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Conference & Stage Expo
For the Record
USITT to Continue Electronic Elections in 2009

Patricia Dennis
USITT Secretary

Because of the success of online voting in 2008, USITT is embarking upon the 2009 election cycle with the intent of again utilizing the secure electronic process. With the use of e-balloting, USITT saw numbers of voters increase a dramatic 21 percent over the return of paper ballots in the past.

The vast majority of members found the process of voting electronically easy and accessible. Votenet, the e-balloting provider, made paper ballots available for members who did not vote electronically.

The USITT Nominations Committee has prepared a slate for the 2009 election cycle. John Uthoff, as Immediate Past President, was chair of the Nominations Committee that prepared the slate appearing below. He and the committee diligently sought input from the membership at large, Commissioners, Regional Sections, Conference Committee, and Directors at Large. Sylvia Hillyard Pannell, who became Immediate Past President in July 2008, now chairs the committee.

The Nominations Committee presents the following preliminary slate for the 2009 election.

Office Nominee(s)
President-elect Joe D. Aldridge
William Teague
Secretary Patricia Dennis
Vice-President for International Activities Alexandra B. Bonds
Vice-President for Commissions Kim E. Williamson
Vice-President for Conferences Dawn Larkey
David Will
Officers elected will serve two-year terms starting July 1, 2009.
Directors at Large (six to be elected)
Bill Browning
Jonathon Darling
Linda Essig
Jack Feivou
Mitch Hefter
Rafael Jaen
Raymond Kent
William Kenyon
Martha Marking
Brian Reed
Kim Scott
Stirling Shelton
Those elected Directors at Large will serve three-year terms beginning July 1, 2009.


The slate may be amended by following the By-Laws that state: "Additional nominations for each elective office may be presented by petition, supported by no fewer than 50 signatures verified as those of members in good standing in the Corporation. Additional nominations shall be accompanied by written approval of the nominee and a brief biographical description."

Petitions for additional nominations for each elective office may be conducted electronically for candidates who wish to be included on the ballot. To file an e-mail petition, the process is to:

  • Confirm the willingness of the individual to stand for election;
  • Collect the names of at least 50 current USITT members who have agreed to support the nomination; and
  • Send an e-mail by October 15 to Nominations Committee Chair Sylvia Hillyard Pannell at

The e-mail must contain the name and brief biography of the nominee as well as names and e-mail addresses of all of those members who signed the petition in support of the nomination.

Once the electronic petition is received, the membership of those who endorse the nomination will be verified and the support of each signer will be confirmed. If all is in order, the name will be added to the slate.

The Nominations Committee hopes that this option will allow the membership a convenient process for participation and involvement. Petitions may still be filed on paper and mailed to Ms. Pannell at USITT, 315 South Crouse Avenue, Suite 200, Syracuse, NY 13210.

Any member with questions may also e-mail USITT Secretary Pat Dennis at or Nominations Committee Chair Pannell at

USITT's officers and Directors at Large shape the future of the organization; it is critical that all members participate in the election process. By doing so, members invest in the future of the Institute.

USITT members will soon receive additional information about the election process as well as instructions for those members who would prefer not to cast votes electronically.

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USITT is again planning to work with VoteNet to provide electronic and paper balloting for its election. VoteNet allows secure online voting for USITT members.