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American Association of Public Welfare Officials: Annual Meeting, June 18, 1931


Ed. Note: This document with the attached By-Laws was transcribed from the originals located in the files of the Social Welfare History Archives at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. It is included here because it presents the full cast of individuals involved in the formation and organization of the American Public Welfare Association, including a set of By-Laws.  Among the notables present are Leroy Allen Halbert, Frank Bane, Fred Hoehler, Grace Abbott and Katherine Lenroot.


Minutes of Annual Meeting of American Association of Public Welfare Officials

Thursday, June 18, 6 p.  m.

Hotel Radisson, Minneapolis 1931


Leroy Allen Halbert, President AAPWO
Leroy Allen Halbert, President AAPWO
Photo: NASW Foundation

Presiding:  L. A. Halbert, President

About forty people were in attendance.  The program began with greetings from Mr. Bolstead, Director of Welfare, Minneapolis.  The President of the Association reported that the membership was now about 235.

A review of the year’s work was given by the President and it was moved and seconded that this report should be printed.  Mr.  Louis Brownlow stated that his organization would be willing to bear the cost of printing.

The report of the Committee on Organization was presented by Mr. Conant of Massachusetts in the form of By-Laws, a copy of which is attached*  Mr.  Conant moved that the By-Laws be adopted and the motion was seconded.  After certain amendments, the By-Laws were adopted.

A supplementary report of the Committee on Organization was read by Mr.  Conant who made the following statements:  “Your committee hands you herewith its reports, recommending the establishment of a central office with a paid staff.  We recommend further that the Executive Committee, with power to act, be authorized to raise the necessary budget, employ a director or executive secretary, and establish the office is such a place as it deems wise.”  On motion of Mr.  Conant, this recommendation was adopted.

The report of the Nominating Committee was made by George B.  Wilson, Chairman, who moved that the Secretary be instructed to cast a unanimous ballot for the names included in the report.  The motion was carried.

The officers elected were as follows:

President – William J. Ellis, Commissioner of Institutions, New Jersey

Vice-President – Fred K. Hoehler, Bureau of Public Welfare, Cincinnati, O.

Secretary– Marietta Stevenson, U. S. Children’s Bureau

Treasurer– Frank Bane, Richmond, Va

Executive Committee:

William J. Ellis

Fred K. Hoefler

Grace Abbott

Richard K. Conant

L. A. Halbert

Member of Board of Directors (to serve three years)

L. A. Halbert, Rhode Island

Grace Abbott, U. S. Children’s Bureau

George S. Wilson, District of Columbia

Richard K. Conant, Massachusetts

Frank Bane, Virginia

Member of Board of Directors (to serve two years)

Sanford Bates, U. S. Bureau of Prisons

Mrs. Blanche LaDu, Minnesota

Mrs. A. M. Tunstall, Alabama

Joseph L. Moss, Cook County, lllinois

Charles H. Johnson, New York

Members of Board of Directors (to serve one year)

Margaret Reeves, New Mexico

W. S. Bixby, Nashville, Tenn.

Grube Cornish, Maine

Helen C. Mawer, Florida

Dr. A. H. Flickwir, Fort Worth, Texas

Nominating Committee:

George S. Wilson, Chairman

Frank Bane

Katharine F. Lenroot

Committee Chairmen, 1931:

Committee on Interstate Problems:

Frank W. Goodhue, Director, Division of Aid and Relief, Department of Public Welfare, Boston

Committee on Developing and Protecting Professional Standards in Public Welfare Work:

Joseph L. Moss, Director, Cook County Bureau of Public Welfare, Court House, Chicago, Ill

Committee on Reports and Statistics:

Dr.  Emil Frankel, Director of Research, Department of Institutions and Agencies. Trenton, N.  J.

