Constitution & By-Laws


ARTICLE I Name and Geographic Area

Section 1 The name of the Club is designated “Colonial Bloodhound Club.”

Section 2 The Club’s geographic area includes Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, and North Carolina.

ARTICLE II The objectives of the Club are:

Section 1 To be representative of Bloodhound owners, breeders, and exhibitors in the designated Club regional area.

Section 2 To encourage and promote quality in the breeding of pure-bred Bloodhounds and to strive to bring their natural qualities to perfection.

Section 3 To actively promote acceptance of the American Kennel Club breed standard of excellence by which Bloodhounds shall be judged.

Section 4 To protect and advance the interests of all breeds of pure-bred dogs and to encourage sportsmanlike conduct at dog shows and performance trials.

Section 5 To conduct sanctioned matches, dog shows, and performance trials.


ARTICLE 1 Membership

Section 1 Eligibility. Membership is open to all persons 18 years of age and older who are in good standing with the American Kennel Club and the American Bloodhound Club and who subscribe to the Colonial Bloodhound Club Constitution and By-Laws. Members may apply for individual, family, or junior membership. Persons under 18 years of age qualify for junior membership. Junior Members shall enjoy all the privileges of membership except for eligibility to vote or hold office. Membership shall not be restricted to the Club’s designated geographical area.

Section 2 Membership Application. Each applicant shall apply for membership on a form which has been approved by the Board of Directors. As a minimum the application will include the name, address, email address, phone number, and membership category of the applicant(s) and the provision that the applicant agrees to abide by the Club Constitution and By-Laws. The application must include the signatures of two sponsors who are Colonial Bloodhound Club members. The application will be submitted to the Membership Chairperson and will include payment of one year’s dues.

Section 3 Membership Application Approval. The names of applicants will be published in the Club newsletter. After 30 days, the Board will vote on the applications. An applicant will be considered elected if a majority of the Board casts votes of approval. The Membership Chairperson will notify each applicant in writing of approval or rejection.

Section 4 Membership Rejection. Rejected applicants will be refunded all dues when notified of rejection by the Membership Chairperson. If an applicant has been rejected, he/she has the opportunity to address the Board of Directors in writing within thirty (30) days and respond to any concerns. Any serious concerns will be pursued by the Board of Directors. Any negative input will be shared with the applicant. Applicants may reapply for membership after a 6 month waiting period from the rejection date. However, the Club will have the authority to review a rejected application prior to the completion of the 6 month period if such review is deemed right and proper by the Board of Directors.

Section 5 Dues. Membership dues will be determined annually by the Board of Directors. Dues are payable in advance annually on or before the first day of October. As a reminder, the Club Treasurer will send a dues statement to each member during the month of August for the ensuing year. Members who join after the first day of April will be credited with full payment of dues for the following year regardless of any pending increase for the following year.

Section 6 Membership Termination. Club members can be terminated by:

(a) Resignation. Any member in good standing may resign from the Club upon written notice to the Corresponding Secretary. However, no member may resign when in debt to the Club. Dues obligations are considered a debt to the Club and are incurred the first day of October each year.

(b) Lapsing. A membership will lapse if dues are delinquent for more than 60 days following the first day of October. Requests for extension will be directed to the Board of Directors for consideration.

(c) Expulsion. A membership may be terminated by expulsion as provided in Article VI of these By - Laws.

ARTICLE II Officers and Directors

Section 1 Board of Directors. The Board will consist of the President, Vice-President, Corresponding Secretary, Recording Secretary, Treasurer, and six Directors.

(a) Responsibilities. The Board is responsible for the general management of the Club affairs and will govern the Club through the provisions of these By - Laws. The Board may issue policy directives for the purposes of By - Laws clarification or to establish detailed written procedure, but in no case will the directives conflict with, or expand the intended scope of these By - Laws.

(b) Term of Office. Officers and Directors shall be elected for two year terms. They shall take office immediately at the conclusion of the annual meeting and each retiring officer shall turn over to their successors in office all properties and records relating to that office within 30 days after the election. All Officers and Directors, with exception of Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary, and Treasurer, may serve no more than two consecutive terms in the same office.

Officers and Directors elected in the Club’s initial election shall serve the following indicated terms:

President 2 years
Vice-President 2 years
Recording Secretary 1 year
Corresponding Secretary 1 year
Treasurer 1 year
Directors 2 years

(To ensure continuity 3 Directors shall be elected in even years and 3 Directors in odd years.)

