• ISA Section Formation

    What is an ISA Section?

    An ISA section is a group of 30 or more ISA professional members within a geographical area that support the objectives of the Society and is chartered by the Geographic Assembly to operate as an official ISA affiliate.

    Sections retain control of the ISA Bylaws through the Council of Society Delegates.

    Purpose of Sections

    Sections have authority to develop activities in response to local needs and may conduct fundraising activities consistent with ISA's mission, vision, and values. Sections are incorporated separately and establish their own bylaws, which must be compatible with the ISA bylaws, objectives, and framework.

    The section charter is an agreement that defines the relationship between the Society and the section.

    Section Organization

    ISA sections are organized as not-for-profit corporations or the closest possible equivalent nonprofit, tax exempt legal entity in the jurisdiction where it is located. Sections located within the U.S. must be organized with the restrictions necessary to qualify for U.S. Federal income tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. U.S. sections may join a group tax-exemption maintained by ISA.

    ISA sections are officially established affiliates of ISA which conform to the purposes, mission, and objectives of the Society at all times. Although Sections operate in accordance with their own bylaws and constitution, it must recognize in its governance documents that it is a subordinate of ISA and its governance and operations are subject to the review and approval of the ISA Executive Board.

    Section Formation

    The establishment of new Sections is encouraged where centers of automation activity with growth potential are not adequately served by the existing sections.  
    The following conditions must be met in order to establish a new section and the appropriate documentation to submit:

    1. Evidence of potential membership growth and development in the area.
    2. At least 30 members affiliated with the new group. If you have new members to affiliate with your group please direct them to the Join ISA page or to submit all new members together with one payment please click here.
    3. Elected officers or acting officers of the new group.
    4. Section bylaws which follows the ISA model for section operating bylaws
    5. Petition for charter completed by the acting officers of the new group, reviewed by ISA staff and the District Vice President, and approved by the Geographic Assembly. The petition must include a statement signed by the section president on behalf of the section members that the group accepts the duties and responsibilities of a section and will abide by the bylaws and policies of the Society as they exist and may be amended from time to time.

    Other Requirements

    The section must meet four requirements annually to maintain active status:

    1. Minimum of 30 professional members. Student members assigned to an ISA section are not included in the required 30-member count.
    2. Annual submittal of section leaders to ISA headquarters. Sections that operate on a fiscal year (1 July thru 30 June) should submit new leaders’ names by 15 June and sections that operate on a calendar year (1 January thru 31 December) should submit new leaders’ names by 15 December.
    3. Offer a minimum of three meetings each year. The three required meetings are separate from business meetings. Examples of meetings include technical offerings, educational courses, tabletop/exhibition, or a start-up event at the beginning of the section’s programming year.
    4. Submit a business plan and budget to ISA Headquarters and the District Vice President for review by 30 September. This is required to receive dues rebates. Submittal of the plan and budget is not a requirement to seat a delegate for the Council of Society Delegates meeting.

    For additional information and guidance in forming an ISA section, please read the Section Formation Kit for more information. You will also want to review and/or download the following documents:

    Position Descriptions

    For additional questions or assistance, please contact ISA Member Services.