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Bylaws Revisions, 1963-2003

The Durham Savoyards, Ltd.

There are seven versions of the Bylaws in the Archives. The earliest version is undated, but is probably the original developed when the Savoyards organized in 1963. The next oldest is dated 12-8-73. The third oldest is labeled "as revised 1973, 1980, 1981." No copy of the 1980 version is present in the Archives so it was not possible to determine what revisions were made that year. Subsequent revisions/amendments were made in 1991, 1992 and 1998, with the latest being proposed for amendment in June, 2003.

This is a version-to-version, article-by-article summary of the Bylaws, beginning with a complete summary of the original (pre-1973) version. For subsequent versions, only those articles revised/amended are listed. The reasons behind the various amendments are obscure for the present. Further research of the Board Minutes may be enlightening and should be the topic of a later project.
Click on the headings to see the full texts of the corresponding version.

Original(?) Version, pre-1973 - "The Constitution of The Durham Savoyards, Limited"

(Earliest version available)
  • Name (Article I): The Durham Savoyards, Limited, of Durham, North Carolina
  • Purposes (Article II):
    • Receive and disburse funds in accordance with 501(c)(3) regulations (the section of the IRS code pertaining to non-profit organizations).
    • "Carry on and promote education and interest in the cultural arts, namely Gilbert and Sullivan musical comedies."
    • Sponsor and promote opportunities for education of its members in the arts of Music, Drama, and Ballet; support associated organizations.
    • Do not conduct activities not permitted under 501(c)(3) IRS code.
  • Location (Article III): City of Durham, North Carolina
  • Membership (Article IV): Open to the general public. Membership in Allied Arts of Durham, Inc. (the precursor to the Durham Arts Council, Inc.) is required.
  • Elected Officers (Article V): Six: President, Vice President, Secretary, Business Manager, and two Members-at-large, all elected to a one-year term.
  • Committee Chairmen (Article VI): One (to be appointed by the President with Board approval): Production Chairman.
  • Board of Governors (Article VII): Nine: Six elected officers, plus past president, production chairman (ex officio), and promotions chairman (job not described). The implication is that all may vote.
  • Meetings (Article VIII): Annual business meeting to be held near the end of the fiscal year following the yearly production.
  • Fiscal Year (Article IX): June 1 through May 31 (same as Allied Arts).
  • Yearly Productions (Article X): One Gilbert and Sullivan musical comedy each year.
  • Financial Support (Article XI): Budget to be presented to Allied Arts, Inc, when requested.
  • Earnings (Article XII): Members are prohibited from benefitting from any net earnings (reasonable compensations for services excepted) or from assets upon dissolution. Activities in support of legislative lobbying or political campaigns are prohibited.
  • Dissolution (Article XIII): Assets will revert to Allied Arts of Durham, Inc, upon dissolution.

1973 Version (Amended December 8, 1973) - "The Bylaws of the Durham Savoyards, Ltd."

(Note change of title to current version)
  • Name (Article I): Simplified to The Durham Savoyards, Ltd.
  • Objectives and Purposes (Article II): New title (added the word Objectives). Rewritten similar to present version: "... a non-profit organization to further the cultural betterment of the citizens of Durham and vicinity through the production of Gilbert and Sullivan operas." References to 501(c)(3) removed; reference to compliance with Allied Arts bylaws retained ("as required of participating members").
  • Membership (Article IV): Removed Savoyards membership requirement for participation in productions.
  • Elected Officers (Article V): Seven: Added Public Relations Manager.
  • Committee Chairmen (Article VI): Two: Added Social Chairman.
  • Board of Governors (Article VII): Eleven, all voting: seven elected officers, plus Production Chairman, immediate past President, Dramatic Director (ex officio) and the Musical Director (ex officio).
  • Meetings (Article VIII): Added requirement that the annual business meeting be held in early January.
  • Fiscal Year (Article IX): Removed reference to specific dates ("shall coincide with that of Allied Arts").
  • Financial Support (Article XI): Combined with Articles XII (Earnings) and XIII (Dissolution) with those articles being removed; wording simplified. Removed section on lobbying and political activities.
  • Permanent Records (Article XII): New Article requiring retention of archives, with an Archivist to be appointed by the Board. Added requirement of formal year-end reports from President, Secretary, Business Manager, Public Relations Manager, Production Chairman, Dramatic and Music Directors. These reports are to be collected by the Vice President and delivered to the Archivist.

1981 Version (Also revised in 1980)

(1980 version not available)
  • Membership (Article IV): Eliminated requirement of membership in Allied Arts; wording simplified to "open to the general public."
  • Elected Officers (Article V): Six: Removed Public Relations Manager
  • Appointed Officers (Article VI): Three: Producer (replacing Production Chairman), Public Relations Chairman, Social Chairman ("normally the immediate past president"). New title for Article VI replacing Committee Chairmen.
  • Board of Governors (Article VII): Normally eleven: six elected officers, plus Producer, Public Relations Chairman, immediate past president, dramatic and musical directors ex officio, all voting.
  • Meetings (Article VIII): Removed specific time frame requirement for the annual business meeting.
  • Fiscal Year (Article IX): September 1 through August 31; removed tie to Allied Arts fiscal year.
  • Financial Support (Article XI): Sets a fiscal policy which shall be self-sustaining. Wording streamlined; references to Allied Arts changed to Durham Arts Council, Inc.

1991 Version (Amended August 29, 1991)

(Modern version - a significant rewrite in combination with incorporation)
  • Name (Article I): Added statement about the organization being incorporated under NC law.
  • Objectives and Purposes (Article II): Simplified to current version, implying an emphasis on, but not a restriction to the operas of Gilbert & Sullivan. Removed requirement of adherence to Durham Arts Council bylaws.
  • Location (Article III): Added the phrase "at an address specified in the articles of incorporation."
  • Membership (Article IV): Expanded to current version requiring that members be current on dues.
  • Elected Officers (Article V): Seven: Added office of Past President in the role of archivist with election eligibility to include all past presidents (not just immediate past president). Added current "normal" tradition of President and Vice President serving two one-year terms.
  • Appointed Officers (Article VI): Four: Added Informal Performances Director responsible for gigues.
  • Board of Governors (Article VII): Voting membership restricted to the seven elected officers, with a quorum of four. The four appointed officers and the dramatic and musical directors are invited to Board meetings and are required to submit formal year-end reports.
  • Financial Support (Article XI): Added provision for soliciting gifts, contributions and grants at the discretion of the Board. Added provision allowing the Board to give minor grants "in furtherance of the arts reasonably relatable to musical theater as a genre." Removed prohibition on members sharing in corporate earnings or profits. Statement on dissolution removed to a separate article.
  • Dissolution (Article XII): New article taken largely from the previous version's Article XI (Financial Support). Corrected an apparently erroneous reference to Article VIII (Meetings) to a more logical reference to Article II (Objectives and Purposes).
  • Permanent Records: Article dropped, the substance and duties of the archivist having been incorporated into the description of the elected office of Past President.

1992 Version (Amended June 6, 1992)

  • Financial Support (Article XI): Added Paragraph B prohibiting officers and members from profiting from the net earnings (except for authorized reasonable compensation for services).

1998 Version (Amended June 6, 1998)

  • Elected Officers (Article V): Eight: Added a third member-at-large position to be elected to a two-year term (all other officers elected to one-year terms).

2003 (Current) Version (Proposed for amendment on June 14, 2003)

  • Elected Officers (Article V): Seven: Removed the third member-at-large position (two-year term).