Section 2 Officers. The Club’s Officers shall consist of the President, Vice-President, Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary, and Treasurer. All will serve in their respective positions with regard to the Club and its meetings, and the Board of Directors and its meetings. Officers shall have the following responsibilities:

(a) President. Presides at all meetings of the Club and Board of Directors. Performs the duties and exercises the powers normally associated with the Office of President, in addition to those specifically mentioned in these By - Laws.

(b) Vice-President. Assumes the responsibilities of the President in his/her absence. In the event of the President’s death, resignation, or expulsion, the Vice-President will assume the title, duties, and responsibilities of the President and will serve in that capacity until the next annual election.

(c) Recording Secretary. Records and maintains a file of all general membership and Board of Directors meetings. Maintains the official file of Club documents which consist of the Constitution and By - Laws, Policy Directives, Membership Roster, Minutes of meetings of the Board of Directors and the General Membership, and other such items as directed in writing by the Board of Directors. This file will be made available to the Board of Directors at all meetings.

(d) Corresponding Secretary. Transacts the official correspondence between the Club and its members, and the Club and other individuals/organizations. This will be accomplished in close coordination with the Board of Directors. Specific responsibilities include correspondence concerning Club meetings, Club business, and other duties which are normally associated with the position of Corresponding Secretary.

(e) Treasurer. Collects and holds in a bank account all money belonging to the Club. Pays Club debts from Club funds as directed by the Board of Directors. The Club bank account will be in the Club name and funds may only be withdrawn by the Treasurer or President. The Board of Directors will have cognizance of the Treasurer’s banking institution selection. Club financial records will be open to inspection by the Board at all times, and at each Club meeting the Treasurer will report the status of the Club finances, including each item of receipt or payment not previously reported. At the annual meeting, the Treasurer will summarize in a written report, all money transactions for the year. At the discretion of the Board, the Treasurer will be bonded for an amount established by the Board; the bond fee will be paid by the Club.

Section 3 Officer and Board of Director Vacancies. Any vacancy occurring during the year due to resignation or other reasons shall be filled until the next annual election by a majority vote of all members of the Board of Directors at its first regular meeting following the creation of such vacancy, or at a special Board meeting called for that purpose; except that a vacancy in the office of President will be filled automatically by the Vice-President.


Section 1 Club Meetings. Club meetings will be held within the regional area. The Board of Directors will establish the time and meeting location. The Club members will be provided notification a minimum of 30 days prior to such meeting, either through the Club newsletter, a personal letter, or email. The quorum for meetings shall be 20% of the members in good standing.

Section 2 Special Club Meetings. Special Club meetings may be called when other than routine matters require general membership consideration or approval. These meetings may be called by the President, a majority vote of the Board, or by the Corresponding Secretary upon receipt of a petition signed by a minimum of five members in good standing. Meetings shall be held within the regional area at the time and place designated by those authorized herein to call such meetings. Written notice stating the purpose will be provided to the membership a minimum of 30 days prior to the meeting.

Section 3 Board of Directors Meetings. The first meeting of the Board shall be held immediately following the annual meeting and election. Other meetings of the Board of Directors shall be held at such times and places as are designated by the President or by a majority vote of the entire Board. Written notice of each such other meeting shall be mailed or emailed by the Corresponding Secretary to each member of the Board at least 30 days prior to the date of the meeting. The quorum for a Board Meeting shall be a majority of the Board voting in person.

The Board of Directors may conduct its business by mail, email, or telephone through the Recording Secretary. All telephone conversations must be documented by the Recording Secretary.

Section 4 Annual Club Meetings. The annual Club meeting will be held within the period of September 15 and November 15 within the regional area. Officers and Directors will be elected at this meeting in accordance with Article IV. Written notice will be provided to the membership at least 30 days prior to the meeting.

Section 5 Order of Business.
(a) At Club general membership meetings the order of business will normally be as follows:

  1. Call to order by President.
  2. Roll Call including self-introductions and guests.
  3. Minutes of previous meeting (Recording Secretary).
  4. Treasurer Report
  5. Corresponding Secretary Report
  6. Standing Committee Reports
  7. Special Committee Reports
  8. Old Business
  9. New Business
  10. Election of Officers and Board (at annual meeting)
  11. Report of President
  12. Adjournment

(b) At Board of Directors meetings, the order of business, unless otherwise directed by a majority vote of those present, will be as follows:

  1. Call to order by President.
  2. Minutes of last Board Meeting.
  3. Minutes of last General Club Meeting.
  4. Treasurer Report
  5. Committee Reports
  6. Old Business
  7. New Business
  8. Adjournment

ARTICLE IV The Club Year, Voting, Nominations, Elections.

