and shall present any nominations, if warranted, to the Board by July 31. The Board shall act on all such nominations by Sept. 1 of that year, in order that any approved inductions may be acted upon by the DBAA Board, and announced at the Atlanta Labor Day Regional, or similar venue.  The HOF Committee may change this venue and the deadlines enumerated in this Procedure if another venue is deemed more suitable in any particular year by the DBAA Board.

 

                                                       b.         Because this award is primarily for bridge playing achievement, the Policies allow any member of the DBAA to recommend any other member.  Therefore, no restrictions are imposed on nominating friends, partners (either life partners or partners at the table), or anyone else. Recommendations may be made by or for DBAA Board members, or even by a DBAA Board member for another Board member. 

 

                                                       c.         The HOF Committee, after an initial review and consideration of a recommendation, shall summarily reject any candidate who does not receive the vote of at least two of the three committee members.  All candidates who pass this initial consideration by the HOF Committee shall be fully vetted.  The vetting process shall consist of obtaining as full a resume as possible, either from the candidate or some other reliable source.  The HOF Committee shall be given leeway in choosing this source. This provision is intended to minimize injured feelings arising from a nominee’s investment of significant time in providing personal data to the Committee, and later failing to meet the rigorous requirement for induction set out by the Board Approval Policy in Paragraph I.G, above. If the candidate still receives at least two of three committee member votes after full vetting, then the candidate, along with his or her resume, shall be nominated to the full Board for a vote. 

 

                                                       d.         The HOF Committee shall try to obtain as accurate a resume as possible, but cannot guarantee the complete accuracy of the information submitted by the candidate or another source.

 

                                                       e.         The HOF Committee shall plan and oversee scheduling and conduct of the Induction Ceremony, subject to approval of its proposed actions by the Board.

 

                                                        f.          The HOF Chair shall have the primary responsibility for administering the provisions of this section.

See also Section III.B regarding the Awards Coordinator’s responsibility for maintaining the plaque recognizing all HOF honorees.

 

                           J.          Change of Rank (COR) Party

The DBAA is proud to recognize its members’ achievements in ACBL rank changes.  Each year the DBAA hosts Change of Rank parties at duplicate bridge clubs in the DBAA area.  COR honorees receive one free play at one of the parties they attend.  

                                           1.     COR Policies

                                                       a.         The DBAA will annually sponsor one COR party at each eligible duplicate bridge club in the DBAA’s geographic area. 

                                                       b.         An eligible duplicate club is one that holds at least one open game weekly.

                                                       c.         Participation in the COR parties is optional for the eligible duplicate clubs.

                                                       d.         Eligible Unit members will be entitled to one free play at one of the sponsored COR parties.

                                                       e.         An eligible member is any individual who is a member of Unit 253 in the current year or was a Unit 253 member in the preceding calendar year, and who had a change in their ACBL rank in the preceding calendar year.

Exception:  an individual who resides outside of the DBAA 253 area who changed rank in the preceding calendar year and frequently plays at one or more of the DBAA 253 area clubs will be entitled to a COR free play. 

                                                        f.          The COR parties will be held during the month of March each year, unless an exception is approved by the Board.

                                                       g.         The DBAA will reimburse each participating club $75 for the cost of refreshments for their party.  The honor system is in effect; no receipts need to be submitted

                                                       h.         The DBAA will reimburse each participating club for the cost of free plays for COR honorees who attend their party.

                                                        i.          The DBAA President will appoint a COR Chairperson on an as needed basis, subject to Board approval.

 

                                           2.     COR Chair Procedures

The COR Chairperson will be responsible for the following actions:

                                                       a.         On or soon after January 6 of each year, request an annual listing of Unit 253 members who changed rank in the preceding calendar year from the ACBL Senior Programmer Analyst (generic email is data.services@acbl.org)– currently Richard Oshlag at Richard.Oshlag@acbl.org).  The report should include the DBAA 253 members who had any change of rank in January to December of the preceding year.  Be careful to request the data from the February 6 preceding year report to January 6 report of the current year.   

 

Note: The listing from ACBL will be in a .csv file format, which can be saved in Excel (or similar spreadsheet program) and edited to produce the DBAA listings.  The ACBL listing will include multiple changes of rank for some members.  The COR Chair will need to eliminate the duplicates and count only the highest change of rank for each member. 

 

                                                       b.         Create two COR listings:  one sorted in alphabetical order by last name and a second listing sorted by rank. 

 

                                                       c.         In early to mid-January, send an e-mail to each club manager to request their preferred date for their COR party to be held in March.  If you have the COR listing ready by then, include the two COR listings as attachments and ask them to post the listing by rank at least two weeks prior to their party, if feasible.  Ensure that the parties are held on different days for each club.  Request that the club manager advertise their party in advance. 

 

                                                       d.         Send the COR listings to the Treasurer for purposes of tracking the submitted free plays later.

