PBL Bylaws

ARTICLE I. Name

The name of this division of FBLA-PBL, Inc. shall be "Phi Beta Lambda" and may be referred to as "PBL."

ARTICLE II. Purpose

Section 1. The purpose of PBL is to provide opportunities for postsecondary students to develop business-related career competencies. PBL is an integral part of the instructional program and in addition promotes a sense of civic and personal responsibility.

Section 2. The specific goals of PBL are to:

  • develop competent, aggressive business leadership;

  • strengthen the confidence of students in themselves and their work;

  • create more interest in and understanding of American business enterprise;

  • encourage members in the development of individual projects which contribute to the improvement of home, business, and community;

  • develop character, prepare for useful citizenship, and foster patriotism;

  • encourage and practice efficient money management;

  • encourage scholarship and promote school loyalty;

  • assist students in the establishment of occupational goals; and

  • facilitate the transition from school to work.

ARTICLE III. Membership

Section 1. PBL membership shall consist of members of chartered local chapters. These members shall hold membership in their state and national chapters. Individual members shall be recognized only through a state chapter of PBL except that, in the case where there is no state chapter, the member shall be recognized by the national office.

Section 2. National PBL, as well as the state and local chapters, shall be open for membership to these classes of members:

Active Members shall be students enrolled in business and/or business-related fields, who accept the purpose of PBL and subscribe to its creed. Active members shall pay dues as established by PBL and may participate in national events, in accordance with the guidelines of the National Awards Program, serve as voting delegates to the National Leadership Conference, hold national office, in accordance with ARTICLE VI, and otherwise represent their state and local chapters as approved by their respective state or local advisers.

Honorary Life Members may be elected to a state or local chapter by a majority vote. They shall be persons who are assisting in the advancement of business and office education and/or who are rendering outstanding service to PBL. Honorary Life members shall not vote or hold office and shall not be required to pay dues.

National Honorary Life Members may be recommended by the membership and shall be accepted upon approval by the board of directors of FBLA-PBL, Inc. They shall be persons making significant contributions to the field of business and office education and/or to the growth and development of FBLA-PBL, Inc. National Honorary Life members shall not vote or hold office and shall not be required to pay dues.

ARTICLE IV. Dues and Finance

Section 1. National dues based on fiscal reports by the national office, and on recommendations by the national executive council and the board of directors, shall be determined by a majority vote of the local voting delegates at the National Leadership Conference. National dues of members shall be forwarded directly to the PBL national office or shall be submitted through state chapters at the discretion of the state chapter.

Section 2. Annual dues shall be $10.00 with $1 being earmarked for the PBL National Scholarship Fund.

Section 3. The affairs and property of PBL shall be managed by the board of directors of FBLA-PBL, which shall have the powers and duties of a board of directors, according to the current D.C. Code.

Section 4. The association president and chief executive officer shall administer all PBL finances, submit an annual budget to the board of directors for approval, and provide the board of directors and members with an annual audit.

Section 5. The fiscal year of the PBL shall be July 1 through June 30.

ARTICLE V. Organization

Section 1. PBL shall be an association of state and local chapters, each operating in accordance with a charter granted by FBLA-PBL, Inc. Only chapters that have received charters, Greek names, and numbers issued by FBLA-PBL, Inc. and which are currently in good standing, shall be referred to as "Phi Beta Lambda" or "PBL".

Section 2. The board of directors of FBLA-PBL, Inc. shall serve as the policymaking body of this organization and derives its authority from the Articles of Incorporation of FBLA-PBL, Inc. and the laws of the District of Columbia. It may be referred to as the board of directors. Members of the board of directors shall be nominated by state chairpersons and elected by the local FBLA-PBL chapters of their respective regions for three-year terms in accordance with the nominating and voting procedures determined by the board of directors.

Section 3. The administration of PBL shall be vested in the association president and chief executive officer of FBLA-PBL, Inc.

Section 4. There shall be a national executive council that shall make recommendations to the board of directors and perform other duties as prescribed in these bylaws.

Section 5. There shall be five administrative regions.

  • The Eastern Region consists of Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, DoDDS-E (Europe), Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Virgin Islands.

  • The Southern Region consists of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.

  • The North Central Region consists of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

  • The Mountain Plains Region consists of Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, and Wyoming.

  • The Western Region consists of Alaska, Arizona, California, Canal Zone, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.

Section 6. State chapter charters shall be issued upon approval of the board of directors. A state chapter shall have at least three local chapters with all members holding national membership in PBL and hold one annual meeting to elect state officers and conduct business in order to qualify for a state chapter charter. Each state chapter shall have a state committee composed of professional educators in the areas of business and office occupations.

Section 7. A state committee chairperson shall be recommended by the association president and chief executive officer and approved by the board of directors.

Section 8. Each local chapter shall have an adviser who is either a faculty member teaching a business and/or business-related class or school staff member. A local chapter may have as many special emphasis groups under the chapter charter as it deems necessary to meet the interests of all students. The local chapter of PBL shall assume full responsibility for coordinating the program for these interest groups.

