IWA Articles of Incorporation

Article I - Name: The name of the organization shall be “Indian Women’s Association" herein referred to as IWA.

Article II - Place: The place where the principal office of the Corporation is to be located is the City of West Lafayette, in Tippecanoe County, Indiana.

Article III - Nature: IWA is a non-profit organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and is organized for charitable, social, educational and cultural purposes.  IWA is a non-political, non-religious and non-sectarian organization.

Article IV - Responsibilities: With respect to the tax-exempt function of IWA’s status, about 70% of IWA’s time and resources will be spent on cultural and social activities.  Remainder of IWA’s time and resources will be spent towards educational activities, community service and activities related to charitable donation.

Article V - Trustees: IWA will elect and/or appoint Trustees to oversee the activities of the organization.

Article VI -Mission: IWA’s main objective is to provide a common platform to all members living in the Greater Lafayette Community for pursuing their common goals and efforts in the social, cultural, educational and charitable activities of its members.  The purpose of IWA shall be to promote Indian culture and values by providing social, cultural, educational, recreational, and community programs, thereby uniting the Indian community, and raising awareness about Indian culture in the local community.

IWA will also direct its effort to promote community spirit and a higher level of affinity between the members of the Indian community in the Greater Lafayette Community. IWA believes in improving mutual understanding and appreciation between the Indo-American community and the mainstream American community.

IWA as a representative organization of the Indian community in Greater Lafayette, will cooperate and participate with other humanitarian organizations in the area in providing community service.  IWA will promote the creation of opportunities for people of all ages, and various social, philosophical, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds to experience voluntary giving, voluntary association, and community service in America.

Article VII - Membership: To promote IWA’s broad mission, it shall be absolutely non-discriminatory as to member's race, religion, or national origin.  Membership is open to women of Indian and Non-Indian origin, who support IWA’s mission and who live in the Greater Lafayette Community, as well as to those who have moved away and yet choose to remain members.  IWA understands and values diversity and thus invites members from other ethnicities.

Article VIII - Dues: Annual dues for membership are $30.00 per family and subject to revision annually based on the decision of the board of directors.  Dues are non-refundable if the member chooses to revoke membership or relocate.  Dues are only prorated to $20.00 for those new to the Lafayette area and becoming members after June 1. The membership dues shall be paid to  IWA via check, credit card or other means.

Article IX -Benefits of Membership:

IWA Member is defined as someone who has paid  membership dues and whose name is qualified to be in the IWA directory.

  • IWA member’s directory
  • Discount admission to IWA functions for member and member’s family (spouse, offspring, parents, parents-in-law, grandparents)
  • Participation in committees 
  • Priority given to family members for participation in cultural, social and educational events
  • Members may recommend charities to the IWA board for receiving a donation from IWA
  • Distribution of informational e-mails to members regarding services offered or events in Greater Lafayette depending on board discretion (maximum two per year per member)
  • Vote in IWA elections and run for the Board (individuals enjoying membership because of a paying family member are not eligible for this benefit)

Article X-Elected officials:

The IWA Board of Directors: IWA’s governing structure will consist of 2 co-presidents, and a 6-member Executive Committee.  All actions taken by these 8 members of the governing structure must be in compliance with the articles of incorporation and the mission of IWA. The governing body will maintain IWA’s non-profit status and ensure its financial stability. IWA must host a minimum of two annual community events, choose charitable organizations for the annual donation and have a source of communication medium to the general membership body of IWA.

Responsibilities of Board of Directors: 

The IWA board will have the responsibility of running day to day operations of the Organization and in keeping with IWA’s Federal and State government mandated charitable mission. The Board will be autonomous in its functioning but ultimately answerable to the Trustees and the General Body in matters of governance.

Term: The term of 6-member Executive Committee is one calendar year beginning Jan 1st and ending on Dec 31st. 

Position Of Co-Presidents: The term of each Co-President shall be for two years. In order to provide smooth transition, the election of the Co-President will be staggered by one year. 

Positions of Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer and Legal Advisor

In addition to the Board of Directors, the organization structure of IWA will also consist of a legal adviser, a treasurer and assistant treasurer. The legal advisor, treasurer and assistant treasurer will be chosen by the IWA members in the same manner as any of the other IWA board members. The advisor and treasurers will assist the board in the day to day administrative activities of the organization. The term of the Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer and Legal Advisor is minimum of two years. The treasurer, assisted by the Assistant treasurer, shall monitor the receipt and disbursement of all funds belonging to the organization; prepare and provide a written financial report to board members; assist IWA in meeting all legal and organizational reporting and accounting requirements; assist the board in preparation of the annual budget; and maintain any excess funds in investment accounts as per the directions of the Board. It is expected that the Assistant Treasurer will transition to the Treasurer’s position when the Treasurer steps down.

