Updated as of October 30, 2021


The Policy and Procedure manual (PPM) serves as a supplement to the AZAD Bylaws and provides details not included in the bylaws.

The Board of Directors is responsible for maintaining the PPM and making the information available to the members, along with the bylaws.

The Board of Directors, by majority vote, may add information to the PPM to help guide the Board in their duties. AZAD members also may submit proposals for changes or additions to the manual to the Vice President, who will then review the proposal and present it to the board for review. If the proposal needs to be voted on by the membership, the item will be placed on the agenda for discussion and approval at the next general meeting.



Affiliation with NAD

The AZAD shall be affiliated with the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) and pay the annual affiliation fee as instructed, due in January of each year.


Registration with Arizona Corporation Commission

AZAD is registered with the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) and complies with the regulations of ACC. The Treasurer of AZAD shall file an annual report and pay an annual fee, and, as appropriate, reports on the names of the officers and related information after each election. Refer to www.cc.state.az.us. for more instructions.

Reporting to Internal Revenue Service

As a nonprofit organization with 501(c)(3) status, AZAD is required to file the annual return with the Internal Revenue Services in order to remain in good standing as a tax exempt organization. See www.irs.gov for regulations, the timeline, and instructions.



  1. In line with the mission of AZAD and the NAD Mission, Vision Statement and Values as the framework, the overarching objective shall be to work toward ensuring and enhancing the rights of the Deaf/Hard of Hearing/Deaf-Blind within the state of Arizona and empowering ourselves to do advocacy work on behalf of the deaf, deaf-blind, and hard of hearing individuals.
  2. Specifically, we strive to:
    1. Provide workshops and activities that educate, empower, and enlighten the Deaf Community and opportunities for networking among ourselves.
    2. Promote leadership and collaboration among the diverse Deaf Community.
    3. Be a watchdog for legislative actions that have impact on the Deaf Community and work with the Arizona legislature on the behalf of the Deaf Community for better quality of life, accessibility and equality as citizens.
    4. Collaborate with any non-profit organization, agency, and educational program of and for the Deaf in the interest of the welfare of the Deaf people.




  1. Deaf, DeafBlind, Hard of Hearing and Hearing individual, living in Arizona and out-of-state who supports the mission of AZAD may become an active member of AZAD, upon payment of membership dues.
  2. Different classifications of membership may include:
    1. Regular Individual may become an active member of AZAD, upon payment of membership dues
    2. Out-Of-State (O.O.S)
      1. Out-of-state residents may join AZAD upon payment as a member. They shall participate in as a regular member, but shall not be eligible to hold office.
    3. K-12 Students
      1. Students under age 18 may become a member with the parent’s signature required and does not have to pay the membership dues. They shall not make motions, vote and hold office. They can be involved in opening discussions.
  3. Qualified members exercise the right to run for any elected position on the AZAD Board of Directors regardless of the length of membership.


  1. The Board of Directors shall comply with Article V. Memberships and the fee structure. Membership dues are collected at every biennial conference and are in effect until the next biennial conference in two years. Dues can be prorated on a semiannual basis in between the two biennial conferences.
  2. Prorated regular membership fees for all age of 18 and up:
    1. Regular: $24
    2. K-12 students: Free
  3. A two-year AZAD membership shall be awarded to all graduating Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing seniors. Ideally, such awards could be made at the Awards program at the school.



Three (3) Regional Representatives shall represent three regions of Arizona as defined as:

  1. North Region (Mohave, Yavapai, Coconino, Navajo, and Apache Counties).
  2. Central Region (La Paz, Maricopa, Pinal, Gila, Graham, and Greenlee Counties).
  3. South Region (Yuma, Pima, Santa Cruz, and Cochise Counties).


  1. The Board of Directors shall be comprised of President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, three (3) Regional Representatives and two (2) Members at Large.
  2. Any past president(s) may serve ex officio (non-voting) as consultant. The Board of Directors may make such appointments.
  3. The Board of Directors shall appoint two (2) Members at Large. One Member at Large shall be a representative from the Arizona Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (ACDHH), as recommended by the Executive Director of ACDHH. The Members at Large shall lend to the organization the additional benefits of their certain expertise and experience as needed for the duration of the term.
  4. The previous and new boards shall meet during the period of transition in the first one or two meetings to assure a smooth transfer between the administrations.

