American Association for Cancer Research

Charter of the Cancer Immunology Working Group of the AACR

Mission and Purposes

The mission of the Cancer Immunology Working Group (hereafter, CIMM/AACR) is to provide an ongoing forum for scholarly discussion of the complex relationships between the immune system and tumor cells along the continuum of cancer research. CIMM/AACR seeks—at a national and international level—to bring together researchers and clinicians from any relevant scientific disciplines who are interested in working together to increase knowledge about cancer immunology and immunotherapy and apply the knowledge gained from advances to accelerate the prevention, detection, treatment, and survivorship of cancer. 

CIMM/AACR will help to enhance AACR's role in the advancement of the field by promoting, integrating, and widely disseminating the new developments in cancer immunology and immunotherapy to the scientific community and by offering opportunities for immunologists and cancer researchers to network, exchange information, and guide the AACR in its activities related to cancer immunology and immunotherapy. Specifically, CIMM/AACR supports its mission and the AACR’s mission to prevent and cure cancer by:

  • Promoting and fostering immunology research, spanning the spectrum of cancer immunology from fundamental immunology research to clinical testing of new immune-based interventions, as an integral part of the prevention and cure of cancer;
  • Facilitating the integration of cancer immunology with other cancer research sub-disciplines;
  • Stimulating new developments in research, technology, concepts, and policies to advance the field;
  • Highlighting the best cancer-related immunology research through AACR and its journals, Annual Meeting, and other forums;
  • Fostering an atmosphere of open dialogue among a diverse group of researchers with a common interest in the field; and
  • Supporting the education, training, and professional advancement of early-career scientists to drive interest in the field.

Article I.  Membership

Section 1. Any member of the AACR may become a member of CIMM/AACR.

Section 2. Immunologists and other professionals with an interest in cancer immunology who are not members of AACR may become members of CIMM/AACR for one year, after which they must become Active, Associate, or Affiliate members of AACR to maintain their membership in CIMM/AACR. Non-members of the AACR may not vote nor hold office within the Cancer Immunology Working Group.

Section 3. Dues for membership in CIMM/AACR, if any, will be assessed on an annual basis at a rate set by the AACR Board of Directors.

Article II. Steering Committee

Section 1. The leadership body of CIMM/AACR shall be known as the Steering Committee.

Section 2. The responsibilities of Steering Committee members will include, but are not limited to:

(a) Encourage and maintain active participation in AACR programs and activities (e.g., presentations at meetings, submission of articles for publication, etc.) of all researchers interested in cancer immunology and immunotherapy;

(b) Encourage membership in AACR;

(c) Promote AACR and its programs relevant to the field;

(d) Represent the field of cancer immunology by acting as a liaison and advisory body to the AACR Board of Directors;

(e) Serve as representatives of cancer immunologists and others interested in immunology at the AACR Annual Meeting and during other meetings or functions as deemed appropriate by AACR leadership;

(f) Propose a plan and establish priorities for the scientific and educational goals of CIMM/AACR;

(g) Approve the incoming Chairperson-Elect’s recommendations for new Steering Committee members; and

(h) Provide input to the Chairperson on issues such as suggestions for new Steering Committee members; formation and membership of Standing or Ad Hoc Committees to carry out the work of CIMM/AACR; and recommendations for nominations of CIMM/AACR members for service on Program and Education Committees, Editorial Boards, and other relevant task forces, committees, and other activities of AACR. 

Section 3. All AACR members in good standing who are also members of CIMM/AACR are eligible to serve on the CIMM/AACR Steering Committee.  

Section 4. The Steering Committee shall be comprised of the following positions:

(a) Three Officers: a Chairperson, serving a one-year term; and a Chairperson-Elect and Past Chairperson, each serving a one-year term;

(b) Up to eight additional members, each serving staggered two-year terms; and

(c) The Chairpersons of any Standing and Ad Hoc Committees established by the Steering Committee Chairperson, each serving for one-year renewable terms, for a maximum of two years.

In sum, the Steering Committee will be composed of up to 11 members, excluding Standing and Ad Hoc Committee Chairpersons.

(d) The overall composition of the Steering Committee will be evaluated by the Chairperson of CIMM/AACR, in consultation with the Steering Committee, to ensure that it reflects the scientific, demographic, and geographic (including international) diversity of CIMM/AACR. 

