spring 2013

c o r p o r a t e
Members vote to ratify new governance model

Dawn Mason Photo



Physicians from across the province voted to ratify the proposed NLMA governance model in an online vote that concluded on April 11.

By NLMA Staff

Physicians from across the province voted to ratify the proposed NLMA governance model in an online vote that concluded on April 11. A total of 396 ballots were cast with a final tally of 5.3% opposed and 94.7% in favor of the new model.

"I am extremely pleased that members support this new direction we are taking the Association. Now that we have approval from the membership to proceed, we will begin implementing the new organizational committee structure over the coming months." said NLMA President Dr. Tony Gabriel.

"Although the proposed changes were overwhelmingly endorsed, the response rate of 23.4 per cent of eligible voters is an indication that we still have our work cut out for us when it comes to engaging members and encouraging participation in NLMA decision making. Our new governance model ensures there will be opportunities for all members in all areas of the province to become more involved," he added.

The NLMA initiated the governance review and strategic planning process to examine its representational structures. It was determined that the Association’s former governance structures might limit the NLMA’s ability to effectively respond to future challenges.

“Our Association was established in 1924 and while the Association has evolved considerably since then, our way of doing business has not kept pace with the rapidly changing medico-political landscape. We needed some modernizing to bring us into the 21 Century,” said NLMA Executive Director Mr. Rob Ritter.

Initial planning for the NLMA governance review began in the summer of 2011 with the creation of the Governance Steering Committee to oversee the review and guide the strategic planning process. The committee was co-chaired by Dr. Pat O’Shea and Dr. Brendan Lewis, and included Dr. Eric Stone, Dr. Vicky Crosbie and NLMA Executive Director Mr. Rob Ritter.

Following months of consultations and interviews with members and key stakeholders, the vision for the new governance structure was presented to NLMA members at the 2012 AGM. During the meeting, delegates voted to adopt the new governance model in principle, pending formal approval by a majority vote of the entire NLMA membership.

The ratification vote was launched on March 25 following a province-wide Special General Meeting, which gave members an opportunity to learn about the proposed changes in more detail.

The primary component of the new governance model is a framework that includes a shift to an at-large nine-member board of directors from the former 20-member board; the dismissal of the Executive Committee; the creation of four standing committees; the development of a number of ad hoc committees and advisory councils; and, mechanisms to facilitate enhanced member engagement.

The transition to the new governance structure will begin in June following the 2013 Annual General Meeting. To ensure a President is in place when the new board structure comes into full effect, a call for nominations for President-Elect was issued in February. To manage the overlap of the old and new governance structures no new board members will be nominated at this year’s AGM, excluding the President-Elect. Instead, the seats of board members whose term ends in June 2013 will not be replenished. The remaining board members will stay on to fulfill their terms to bridge the transition. When the remaining members complete their terms, the positions of the new board structure (excluding the Past-President) will be filled through a general election in 2014.



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