Voting at NAMI

NAMI elections include selection of board members, possible amendment of bylaws and consideration of resolutions posed by the membership.

Five (5) new members are elected each year to serve for the standard three-year term. Nominees to the Board of Directors must be NAMI members and members of record of the NAMI Affiliate or NAMI State Organization making the nomination. Nominations may be made only by NAMI Affiliates and NAMI State Organizations that have submitted their membership and paid dues by the nomination deadline. Each NAMI Affiliate and NAMI State Organization may nominate no more than one candidate. Nominations must be received by NAMI no later than 90 days prior to the NAMI Annual Meeting.

NAMI membership may also propose amendments and proposed resolutions to NAMI Bylaws. Proposals must be sent to the NAMI office at the above address by return-receipt mail and received by NAMI 90 days prior to the NAMI Annual Meeting. Proposed amendments to the NAMI Bylaws must be submitted in amendment form. For guidance on making submissions, please contact us at voting@nami.org.

Who Votes in NAMI Elections

NAMI Affiliates in good standing (those embracing the NAMI mission, having at least five members and fully paid dues) and NAMI State Organizations may vote, either by online absentee ballot or at the NAMI National Convention.

NAMI State Organizations each get one vote in NAMI elections. NAMI Affiliates have “weighted votes” based on the number of members in the group as of 70 days prior to the election. The more members a NAMI Affiliate has, the more votes you get, ranging from one vote for groups of five to 50 to 10 votes for groups of 800 or more.

Individuals do not vote in NAMI’s national elections, but all NAMI members have an opportunity to participate in the election process by helping to decide how their NAMI Affiliate or NAMI State Organization will cast its vote. Contact NAMI Affiliate and NAMI State Organization leaders for more information about how and when they will be deciding how to cast a vote. Each NAMI Affiliate and NAMI State Organization chooses someone to serve as their credentialed delegate or proxy. That person will cast the ballot on behalf of the group.

Voting Packet

At least 30 days before the Annual Meeting, a packet of voting information, including the slate of candidates, any proposed amendments or resolutions to the bylaws, credentialing forms, and instructions for voting will be mailed to each NAMI Affiliate and NAMI State Organization in good standing. To be sure that your voting packet gets to you, please work with Member Services to update your current mailing address in NAMI 360.

Members should plan to convene once nominations close to consider who will serve as delegate or proxy for their NAMI State Organization and NAMI Affiliate.

Absentee Voting

NAMI Affiliates and NAMI State Organizations that wish to vote absentee may do so via the online voting system. Details about that process will be mailed in May.

Credentialing BEFORE Convention

Ballots cast at Convention are completed by individuals who have been designated as proxies by the leadership of their NAMI Affiliates and NAMI State Organizations. Pre-credentialing allows Affiliates and State Organizations to tell NAMI in advance who the person casting the vote for their group will be. This saves valuable time at Convention for the voters as they are moved through the check-in line to receive ballots very quickly.

If someone arrives to vote that has not been pre-credentialed, NAMI will have to confirm on Elections day from leadership at the Affiliate or State Organization that the person who has arrived to cast the vote is authorized to do so. Onsite credentialing often takes time away from the potential voter that could be spent in other ways at Convention.

Onsite Voting

Voting takes place at Convention the day before the Annual Meeting. The NAMI National Convention program will include a map with the voting area clearly marked. Only credentialed delegates or proxies may cast ballots (see previous section). Voting will be open between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. All ballots must be submitted by 6 p.m.

NAMI Affiliates and NAMI State Organizations that do not return voting credentials to NAMI by the deadline will be subject to onsite review and qualification.

Election Results

Election results will be reported at the NAMI business meeting. Results will also be posted on www.nami.org/voting.