The President shall:

  1. Preside at all meetings of AZAD and the Board of Directors; see that the AZAD Bylaws as well as the Policy and Procedure Manual (PPM) are being enforced; to cast the deciding vote where there is a tie except in the election of the officers; to appoint members for different established committees as may be necessary for carrying out the business of AZAD; and to perform other duties usually assigned to this office.
  2. Represent AZAD at the NAD Conference and NAD-related meetings and events.
  3. Serve as the spokesperson for AZAD.
  4. Delegate duties to the vice-president in the event that he/she is absent or unable to perform duties.
  5. Have the power to appoint an active member to perform temporary official duties, should another member on the board be absent or unable to perform duties.
  6. Perform other duties as assigned.

The Vice-President shall:

  1. Assume the duties of the President in case of the President’s absence or inability to serve and to perform such other duties as may be required.
  2. Be responsible for oversight of all Standing and Ad-Hoc Committees.
  3. Chair the Law Committee to review By-Laws and maintain the PPM.
  4. Maintain an inventory of possessions that belong to AZAD.
  5. Perform other duties as assigned.

The Secretary shall:

  1. Keep record of the proceedings of all AZAD meetings (general assembly, general meetings, and board meetings).
  2. Complete minutes within two weeks after each meeting.
  3. Give ample notice to each member of an upcoming general meeting of AZAD.
  4. Keep track of all motions and different actions to ensure follow through on each one.
  5. Send a list of newly-elected members on the Board of Directors to different state and national associations—e.g., NAD, ACDHH.
  6. Take the duties of the Vice President temporarily in the event that the Vice President is absent, unable to perform, or is moved up to the position of the President.
  7. Maintains the record of award recipients and makes sure the list is posted on the AZAD website.
  8. Perform other duties as assigned.

The Treasurer shall:

  1. Work with the webmaster to keep the database of all members, addresses, and other contact information updated.
  2. Receive all monies belonging to AZAD, and to keep an accurate account, verified by claim forms, letters or vouchers, of all its receipts and expenditures. Any expenses over $100 shall be approved by the board.
  3. Submit an audited report approved by two auditors selected by the Board of Directors at the general assembly, general meetings, and its board meetings on a regular basis.
  4. Develop an annual operating budget for board approval by January of each year.
  5. Submit a Budget and Balance Sheet at the general assembly at the biennial state conference.
  6. Take the duties of the President temporarily In the event that all of the three ranking officers are absent or unable to perform the duties.
  7. Keep a complete list of the officers and board members with their home addresses for Arizona Corporation Commission and other agencies. The list shall show the date of office taken.
  8. Keep in communication with the Finance Committee whose responsibility is to oversee the reserved fund of AZAD.

The Regional Representatives & Members at Large shall:

  1. Contribute to the efforts of AZAD as an expert in his/her field. The Board of Directors with consultation with the Regional Representatives and Members at Large themselves shall determine the scope and timeline of each representative’s work.
  2. Be assigned to at least one committee as determined by the Board of Directors.
  3. Perform other duties as assigned.
  4. The AZAD Delegates shall be appointed by the board to represent AZAD at the biennial NAD Conference. The President will automatically be one of the delegates.