Section 1 Club Year. The Club’s fiscal year shall begin on the 1st day of October and end on the 30th day of September.

The Club’s official year shall begin immediately at the conclusion of the election at the annual meeting, and shall continue through the election at the next annual meeting.

Section 2 Voting. Voting shall be limited to those members in good standing who are present at a meeting, except for the annual election of Officers and Directors, and such other specific questions as the Board of Directors may decide to submit for decision by written ballot cast by mail in accordance with Section 4 (d) of this Article. Voting shall be limited to one vote per paid membership. A valid vote by written ballot cast by mail requires a majority of votes cast by eligible voters. Voting by proxy shall not be permitted.

Section 3 Nominations and Ballots. No person may be a candidate in a Club election who has not been nominated in accordance with these By - Laws.

(a) The Nominating Committee shall nominate from among the eligible members of the Club one candidate for each office and the other positions on the Board, as specified in Article II, Section 2, and shall procure the acceptance of each nominee so chosen. The Committee shall consider the geographical representation of the memberships on the Board to the extent that it is practicable to do so. The Committee shall then submit its slate of candidates to the Recording Secretary by June 15th. The Recording Secretary shall mail or email the list, including full name of each candidate and the name of the state in which he/she resides, to each member of the Club, on or before June 25th, so that additional nominations may be made by the members if they so desire.

(b) Additional nominations of eligible members may be made by written petition addressed to the Recording Secretary and received at his/her regular address on or before August 1st, signed by five members and accompanied by the written acceptance of each such additional nominee signifying his/her willingness to be a candidate. No person shall be a candidate for more than one position and the additional nominations which are provided for herein may be made only from among those members who have not accepted a nomination of the Nominating Committee.

(c) If no valid additional nominations are received by the Recording Secretary on or before August 1st, the Nominating Committee’s slate shall be declared elected at the time of the Annual Meeting, and no balloting shall be required.

(d) If one or more valid nominations are received by the Recording Secretary on or before August 1st, he/she shall, on or before August 15th , mail to each member in good standing, a ballot listing all the nominees for each position in alphabetical order, with the names of the states in which they reside, together with a blank envelope and a return envelope addressed to the Recording Secretary marked “Ballot”, and bearing the name of the member to whom it was sent. The ballots shall be returned within 30 days of the Recording Secretary’s mailing. So that the ballots may remain secret, each voter after marking his/her ballot, shall seal it in the blank envelope which in turn shall be placed in the second envelope addressed to the Recording Secretary. Prior to opening the outer envelopes and removing the blank envelopes, the election committee shall check the returns against the list of members whose dues are paid for the current year and shall certify the eligibility of the voters as well as the results of the voting, which shall be announced at the annual meeting.

The person receiving the greatest number of votes for each office shall be declared elected. The nominated candidates for the other positions on the Board of Directors who receive the greatest number of votes for such positions shall be declared elected. If any nominee, at the time of the meeting, is unable to serve for any reason, such nominee shall not be elected and the vacancy created shall be filled by the new Board of Directors in the manner provided by Article II, Section 3.

(e) Nominations cannot be made at the annual meeting or in any manner other than as provided above.

ARTICLE V Committees

Section 1 Formation and Purpose. The Board of Directors will appoint committees as required in these By - Laws. They may also appoint committees as necessary for any Club activity or function which will benefit through committee effort. These may include, but are not limited to: committees for specialty shows, field trials, trophies, Club membership and editorship of the newsletter. The President will appoint the chairperson of each committee.

Section 2 Operation. The specific committee formed may be either permanent (standing) or temporary (special), depending upon its purpose. All committees will be subject to the final approving authority of the Board.

Section 3 Termination. Standing committees may only be terminated by a majority vote of the full Board membership.

Any committee appointment may be terminated by a majority vote of the full membership of the Board upon written notice to the appointee; and the Board may appoint successors to those persons whose service has been terminated.

Section 4 The Nominating Committee.

(a) Purpose. The Nominating Committee provides candidates for Officer and Board of Director elections described in Article IV of these By - Laws.

(b) Selection and Composition. The Nominating Committee is temporary and is appointed by the Board of Directors by May 15th. The committee will consist of a chairperson and two other members, plus two alternates. No more than one of the members may be on the Board of Directors. The nominating committee may conduct its business by mail, email, or by telephone. All telephone conversations must be documented.

Section 5 The Election Committee.

