A Series: Roles of Each Position on a Board of Directors – The President

by admin on June 17, 2010

in Board of Directors


An effective Board of Directors works together as a unit in carrying out the duties, roles and responsibilities of the Association. The Association Documents and state statutes define and set forth the duties and roles of each Board member.  Each and every Board member has a function and a role in order for their Association to function and operate well.  

First, each Board member should read and understand their Association Documents, as the articles and bylaws should be specific in what is expected of being on the Board and exactly what their fiduciary duty will be.  For associations that have poorly written documents that exclude officer duties, I suggest reading Robert’s Rules of Order, as it has great information on the rules to follow. 

Each Officer should have a place on the Agenda for Reports of the Officers, and for this report they will detail the activities of their position at each Board meeting.  It also a good idea to have each officer be on each Association committee, or at least have each committee report to a certain Board member.  The following role of Board President is a part in a series that will have a description of the roles and duties of each officer.

The President is the presiding officer and helps the Board to make effective decisions for managing and operating the Association by fulfilling the following duties: opens the meetings, determined whether there is a quorum, establishes the schedule of the meeting, and coordinates the subject matter of the agenda. During Board meetings the President will keep business and discussions on track and will generally keep the meetings from becoming too long.  The President can accomplish this by having most of the business that is brought to the floor in the form of a motion, as this will then focus the discussion.  Open discussions and cross talk just derails the agenda and creates confusion and wastes time. If there is no second to the motion, then there will be no discussion and the Board can then go on to the next agenda item.  If the motion is seconded and the ensuing discussion becomes confused or too long, the President will refocus the discussion, or have the motion tabled if there is no chance of a decision on this matter at this meeting.  Think of the President as an expediter of the meeting, the agenda and the discussions at hand.

In addition to the above, the President usually has the additional function of running the day-to-day operations (which would not require a vote of the Board) of the Association.  Even if the Association has a property manager on staff or employs a management company, being the President is a time consuming position that will require some sort of sacrifice of that individual.

The Board President may also meet or be engaged with vendors, contractors and other professionals as part of their duties. Generally, the President acts as a liaison with management and also co-signs checks with the Treasurer. 

In my opinion, it is unorganized and long Board of Directors’ meetings that are the reason why owners do not like to attend or participate in community Association business.  If I were a unit owner and was considering about running for the Board, I would not want waste my time in meetings that were long, unproductive and did little for the benefit of the Association and its owners.  The same holds true if I considered attending the Board meeting, would that meeting waste my time?  If the answer is yes, I would not attend.

In the future, let the Documents and good common sense guide the person who takes on the role and responsibility of the President of your community Association.

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