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PCSA Constitution

(PCSA's Constitution Amendments were voted on and approved at the 2017 Annual Business Meeting. According to Article VIII, Section 1, these changes will lie for one year.)


Section 1. The name of this Association shall be THE PACIFIC COAST SURGICAL ASSOCIATION.


Section 1. The object of the Association shall be to advance the science and practice of surgery.


Section 1. The Association shall consist of Active, Senior, Retired, Honorary, and Non-Resident Members.

Section 2. Active membership shall be limited to 250 Members, the number elected each year to be left to the discretion of the Council. PCSA Council shall have the discretion to increase the number of Active Members in order to maintain the mission of the Association.

Section 3.  No one shall be eligible for membership unless his/her practice is limited to surgery and he/she has established a reputation as a practitioner, author, teacher or original investigator, and has been recommended by the Council. Candidates must be in practice for two years on the West Coast.  The candidate shall also have been certified either by the American Board of Surgery, the appropriate specialty Board, or its foreign equivalent. 

Section 4. The Council shall have the power of decision in the consideration of each candidate’s eligibility and its judgment upon such eligibility shall be final. No candidate for membership shall be voted upon at the executive session of the Association unless recommended by the Council.

Section 5. Proposals for membership shall be made by Members on applications furnished by the Secretary-Treasurer of the Association. The proposal of a candidate for membership shall be supported by letters to the Secretary-Treasurer from each of the three sponsors who shall vouch for his/her character and standing. The application and letters shall be presented to the Council by the Councilor of the region recommending the candidate.

Section 6. Proposals for membership, properly filled out, accompanied by the necessary endorsements and confidential letters from the sponsors, shall be in the hands of the Secretary-Treasurer at least six four months before the date of the annual meeting. Three months before the annual meeting, the Secretary-Treasurer shall send to each member of the Association a list of all candidates for active membership and a printed summary of their qualifications, including educational attainments and professional positions. Members are encouraged to submit to the Council written comments on the candidates’ qualifications for membership. The Council at its annual meeting shall, after full consideration of all information available, recommend to the Association such candidates as are qualified for membership. The Council shall have the power to request from any member of the Association a careful and unbiased investigation of the qualifications of any candidate for election to the Association. Any candidate for active membership may be assigned to a member of the Council for careful investigation as to his/her personal and professional qualifications.

Section 7. After recommendation by the Council, election to membership shall be by ballot at the executive session of each annual meeting and if three-quarters of the ballots are favorable, the candidate shall be declared elected. Candidates for active membership not brought forward to the Association for election by the Council in the first year after nomination may be reconsidered in the two subsequent years at the request of the Councilor and with support from their region.

Section 8. Candidates who have not been recommended for active membership by the Council three years after nomination, shall be withdrawn and their sponsors notified. This action shall not prevent the reproposal of such candidates for membership. Any candidate for membership who has been recommended by the Council, but not selected by the Association cannot be proposed again for membership for at least two years.

Section 9. Prospective Members after election must qualify within three months by the payment of the initiation fee and annual dues to the Secretary-Treasurer and by filing a recent photograph with the Association. To become an Active member, the nominee shall be expected to attend the first Annual Meeting after election to be introduced to the Association and to receive the certificate of membership. Should the nominee fail to attend the first subsequent meeting, the second Annual Meeting must be attended. If the nominee is unable to attend the second meeting, membership will not be conferred subject to action by the Council. Fees contingent on membership will not be refunded.


Section 1. Active members shall have a practice that is limited to surgery.

Section 2. All Members shall automatically become Senior Members at the age of sixty (60) years.  They shall pay dues and have the privilege of voting and holding office but are excused from the annual meeting attendance requirement.

Section 3.  Active and Senior Members shall be required to pay association dues.  They have the privilege of voting and holding office.

Section 4. Members are considered Retired upon reaching the age of seventy five (75) or retirement from active clinical practice, whichever occurs first.  They are no longer required to pay Association dues. 

Section 5. Candidates for Honorary Membership shall be nominated by the Council and elected by ballot at the executive session of the annual meeting. Honorary Members shall not be required to pay dues or initiation fees and shall enjoy all the privileges of other Members except those of voting and holding office.