  1. AZAD shall have its biennial state conference including a general assembly during the odd- numbered year, at least seven months before the next National Association of the Deaf (NAD) Conference.
  2. The place and location of the above conference shall be determined by the Board based on feedback from the members and extenuating circumstances.
  3. The Conference Committee Chairperson(s) (or any other title) shall prepare the official conference of AZAD and report to the President. The Board of Directors shall approve the conference budget, keep abreast of the developments of the conference program and share input.
  4. The President shall appoint an active member, who shall act as Parliamentarian and sergeant -at -arms for the general assembly.
  5. Voting shall be done by secret ballot, unless otherwise agreed to by the Board of Directors. Active members may vote for themselves.
  6. The Election Committee Chair shall be appointed by the Board of Directors to lead the election procedure at the general assembly. The Chair may choose at least one member to serve on the committee. The Election Chair shall conduct the nominating procedure before the conference and actively seek nominations. The Election Chair and committee members shall not run for any position on the Board of Directors in order to remain neutral.
  7. Any eligible members in good standing may nominate themselves or anyone who is a current member of the AZAD.
  8. All nominations will be submitted on the floor by the Chair. Additional nominations are also welcome from the floor.
  9. The membership status of all nominations will be verified by the Treasurer.
  10. The election chairperson shall lead the oath for all new and continuing elected members of the Board of Directors during the general assembly. The oath will be read with everyone signing the following:
    1. “I, (name) as a (position) , hereby solemnly and sincerely promise that I will obey and uphold the AZAD By-Laws. I shall do my best with my ability to serve the public and lead forward for the betterment of our society.”
  11. The new Members at Large, when appointed, could take their oath during a board meeting.
  12. Vote Recounts/Grievance
    1. The process for handling vote recounts or grievances shall be in compliance with the Robert’s Rule of Order.
  13. Besides regular scheduled Board meetings, the President may call for special and/or emergency meeting(s).
  14. The agenda of any meeting should follow this order of business:
    1. Call to Order
    2. Minutes
    3. President’s Report
    4. Vice-President’s Report
    5. Secretary’s Report
    6. Treasurer’s Report
    7. Committee Reports
    8. Old Business
    9. New Business
    10. Announcements
    11. Adjournment



Per the bylaws, the Board may form committees in the best interests of the organization. The following list of committees could serve as a guide for each administration, based on directions and priorities set forth by the Board and the membership.

  1. Legislative Committee
  2. Education Committee
  3. Public Relations
  4. Events Committee
  5. Youth Section
  6. Diversity & Inclusion Committee
  7. Fundraising Committee
  8. Governance Committee
  9. Finance Committee
  10. Biennial State Conference Committee
  11. Outreach Committee
  12. History and Archives Committee
  13. Awards Committee

Anyone who is a member in good standing can serve on an ad hoc committee when a situation arises for the need to temporarily address certain issues. The Board of Directors shall approve the appointment of the Chair for any Ad-hoc committee. The responsibilities include running the committee in accordance with the PPM. The chairperson shall make progress reports to the President. All committee members and chairs shall be active members of the AZAD before assuming duties.


  1. All checks, drafts, and orders for payment shall be signed in the name of AZAD by the President and/or Treasurer.
  2. Any purchase larger than $100 requires Board’s approval if not covered by the pre-approved proposed budget.
  3. The Board of Directors shall serve without compensation except for business-related travel, lodging and official representation expenses subject to approval made by the Board of Directors.
  4. All original receipts for reimbursement must be submitted to the treasurer within thirty (30) days from the date of transaction.
  5. Any Board member if outside of the area of the board meeting, upon request could be reimbursed for gas mileage. The federal mileage standard rate will be used as the basis. (www.gsa.gov)
  6. AZAD keeps a separate reserve fund of $25,000 as a minimum. It shall be left intact as long as the organization is able to operate financially with its general fund. The Finance Committee, upon the request of the Board, has the authority to determine whether withdrawals could be made from this fund.
  7. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) involving any fees shall be required for any agreement with a performer, presenter and/or an organization.



  1. All members of the Board of Directors shall abide by all rules established by the AZAD Bylaws and PPM.
  2. Violations of the bylaws and PPM shall be reported to the Vice-President and/or the Law Committee.
  3. Any member in good standing shall have the right to enact impeachment proceedings against any officer who has violated the By-Laws and PPM.
  4. Resignation in writing shall be submitted to the AZAD President.
  5. In the event should the President resign from AZAD, he/she shall submit the resignation letter to the Board of Directors.



Special Recognition: Contributor

An individual donor — either active member and non-member of AZAD, may donate at least $500.00 per two year to AZAD shall be as a regular member.

