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Early Cow Gets the Vote: Why Association Elections Start the New Year

Early Cow Gets the Vote: Why Association Elections Start the New Year

What will you be doing Tuesday, January 2, 2018?

Recovering from New Year’s Eve? Traveling back from the holidays? Counting cows?

If you’re a member of the Holstein Association USA, you’ll be submitting your ballot for the annual delegate election by the midnight deadline, according to Hoards Dairyman.


Chances are you aren’t a dairy farmer, though. Why should you care about Association delegate elections? Or care that their delegate elections happen at the start of the year?


Associations Impact Your Life

The answer is simple. One or more professional Associations will impact your life in 2018. According to the Gale Group, there are over 23,000 Associations in the United States.

Associations elect member delegates to represent:

  • Your professional industry
  • Your child’s education
  • Your banking and investing options
  • Your healthcare services
  • Your food and drink choices
  • Your political views
  • ...and more

Associations make important decisions in multiple facets of our lives. These decisions impact regular people and their daily lives.

Delegate elections are the method by which Associations elect the representatives. Delegates work on behalf of a very important person:



Delegate Elections in Associations

Association members share a credential, goal, or another affinity.

Elected representatives come from the membership base to implement an Association’s goals. Delegates are the conduit between the Association and the larger population the Association represents.

The California School Board Association (CSBA) explains the role of the delegate:

CSBA’s Delegate Assembly is a vital link in the association’s governance structure. Working with local districts, county offices, the Board of Directors and Executive Committee, Delegates ensure that the association reflects the interests of school districts and county offices of education throughout the state. (emphasis added)

Often, these delegates span large geographic areas. CSBA’s Delegate Assembly consists of 270 elected board members representing 21 geographic regions. CSBA member boards elect delegates to serve a two-year term. Nominees for a delegate seat must be a school board member within that geographic region.

Delegates are the connection between an Association’s leadership and the real people they represent.

January is a busy month for Association delegate elections. CSBA’s delegate election is Sunday, January 8. Thousands of Associations have upcoming ballot deadlines and delegate elections.


Why Delegate Elections Kick Off the Year

Delegates elections kick off the new year to maximize the time delegates serve.

Delegates serve terms of 2-4 years, depending on the Association’s bylaws. Getting elections finalized early empowers the delegates to get down to business.

Many Associations operate on quarterly schedules. Incoming delegates can quickly join projects and participate in decision-making.


Why Delegate Elections Choose Online Voting

Associations tend to have large membership bases. In order to process new delegate candidates through an election procedure, it makes sense to rely on an online balloting system.

Online balloting has several advantages:

  • More cost-efficient than paper balloting
  • Built-in marketing options, such as email and social media outreach
  • Candidate templates, and other templates, for future use
  • Immediate voting results
  • Reports to compare voting patterns

Regardless of your plans this January 2nd, remember the dairy farmer. Thousands of Associations will elect delegates. Many projects will enhance your quality of life next year.

Delegates make it happen, and voting gets them there.



eBallot is an online ballot system used by Associations. We can help you run a formal election. We can also help your members decide anything. Contact us to discuss.

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