(a) Selection and Composition. The Election Committee is a temporary committee and may be appointed by the Board of Directors as needed. It will consist of a chairperson and one other person plus one alternate.

(b) Purpose and Operation. The committee will be responsible for administering the annual election to insure its smooth and orderly completion. The committee will coordinate with the Board of Directors, Nominating Committee, Recording Secretary, and Corresponding Secretary to insure that deadlines are met and election procedures adhere to these By –Laws. The committee will administer the election and determine the final winners.

ARTICLE VI Discipline

Section 1 Automatic Suspension. Any Club member who is suspended from the privileges of the American Kennel Club or the American Bloodhound Club will be automatically suspended from this Club for a like period.

Section 2 Charges. Any Club member may prefer charges against another member for alleged misconduct prejudicial to the best interests of the Club or the breed. Written charges with specifications must be filed in duplicate with the Corresponding Secretary together with a deposit of $50.00 which shall be forfeited if such charges are not sustained by the Board of Directors following a hearing. The Corresponding Secretary shall promptly send a copy of the charges to each member of the Board or present them at the Board Meeting. The Board shall first consider whether the actions alleged in the charges, if proven, will constitute behavior prejudicial to the best interests of the Club or the breed. If the Board entertains jurisdiction of the charges, it shall fix a date of a hearing by the Board not less than 3 weeks nor more than 6 weeks thereafter. The Corresponding Secretary will send one copy of the charges and a notice of the hearing to the accused by registered mail. The notice will include a statement of assurance that the defendant may personally appear in his/her own defense and bring witnesses if desired.

Section 3 Board Hearing. The Board of Directors shall have complete authority to decide whether counsel may attend the hearing, but both complainant and defendant shall be treated uniformly in that regard. Should the charges be sustained, after hearing all the evidence, the Board may, by majority vote of those present, suspend the accused from all privileges of the Club for not more than 6 months from the date of the hearing. If the Board feels the foregoing punishment insufficient, it may recommend the penalty of expulsion to the Club membership. In such cases, the defendant may appear before the membership at the ensuing Club meeting which considers the Board recommendation. Immediately after the Board hearing, the Corresponding Secretary will notify each of the parties involved of the Board’s decision, and the penalty, if any.

Section 4 Expulsion. Expulsion of a member from the Club can only be accomplished at a Club membership meeting following a Board of Directors hearing and recommendation as provided in Section 3 of this Article. Two-thirds of the membership present and voting is required for expulsion. Such proceedings may be held at a regular or special meeting of the Club and will be conducted within 60 days but not earlier than 30 days after the date of the Board’s expulsion recommendation. The defendant may appear in his/her own behalf, though no evidence shall be taken at this meeting. The President shall read the charges and the Board’s findings and recommendations. He/she shall invite the defendant, if present, to respond to the charges if desired. The membership shall then vote by secret written ballot on the proposed expulsion. If expulsion is rejected, the Board’s suspension of 6 months shall stand.

ARTICLE VII Amendments to the Constitution and By Laws

Section 1 Amendments to the Constitution and By - Laws may be (1) proposed by the Board of Directors or (2) proposed by written petition addressed to the Recording Secretary signed by twenty percent of the members in good standing.

Amendments proposed by such petition shall be promptly considered by the Board of Directors and must be submitted to the membership. Members shall have a specified period of sixty (60) days to offer comments or suggestions to the By - Laws Committee and/or the Board (through the Recording Secretary) before a final draft is submitted to the membership for a vote. Amendments must be submitted with recommendations of the Board by the Recording Secretary for a vote within four months of the date when the petition was received by the Recording Secretary.

Section 2 In the case of amendments proposed by the Board, the Constitution and By - Laws may be amended at any time provided a copy of the proposed amendment(s) has been mailed by the Recording Secretary to each member on the date of mailing, accompanied by a ballot on which he/she may indicate his/her choice for or against the action to be taken. The notice shall specify a date not less than 30 days after the date of mailing by which date the ballots must be returned to the Recording Secretary to be counted. The favorable vote of 2/3 of the members in good standing who returned valid ballots within the time limit shall be required to effect any such amendment.

ARTICLE VIII Dissolution of the Club

The Club may be dissolved at any time by the written consent of 2/3 of the members. Whether the dissolution is voluntary or involuntary, none of the Club property or assets of any kind may be distributed to any Club member. After payment of the Club debts, the remaining property and assets shall be given to a charitable organization selected by the Board of Directors, which will benefit dogs. This donation will be in strict compliance with Section 504, U.S. Internal Revenue Code.