(e) Steering Committee members may not serve for more than five consecutive years as a member of the Steering Committee, including time spent as an Officer. Officers may not hold a particular office for more than one consecutive term. Steering Committee members may return to the Steering Committee after spending at least one year off the Steering Committee.

(f) The members of the Steering Committee will assume office at the CIMM/AACR Annual Town Meeting, and will relinquish office at this same meeting at the conclusion of their terms.

Section 5. Officers of the Steering Committee shall be elected as follows:

(a) The slate for Chairperson-Elect will be developed, in consultation with AACR leadership, by a Nominating Committee consisting of five CIMM/AACR members in good standing. Two of these members will be the current Chairperson and Past Chairperson of the Steering Committee. No other member of the Steering Committee may serve on the Nominating Committee. The remaining three members of the Nominating Committee will be appointed by the Chairperson of the Steering Committee, with one of these three members serving as Nominating Committee Chairperson;

(b) The Nominating Committee will identify two candidates to stand for election to the position of Chairperson-Elect; and

(c) A ballot will be developed that includes a summary of each candidate’s professional background and a statement outlining the candidate's intended goals for CIMM/AACR. The ballot will be sent to all members of CIMM/AACR for a popular vote. Voting may be by U.S. mail or electronic means.

Section 6. The Chairperson-Elect shall be elected by popular vote of CIMM/AACR members, and will assume office at the CIMM/AACR Annual Town Meeting, and will relinquish office at this same meeting one year later. The Chairperson-Elect will assume the office of Chairperson upon the expiration of the Chairperson’s term of office, and the Chairperson will become the Past Chairperson. The Past Chairperson will retire from the Steering Committee upon the expiration of his or her term of office.

Section 7.  Duties and Responsibilities of the Officers:

(a) The Chairperson shall be the chief officer of the Steering Committee and shall preside over all Steering Committee meetings and other meetings and functions of CIMM/AACR. The Chairperson shall prepare an annual report and other reports to the AACR Board of Directors; serve as the main point of contact between AACR and the Steering Committee; oversee the Committees of CIMM/AACR, if any; and direct the activities of CIMM/AACR approved by the AACR Board of Directors.

(b) The Chairperson-Elect shall assume the duties of the Chairperson in his or her absence and shall oversee those activities as delegated by the Chairperson. The Chairperson-Elect shall recommend up to four new members of the Steering Committee, to be approved by the current Steering Committee, to serve for two-year terms, commencing at the beginning of the Chairperson-Elect’s term of office and concluding two years later when the Chairperson-Elect assumes the office of Past Chairperson. 

(c) The Past Chairperson shall serve to preserve programmatic and leadership continuity, and shall assist in the functions and programs of the Steering Committee as needed.

Section 8.  A Steering Committee member who has failed to attend three consecutive Steering Committee meetings or conference calls shall be considered to have resigned. Reinstatement shall be considered by the Steering Committee upon receipt of a written petition from that member. A Steering Committee member may be dismissed upon unanimous vote of the remaining members of the Steering Committee for failure to perform his or her duties and responsibilities. Grounds for dismissal include, but are not limited to: the failure to perform duties and responsibilities as assigned by the Steering Committee Chairperson; the failure to attend three consecutive Steering Committee meetings; and the failure to act in accordance with this Charter, the Policies of the Steering Committee, or with the By-Laws and Policies of the AACR.

Section 9.  In the event of a vacancy in the office of Chairperson, the Chairperson-Elect shall assume the office of Chairperson for the remainder of the unexpired term, and shall then continue as Chairperson for the next term of office. In the event of a vacancy in the office of Chairperson-Elect, the Steering Committee shall hold an election following the procedure in Section 5 of this Article II. In the event of a vacancy of a Steering Committee member’s seat, the Chairperson-Elect shall appoint a member in good standing of the Working Group to serve for the remainder of the term of office. 

Section 10.  Interim Governance Provisions. To facilitate the smooth transition from the AACR Cancer Immunology Task Force to the AACR Cancer Immunology Working Group, the following interim provisions will be in effect through the transitional period extending to the 2011 Annual Town Hall. After the 2011 Annual Town Hall, this provision will lapse and the remaining charter language will become fully operative.

(a) CIMM/AACR will be organized and led by a Steering Committee consisting of the Chairperson of the AACR Cancer Immunology Task Force who will serve as the Steering Committee’s Chairperson and 13 additional members (selected by the Chairperson in consultation with AACR leadership).

