Berkeley Lab

The Molecular Foundry Users Association Organizational Charter

A. Purpose, Goals and Objectives

The purpose of The Molecular Foundry Users Executive Committee (UEC) is to provide an organized framework to support those who use The Molecular Foundry (TMF) at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory (LBNL) (i.e. “Users”). The UEC works collaboratively with TMF Staff and Management to develop effective policies and programs that best support User’s needs and interests.

The UEC also plays a leading role in the planning of TMF Annual User Meeting; assisting in the general planning and workshop selection. The UEC provides input to the TMF Scientific Advisory Board, the Department of Energy Supervisory Board, and communicates regularly with other Nanoscale Science Research Centers (NSRCs).

B. User Executive Committee (UEC) Elections, Officers and Committees


1. UEC Elections and Membership Status:

  1. The UEC is comprised of 10-13 members that are elected by the User community and expected to serve for a period of three years. During the three year period, every member of the UEC is expected to participate on the Annual User Meeting Planning committee.
  2. The election process for new members can take place at the discretion of the Vice Chairperson. There should minimally be 10 participating members in the UEC.
  3. During an election the UEC will notify the User community via email about the number of available positions and the election date. Any interested people can apply directly to the UEC or be nominated. To qualify, all candidates should contact the TMF liaison to accept the nomination and submit a brief biography and mission statement. An online election will take place with all qualified candidates listed; the candidates that receive the highest number of user community votes will be admitted to fill the open positions. There should be at least twice as many candidates as positions; if this is not the case then only the top half of candidates based on vote tally shall be admitted (e.g. if there are eight candidates for five spots then only four candidates with the most votes will be chosen in that election cycle).
  4. The UEC should minimally include one industrial member and one student representative, which is defined as a post doc, graduate or undergraduate student.
  5. Members that are considered non-participating can be removed from the UEC if they miss more than four meetings over the course of the calendar year
  6. The User Program Office Manager and User Proposal Administrator shall be an exofficio UEC Board Members.

2. UEC Officers:

  1. The Chairperson of the Users Executive Committee directly interfaces with TMF staff and management, runs UEC meetings, and manages the effort to organize the Annual User Meeting. The Chairperson’s term of office shall be for one (1) year. To assure program continuity, the Chairperson shall continue to serve on the UEC for up to one additional year as the Immediate Past Chairperson.
  2. The Vice Chairperson shall stand in for the Chairperson if he or she is unavailable and shall assist the Chairperson in the discharge of his or her duties. The Vice Chairperson is also responsible for organizing UEC elections with the assistance of Foundry staff. UEC members shall elect the Vice Chairperson; his or her term of office shall be one year, upon expiration of which term he/she shall assume the position of Chairperson.
  3. The Recording Secretary is elected by the UEC and is responsible for documenting the meeting minutes. The term of office of the Recording Secretary shall be one (1) year.
  4. The UEC can appoint a TMF representative for the “National User Facilities Organization” (NUFO) and other advocacy groups. The representative is appointed annually and does not need to be a current member of the Users’ Executive Committee. The appointed representative can serve for multiple years.

3. UEC Committees

The UEC is comprised of several committees that are responsible for assisting in planning the Annual User Meeting, user outreach, and user support. Every member of the UEC should actively participate in a committee. Committees can be created, amended, or removed with a two-thirds majority vote from full UEC membership.

  1. Annual User Meeting (AUM) Planning Committee: is responsible for planning the AUM. Their duties involve working with TMF staff to find a venue, choosing and inviting speakers, and planning workshops. It is expected that every member of AUM committee organize a workshop. The AUM committee is also responsible for soliciting and choosing TMF staff member for the UEC Staff Award.
  2. User Focused Outreach (UFO) Committee: is responsible for promoting TMF as a resource to potential academic and industrial users as well as promoting User driven research inside TMF. The UFO committee is also responsible for maintaining the UEC online presence either separately through the UEC website or on the TMF website.
  3. Foundry Internal Development Opportunity (FIDO) Committee: is responsible for working with TMF Staff and Management to ensure that TMF staff is addressing user needs and requests. FIDO committee should work closely with TMF staff to improve communication and provide input regarding research directions and equipment acquisitions.

C. UEC Meetings

  1. The Chairperson has the discretion to change the monthly meeting date and cancel meetings (with advanced notice) up to four times per year. An agenda for each meeting shall be provided by the UEC Chairperson three days prior to the meeting and UEC members are free to suggest amendments.
  2. Minutes of all UEC meetings shall be documented by the Secretary and shall include a brief resume of the agenda and results of the meeting within 24 hours of its conclusion. Meeting minutes can be distributed to anyone that directly asks the Recording Secretary.
  3. The UEC shall plan and manage the AUM and workshops with input from TMF Management and Staff.

D. Procedural Rules

  1. This charter and by-laws can be amended by a mail or web-based ballot of UEC members. A two-thirds majority of those members voting in the balloting must vote in favor of an amendment for it to be adopted.
  2. Meeting Quorum A quorum shall be determined by at least 50% percent of full UEC members being present before any official business can be transacted, motions made, or votes taken and decisions recorded.
  3. Decisions A simple majority of UEC members present at a meeting shall be sufficient to cause passage of the item being considered. All items requiring decision by the UEC shall be documented, as well as the vote of each member present. All decisions taken by the UEC shall be included in the meeting minutes.
  4. UEC Expenses: The UEC has no separate budget in terms of operating funds. It relies on the funds provided at the discretion of TMF’s Director for allowable expenses, as well as contributions from various external entities to cover its unallowable expenses under DOE guidelines and regulations.
  5. UEC Compensation: UEC members shall receive no compensation for their efforts, other than pre-approved reasonable expenses in pursuit of achieving the UEC objectives and goal.
  6. UEC Resignation, Termination and Absences Resignation from the Board must be in writing and received by the Secretary. To be effective, the resignation shall be announced at the next regularly scheduled monthly meeting.

TMFUA Charter Creation & Revision History
Date Revision Description of Revision
6/2007 NR TMFUA Initial Charter creation
12/8/2011 A Charter update for consistency with new TMFUA Bylaws