AAC Nomination Election

By USATT | April 22, 2016, 12 a.m. (ET)

USA Table Tennis

USA Table Tennis (USATT) is pleased to announce its nationwide application process by which qualified athlete candidates may apply to serve on the USATT Athletes’ Advisory Council (AAC) for the period of January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2020.

Eligibility Requirements

Candidates must have represented the United States in the Olympics, Paralympics, Pan American Games, Para Pan American Games, World Championships, or Para World Championships, as recognized by the ITTF, in the ten (10) years preceding January 1, 2017. These events collectively are designated as Operation Gold events by the US Olympic Committee (USOC). This rule is known as the 10 year rule. Candidates must be persons of the highest personal and professional integrity and must be members in good standing of USATT.

This term is for four years, from January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2020. Athletes who have served one partial or whole term may be reelected if meeting the 10 year rule as of the beginning of the second term.

Position Description and Time Commitments

The USATT AAC represents the interests of table tennis athletes in the US while upholding fair play and providing input on athlete issues such as high performance funding, doping, team selection procedures, etc. Athletes who serve on the AAC also serve as a communication channel between elite athletes and USATT. USATT bylaws and USOC guidelines require all USATT bodies, including the Board of Directors, standing committees, and task forces, to include at least 20% athlete representation. For the vast majority of committees as well as the Board, athlete representatives must qualify under the 10 year rule.

Athletes on the AAC are at a minimum expected to:

  • Participate in occasional teleconferences and email exchanges to provide feedback on athlete issues.
  • Participate in matters that require an AAC vote, such as internal AAC elections.
  • Volunteer to serve on committees and task forces as needed. Some committees are bigger time commitments than others, but most committees require at most a few hours of commitment per month.

The AAC is required to elect from within its membership a First Athlete and a Second Athlete. These positions have additional minimum responsibilities:

  • Both the First Athlete and Second Athlete serve as Athlete Representatives on the USATT Board of Directors. This entails multiple in-person meetings per year (usually onweekends) as well as teleconferences as needed. Representatives are expected to serve as the primary conduit between the Board and the rest of the AAC as well as the athlete body.
  • Both the First Athlete and Second Athlete are expected to serve on more committees and task forces than other AAC members due to their knowledge of USATT operations.
  • The First Athlete shall serve as the Chair of the AAC. 
  • The First Athlete serves as the Primary Rep to the USOC Athletes’ Advisory Council
  • This position attends three in-person meetings per year (usually on weekends) and serves as the primary channel of communication between the USOC AAC and elite table tennis athletes. Contribution to USOC AAC efforts between meetings is generally optional.
  • The Second Athlete serves as the Alternate Rep to the USOC AAC if he/she is of opposite gender of the First Athlete. If the Second Athlete is of the same gender as the First Athlete, the AAC may elect a separate Alternate Rep to the USOC AAC. The Alternate Rep’s primary responsibility is to attend USOC AAC meetings if the Primary Rep cannot attend. In addition, the Second Athlete may also voluntarily contribute to USOC AAC efforts.
Election Procedure

A total of seven (7) candidates will be selected to serve on the AAC. All qualified candidates who submit complete applications before the application deadline will be placed on the ballot. All athletes who meet the 10 year rule are eligible to vote and will be sent the ballot electronically along with all candidate applications.

An approval voting system will be used for the election. Each voter may vote for any number of candidates indicating his/her approval of those candidates. Voters may also vote for zero (0) candidates. Each approval vote counts as 1 vote for the corresponding candidate.

The seven (7) candidates receiving the most votes shall be elected as members of the AAC, unless all of the top seven (7) vote getters are of the same gender. In this case, the candidate of the opposite gender receiving the most votes will replace the 7th place candidate as a member of the AAC. In the event of a tie in vote count affecting the composition of the AAC, the Nominating and Governance Committee shall break the tie by selecting from candidates involved in the tie.

Once the AAC is elected, its first order of business will be to elect the First Athlete and Second Athlete. AAC members who indicate interest in these positions will be placed on a ballot. After discussion, all AAC members will vote using the same approval voting method used to elect the AAC. The candidate receiving the most votes will assume the role of First Athlete. The candidate receiving the second most votes will assume the role of Second Athlete. In the case of a tie affecting the selection of either position, the Nominating and Governance Committee shall break the tie by selecting from candidates involved in the tie.

Election Timeline

  • July 15, 2016: application deadline (may be extended if fewer than 7 applications are received)
  • August 29, 2016: electronic ballots distributed
  • September 4, 2016: AAC voting deadline
  • AAC members will be announced as soon as voting results are finalized and any ties are broken by the Nominating and Governance Committee. 
  • Ballots for First Athlete and Second Athlete will be prepared and distributed as soon as the newly elected AAC has been given the opportunity to express interest in the positions and is ready to vote.
Application Materials

Interested persons should submit the following:

  • A brief cover letter summarizing qualifications, motivation, and willingness to serve 
  • Current resume/CV with professional, athletic, and governance qualifications
  • Date of most recent Operation Gold event

The submitted information will be forwarded to all eligible voters for review. Please ensure that you are a USATT member in good standing throughout the application and election process. USATT will verify membership status before the AAC election ballot is finalized.

All applications and questions about the application and election process should be sent to Dennis Taylor (dennis.taylor@usatt.org). Applications should be submitted in full by July 15, 2016. You shall receive a confirmation email upon receipt of your application.

See the complete USATT bylaws here for more information regarding the AAC and Athlete Director positions.