Section 6. A Non-Resident Member shall be a Member under the age of sixty (60) who no longer resides in the Pacific Coast geographical area. He/She shall be excused from attendance requirements. He/She may vote at such meetings as he/she attends and enjoy all the privileges of the Association except that he/she may not hold office or membership on standing committees. He/She shall pay annual dues. A request for non-resident status must be submitted in writing to the Secretary-Treasurer and shall be granted only by the Council. Upon written request the Council may restore a Non-Resident Member to active status. At its discretion, the Council may terminate membership as a Non-Resident Member. A Non-Resident Member shall automatically become a Senior Member at age sixty (60).

Section 7. The resignation of a Member may be accepted at the discretion of the Council.


Section 1. The officers of the Association shall be a President, a President-Elect who becomes President one year following election, a President-Elect who becomes President two years following election, a Vice-President, a Secretary-Treasurer, a Recorder, an Historian, and four Councilors. There shall be a Program Committee appointed by the President, consisting of five members, one representing each of the four geographical sections of the Association, and the Recorder, who shall act as Chairman. The Council member and the Program Committee member who resides in the same geographical area as the Recorder shall act as an Advisory Committee to him/her.

Section 2. The Presidents-Elect, the Vice-President, the Secretary-Treasurer, the Recorder, and the Historian shall be elected for one year, and a Councilor shall be elected as provided by the Bylaws. The President shall not be eligible for re-election at any time. The Secretary-Treasurer and Recorder shall not serve more than six years, shall not both be retired in the same year, and shall not be elected from the same region of the Association.

Section 3. All officers shall be nominated by a Committee, appointed by the President, consisting of the three most recent past Presidents, at least three (3) months prior to the annual meeting. Additional nominations may be made from the floor.

Section 4. The election of officers shall take place at an executive session of the annual meeting. A majority of votes cast constitute an election.


Section 1. It shall be the duty of the President to be present and to preside at all meetings of the Association; to see that the rules of order and decorum are properly enforced in all deliberations of the Association; to sign the certificates of membership.

Section 2. In the absence of the President, the Vice-President shall preside, and in the absence of the Vice-President, the Secretary-Treasurer shall preside.

Section 3. In the absence of all three, the Association shall elect one of its Members to preside pro tem.

Section 4. The Secretary-Treasurer shall keep the minutes of the Association and shall issue, at least six weeks prior to the annual meeting, a preliminary notice of the time and place of the council meeting, and the business to be transacted. He/She shall issue the final program of the annual meeting and a list of the names of the candidates for Membership who are under consideration by the Council. He/She shall attest all official acts requiring certification, in connection with or independent of the President, notify officers and Members of their election and take charge of all papers not otherwise provided for. He/She shall serve as Secretary-Treasurer and keep minutes of the meetings of the Council. He/She shall, with the President, sign the certificates of Membership and receive all monies and funds belonging to the Association. He/She shall pay the bill of the Association, collect all dues and assessments as promptly as possible, report to have, in accordance with the Bylaws, regulating the same, forfeited their Membership. It shall be the duty of the President of the Association to appoint an Audit Committee, consisting of two (2) Members of the Association, whose duty it shall be to consult with a Certified Public Accountant, to examine the books of the Secretary-Treasurer, and to report on the same to the membership during the annual meeting.   A full audit shall be performed as determined by the President and President-Elect in the final year of the Secretary-Treasurer term.

Section 5. It shall be the duty of the Historian to assemble and preserve the Archives of the Association for storage and reference. The Archives shall consist of the roster of the members of the Association since its inception, and such photographs as are available. At each Annual Meeting of the Association, the Historian shall be called on by the President to give a presentation of historical significance to the membership.

Section 6. The Recorder shall, as Chairman of the Program Committee, assemble the scientific program and forward it to the Secretary-Treasurer at least two months before the annual meeting. The Recorder shall receive all papers and reports of discussion on papers presented before the Association and as the Chairman of the Program Committee take charge of the publication of the papers presented before the Association.


Section 1. Vacancies occurring in the offices of the Association shall be filled by appointment by the President until the next meeting. He/She shall also have the authority to appoint all committees not otherwise provided for.


Section 1. The Constitution may be amended at any regular meeting by a written resolution embodying the proposed changes, which shall lie over for one year and which must receive approval by two-thirds of the members present and voting.


Section 1. The President, the two Presidents-elect, Vice-President, Secretary-Treasurer, Recorder and Historian shall act as ex-officio members of the Council with the right to vote. 

Pacific Coast Surgical Association
c/o ACS
633 N. St. Clair Street
Chicago, IL 60611
Phone Number: 1-800-274-9083
Fax Number: 312-278-0793