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Policy on Conflict of Interest

Passed by the Board of Governors, January 10, 2001

Revised and passed by the Board of Governors, January 2010

WHEREAS, the Board of Governors of the Mathematical Association of America ("Association") has consistently followed a policy of avoiding a conflict of interest or the appearance of such conflict on the part of the members of the Board and Volunteers; and

WHEREAS, it is desirable that the policy to avoid conflicts of interest be clarified and spelled out in a Resolution of the Board;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that this Board hereby adopts the following policy with respect to possible conflicts of interest among the members of the Board, and Volunteers of the Association: Service on the Board and as a Volunteer for the Association is purely voluntary and shall not be used as a means for personal or private benefit or inurement. This provision shall not be deemed to prevent a member of the Board or a Volunteer from fairly representing his or her association with the Association on a resume or in other personal publicity.

No member of the Board or Volunteer who is a vendor of goods or services to the Association or is affiliated (as defined below) with any vendor of goods or services to the Association or with a competitor of any vendor of goods or services to the Association, shall vote on, or participate on behalf of the Association in the administration of, any contract with such vendor.

No member of the Board or Volunteer who is a competitor of the Association or affiliated (as defined below) with a competitor of the Association shall vote on, or participate on behalf of the Association in the administration of, any arrangement in which such competition exists or may exist.

No member of the Board or Volunteer who is a recipient of grants, goods or services from the Association or is affiliated (as defined below) with a recipient of grants, goods or services from the Association shall vote on, or participate on behalf of the Association in the administration of, any contract or other arrangement with such recipient.

Such person shall, upon request of any member of the Board or committee, leave any meeting for the period of time the Board or committee is discussing any arrangement with which he or she has an affiliation.

No member of the Board or Volunteer shall accept gifts, entertainment or other favors (except those of a nominal value) from individuals or entities when the party providing the gift/entertainment/favor might be inferred to be attempting to influence the MAA.

No individual or entity with which a member of the Board or a Volunteer is affiliated shall receive any special consideration by the Board. There shall be no variation in the procedures for processing grants to or contracts with, or in deciding recipients of awards with, except that additional scrutiny may be applied to such consideration, and the Association shall follow such procedures as are necessary or appropriate to assure that the transaction does not constitute an "excess benefit transaction" under the Internal Revenue Code.

A Volunteer shall include any person, other than a member of the Board of Governors, who serves as officer, editor, committee member, or section officer of the Association, and any principal investigator on a grant or contract administered by the Association.

A person shall be deemed to be affiliated with an entity if the person

A person shall be deemed to be affiliated with an individual if such individual is a spouse, parent, sibling, child, or member of the immediate household of such individual or has a material economic relationship with such individual.

Where a member of the Board or a Volunteer is unsure whether a conflict or affiliation exists, he or she shall disclose the relevant facts to the Secretary (to the Treasurer in the case of the Secretary, and the Committee on Management Evaluation and Oversight in the case of the Executive Director). The member of the Board or the Volunteer shall abide by the decision so rendered as to the existence or non-existence of a conflict or affiliation.

Nothing in this policy shall prevent a member of the Board who is or is affiliated with a recipient of grants, goods or services from the Association from participating in discussions or decisions relating to the scope or quality of grants, goods or services provided generally to such recipient and other persons similarly situated.

Each member of the Board or Volunteer shall advise the Secretary (the Committee on Management Evaluation and Oversight in the case of the Executive Director, and the Treasurer in the case of the Secretary) of any conflict or potential conflict of interest when such person becomes aware of any such relationship that has not previously been disclosed.

Upon approval of this Resolution, a copy of the resolution shall be sent to each Board member and Volunteer and shall be posted on the MAA website. Subsequently, this resolution shall be provided to all Board Members and Volunteers. Similarly, all Board members will be required to review, sign and return the annual disclosure form which will be distributed at an annual meeting of the board.

Examples of Potential Conflicts of Interest

The following are examples of conflicts of interest which may exist in fact or appearance. This is not a comprehensive list and is intended only to be illustrative. If you have any question as to the existence of a conflict of interest, contact the appropriate person as described above.

  • serves as a member of a governing body of the entity,
  • has a material economic relationship with such entity, or
  • if the person's spouse, parent, sibling, child, or member of the immediate household, holds such a position or has such a relationship.
  • The sale, purchase, lease or rental of any property or other asset;
  • Employment, or rendition of services, personal or otherwise;
  • The awarding of any grant, contract, or subcontract;
  • The investment or deposit of any funds of the Association;
  • The acceptance of any gifts (except of a nominal nature) from any party who may benefit from an enhanced relationship with the MAA;
  • An office or position of leadership in or receives compensation from an organization who may be competing with the MAA for members, programs, or funding;
  • A close personal or financial relationship with a person or organization you are considering for an MAA recognition, appointment, or award.

 

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