 

                                                       e.         In late January, prepare a summary reflecting the COR party schedule in the format below.  Send a brief announcement about the upcoming COR parties along with the COR listing by rank for posting to the DBAA Website Administrator for posting to our web site. As an examples

                                                           f.          In late January, prepare an article for the DBAA Newsletter to announce the COR parties, the schedule, that honorees will receive one free play at one party, etc.  Submit the article to the Newsletter Editor in time to be published in the February Newsletter.

 

                                                       g.         Send a second e-mail to club managers, with a copy to the DBAA Treasurer, in late February to request that they announce the names of the COR honorees at their party and that the DBAA is the sponsor.  Also, ask them to announce the policy that an honoree is entitled to one free play at one COR party (per year).  Advise the club managers that the DBAA will provide a volunteer to help them with the announcement of the honorees’ names, if needed.    In the same e-mail, advise the club managers that after their party, they need to send the COR listing with the names of the honorees who attended to the DBAA Treasurer for reimbursement, along with the game report and table fee applicable for the game.  Provide the Treasurer’s e-mail and contact information in the e-mail.

 

                                                       h.         If the DBAA holds a COR party at the Wednesday night Unit game, ensure a flyer to announce the COR party is posted at the club and coordinate the extra refreshments for the party.  Remind the Director to track and announce the honorees’ names and to give the information to the DBAA Treasurer, who is also the DBAA game club manager.

 

                                           3.     Unit Treasurer Procedures

The Unit Treasurer shall be responsible for the following actions each year:

                                                       a.         Upon receipt of the COR listing with attending honorees noted, the ACBL game report and table fees from the club manager, the Treasurer will send reimbursements to the club managers for refreshments in the amount of $75 and the cost of free plays.

 

                                                       b.         Summarize the results of the COR parties in a report to the board that reflects the costs and number of players recognized.

 

                          K.         Goodwill Committees

                                           1.     Overview

The Goodwill movement exists at National, District and Unit levels.  Its purpose is to recognize and honor those individuals who strive to make bridge better for all, and to support active ethics and zero tolerance. 

 

Membership in all of the Goodwill Committees shown below (ACBL, District 7 and Unit 253) is for life as long as the member remains in good standing. 

National - The ACBL Goodwill Committee was founded in 1955 and is named the Aileen Osofsky ACBL Goodwill Committee.  Each year each District Director may appoint two people to be lifetime members of the Goodwill Committee.  In addition, the District Director may appoint up to two replacements per year to fill vacancies created by deaths of prior appointees.  ACBL Goodwill members also include members of the ACBL Board of Directors, Chairman of the Board of Governors and ACBL Goodwill Members of the year. 

District 7 – The District 7 Goodwill Committee was created in 2005 to promote special goodwill activities and recognize members’ for their contributions to the betterment of bridge.  Membership in the District 7 Goodwill Committee includes:

1)      members nominated annually from each Unit in District 7, and

2)      members appointed to the ACBL Goodwill Committee by the District 7 Director.

 

Unit 253 – The Unit 253 Goodwill Committee was formed in 2015 to recognize members who demonstrate high standards of goodwill, sportsmanship and volunteerism.  Membership in the Unit 253 Goodwill Committee includes: 

1)      members nominated by Unit 253 to the District 7 Goodwill Committee (including those formerly in Unit 114), and

2)      members appointed to the ACBL Goodwill Committee by the District 7 Director (including those formerly in Unit 114).    

 

                                           2.     Unit Goodwill Panel

                                                       a.         Unit 253 will have a Goodwill Panel to handle the administrative duties related to the nominations of members to the District 7 Goodwill Committee. 

                                                       b.         It is preferable that the Goodwill Panel will serve for at least two years.

                                                       c.         The Unit Goodwill Panel will follow the District 7 Goodwill policies and procedures for submitting nominations to the District 7 Goodwill Committee each year. 

                                                       d.         The Unit President will appoint the Unit Goodwill Panel Chair, subject to board approval.

                                                       e.         The Chair will select two panel members, subject to board approval.

                                                        f.          The Chair will serve as the liaison with the District 7 Goodwill Coordinator.

                                                       g.         Activities of the Unit Goodwill Panel will include:

                                                                         i.       solicitation of nominations through postings at clubs, Constant Contact e-mails  and other means as appropriate,

                                                                       ii.        publication of articles in the Unit Newsletter regarding the nomination process and also the selections from the Unit,

                                                                      iii.       submit appropriate announcements to be posted on the Unit’s website for Goodwill,

                                                                      iv.       review the nominations for completeness and candidates’ qualifications for the Goodwill Committee, and prepare a recommendation to the Unit Board with the submission of all nominations,

                                                                       v.        inform the Unit’s honorees that they were selected,

                                                                      vi.       submit the Unit’s honorees’ write-ups and pictures to the District 7 Goodwill Coordinator by March 15 each year,

                                                                    vii.       in conjunction with the District 7 Coordinator, maintain an accurate listing of the Unit 253 Goodwill Committee members, and

                                                                  viii.        prepare an annual updated listing of the Unit 253 Goodwill Committee and submit to the Unit’s website administrator for posting on the Unit’s website. 