ARTICLE VI. Officers and Elections

Section 1. National officers. The national elected officers of PBL shall be a president, five vice presidents representing the respective regions, a secretary, and a treasurer.

Section 2. Qualifications for National Office.

A. Only active members are eligible to hold national office.

B. Only those applicants who are present at the National Leadership Conference and officially certified by the officer screening committee shall be eligible for nomination.

C. To be considered for an office in PBL, a candidate shall:

1. have at least one full year remaining in his/her business education program,

2. hold or have held a corresponding or higher elective office in his/her local or state chapters,

3. be recommended by the chapter advisers and endorsed by his/ her local and state chapters (if applicable), and

4. file an official application with the association president and chief executive officer of FBLA-PBL, Inc. by May 15.

a. If no state chapter submits an applicant for a particular office by the May 15 deadline, then the deadline for the particular office shall be extended to June 15.

b. Applicants for national office who become candidates for office as of the second deadline shall have to prepare a campaign for office like all other candidates, including a requirement to pass the officer screening committee and caucus in state chapter meetings.

c. If no candidates are submitted for a particular office by the first or second deadline, then candidates may apply for office at the National Leadership Conference and shall comply with all guidelines that other candidates comply with during the conference.

5. Candidates for secretary must have completed, or will complete, one course in keyboarding by the end of the current school year and possess the ability to accurately record and produce minutes in a timely fashion.

6. Candidates for treasurer must have completed, or will complete, one year of accounting, bookkeeping, or record keeping by the end of the current school year.

Section 3. Nominations.

A. The president, secretary, and treasurer shall be nominated by a state chapter at a general session of the National Leadership Conference. The national vice presidents representing the regions shall be nominated by a state chapter at their respective regional meetings at the National Leadership Conference. If a candidate holds membership in a local chapter where there is no state chapter, then the nomination shall be made by his/her local chapter.

B. Only candidates approved by the officer screening committee shall be nominated.

Section 4. Elections.

A. The president, secretary, and treasurer shall be elected annually at a general session of the National Leadership Conference by the local voting delegates. The national vice presidents representing the regions shall be elected annually at their respective regional meetings at the National Leadership Conference by the local voting delegates of the respective regions.

B. These national officers shall be elected by a ballot vote of the voting delegates. A majority vote shall be required for election. If no candidate for an office receives a majority vote on the third ballot, the candidate receiving the lowest number of votes for that ballot shall be dropped from the fourth ballot. If necessary, the candidate receiving the lowest number of votes shall be dropped from each subsequent ballot until one candidate receives a majority of votes.

C. No two national officers shall be elected from the same state chapter. With the exception of the vice president no more than two national officers shall be elected from the same region. Unopposed candidates shall not be eliminated because of these restrictions.

Section 5. Term of Office. National officers shall be elected for one year or until their successors are elected or appointed, and their term of office shall begin at the close of the National Leadership Conference at which they were elected.

Section 6. Vacancy in Office. A vacancy in any office, other than that of president, shall be filled by appointment by the president with the approval of the national executive council. Should the office of president become vacant, the vice president from the president's region shall automatically become president.

Section 7. Appointment of Parliamentarian. The person scoring highest on the parliamentary procedure written test shall be appointed by the incoming national president to serve as parliamentarian. This individual shall have at least one year remaining before being graduated from a postsecondary institution.

ARTICLE VII. Duties of PBL National Officers

Section 1. The president shall:

A. serve as chairman of the national executive council;

B. preside over the council meetings and business meetings of PBL;

C. serve as a member of the board of directors;

D. appoint appropriate committees and committee chairpersons;

E. serve as an ex-officio, nonvoting member of all committees;

F. appoint a national parliamentarian to serve at all business sessions of PBL; and

G. perform other duties for the promotion and development of local, state, and national PBL.

Section 2. The vice presidents shall:

A. assist the president in the promotion and development of PBL in the regions which elected them;

B. assist in planning Regional Leadership Conferences; and

C. preside at regional meetings at the National Leadership Conference.

Section 3. The secretary shall:

A. keep an accurate record of all business meetings of the National Leadership Conference and the national executive council;

B. supply promptly at least one copy of the minutes and substantiating reports to the PBL president and the association president & chief executive officer; and

C. initiate communication with state officers to promote quality articles for national publications.

Section 4. The treasurer shall:

A. assist the national office in keeping an accurate record of national officer travel expenses and disbursements, and in planning national officer travel; and

B. present an annual financial report to members at the National Leadership Conference.

Section 5. The parliamentarian shall advise the president of the orderly conduct of business in accordance with PBL bylaws and Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised.

Section 6. These officers shall serve on the national executive council and perform such duties as directed by the PBL president and the association president & chief executive officer and not inconsistent with these bylaws and other rules adopted by PBL.

ARTICLE VIII. National Leadership Conference

Section 1. A National Leadership Conference shall be held each year. A date and location will be recommended by national staff and approved by the board of directors.