(b) A new Chairperson will be appointed by the current Chairperson, in consultation with AACR leadership, to serve for a one-year term commencing at the 2011 Annual Town Hall and concluding one year later, at which time he/she will become Past Chairperson.

(c) The first Working Group election will be held in the fall of 2010, and the members at large of CIMM/AACR will elect a Chairperson-Elect.

(d) The slate for the first Working Group election will be developed by a Nominating Committee consisting of five CIMM/AACR members in good standing. Two of these members will be the current Chairperson and one other member of the Steering Committee. No additional members of the Steering Committee may serve on the Nominating Committee. The remaining three members of the Nominating Committee will be appointed by the Chairperson of the Steering Committee in consultation with AACR leadership, with one of these three members serving as Nominating Committee Chairperson.

(e) The incoming Chairperson, in consultation with AACR leadership, will appoint up to four people from the current Steering Committee for a one-year term each. The Chairperson-Elect will recommend up to four people, to be approved by the current Steering Committee, to serve on the Steering Committee for a two-year term each, thus setting up the staggered rotation of up to eight appointed members of the Steering Committee (Section 4(b) of this Article II).

(f) At the 2011 Annual Town Hall, the incoming Chairperson (Section 10b of this Article II) and Chairperson-Elect will assume office for one-year terms. The current Chairperson will become Past Chairperson, and in this capacity shall become a member of the Steering Committee to preserve continuity. 

Article III. Meetings and Quorum

Section 1. CIMM/AACR shall hold an Annual Town Meeting for members and those interested in the work of CIMM/AACR during the AACR Annual Meeting or at such other meeting as the Steering Committee determines.

Section 2. Meetings of the Steering Committee may be called by the Chairperson or, in case of the Chairperson's absence or disability, by the Chairperson-Elect. Notice of all meetings shall be given so as to reach the members of the Steering Committee at least seven days before the date of the meeting. 

Section 3. The Steering Committee will conduct meetings via teleconference. In-person meetings may be called with the approval of the AACR leadership.

Section 4. A simple majority of the Steering Committee members shall constitute a quorum at all its meetings.

Article IV. Committees

Section 1.  The Chairperson, with the consultation of the Steering Committee and approval of the AACR leadership, may establish Standing and Ad Hoc Committees to carry out the work of the Steering Committee. The number of Committees to be appointed will depend upon the approved programs and activities of the Working Group and the financial resources available to maintain the work of CIMM/AACR.

Section 2. Unless otherwise governed within this Charter, the Chairperson, with the consultation of the Steering Committee and approval of the AACR leadership, will appoint the Committee Chairperson(s) and Committee member(s). 

Section 3. The Chairperson, with the consultation of the Steering Committee and approval of the AACR leadership, may dissolve Standing and Ad Hoc Committees. 

Article IV. Program and Administrative Policies

Section 1. An AACR Staff Liaison shall be appointed by the AACR Chief Executive Officer to serve as the facilitator of communication between the AACR and the CIMM/AACR Steering Committee, and to perform the administrative functions necessary to successfully execute the initiatives of the Steering Committee in keeping with the policies of the AACR.

Section 2. The AACR must be informed of and approve all programs and activities (both internal and external) of CIMM/AACR well in advance of initiation. Approval is based on feedback from the AACR Board of Directors, the compatibility of the proposed agenda items with those of the AACR, staff availability to complete the tasks necessary to implement the project, and the overall feasibility of the item(s) contingent upon financial resources. Written proposals for programs along with an estimated budget must be submitted to the AACR Staff Liaison prior to submission to the Board of Directors.

Section 3. All official communications coming from the Steering Committee must first be approved by the AACR. All e-mails, faxes, and letters generated by the CIMM/AACR Steering Committee should be copied to the AACR Staff Liaison.

Article VII. Amendments

Section 1. Any member of CIMM/AACR may submit a written proposal to amend the Charter of CIMM/AACR. However, only a member of the Steering Committee may raise the amendment for consideration by the Steering Committee.

Section 2. The proposed amendment must be submitted in writing to the Steering Committee for a review and vote. A vote in favor by two-thirds of all the members of the Steering Committee is necessary in order for an amendment to be considered for further disposition by the AACR Board of Directors. The proposed amendment must be reviewed and approved by the AACR Chief Executive Officer prior to consideration by the Board.

 

Vers. 4/5/10