The legal adviser will file legal papers with federal and state agencies that maintains IWA’s status as a non- profit organization; renew insurance policies and file insurance claims if the need arises. 

Position of  of Trustees:

IWA shall have up to three trustees and the term of the trustees shall be for two years. The elected term shall be staggered in order to provide continuity for  the organization. The trustees will be elected by the IWA members in the same manner as any of the other IWA board members.

Responsibilities of the Trustees:

  • To provide oversight of the affairs of the organization including conducting election for the new board
  • To ensure the Organization is solvent and well-run in a professional manner
  • To ensure the Organization complies with State and Federal regulations for a 501(c)(3)
  • To ensure the Organization’s funds and assets are used only to further the objectives (or purpose) of the organization
  • To provide strong intervention, if there is a risk to the Organization
  • To always act with integrity and utmost professionalism as a representative of IWA
  • To ensure all elected officers act in a professional manner and do not pose risk whether material or physical, to the Organization or to any other IWA member.

Article XI-Elections: 

Nomination: The nomination procedure will take place in accordance with the following rules at least two weeks before the elections:

  • Past presidents and board members can re-run any number of times. However, each block of service on the IWA Board shall not exceed 10 consecutive years 
  • Only current IWA members can nominate and be nominated
  • IWA members can nominate themselves
  • You can nominate any number of persons but you must first get their verbal consent
  • In the case of the team of presidents, you must get consent from both members that they want to be a team. They are voted as a team and must run together
  • If you did agree to be nominated and then later decide you do not want to run, then you may take your own name off the list
  • You may NEVER take another member’s name off the list
  • A member’s name can be on both lists (the president team and executive committee). If the member is elected on the president team, then she will not be chosen for the executive committee
  • All nominations should be made on or before the announced deadline. In case no nominations are received for a position then it is the responsibility of the trustees to seek out and nominate a suitable candidate(s) for that position before the election.

Election Procedure: IWA officials will be elected by ballot at the elections which will be held before the end of the year. A simple majority of those members present will constitute a majority. 

Article XII: Replacing an Elected Member: If an elected member cannot fulfill their responsibilities due to reasons of health, family, employment or employment of their spouse, then the board may appoint another IWA member as a replacement for the duration of the board’s term. The replacement appointment can be for any time frame within the board’s term. The proposed new board member must consent to the appointment. Replacement of an existing elected member is discouraged for reasons other than the above; for example, due to disagreements of opinions and ideas with other elected members. The IWA board’s strength should be in their diversity and lack of viewing all matters in a similar manner. All disagreements should be addressed in a constructive manner within the frame work of a team approach. 

Replacement of both the Co-Presidents at the same time is discouraged. Similarly, replacement of all the three Trustees at the same time is also discouraged.

Article XIII: Avoidance of conflict of interest: 

All IWA officials are required to act with integrity and avoid any personal conflict of interest. All elected officials are required to disclose the conflict/potential conflict of interest, and if established, are prohibited from voting on any matter that gives rise to a conflict between their personal interests and IWA’s interests. As any of the other IWA board members, a Trustee cannot simultaneously serve as an officer of IWA, namely as a co-president, a board member, treasurer, assistant treasurer or legal advisor.

Article XIV - Funds: No part of the net earnings of the corporation shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable to its members, trustees, officers or other private persons, except that the corporation shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation of service rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in Article III. No activities of IWA will be for furthering of political propaganda, nor shall its activities attempt to influence legislations. IWA will not participate in activities that support or oppose any candidate for public office. No IWA funds can be used towards furthering of religious or sectarian agendas.

The final decision pertaining to IWA’s annual charitable contributions rests with the board of directors. However, members of the general body can recommend charities to the board for consideration.

Article XV - Dissolution: Dissolution of IWA shall require two-third majority vote by general membership. Upon dissolution its assets shall be donated to another or other Non-Profit Organization (s) or returned to the federal, state or local government for a public purpose. This shall be decided through a majority vote of IWA’s membership body.

Article XVI- Amendments: Any amendments to all of the above articles, mission, governing body structure, election and nomination procedure can only be done through a majority vote of the general body of IWA’s membership.