The American Cricket Federation (ACF) announced today that the organization’s draft constitution was ready to be issued for public comment.
Announcing the time table for adoption, Prof. Gangaram Singh, the Coordinator of the Constitution Committee, said: “It has long been our goal to provide US Cricket with a selfless platform that will unite all cricket constituencies through a universal appeal that can accelerate US cricket development. In addition to the months of internal committee deliberations of several experts and experienced cricket administrators, and unanimous adoption by the Steering Committee, we determined that the draft should also be made available for comment and input to the wider cricket community for whose benefit it was designed”. See “Constitution” below.
About the American Cricket Federation
The ACF was founded by a large group of experienced cricketers and administrators united in the belief that US cricket needed and deserved a new direction. Incorporated on October 9, 2012, it is currently managed by a Steering Committee whose members and biographies may be found on the ACF website at www.cricketfederation.org
With a highly successful intra-regional league tournament already staged on turf wickets in California, another early goal was to define governing principles and a vision to translate into a Constitution that would be attractive to the vast majority of US cricketers and stakeholders. Now in fruition, the next goal is to convert that attraction and benefit into a membership electorate that will have the voice in electing and setting the agenda for a truly representative national body. The Steering Committee will dissolve concurrent with the earliest possible election.
The ACF promises a new path forward for cricket in the US and the constitution is an important expression of that intent. In the document, ACF embraces the core tenets of American ideology – transparency, equal opportunity, and accountability. The constitution also stays true to the ethics and principles of transparency, inclusiveness and fairness.
The Constitution – A Path Forward
In preparing the draft, the Constitution committee studied several important documents including the Ted Stevens Olympic and Amateur Sports Act, Lord Woolfe’s independent governance review of the ICC and best practices followed by the national governing bodies of other sports. Key features are:
Broad participation: The first guiding principle of ACF is to widen its membership and partner with them in promoting cricket. This inclusive spirit mandates the provision for several classes of members and also recognizes specific designations such as Women, College, Youth and Softball cricketers, besides Clubs and Development Administrators in order to provide them with a voice. While the constitution recognizes the importance of the leagues, the document also contemplates representation for each of these categories thereby allowing players, smaller organizations and individuals involved with development the ability to shape the agenda for the board. Eligibility requirements for each category are also clearly laid out in the document.
Accountability: ACF embraces the concept of a senate and house of representatives to ensure a system of checks and balances. The eleven member ACF Board, which will have ultimate authority over the business and policies of the ACF, will also ensure cross-geographic representation. The Advisory and Judicial Committee, which will have direct representation from men and women players, clubs, leagues, colleges, youth and development leaders, will discuss matters to be taken to the Board and also serve as the dispute resolution body.
Fair representation and term limits: The ACF Board will comprise six directors from the league zones, four directors at-large, and one independent director. Of the four at-large directors, one will be directly elected by softball leagues and three will be elected by player and club members. The presence of an independent member is consistent with Lord Woolfe’s report and corporate best practices. To ensure continuity, the members will have staggered terms. Significantly, members of the board may not serve more than two successive terms. The Advisory and Judicial Committee will comprise eleven members. Men and Women’s clubs and players shall each provide two representatives, as well as Development Administrators, and College/Youth cricketers. The committee will also have direct representation from hardball and softball cricket leagues. The Advisory and Judicial Committee will have a two-term limit with each term lasting 4 years.
In the coming days, the draft constitution will be distributed to signatory leagues and posted on the ACF website for all well-wishers of cricket in the US to review and provide their input. ACF expects formal adoption of the constitution in February and will shortly open website access to accommodate applications for general membership.
In order to meet this expectation, the Steering Committee has set an initial comment period of 10 days, which will close on January 31, 2013. The Constitution committee will consider the comments received during this period. Following this, the committee will produce FAQs and interpretative guidance to address the most common concerns as well as make any revisions deemed appropriate. For your copy of the Draft Constitution click here: ACF_Constitution-DRAFT_012013-Released