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SSSSNE Constitution, Bylaws and Ethics

November 1974, Revised April 1979, Revised September 1980, Revised June 1981, Revised February 1991, Revised June 1991, Revised June 1998, Revised November 2014, Revised 2017

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Recognizing that soil constitutes natural bodies and that knowledge about and advancement of intelligent use of this natural resource is an obligation of the professional soil scientist, the SOCIETY OF SOIL SCIENTISTS, is hereby dedicated to foster the profession of soil classification, mapping, and interpretation and to increase and further the dissemination of information concerning soil science to contribute to the general human welfare.

Article I - NAME

The name of the organization shall be the Society of Soil Scientists of Southern New England.

Article II - PURPOSE

The purpose of the Society shall be: (1) the advancement of soil science as it relates to soil classification, mapping and interpretation and (2) the promotion of the professional interests of soil scientists in the states of Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts.


The headquarters of the Society shall be determined by the Board of Directors, and shall be within the three-state region of Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts.


The affairs of the Society shall be managed by The Board of Directors. The number of directors of the Board shall be fixed by Bylaws.


The Society shall have the number and classes of members as provided in the Bylaws.


Amendments to the Constitution, proposed either by the Board of Directors or by petition by 25 percent of the Members, shall be made by an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the Members voting in either of two ways: (1) at a regular meeting by ballot sent (electronically or by mail) or handed to the Secretary, provided that printed notice of the proposed changes was sent (electronically or by mail) to all voting members with the call to the meeting or (2) by mail or Email ballot at any time, provided that 30 days’ notice of the proposed change has been sent (electronically or by mail) to all voting members.

Article VII - STATUS

The SOCIETY OF SOIL SCIENTISTS OF SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND is a nonprofit (educational, scientific, and professional) organization without capital stock.


Article I - NAME, EMBLEM

Section 1.0 -Abbreviation. The approved abbreviation of the name of the Society, where an abbreviation is proper, shall be SSSSNE.

Section 2.0 -Emblem. The design, specification and guidelines for the use of the emblem of the Society shall be as prescribed by the Board of Directors.


Section 1.0 -The Society shall have four classes of members designed as Basic Members, Professional Member, Associate Member, and Honorary Member. Associate Members and Honorary Members shall have all rights and privileges as Basic Members and Professional Members except those of voting and holding office.

Section 2.0 -Qualifications for the class of Basic Member shall consist of a baccalaureate degree with 30 semester hours, or the equivalent, in biological, physical, chemical, and earth sciences including a minimum of 15 semester-hours in soil science courses meeting the following distribution, with approval (majority vote) of the Board of Directors:

i) A minimum of three credits in Soil Genesis, Classification, Morphology, and Mapping.

ii) The remaining credits shall be in at least three of the following categories:

1. Introductory Soil Science

2. Soil Chemistry/Fertility

3. Soil Physics

4. Soil Microbiology/Biochemistry

5. Soil Survey Interpretations/Soils and Land Use/Soils and the Environment.

6. Independent Study/Seminar/Geology (three-credit maximum). Course(s) must be related to soil science with Board of Directors approval.

Field, laboratory, practicum, and/or field internship coursework is a required component of at least two of the above soil science courses.  At least one of these must be field-based soil coursework.  Field-based soil coursework includes soil judging, undergraduate soil field research, and soil courses with a field lab.  If the field-based soil coursework is completed through distance learning, the applicant must demonstrate how they meet the field requirement through detailed syllabi.  All decisions regarding the acceptability of distance learning field or laboratory work shall be made on a case-by-case basis.

Section 3.0 -Professional Members shall meet the qualifications of Basic Members and have three years (full-time equivalent) experience in soil science subject to the approval of the Board of Directors. M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in soil science each count as one year of experience. Professional Membership also requires that two letters from qualified soils scientists be submitted on the applicant’s behalf, stating that they know the applicant and are familiar with the applicant’s experience

Section 4.0 -Other individuals interested in the aims and objectives of the Society may become Associate Members upon approval (majority vote) of the Board.

Section 5.0 -Honorary Members shall be determined by a vote of the Board of Directors at a regular meeting.

Section 6.0 -Membership in the Society or participation in any meeting or activity sponsored by the Society shall be open to any individual regardless of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex (including gender identity and expression), marital status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, political beliefs, or genetic information.


Section 1.0 - Dues and fees for Basic and Professional Members and Associate Members shall be determined by the Board of Directors. There shall be no dues for Honorary Members. Membership shall be from January 1 to December 31. Dues for the following year are payable at the time of the annual meeting. If the Treasurer does not receive renewal dues by April 1, membership will be canceled.


Section 1.0 - The annual meeting of the SOCIETY OF SOIL SCIENTISTS OF SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND shall be held in the fall at a time, date, and place designated by the Board of Directors. The membership shall be notified of the date, time, and place of the annual meeting by the Secretary at least 30 days prior to the meeting.

Section 2.0 - Special meeting shall be called by the Board or by petition of the Board by 25 percent of the Basic and Professional Members. The membership shall be notified of the date, time, place, and purpose the meeting at least 14 days in advance.

Section 3.0 - Except for amending the Constitution or Bylaws, a quorum for conducting regular business at all meetings of the Society shall consist of the duly paid Society members present.