Committee on Exhibits:

A. L. Bowen, Superintendent of Charities, State Department of Public Welfare, Springfield, Ill

Special Committee on Public Relief and Welfare Service:

The Executive Committee was constituted the Special Committee with the addition of the following members:

Frank Bane, Commissioners State Department of Public Welfare, Richmond, Va

Charles H. Johnson, Commissioner Department of Social Welfare, Albany, New York

Mary Irene Atkinson, Superintendent, Division of Charities, Department of Public Welfare, Columbus, Ohio





Article I- Name

The Name of this organization shall be The American Association of Public Welfare Officials

Article II- Objects

(a)        To educate public opinion regarding the fundamental importance of public welfare work in present-day government

(b)       To develop and maintain high standards of public welfare work.

(c)        To collect and make available information and reports relative to administration, activities and functions of public welfare organizations and agencies throughout the country.

(d)       To provide consultant and advisory service regarding welfare matters to cities, counties, and states, or to public welfare departments, and welfare institutions and agencies.

(e)        To act as a medium of inter-communication for public welfare officials, institutions and agencies

(f)        To promote, in cooperation with schools, college and universities, training for public administration

(g)        To promote the correlation of the work of various agencies now in pubic welfare field

Article III- Membership

(a)        All persons engaged in any phase of public welfare work, federal, state or local, shall be eligible for membership in the AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF PUBLIC WELFARE OFFICIALS.

(b)       Persons in administrative or executive positions having supervision of public welfare departments and persons in academic or research work in the public welfare field shall be eligible for associate membership.

(c)        All institutions and agencies of a public welfare nature- hospitals for the physically and mentally ill, institutions for the physically and for the mentally handicapped, various correctional and penal institutions, such as institutions for juvenile delinquents, industrial schools, reformatories and prisons, shall be eligible for institutional membership in the Association.

Article IV- Dues.

The annual dues shall be one dollar ($1.00) a year, payable in advance of the annual meeting.  The annual dues for institutions shall be twenty-five dollars ($25.00) per year.

Article V- Sections

There shall be three subdivisions or sections in the Association, as follows:

Section A– which shall consist of those serving under the state or federal governments

Section B– which shall consist of those serving under counties of municipalities dealing with urban conditions.

Section C– which shall consist of those serving under counties or smaller units of government that are concerned primarily with the problems of rural districts or small municipalities

It shall be left to the judgment of each member concerned as to whether he belongs to Section “A,” “B,” or “C.”

Article VI- Officers

The Officers of this Association shall be:

President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and Secretary

The term of office of all officers shall be one (1) year.

The duties of all officers shall be those that ordinarily pertain to such officers.


Article VII- Board of Directors

All officers shall serve without salary.

The Board of Directors shall consist of fifteen (15) members chosen by the Association at its annual meeting; at the first election, five (5) shall be elected for one (1) year; five (5) for two years; and five (5) for three years; and their successors shall be elected for three-year terms

Article VIII- Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall consist of the President, Vice-President, and three other members of the Association elected by the Board of Directors from its membership.

The term of office for the Executive Committee shall be one (1) year.  The Executive Committee shall act for the Association and have general charge of its business between meetings of the Association.  It shall have power to establish such committees as it deems necessary.  It shall have the power to devise a program and budget for the Association.  It shall employ the chief executive officer in case one is employed.  All action of the Executive Committee shall be subject to the approval of the Board of Directors.

Article IX- Meetings

The Association shall hold an annual conference at the time and place of the National Conference of Social Work and it shall consist of such meetings as the Executive Committee shall decide.  One such meeting shall be the annual meeting of the Association.

Quorum- at meetings of the Association, fifteen (15) shall constitute a quorum and at meetings of the Board of Directors, five (5) shall constitute a quorum.

Article X- Elections

All officers of the Association shall be elected at the annual meeting of the Association.

Members of the Executive Committee shall be elected by the Board of Directors at its annual meeting.

Any vacancies occurring by resignation or otherwise during the year may be filled by the Executive Committee pending the next annual meeting.

Article XI- Amendments

These By-Laws may be amended by a majority vote at the annual meeting and may be amended at any other meeting, provided a written notice of the amendment is given at a previous meeting, or in writing, sent to all members calling attention to the meeting.

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