 

                                           3.     Nominations to the District 7 Goodwill Committee

                                                       a.         Any member of Unit 253 may nominate another Unit 253 member in good standing for the District 7 Goodwill Committee.  An ACBL member is considered to be in “good standing” when such member’s dues (if required) are current and such member is not expelled or serving a term of suspension or indefinite probation.  See ACBL Handbook for more information.  http://www.acbl.org/about-acbl/administration/acbl-handbook/iv-discipline-of-a-member/

 

                                                       b.         Nominations for District 7 Goodwill Committee may be sent to the Unit 253 Goodwill Panel Chair by e-mail, regular mail or hand delivered.  The due date for nominations is January 15 each year. 

 

                                                       c.         The District 7 Goodwill policy provides that all Units in District 7 may nominate one person each year for the Goodwill Committee.  In addition, the District’s policy provides that Units with larger memberships may nominate more than one, depending on their membership as of June 30.  Based on this policy, Unit 253 is currently allowed to submit two nominations each year.  In addition, a Unit may decline to submit a nomination.

 

                                                       d.         The attributes that distinguish someone as a candidate for the Goodwill Committee may include, but are not limited to, the following:

·         Observes both the laws and ethics of the game

·         Plays competitively and is always fair

·         Is gracious in victory as well as defeat

·         Is pleasant as both a partner and an opponent

·         Graciously abides by rules of the director

·         Does not give unsolicited bridge lessons at the table

·         Avoids discussion of boards in the presence of new opponents

·         Genuinely promotes bridge and upholds its reputation

·         Gives back to the game through mentoring newer players

·         Volunteers in bridge administration

·         Promotes the game by example

 

                                           4.     Review and Board Approval of Unit Goodwill Nominations

                                                       a.         The Unit Goodwill Panel will review the nominations submitted from the Unit members to determine completeness and the candidates’ qualifications for the Goodwill Committee, including status as a “member in good standing.”  If a nomination is lacking in content, the Panel may request an update from the nominator. 

 

                                                       b.         The Panel will prepare a brief summary of all nominations and a recommendation to the board.  The Panel will send these documents to the board on e-mail within 10 days of the Unit’s February (or early March) meeting.

 

                                                       c.         District 7 requests that Units submit their Goodwill nominations by March 15.  The Unit board will vote for their nominees no later than March 5 to allow the Panel time to finalize the nominations with the required personal information and picture.

 

                                                       d.         At its February or early March meeting, the Board will consider and vote on all nominees submitted by the Panel.  The Board will not be allowed to add new nominations at the meeting in which the Goodwill nominees are to be voted upon.

 

                                                       e.         The Unit Board will vote by secret ballot.  Board members will vote for their 1st and 2nd choices from the candidate pool.  A board member may opt to vote for only one candidate or none.  The president will not vote in the initial round of voting, but may vote in the second round in order to break a tie.

 

                                                        f.          A weighted point system will be used to tabulate the votes.  1st place votes will count as 5 points; 2nd place votes will count as 3 points.  The two candidates with the highest number of points will be the Unit’s nominees for the year.  If there is a tie between two candidates, a second round vote will be taken with the president voting to break the tie, if needed. 

 

                                           5.     Annual Goodwill Awards Dinner

District 7 hosts a Goodwill Awards Dinner at one of its Regional Tournaments each year to recognize new honorees from each Unit and honor existing members.  District 7 covers the cost of the dinner for all Goodwill Members.  New honorees may bring guests to the dinner.  District 7 currently charges $25 per person for guests who attend. 

If the new honorees bring guests to the Goodwill dinner, the Unit will pay for their guests’ dinner fees at the rate that District 7 charges. 

Each new honoree receives a District 7 Goodwill pin at the dinner.

 

                                           6.     District 7 Goodwill Committee Members

District 7 created the Goodwill award to recognize members who demonstrate high standards of ethical behavior, sportsmanship and volunteerism.  It is not a “working” committee in which members are expected to serve as volunteers.  The Goodwill Committee requests that all members wear their Goodwill pins as often as possible, and particularly on Goodwill Friday of each District 7 Regional.    

 

                                           7.     Suspension or Removal from the Unit 253 Goodwill Committee

A Goodwill Committee appointment is a lifetime appointment as long as the member is a member in “good standing,” as defined by ACBL.  If a member loses good standing, the member’s Goodwill Committee appointment will be suspended until the member regains good standing.  Expulsion from the ACBL, suspension for one year or longer, or probation for two years or longer will result in permanent removal from the Unit 253 Goodwill Committee.

 

                          L.          New Life Masters

The President shall send a congratulatory email to each member who achieves the rank of Life Master.  The list of new Life Masters is part of the “in-and-Out Report” emailed but the ACBL each month.  The form of the letter is up to the President; a sample version is attached in 41Exhibit C.

 

                        M.        Grand Life Master

Grand Life Master is the highest rank that can be achieved in the ACBL, requiring the member to have accumulated 10,000 points and to have won an NABC+ event.  To recognize such a rare accomplishment by a member, we will honor them in the following manner:

                                           1.     The President will preside over a celebration and an announcement to the general membership between sessions at the next available sectional tournament.

