Mission and Purposes
The mission of the Pediatric Cancer Working Group (PCWG) is to establish childhood cancer research as a global priority supported by improved funding, the very latest technologies and best educational strategies. The PCWG will provide a forum for communication and collaboration among basic, clinical and translational researchers in academia, industry and government on all aspects of pediatric cancer research. It will serve as an interface bridging the AACR with advocacy and legislative groups to promote the prevention and cure of cancers arising in children.
Article I: Membership
Section 1. The PCWG is open to all members of the AACR interested in childhood cancer. Interested individuals may join the PCWG at any time by completing the PCWG membership form. AACR members may also indicate their wish to join the PCWG via the AACR annual dues invoice, which is sent to members in the winter of each year.
Section 2. PCWG membership dues 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 the PCWG shall be known as the Steering Committee.
Section 2. Steering Committee member responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:
a) Encouraging and maintaining active participation in AACR activities from all individuals interested in pediatric cancer-related research;
b) Promoting AACR and its programs related to pediatric cancer research;
c) Representing the field of pediatric cancer research by acting as a liaison and advisor to the AACR Board of Directors and CEO;
d) Serving as representatives of those engaged in pediatric cancer research at the AACR Annual Meeting and all other relevant AACR Meetings, Special Conferences, and special events as deemed necessary by AACR leadership;
e) Working to establish priorities for the scientific and professional goals of PCWG members;
f) Providing input to the PCWG Steering Committee Chairperson on issues such as suggestions for new Steering Committee members; formation and membership of necessary Standing or Ad Hoc Committees; and recommendations of PCWG/AACR members to be considered for service on AACR Annual Meeting Program and Education Committees, Editorial Boards and all other relevant task forces, committees, and association groups.
Section 3. All Active AACR members in good standing are eligible to serve on the PCWG Steering Committee.
Section 4. The PCWG Steering Committee shall be comprised of:
a) Three officers: a Chairperson, a Chairperson-Elect, and a Past Chairperson. Term limits for the AACR Pediatric Cancer Working Group leadership are as follows: Chairperson-Elect (one year), Chairperson (two years), and Past Chairperson (one year);
b) Additional members decided upon by the PCWG Steering Committee, each serving staggered three-year terms; all new Steering Committee members are nominated by the PCWG Chairperson-Elect;
c) The Chief Executive Officer of AACR;
d) The overall composition of the PCWG Steering Committee will be evaluated by the PCWG Chairperson to ensure that it reflects the scientific and geographic diversity of the PCWG and the AACR;
e) PCWG Steering Committee members may not serve for consecutive terms, either in the same or in another position on the PCWG Steering Committee. PCWG Steering Committee members may return to the PCWG Steering Committee after spending at least one year removed from the PCWG Steering Committee;
f) Terms for all newly elected PCWG Steering Committee members will begin at the time of the AACR Annual Meeting immediately following their election.
Section 5. Officers of the PCWG Steering Committee shall be elected as follows:
a) The slate for Chairperson-Elect will be developed by a Nominating Committee consisting of five PCWG/AACR members in good standing. Two of these members shall be the current Chairperson and Past Chairperson of the PCWG Steering Committee. In the absence of a Past Chairperson, other PCWG Steering Committee members may serve on the Nominating Committee. The remaining three members of the Nominating Committee will be appointed by the Chairperson of the PCWG Steering Committee in consultation with the CEO of AACR, with one of these three members serving as Nominating Committee Chairperson;
b) The PCWG Nominating Committee shall identify two candidates to stand for election for the PCWG Chairperson-Elect position;
c) A ballot will be developed summarizing each candidate’s professional background and a 250-word statement outlining the candidate’s intended goals for the PCWG/AACR that will be sent to all PCWG members for a popular vote. Voting may be by U.S. mail or electronic means.
Section 6. The PCWG Chairperson-Elect shall be elected by popular vote of PCWG/AACR members, and will assume office at the AACR Annual Meeting immediately following their election. Upon expiration of the Chairperson’s term of office, the PCWG Chairperson-Elect will assume the office of Chairperson, while the Chairperson will assume the role of Past Chairperson. The Past Chairperson will retire from the PCWG 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 PCWG Steering Committee and shall preside over all Steering Committee meetings and other meetings and functions of the PCWG. The Chairperson shall prepare an annual report and all other necessary reports to the AACR Board of Directors; serve as the main point of contact between AACR and the Steering Committee; oversee any PCWG sub-committees, if any; and direct all activities 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;
c) The Chairperson-Elect, in consultation with the Chairperson, shall appoint all new members of the Steering Committee required to replace outgoing members at the beginning of their term of office;
d) 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: failure to perform duties and responsibilities as assigned by the Steering Committee Chairperson; failure to attend three consecutive Steering Committee meetings; and failure to act in accordance with this Charter, the Policies of the Steering Committee, or with the By-Laws and Policies of 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 outlined in Article II, Section 5. In the event of a vacancy of a Steering Committee member’s seat, the Chairperson-Elect shall appoint a PCWG member in good standing to serve for the remainder of the term of office.
Article III. Meetings and Quorum
Section 1. The PCWG shall hold an Annual Town Hall Meeting for members and those interested in the work of the PCWG/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 all Steering Committee members at least seven calendar days before the date of the meeting.
Section 3. The Steering Committee will conduct meetings via teleconference as needed. In-person meetings may be organized with the approval of the AACR leadership.
Section 4. A simple majority of Steering Committee members shall constitute a quorum at all meetings of the PCWG Steering Committee.
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 shall depend upon the approved programs and activities of the PCWG and the financial resources available.
Section 2. Unless otherwise governed within this Charter, the Chairperson, in consultation with the Steering Committee and approval of the AACR leadership, shall appoint all Committee Chairpersons and members.
Section 3. The Chairperson, in consultation with the Steering Committee and approval of the AACR leadership, may dissolve any Standing and/or Ad hoc committee as deemed appropriate.
Article V. Communications Policy
Section 1. An AACR Staff Liaison shall be appointed by the AACR Chief Executive Officer to serve as the facilitator of communication between AACR and the PCWG Steering Committee, and to perform the administrative functions necessary to successfully execute the initiatives of the Steering Committee in keeping with the policies of AACR.
Section 2. AACR must be informed of and approve all activities 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 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 Chief Executive Officer prior to submission to the AACR Board of Directors.
Section 3. All official communications (i.e., new initiatives, new programs, etc.) originating from the PCWG Steering Committee must first be approved by AACR. All e-mails, faxes and letters generated by the PCWG Steering Committee should be copied to the designated AACR Staff Liaison.
Article VI. Amendments
Section 1. Any member of PCWG/AACR may submit a written proposal to amend the Charter of PCWG/AACR. However, only a member of the Steering Committee may raise the amendment for consideration by the Steering Committee.
Section 2. All proposed amendments must be submitted in writing to the PCWG Steering Committee for 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 Chief Executive Officer and the AACR Board of Directors. All proposed amendments must be reviewed and approved by the AACR Chief Executive Officer prior to consideration by the AACR Board of Directors.