Section 2. Each local chapter in good standing shall be entitled to send two to four local voting delegates and alternates from its active membership to the National Leadership Conference in accordance with the following:

  • under 50 members—two voting delegates

  • 50–100 members—three voting delegates

  • over 100 members—four voting delegates

Section 3. All voting delegates of local and state chapters shall be officially certified by their respective advisers and their names submitted to the national office postmarked no later than 20 days prior to the National Leadership Conference.

Section 4. Voting. Voting delegates shall be entitled to vote on all matters which come before the general sessions and regional meetings. There shall be no proxy voting.

Section 5. Quorum. The quorum for all business meetings of the National Leadership Conference shall be a majority of the registered voting delegates.

ARTICLE IX. National Executive Council

Section 1. The national officers of PBL shall, with the ex-officio, nonvoting members, constitute the national executive council. The chairperson of the board of directors and the association president and chief executive officer shall be ex-officio, nonvoting members.

Section 2. Duties. The National Executive Council shall:

A. adopt policies of operation of PBL as deemed necessary, by a three-fourths vote subject to the approval of the board of directors;

B. approve committee appointments and the creation of new committees by the president;

C. approve appointments by the president to fill vacancies in office;

D. review all proposed amendments to the bylaws;

E. present to the voting delegates at the National leadership Conference, with recommendations, those proposed amendments approved by the board of directors; and

F. perform such other duties as are prescribed by these bylaws.

Section 3. Meetings. Meetings shall be called by the president, or upon the written request of three voting members of the national executive council, upon approval by the association president and chief executive officer.

Section 4. Voting by Alternative Methods. Business of the national executive council may be conducted by mail, teleconferencing, and/or electronic conferencing at the discretion of the PBL president upon the approval by the association president and chief executive officer. For adoption, action by mail, teleconferencing, and/or electronic conferencing shall require a three-fourths vote of the members eligible to vote, and shall be recorded in the minutes of the next regular meeting.

ARTICLE X. Committees

Section 1. Advisory committees to assist in the growth and development of PBL may be appointed as deemed necessary by the board of directors. Recommendations of persons for such appointments shall be requested of state chapters.

Section 2. Local and state chapters may select advisory committees to assist in the growth and development of their respective chapters.

Section 3. The president of PBL shall, with the approval of the national executive council, establish committees, appoint their members for a period not to exceed his/her term in office, and assist these committees in their activities.

Section 4. An officer screening committee, composed of national officers and board members, shall be appointed by the PBL president in consultation with the association president and chief executive officer. The officer screening committee shall, after careful consideration of applicants for offices of PBL, approve candidates for nomination.

Section 5. Committee business may be conducted by mail, teleconferencing, and/or electronic conferencing at the discretion of the chairperson. For adoption, action by mail, teleconferencing, and/or electronic conferencing shall require a three-fourths vote of the members eligible to vote, and shall be reported to the committee members not later than the next regular meeting.

ARTICLE XI. Emblems and Colors

Section 1. The official emblem and insignia item designs are described and protected from infringement by registration in the U.S. Patent Office under the Trademark Act of 1946. The manufacture, reproduction, wearing, or display of the emblem shall be governed by the board of directors.

Section 2. Emblems and insignia shall be uniform in all local and state chapters and within special emphasis groups: they shall be those of PBL. Only members in good standing may use official emblems and insignia.

Section 3. The official colors of PBL shall be blue and gold.

ARTICLE XII. Parliamentary Procedure

The rules contained in the latest edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the PBL in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with the rules of FBLA-PBL, Inc., these bylaws or any special rules of order the PBL may adopt.

ARTICLE XIII. Amendment

Section 1. Proposed amendments to these bylaws shall be submitted in writing by local or state chapters or by a national officer to the association president and chief executive officer no later than April 1. The proposed amendments shall be submitted for review to the division president and the bylaws committee of the board of directors by April 15. Proposed amendments approved by the bylaws committee shall be returned to the association president and chief executive officer by May 1. Each state chapter will be sent copies of the approved amendments by May 15. The national executive council shall present approved proposed amendments with recommendations to the local voting delegates at the National Leadership Conference. A two-thirds vote of the local voting delegates present and voting at the National Leadership Conference is required for adoption.

Section 2. The president and chief executive officer of FBLA-PBL shall be authorized to revise these bylaws to correct punctuation, grammar, cross-references, article and section designations, and to make such other technical changes as may be necessary, where these changes shall be minor in detail and shall not alter the meaning or intent of the bylaws. Notice of changes made under this authority shall be communicated in writing to the PBL national executive council, the board of directors, and to the state committees within 30 days.

Adopted June 25, 1975
Amended July 8, 1979
Amended July 8, 1980
Amended July 8, 1981
Amended July 8, 1982
Amended July 3, 1986
Amended July 8, 1987
Amended July 2, 1988
Amended July 4, 1990
Amended July 9, 1991
Amended July 8, 1992
Amended July 13, 1993
Amended July 8, 1995
Amended July 16, 1996
Amended July 16, 2000
Amended July 2, 2003
Amended January 12, 2008