                                           2.     If possible, refreshments will be served.  For example, ice cream or cookies.      

                                           3.     The event should be advertised in advance and on-site to assure player participation.

                                           4.     The Awards Coordinator will organize the event with the cooperation of the honoree, their family and friends, the DBAA Board Members and the tournament chair.           

 

                         N.         Mentoring Program

For our Mentoring Program we designate one month in which a Life Master plays with a Non-Life Master.  Our goal is helping advancing players grow their game while giving more experienced players the opportunity to give something back to the game.   We are happy to encourage interaction between players of differing levels which tends to improve the social aspects of the game.

                                           1.     Policy

                                                       a.         The Education Chair is responsible for managing this program.

                                                       b.         The specifics of each year’s program are up to the Chair. The program and estimated costs do require annual approval by the Board.

                                                       c.         We allow the mentor to play free for each session mentored and reimburse the club for the cost of that free play.

                                                       d.         The program is not available to established partnerships, a term we intentionally leave vague and undefined.  We ask the club managers to monitor this but we do not police it.  We rely on the good judgment and integrity of the club managers.

                                                       e.         Teachers may play with their students only if they are not being paid for the session.

                                                        f.          We rely on the club manager and directors to match up LM’s and NLM’s.  We give them tools to help in this regard but they know their players and are the most reliable source for this task.  LM’s and NLM’s may of course arrange games on their own, subject to d above.

                                                       g.         Once completed, the Education Chair in cooperation with the Treasurer shall report on the costs of program, problems encountered and solutions provides as well as suggestions for the next year’s program.

 

                                           2.     Procedures

                                                       a.         Several months in advance of the target date, prepare a proposal for the Board summarizing the plan for the current year.   The proposal would include the program’s parameters, dates, expected participation (based on previous year’s and estimated cost.  Obtain Board approval.

                                                       b.         Determine the documentation you will need from the clubs to approve reimbursement of their cost for free plays.  Clear this with the Treasurer beforehand.  Make sure the clubs understand their responsibilities.

                                                       c.         Early in the month before the program, send an email to all the DBAA clubs explaining this year’s program with all the forms & documents they will need for reimbursement.  If free plays are to be given out (beyond the one for the actual mentoring session, the free play forms for them to copy along with an explanation of how and when to accept the free plays as they came back in and how to get reimbursed for them.

                                                       d.         Publicize the event with posters in the clubs, articles in the newsletter and on the web site and other means deemed appropriate.  Ask the clubs to promote it in their newsletters.  Ask board members to make announcements where they play.

                                                       e.         Maintain records so as to make a final report per I.A.4.g above.

 

                         O.         Beginning Bridge Lessons

The DBAA wants to encourage teachers to bring new players into the game. We offer a free play at any participating DBAA club to any new student completing a minimum of 16 hours of beginning bridge instruction. The student must have attended class within the DBAA area.  This is for new students only and by definition excludes anyone who is already playing in any of our clubs prior to the start of the class.

                                           1.     Policy

                                                       a.         The Education Chairs shall have the responsibility for administering this policy.

                                                       b.         The 16-hour requirement is intended as eight lessons of two hours each but teachers fulfill it however they choose. These hours include playing and practice time in addition to actual instruction. Many students will miss a class or two. The 16-hour requirement is still met for such students if at the instructor’s discretion they made reasonable efforts to learn the material from the missed classes. The DBAA will not monitor this but instead rely on the integrity of the teachers.

                                                       c.         While the class must be held in the DBAA area, the teacher need not be a member of the DBAA or live in the DBAA area.

                                                       d.         Students need not live in the DBAA area.

                                                       e.         The Free Play Certificate (see Exhibit A) shall:

                                                                         i.       List include the name, address and contact information for any club that regularly holds three or more games per week. 

                                                                       ii.        State that it may be used at any participating club in the area and that other clubs may be found on the DBAA web site.

                                                                      iii.       Bear an expiration date calculate as follows: Add 90 days to the date of presentation and then round to the last day of that month.  The expiration date is to encourage use.  The DBAA will however honor the certificate even past its expiration date.

                                                                      iv.       Instructions to the club manager as to how to be reimbursed by the DBAA for the free play.

                                                                       v.        The DBAA may exclude any teacher from this program for failure to comply with this policy or for abuse of the free play program.

 

                                           2.     Procedure

                                                       a.         Upon request, the Education Chair will email the teacher spreadsheet template for listing the students in the class.

                                                       b.         The teacher completes the required information and emails the spreadsheet back to the Education Chair.  The email must state that the students have completed 16 hours of instruction (as defined in I.A.1.b above and the date upon which the teacher wants to present the Free Play Certificate.

                                                       c.         The Education Chair will then prepare the certificates and email them to the teacher for printing, signing and distribution.

 

                          P.         New Members

The Membership Chair shall send to new members of our unit, including ACBL members who relocate from another area, a letter welcoming them to the DBAA.  The list of new members is part of the ACBL’s monthly In-and-Out Report.  The mailing shall include: 1) a list of DBAA clubs with contact information, 2) DBAA area bridge teachers, 3) one free play good at any participating club, and 4) other such material deemed appropriate by the Membership Chair.

