It's back! The board of publications is again hosting an Internet candidates' page on www.acb.org.
This page is a read-only web page where all individuals who wish to announce their candidacy will be asked to respond to the same set of questions. We envision the online candidates' page as a place where people who want to run for office can allow the ACB membership to get to know them. The page will also allow ACB chapters and affiliates to have more information at their disposal before they send delegates to the national convention. Over the past several years, a number of chapters have provided copies of the candidates' responses to their members in braille or had read all the responses aloud at membership meetings. Lively discussions ensued, and many members have told us how much they appreciated the opportunity to participate more actively in ACB's democracy because of the early dissemination of information which the online forum was able to facilitate.
In a meeting in early March, the board of publications came up with a set of questions for all officer candidates, as follows.
1. What office are you seeking, and what qualifications do you possess which make you uniquely qualified to serve in that office?
2. What do you think are ACB's responsibilities to its members in addressing the changing government attitudes toward rehabilitation, Social Security, and other disability-related programs?
3. Discuss how ACB can best recruit and retain new members, especially those under 50 years of age.
4. As an officer of ACB, what would you do to encourage a greater feeling of belonging for the average member?
5. In your opinion, what should occur within your term of office toward streamlining the ACB convention in order to make it more desirable for more members to participate in the business sessions, and to make the convention less costly?
Answer each question with a maximum of 250 words. Submit answers in any accessible, readable media, i.e., in print, or braille, on paper, computer disk (in ASCII text, WordPerfect 5.1, or Microsoft Word formats), or via e-mail. Pasting the text into an e-mail message is preferable to sending attachments, but attachments in ASCII text, Microsoft Word or WordPerfect 5.1 will be accepted. Submissions will not be accepted via telephone, voice mail, audiocassette, or in handwriting. Note that we will not edit submissions for spelling, grammar, or content. The only change which will occur to submissions is conversion to the HTML code to facilitate online posting. Note further that it is our webmaster's role to convert documents into HTML, and we will not accept submissions which you have coded in this format yourself.
When submitting your answers, please place your name, address, telephone numbers, e-mail addresses, and employer and job title at the top of each page. Center each item. The top of your page should look like this:
Write each question, and then place your corresponding answer underneath. Please number your pages. Send your completed submissions to the following address: American Council of the Blind Candidates' Page, 1155 15th Street NW, Suite 1004, Washington, DC 20005. Responses may be submitted by e-mail, according to the guidelines noted above, to [email protected]
Submissions should be mailed, either by postal delivery or electronic mail, so that they reach the ACB national office no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on May 31, 2005. When we receive a declared candidate's materials, we will check the membership database to ensure that he or she is a member in good standing. We hope to have the online candidates' page available at the ACB web site as soon after we have received all the submissions as possible, so that members will have access to the information in time for June membership meetings of local chapters. The pages will be available online no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on Friday, June 10, and will remain online at http://www.acb.org until the conclusion of convention. We encourage ACB members who have computer access to share the contents of the candidates' page with members who do not. We will notify members on the day that the page goes live online on all the ACB e-mailing lists.
When official campaigns begin in earnest at the ACB national convention, declared candidates will present at formal and informal state and special-interest caucuses. In addition, the board of publications will sponsor a live question-and-answer Candidates' Forum, which will be held on Thursday of convention week. The board of publications encourages all ACB members to submit written questions which will be considered for this forum to the convention communications center. More details about this and other aspects of communications center operations will be included in the June issue.
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