  1. Preferential seating at the biennial conference and any special AZAD event
  2. A special luncheon in their honor and/or access to the hospitality room at the biennial conference
  3. Name listed in the conference program book or any other digital publications in our social media
  4. Regular benefits for membership
  5. And the feeling of “personal reward” for giving back to the community


The awards as follows shall be presented to the recipients at the biennial conference or at a special event.


Angela Watson Mover and Shaker Award: Presented in memory of Angela Watson, co-founder of AZAD and first president of Arizona Association of the Deaf, this award recognizes a mover and shaker who has made a significant impact on the community.


William Wherry Volunteer Award: Presented in memory of co-founder and longtime leader of Arizona Association of the Deaf, this award recognizes an individual who has made significant contributions as a volunteer in the Deaf Community within the state of Arizona.


Gilbert Leon Distinguished Community Service Award: Presented in memory of Gilbert Leon, a versatile and lifelong leader in the community, this award recognizes an individual who has demonstrated exemplary commitment, dedication and volunteer service with everlasting benefit to the community.


Henry White AZAD Partnership Excellence Award: Presented in memory of Henry White, deaf founder of the Arizona School for the Deaf, this award recognizes an agency or organization that has demonstrated a strong partnership with AZAD in different venues and supports AZAD’s mission.


The Spirit of AZAD Award: This award is presented to a board member (or an individual member) of AZAD. This award recognizes a person who carries the spirit of the AZAD in all levels of their work, demonstrating exemplary commitment, dedication, and service. The president of AZAD selects the person for the award.


For the four awards – namely, the Angela Watson Mover and Shaker, William Wherry Volunteer Award, Distinguished Community Service Award, Henry White AZAD Partnership Excellence Award, the Board shall select the recipients based on their qualifications and service to AZAD. The officers and board representatives could invite input and recommendations from the members. Because of their role in the selection process, the members of the Board cannot qualify for such awards.


Other Awards

NAD – The Golden Hand Award and #NADHandwaves

Nominations could be made to the NAD for the national recognition of an individual or organization for its contribution in Arizona. Nominations must be submitted to the NAD at least 30 days before the conference date. For the criteria and the form, see:



Guidelines and Criteria for AZAD Donations and Sponsorships

The Guiding Star

AZAD’s mission statement is to preserve, protect, and promote the civil, human and linguistic rights of deaf, deaf-blind, and hard-of-hearing individuals in Arizona.

  • Our values: Diversity and youth
  • A certain percentage of the budget should be set aside for donations, sponsorships and scholarships.
  • Categories of donation requests:
  • Deaf Organizations (non-profit 501 c entity)
  • School organizations (Jr. NAD chapters, SBG, etc.)
  • Individuals- deaf, hard of hearing, deaf blind


The donation should be for charitable causes in line with our mission statement.


Where applicable, the organization that requests a donation from AZAD must be a non-profit 501 (c) entity.


Requests should be received at least one month prior to the date of event by letter or email.


When the request for a donation is being reviewed, the following should be considered:

  1. The name of the organization. National, state, or local?
  2. The mission of the organization
  3. The organization’s website, if any
  4. The organization’s EIN (tax Id) (optional)
  5. The organization’s current cause/priority
  6. If for an event, the date, number of attendees
  7. The fundraising goal for the event
  8. In what way would we donate? Monetary, in-kind service, sponsorship of event, other


  1. The individual must be deaf, hard of hearing, or deaf blind and a current student enrolled in a school in Arizona or if enrolled in college in or outside of Arizona, a resident in AZ.
  2. The purpose of the request must be clearly stated. Examples: YLC or other Camp tuition, application for NAD’s Ambassador Program
  3. The process may include the following:
  4. Personal interview
  5. Letters of reference (2-3)
  6. Character evaluation form
  7. Student essay/video (3-4 minutes)
  8. High school/college transcript
  9. Evidence of letter of acceptance to camp or program

Originated: 1998
Revised: November 10, 2001
Revised: October 1, 2005
Revised: October 1, 2009
Revised: January 15, 2010
Revised: August 19, 2015
Revised: April 23, 2017
Revised: October 25, 2017
Revised: December 16, 2017
Revised: October 12, 2020
Revised: October 30, 2021
Revised: September 4, 2023