 

                         Q.         Web Site

As the web site has changed significantly, this section will be added in late 2017.

 

                          R.         Newsletter

The DBAA publishes a quarterly newsletter with approximate issue dates the first of February, May, August and November.  (These dates were selected to best promote our four major tournaments each year.

                                           1.     General

                                                       a.         The objective of the newsletter is to keep the membership apprised of activities in the DBAA area and, to a lesser extent, in the larger world of bridge. 

                                                       b.         The newsletter is geared to the average player – 200-300 points or so – with some additional attention paid to those with less.  Those with more points generally know their way around bridge in Atlanta (or already think they know everything anyway!).

                                                       c.         Articles should be of general interest – tournaments, elections, clubs, teachers, and the like – including acknowledging significant bridge accomplishments such as Hall of Fame, Grand Life Master and NABC wins.

 

                                           2.     Editor

                                                       a.         The Editor of the newsletter shall be appointed by the President and approved by the Board.

                                                       b.         The editor’s job is to organize the content provided by others in the DBAA.  S/he is not responsible for writing the articles; that is the job of the various chairs and other appointed individuals.  The newsletter can only be as good as the members supplying content will make it.

                                                       c.         The editor maintains the right to edit/rewrite any article to fit the style (and occasionally space limitations) of the newsletter.

 

                                           3.     Publication / Mail list

                                                       a.         The newsletter is (at least for now) only available in digital form.

                                                       b.         The Editor maintains a list of email addresses.  Additions are made only for submissions from individual members and a quarterly update just before mailing from the Unit Roster and downloaded from the ACBL.  No one is deleted unless they so request.

                                                       c.         The Editor will post each completed newsletter on the web site which will maintain a specific link to the latest newsletter as well as a general link to the page with all prior newsletters.  S/he will email everyone on the mailing list (using bcc so as not to make the list public) a notice when a newsletter is published.

                                                       d.         The mailing list can be used for other general interest matters but care must be taken to not overdo this or our emails will eventually be treated as spam.  There is a $30 charge to any organization for each such mass mailing.

                                                       e.         An individual need not be a member of the DBAA to receive the newsletter email list.

 

                                           4.     Teachers

                                                       a.         We generally do not promote the activities of individual teachers.  We will however include articles on the following:

                                                                         i.       Beginning bridge lessons as long as we have the information in time.

                                                                       ii.        Lessons taught for free

                                                                      iii.       Junior bridge lessons, including summer camps

                                                                      iv.       Notable accomplishments such as works authored or awards received

 

                                           5.     Clubs

                                                       a.         Care must be taken to treat all clubs as equally as is practical.

                                                       b.         We will include in each issue a list of all clubs and contact information

                                                       c.         We will publish each issue – space permitting – a list of all games in the area that are limited to 500 points or less.  It is the mutual responsibility of clubs and the editor to keep this accurate.  The editor can ask but only the clubs know for sure which games they are running.

                                                       d.         We do not as a rule promote activities of individual clubs, not teaching programs nor individual games.  We will however include articles on the following:

                                                                         i.       Charitable events as noted in I.A.6 below, even if they are in a club

                                                                       ii.        Beginning bridge lessons that meet the conditions noted in I.A.4.

                                                                      iii.       New clubs or relocation of existing clubs.

                                                                      iv.       Limited games below a specific masterpoint level in a listing of all such games in the area in our newsletter or website.

                                                                       v.        Awards or other special recognition.

 

                                           6.     Charitable events

We will gladly help promote charitable efforts using bridge lessons or games as fundraisers, e.g., Longest Day)

 

                                           7.     Advertising

The newsletter accepts no advertising.

                          S.         Membership Directory

As there is a new online directory as part of the web site and we have not yet determined when and how we will prepare a print directory from it, this section has not be been prepared.

 

         II.         Administration

                          A.         Volunteers Positions

                                           1.     Officers

The duties of the officers – President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer – of the DBAA are defined in Article VII of the Bylaws.  The Board may assign additional responsibilities.  

 

                                           2.     Committee Chairs

As used in this P&P, “Committee Chairs” includes all volunteers responsible for significant ongoing affairs of the DBAA such as Newsletter Editor and Recorder, even if their title doesn’t specifically include the word “chair”.

                                                       a.         All Committee Chairs are appointed by the President, subject to the approval by the Board.  Their term is indefinite and continues until they resign or a replacement is approved by the Board.  These positions are:

·         Awards Coordinator (formerly Trophies Chair)

·         Change of Rank Chair

·         Directory Chair

·         Disciplinary Chair (Conduct and Ethics)

·         Education Chair

·         Elections Chair

·         Finance Chair

·         Goodwill Chair

·         Hall of Fame Chair

·         Investment Committee Chair

·         Membership Chair

·         Newsletter Editor

·         Recorder

·         Special Games Coordinator

·         Sportsperson of the Year Chair

·         Tournament Oversight Committee Chair

·         Web Site Manager

·         Youth Bridge Chair

The President may create additional committees and chairs thereof, subject to the approval of the Board.

