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Bylaws of Bowie State University Board of Visitors


The Office of the Bowie State University Board of Visitors (hereinafter "Board of Visitors") is to be located in Bowie, Prince George's County, and State of Maryland.


Section 1. Mission: Invited by the President of Bowie State University, The BSU Board of Visitors (BOV) serves as an advisory group to the president and is committed to the advancement of the University's Mission and Vision.

University Mission: Bowie State University, a regional comprehensive university of the University System of Maryland, embraces diversity, which includes its African American heritage, emphasizes its foundational heritage in teacher education, facilitates interdisciplinary learning, fosters research, and produces graduates who are technologically astute, think critically and demonstrate proficiency in their chosen fields.

Vision: Bowie State University will be an important higher education access portal for qualified persons from diverse academic and socioeconomic backgrounds who seek a high quality and affordable public comprehensive university. The university will empower our students and improve our world through rising enrollments, improving graduation rates, and service to the community. We will do so while placing special emphasis on the science, technology, teacher education, business, and nursing disciplines within the context of a liberal arts education.

Section 2. Purpose: The purpose of the Board of Visitors (BOV) is to partner with the President in leading BSU in the pursuit of its mission. Visitors learn about the university and provide feedback to the President on the university's initiatives, strategic direction, and plans.

Section 3. Goal: The overall goal of the Board of Visitors is to facilitate, improve and increase the service, performance and perception of the University within the community.

Section 4. Structure: The executive committee of the BOV (elected Chair, Vice Chair and Secretary) meets once per year, in conjunction with the Founders Day Observance, to review the slate of nominations for new members from the Nominating Committee and to recruit prospective members to join the Board of Visitors. The slate of prospective members shall be presented to the Executive Committee of the BOV for election by secret ballot by the BOV membership at its annual fall meeting.

Section 5. Meetings: The Board of Visitors will meet twice each calendar year, as appointments begin in the fall. It is expected that there will be a Spring Semester meeting and a Fall Semester meeting where the President will host the BOV. A specific school or program will be featured at each meeting to provide the members of the Board greater insight into the University's priorities and initiatives. The BOV chairman (or designee) shall make an annual report to the Board of Directors of the Bowie State University Foundation and the University System of Maryland Board of Regents.

Section 6. Meeting Notice: At least fifteen (15) days written notice shall be delivered to each Visitor or sent by mail, email, fax, conference call or any other means of communication to his/her home or business addresses.

Section 7. Board of Visitors: Number, Quorum/Voting Term, Election/Appointments, Vacancies/Removal, Indemnification

(a) Membership of Board of Visitors: The BOV shall consist of not less than thirty (30) and not more that sixty (60) members. Members shall reflect a wide spectrum:

a. The Chair of the Council of Advisors from each Bowie State University School

b. Alumni

c. Friends

(b) Responsibilities: Tangible support to the University as sustaining members of the 1865 Society may be in the form of an annual gift of $2500 or a combination of a gift and/or in-kind contributions that would total $2500. Contributions may include but are not limited to stocks, real estate, life insurance, equipment or professional services. Visitors may seek and accept contributions totaling $2500 from alumni and others in their community in lieu of an annual personal contribution.(c) Quorum and Voting: A quorum shall consist of one-third of the presently serving BOV members. If a fewer number of Visitors is present at a meeting and, thus, no quorum exists, a majority of these Visitors present may conduct no business except to adjourn the meeting from time to time without further notice. However, the act of the majority of the Visitors present at a meeting at which a quorum is present, shall be the act of the Board of Visitors, and, thus, the business of the full Board of Visitors can be conducted.

(d) Term of Visitors: To ensure board stability, Visitors' terms of service will be structured so that only one-third of the BOV will conclude their terms in any year. The BOV's first Executive Committee (Chair, Vice Chair, and Secretary) and the first staggering term. No Visitor shall serve not less than one (1) year or more than nine (9) years consecutively. A Visitor at the end of the three consecutive terms may sit out for a year, and then be eligible for reappointment or re-election. A term will expire on the annual date of June 30.

(e) Elections/Appointments: The BOV Chair, Vice Chair and Secretary shall be selected from current members of the Board of Visitors. These positions shall serve in accordance with the terms in section c above.(f) Vacancies on the Board of Visitors: After the Executive Committee and slate of members have been named, any vacancies occurring on the BOV shall be filled by secret ballot of the BOV membership.

(g) Removal: Any member of the BOV who misses two consecutive meetings without prior notice to the Chair or who has not provided tangible support to the University will receive written notification of his or her removal from the Board of Visitors.(h) Gifts and Donations: Any Visitor making gifts to the BSU Foundation may designate the purpose(s) for which the gift shall be applied and specify the term and conditions for administration and distribution, which shall be known as a (restricted) gift; or any such person may make a gift to the Bowie State University Foundation without any such designation or limitation which shall be known as an (unrestricted) gift.(i) Indemnification: The BOV shall indemnify its executive committee to the maximum extent required or permitted by Part 5 of Article 8 Chapter 55a of the General Statutes of Maryland as from time to time amended, and such officers and directors shall be deemed to have relied upon this part.

Section 8. Executive Committee/Other Committees: The Executive Committee shall be a committee of three (3) individuals (Chair, Vice Chair, and Secretary). This committee shall be initially selected by secret ballot, inclusive of a short biographical sketch, upon recommendations from the Nominating Committee. Prior to the final selection, nominations may be accepted from the floor. The Executive Committee members will assume their roles after acceptance of the positions. Other committee(s) will be appointed as needed by the Executive Committee.

Section 9. Board of Visitors: BOV members shall be replaced for cause by a two-third vote of the Board of Visitors.


Section 1. General: The officers of the BOV shall consist of a chair, vice chair, and a secretary, and such other committee members, as the Board of Visitors shall deem necessary.

Section 2. Chair: The chair shall exercise the usual functions of a presiding officer and shall have and perform other such duties of the Office of Chair.

Section 3. Vice Chair: The vice chair shall in the absence or disability of the chair exercise the powers and performs the duties of the Office of Chair.

Section 4. Secretary: The secretary shall keep a record of the proceedings of the BOV, shall notify Visitors of meetings and perform all the duties usually incident to that office.

Section 5. Fiscal Year: The fiscal year will begin on July 1st and end on June 30th.


Section 1. Adopted, Amended, Repealed: The Bylaws may be adopted, amended or repealed by a majority vote of the quorum after a proposed change has been offered in writing at a previous regular or special meeting, and notice thereof given in the call for the meeting at which the same may be adopted.


Effective Date:  10/17/1996