AMNESTY CANADA BOARD NOMINATIONS
The deadline for 2017 Amnesty Canada Board positions has now passed. In early 2018, the Nominations Committee will be posting the process for the next Board Election which will take place in late May 2018.
Amnesty International Canada needs new Board members to do the governance work that keeps the organization healthy and able to carry out its human rights work. We are looking for people with a wide variety of skills and backgrounds. If you, or someone you know, would like to consider being nominated to the Board in 2018, please read further.
We are looking for Amnesty members with the enthusiasm, commitment, and skills to run for election. Please do not be discouraged when you read the skills outlined below; board members come from a diverse variety of backgrounds and perspectives and combine their skills to address issues as a group.
What does the Board Do?
- Governance: The Board manages and controls the affairs and business of the Branch on behalf of the membership of the organization. Board members implement decisions made by the Annual General Meeting (AGM) as well as provide leadership and general direction between AGMs;
- Policy, Programs, and Finance: The Board sets organizational policies and priorities, approves the planning framework and the allocation of resources (budget). This forms the bulk of the work for the Board. Much of this work is done through committees and working groups of the Board, some of which include AI members, supporters and staff who are not Board members;
- Oversight: The Board ensures that the goals, objectives, and strategies contained in organizational plans are implemented and that the finances of the organization are properly planned and managed. This involves oversight of the work of senior management (who in turn oversee the work of all other staff); and
- Representational and Promotional Work: The Board represents Amnesty International to its own members and supporters, the public and the international movement.
Some Board members have specific functions by virtue of their position (President, Vice-president, Treasurer, Chair and Secretary); however, all Board members actively contribute to the effectiveness of the Branch according to their skills and interests. The Board works in collaboration with members, supporters and staff and often undertakes consultations with other sectors of the Branch. Decisions are made by the full Board, with all members having an equal vote. We strive for an atmosphere of mutual support and respect.
New Board members receive an orientation to the organization and how the Board functions. They are encouraged to choose a continuing Board member as a mentor. Child care and travel expenses while on Amnesty business are covered.
What positions are open in 2018?
The following Board positions are open for nomination:
- Vice President
- Two (2) Directors
What skills and experiences are we looking for?
We are looking for a well-rounded person with a combination of skills and experiences. Please refer to the following questions when filling out your nominations form.
- Are you committed to Amnesty’s Vision and Mission? Amnesty International’s vision is a world in which every person enjoys all of the human rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human rights standards. (For the full mission statement see www.amnesty.ca)
- Are you able to demonstrate integrity and respect while working with other Board Members? You must be willing and able to work collaboratively with other Board Members who come from different identities, who may hold different world views from yours, and whose working style may be different than yours.
- We are looking for individuals with a combination of skills and experiences. No one person will have all of these. Do you have one or more of the following skills or experiences to contribute to the Board?
- knowledge of Canadian and international human rights issues;
- fundraising experience;
- experience with information technology systems;
- gender mainstreaming understanding and/or experience;
- experience working with youth;
- diversity and equity understanding and/or experience;
- human resources skills, including organizational development, policies and procedures;
- governance experience, especially in a non-profit, member based organization;
- legal experience regarding charities and human rights law;
- financial management skills;
- business experience, for-profit or non-profit;
- communications, including public engagement, social media;
- understanding of Amnesty International Canadian Section (English Speaking), and;
- language skills (French and Spanish)
4. Do you bring an alternate or diverse perspective to the Board? We welcome individuals from diverse backgrounds to the Board. Can you bring an understanding of world views that is different from the dominant view in Canadian society? These views can come from your own life experience as well as through other learning experiences.
What is the time commitment?
We hold four meetings each year that are two to three days in length. These meetings take place on weekends and are in, or near, Ottawa. Board members also attend the AGM if at all possible. Amnesty’s AGMs now alternate between large and small meetings so that in alternate years, a small AGM is held in conjunction with a Board meeting in Ottawa.
Time commitments vary depending on committee work and can be between four hours to two days per month in addition to the meetings noted above.
What can you gain from this experience?
- the satisfaction of being able to contribute to human rights
- the opportunity to use and further develop your skills
- the opportunity to meet and work with a variety of interesting, committed people
- the opportunity to deepen your understanding of Amnesty and its work
- a chance for you to make a unique contribution to the evolution of the Branch
For most Board members, serving on the Board is a positive and rewarding experience.
What are the next steps if I wish to be nominated?
Please visit this webpage in early 2018 for detailed information on the nominations process.