 

                                                       b.         The ACBL requires that certain positions be created within the unit.  These include:

                                                                         i.       Electronic contact, which shall be the Secretary

                                                                       ii.        Club Manager for the DBAA game, which shall be the Treasurer

                                                                      iii.       Tournament Coordinator, which shall be the Chair of the Tournament Oversight Committee

 

                                                       c.         Representatives to the D7 board are appointed (per D7 Bylaws) for annual terms on approximately a calendar year basis.  The number is determined by the D7 bylaws.  Such representatives shall be appointed by the President and approved by the Board.  The secretary shall in accordance with D7 bylaws notify the D7 Secretary (or president) of the representatives appointed before their terms begin.

 

One D7 Rep, by mutual agreement among them, shall be designated to apprise the board of D7 activities that have an impact on the unit or our clubs or may be of general interest.

 

                          B.         Meetings

                                           1.     Board Meetings   (See Bylaws Article VI, E through I)

                                                       a.         Schedule

                                                                         i.       The President before the beginning of each calendar year shall propose a regular meeting schedule for the ensuing year, with no less than one meeting every three months.  The President shall consider:

                                                                                   (a)        Avoiding conflict with our sectionals and those of nearby units; District 7 regionals and those of nearby districts; NABC’s; District GNT and NAP finals; and religious holidays. 

                                                                                  (b)        Times and locations suitable to the overall needs of board members, in particular minimizing conflicts with club games.

                                                                       ii.        The Board shall approve the schedule with such adjustments as it deems necessary.

                                                                      iii.       The schedule shall be posted on our web site with appropriate notation that the schedule is subject to change.

                                                                      iv.       The secretary shall provide via email no less than three and no more than 45 days prior to the meeting.

                                                                       v.        The secretary shall send the draft of prior minutes and the Treasurer’s report to the Board before the meeting.  This practice helps to ensure that the secretary has the correct wording of the motion and that the Board shall have adequate time to preview the reports prior to the meeting.

                                                       b.         Operations

                                                                         i.       50% of the Board shall constitute a quorum to transact any business.

                                                                       ii.        Meetings generally follow Roberts Rules of Order but good judgment in organizing the meeting is encouraged.

                                                                      iii.       Board members are encouraged to submit motions to the secretary in advance of the meeting.  This practice helps ensure that the correct wording is in the minutes.  Advance notice to other board members will then

                                                                      iv.       Committee heads are encouraged to submit their reports to the Secretary one week before the meeting so they can be distributed to the Board

                                                       c.         Special meetings may be called by the President, the Board or at least five directors.

                                                       d.         Attendance at all meetings is open to any DBAA member.

                                                       e.         The Secretary shall maintain a hard copy of all the minutes of DBAA board meetings and, in cooperation with the Web Liaison, have then posted on the DBAA website.  The Web site will include drafts of minutes not yet approved by the Board with the unapproved status so noted.

 

                                           2.     Committee Meetings

DBAA committees are not required to maintain minutes of their meetings.  If a Committee wishes to make a proposal to the board, it shall be approved by a majority of the board members and shall be submitted in writing.

 

                                           3.     Annual Membership Meeting

In accordance with DBAA Bylaws Article V, the annual meeting of the DBAA shall be held in the first quarter of the year.  We normally do so on the last day of the Winter Sectional in February or March.

                                                       a.         The bylaws require the presentation of the annual financial report for the prior year.

                                                       b.         While not required by the bylaws, the DBAA normally announces the winners of the prior year’s winners in each category of the Unit Ace of Club competition as well as that for the Mini-McKenney.  If available in time for the meeting, the winners are presented a certificate from the ACBL for Ace of Clubs competition and pins (which must be purchased in advance) for Mini-McKenney competition.

                                                       c.         DBAA elections (held in even numbered years) for officers and other board members are normally completed the day before the annual meeting, If so held, the Chair of the Election Committee (or a member designated by the Chair) shall announce the winners of that election.

 

                          C.         Elections

The DBAA maintains a separate Elections Policies and Procedures Manual.  The procedures are an integral part of the policy so as to preserve the integrity and transparency of out election process.  As these extensive P&P are long, we have chosen to keep them as a separate document available at www.DBAA.us , Election Procedure.   This also makes it easier for our election committee to communicate the policies to those members considering running for a governance position.

 

                         D.         Disciplinary Actions

Under ACBL policy, our Unit has certain responsibilities regarding dealing inappropriate actions by our members.  This authority is principally limited to activities at sanctioned events and other activities sponsored by the Unit and, in actions that could be deemed to be cheating, to our clubs as well.  The policies and procedures regarding such activities is prescribed in ACBL policies noted below.

 

                                           1.     The primary document is the ACBL Code of Disciplinary Regulations (CDR) available to all members at http://web2.acbl.org/documentLibrary/play/CDR.pdf . The following summarizes key provisions of this code.