Section 1.0 -The Board of Directors, responsible for managing the Society affairs shall consist of six Soil Scientist Members. The Board of Directors shall be known as the Board. Term of office of Directors of the Board shall be 3 years. The terms shall be staggered such that the regular term of office of no more than two Directors shall terminate in any one year.

Section 2.0 -Officers of the Society shall be President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer. The officers shall be elected from the Board by voting members of the Society at the annual meeting. Term of office shall be 3 years.

Section 3.0 –The election ballot of the Board Members shall be sent electronically or by mail to the voting members at least 30 days prior to the annual meeting. Terms of office shall begin January 1 of the following year. Any vacancies on the Board will be filled by a majority vote of the remaining Board Members. The newly elected Board Member(s) shall serve out the remainder of the term of the directorship vacated. The President shall appoint an Alternate Director to serve in the absence of any one of the five elected Directors. Term of the appointment shall be 3 years.

Section 4.0 -Any Basic or Professional Member in good standing who has held membership in the Society for 1 year is eligible for election to the Board.

Section 5.0 -Candidates for the Board shall be selected by a nominating committee consisting of the President, one Board Member, and one Basic or Professional Member appointed by the President. Members may also vote for write-in candidates.

Section 6.0 -The President shall be Chair of the Board, shall be responsible for the program of the annual meeting, preside at meetings, shall promote cooperation with other organizations with common aims, and perform other such duties as usually pertain to this office. The Vice-President shall perform the duties of the President in this officer's absence and shall succeed to the presidency in case the office is vacated and shall serve out the remainder of the term vacated. The Secretary shall keep notes and records of all meetings and transactions and will handle correspondence as necessary. The Treasurer shall collect all dues and fees and shall be custodian of all funds belonging to the Society. The Board shall determine how all funds are to be spent. Upon written statement of indebtedness, and countersigned by the President, the Treasurer may withdraw funds from the treasury for payment of financial obligations incurred by the Society. The Board will elect a Vice-President, Secretary, or Treasurer to fill unexpired terms of these officers. They may be elected from the Board or from the Basic and Professional Members of the Society.


Section 1.0 -The President shall appoint committees as needed for tasks related to managing the affairs or furthering the objectives of the Society. Such appointments shall be made on a year-to-year basis.


Section 1.0 -The Bylaws of the Society may be amended, added to, or repealed by a vote of the majority of Basic and Professional Members present in person, or by proxy as stated in the Constitution, at any meeting provided notice of the proposed change is given in the notice of the meeting at which such action is taken.


The rules contained in Roberts Rules of Order shall govern the Society in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with the Constitution or Bylaws of the Society.



To establish and maintain a high standard of integrity, skills, and practice in the Soil Scientist profession, the following shall be binding upon every Society Member.


1.Shall express an opinion on Soil Science subjects only when thoroughly informed and only when it is founded on adequate knowledge and honest conviction.

2. Shall endeavor to extend public knowledge and appreciation of Soil Science and its achievements and to foster broader recognition of the need, use, and application in government and private business.

3. Shall oppose and discourage any untrue, unsupported, and/or exaggerated statements regarding the profession.

4. Shall not advertise work or accomplishments in a self-laudatory, exaggerated, or unduly conspicuous manner.


1.Shall advise employer or client to engage and cooperate with other experts and specialists whenever the employers or clients interests would be best served by such service.

2. Shall not accept compensation from more than one interested party for the same services pertaining to the same work without disclosure and consent of the interested parties.

3. Shall act as a faithful agent and protect, to the fullest extent possible, the interest of employer or client insofar as such interest is consistent with professional obligations and ethics.

4. Shall inform employers or clients of any business connections, interests, or circumstances which may influence professional judgement or services.

5.Shall not disclose, directly or indirectly, information concerning the business affairs of employer or client in any way without consent.

6. Shall not, as an employee of a governmental body, receive personal compensation with respect to services provided when representing employer.


1. Shall refrain from undue criticism of the work of another professional in an attempt to injure the Soil Scientists reputation.
Shall freely give credit for work done and to whom the credit is properly due.

2. Shall promote high quality standards among Soil Scientists and encourage the ethical dissemination of technical knowledge.

3. Shall not compete unfairly with other professional Soil Scientists.
Shall be candid and forthright in statements and responses to the Society or its representatives in matters pertaining to professional conduct.


1. Shall foster good land use and environmental programs through the use of sound soil resource information.
Shall accept personal responsibility for professional work performed.

2. Shall not lend use of name in an enterprise of questionable nature.

3.Shall strive to increase the competence and prestige of the Soil Scientist profession.

4.Shall endeavor to increase the effectiveness of the profession by broadening education, through association with other professional organizations, and by other appropriate means.

5. Shall keep abreast of current changes and developments in the field of Soil Science.

7. Shall uphold this Code of Ethics by precept and example and encourage, by counsel and advice, other professional Soil Scientists to do the same.


Advance the profession of soil science as it relates to soil classification, mapping, and interpretation.

Improve and maintain the stature of the professional soil scientist in Southern NE.

Promote high quality standards among soil scientists.

Foster broader recognition of the need, use, and application of soil science in the public and private sector.

Cooperate with counsel colleges and universities in adjusting curricula to the changing needs of the soil scientist.

Function as a communication medium between professional soil scientists, allied disciplines, and professional organizations.

Cooperate with other disciplines and professional organizations to advance causes of mutual interest and concern.

Work toward state registration and certification of soil scientists.
Foster good land use and environmental programs through the use of soil resource information.