                                                       a.         Unit jurisdiction generally applies to:

                                                                         i.        Members and others participating in a sanctioned event (sectionals, unit championships, NAP games, etc.) or other activity sponsored by the unit, district or ACBL.

                                                                        ii.       Persons participating in ACBL sanctioned events at our clubs relating to complaints of alleged cheating or serious breach of ethics.

                                                       b.          The grounds for discipline, too numerous to cite here, are listed in CDR section 3.

                                                       c.          The CDR also prescribes procedures for disciplinary action.

 

                                           2.     The President with the approval of the Board appoints a Recorder who has the responsibilities defined in the ACBL Handbook, Appendix C (http://www.acbl.org/tournaments_page/general-information/tournament-management/recorder-regulations-and-procedures)

                                                       a.         These duties include receiving, evaluating and investigating Player Memos.  A Player Memo, available from any director (whether club or tournament) or at http://web2.acbl.org/discipline/pmemo.pdf, is the document used to inform the Recorder of any incident involving incidents of inappropriate conduct.  Inappropriate conduct may include violations of the Laws of Duplicate Bridge, the ACBL’s Zero Tolerance Policy or cheating.

                                                       b.          The Recorder deals with most complaints by spea               king with the offending parties and educating them in proper demeanor and ethical behavior.

                                                       c.          While Recorders have no disciplinary authority, they may refer serious offenses to the Unit’s Disciplinary Chair.

 

                                           3.     The President with the approval of the Board appoints a Disciplinary Chair, who Is responsible for ensuring that we adhere to ACBL policies as outlined in the ACBL Handbook and in particular the CDR.

 

                                           4.     The DBAA shall notify our community of the suspension of a member on its web site and in its newsletter.  Such notice shall be limited to the information contained in the “Notice of Suspension and Probation” (or its successor if the form is changed) provided by the ACBL.

 

In accordance with paragraph 9.63 of the ACBL’s Code of Disciplinary Regulations, such notice must be removed from the web site once the penalty period (including any probation period) is over.

 

Example

 

Upon recommendation of a Unit 253 Disciplinary Committee, Pat Member has been suspended from the ACBL for four months and placed on probation through June 30, 20xx for engaging in unethical behavior as defined in the ACBL Code of Disciplinary Regulations section 3.20.

 

There shall be nothing published regarding any disciplinary action that is less than suspension or expulsion.

 

The President and Secretary along with the Conduct and Ethics Chair share the responsibility for implementing this policy.

 

                          E.         Financial

                                           1.     Accounting

To be done

 

                                           2.     Annual Review

To be done

 

                                           3.     Investment Policy

The DBAA in addition to funds maintained for current and future operations holds separate funds restricted[1] for use in future Atlanta NABC’s.  These funds shall be segregated from one another.

The investment policy of the DBAA is:

                                                       a.         The Finance Committee (“FC”) shall manage the funds not deemed necessary for current and immediate future needs.   The FC and its chair shall be appointed by the President and approved by the board.  The DBAA treasurer shall be an ex-officio non-voting member of the FC.

 

                                                       b.          The DBAA shall keep $100,000 available in cash and/or CD’s, $50,000 from the Unit’s operating funds (the above referenced funds for “current and immediate future operations” referred to above) and $50,000 from the NABC funds.  These funds are to be managed by the DBAA Treasurer and may be invested in federally insured CD’s .

                                                       c.          The FC may direct the remaining funds be invested in moderate risk investments such as mutual funds/index funds/exchange traded funds (ETF's) or similar vehicles, at the committee's discretion

                                                       d.          The maximum amount of each individual investment shall be no more than35% of invested funds.  This shall be based ontheoriginal investment; reinvested earnings and increase in market value are excluded.

                                                       e.         The FC should invest in funds with low fees; the Committee should invest in no-load funds.

                                                        f.          The FC will review, evaluate and report to the Board the DBAA’s investment performance annually.

 

                                           4.     Insurance

To be Done

 

                                           5.     Monetary Grants

The DBAA upon Board approval may give financial grants to qualifying organizations.  Grants should be made in accordance with the following guidelines:

                                                       a.         The grantee is a not-for-profit organization so recognized by the IRS.

                                                       b.         There is some bridge connection associated with the grant.

                                                       c.         The DBAA received some favorable publicity for its largesse.

 

        III.        Maintenance /Amendment

                          A.         The Vice-President (VP) of the DBAA, unless otherwise determined by the Board, shall be responsible for maintaining this P&P manual.  The VP shall ensure that the current P&P is available on our web site.

                          B.         It is preferable that any motion intending to change the P&P specifically state that. There need not be, however, such formal statement by the board but rather the VP shall update the P&P based on board decisions.  This may require that the VP ask for board guidance should there be a question as to whether any board action is setting new policy.

                          C.         The following guidelines should be considered for any change in the P&P

                                           1.     The policy should be clear as to whose responsibility it is to ensure that the particular policy is followed

                                           2.     Care should be taken to avoid overly detailed procedures that will limit flexibility in administering any policy.  Each Committee Chair shall per Section II.B above maintain procedures for implementing policies.  The latter can be altered as needed but a change in this P&P requires board approval.

                          D.         Following any change to the P&P, the VP shall notify the Board via email of what section(s) was changed and a short summary of that change.  This should ensure that the VP did not misinterpret a one-time board approval as an ongoing policy.  Should any board member disagree with either the need for the change or the particular wording, they may pursue a correction at any board meeting.

                          E.         The format of the P&P should be consistent,  At present this includes:

                                           1.     Use of 12 pt. Calibri

                                           2.     There should be line spaces between long sections/subsections so as to make it easier to read.

                                           3.     Major sections covering several paragraphs should be in bold to make it easier for readers to find what they are looking for.


 

Exhibit A
Calendar of Key Dates

 

This is a rough approximation of critical dates.  Any particular year will of course vary.

January

Annual Review of Investment Performance

 

February                                                                

Winter Newsletter (1st of month)

Elect members to D7 Goodwill Committee

Winter Sectional (including Annual Membership Meeting)

Officer/Director Elections (even years)

 

March

Change of Rank Celebrations in clubs

 

April

Annual HOF program begins

Annual Registration – Georgia (due on 1st)

 

May                                                                

Spring Newsletter (1st of month)

Mentoring Program

Spring Sectional (odd years)

Form 990 due to IRS (15th)

 

June                                                                

NLM Sectional

July                                                                

Summer Sectional

Spring Sectional (even years)

 

August                                                                

Summer Newsletter (1st of month)

Atlanta Regional (ends Labor Day)

 

September

 

 

October

Election Cycle begins (odd years)

SPOTY elected

 

November

Fall Newsletter (1st of month)

Fall Sectional

 

December

Unit Special Games sent to clubs

List of D7 Reps sent to D7 Secretary

 

 

 

Exhibit B
Free Play Certificate

Note:  This is just an example of what it might look like.  This is NOT the actual certificate in use.

DUPLICATE BRIDGE ASSOCIATION OF ATLANTA

Free Play Certificate

I am pleased to report that Sam Student has completed a series of beginning bridge lessons given by Theresa Teacher and is therefore entitled to one free game at any of the following clubs within the DBAA area.

This certificate is non-transferable and expires on August 31, 20xx.

 

__________________________                                      _______________

Instructor Signature                                                                      Date

 

Alpharetta Duplicate Bridge Club

Larry Rich

6250 Shiloh Road, Suite 30

Alpharetta GA 30005

(678) 361-5198

 

Bridge Club of Atlanta

Sam Marks

4920 Roswell Road, Suite 33

Atlanta, GA 30342

(678) 812-4324

Atlanta Duplicate Bridge Club

Dan Papineau

5 Dunwoody Park S., Suite 118

Atlanta, GA 30338

(770) 248-0306

 

Ruff ‘N Sluff Bridge Club

Priscilla Smith

1809 Roswell Road

Marietta, GA  30062

770-973-7717

 

 

There are other club locations within the DBAA area that offer one or two games per week.  This certificate may be used at any of them.  Ask your teacher if you want information on these or you can find them on our web site www.dbaa.us by clicking on “Area Clubs”.

 

Club manager:  Submit this form to the DBAA Treasurer for reimbursement.


Exhibit C
New Life Master Email

Note:  This is just an example of what it might look like.  Each President and should personalize this effort.

 

Dear «First»,

Theprimary goal of a duplicate bridge player is to become a Life Master. Your ACBL unit board is proud to saythatyou have earned that elite status.

Ever since I became a Life Master,Ihaveenjoyed the opportunity to“initiate” new Life Masters.  Letmedothat for you now.  You may recall that as a non-Life Master, you made a certain number of mistakes.  Youchose the wrong bid.  Your declarer concentration slipped and you called for the incorrect card.  You may have failed to make the key defensive play.  Now that you are a Life Master, that no longer can occur.  You just explain to youpartner,“I took a position on the hand.”  LifeMasters can do that!

Life Master should not be your ultimate goal.  As you know, there is Bronze Life Master and Silver Life Master and many more beyond that.  There is more however than chasing masterpoints.  You can mentor newer players and help them progress toward Life Mater themselves.  There are many volunteer opportunities in our unit and elsewhere in the world ofduplicatebridge.  I hope you will find ways to give back to the game that I know has meant so much to you.

Youdon’thave to decide on those further goals at this moment.  Fornow relish the unique feeling that comeswith becoming an ACLB Life Master.

Marty Nathan, President

Duplicate Bridge Association of Atlanta/ACBL Unit 253

mjaynathan@gmail.com

 


 



[1] The exact nature of this restriction is a legal issue that has never been resolved.  As best can be determined, approximately $45,000 originated from the 1971 Atlanta NABC and was left with (our predecessor) Unit 114 to be held for future nationals.  That balance grew from funds left over from subsequent NABC’s as well as investment earnings.  When Unit 253 was created in April 2015, approximately 2/3 of the balance was transferred to the DBAA/Unit 253. 100% of that amount plus future earnings thereon have been restricted by the board to use only for Atlanta NABC’s.

 

 

 

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