Bylaws Amendment Proposal: Election Results

Results: 544 (52%) Yes, 500 (48%) No (1 illegal vote that was not counted)
Proposed Change Needed 67% fo pass; motion failed.

We want to thank everyone for making their voice heard and taking the time to vote in this year’s election. We had a large turnout this year with 1045 members casting ballots. As your Bylaws Team, we are encouraged that more than 50% of members who voted feel that we are proceeding in the right direction with this proposed change. We are looking forward to the opportunity to have more conversations with the membership about the concerns around the proposed change. We hope that in the upcoming year we will be able to have those conversations in person, to help us learn together to set a future course.

Voter Guide (published July 26, 2021)

Voter Guide 2021PDF Document | 312.3 KB

The Voter Guide contains information on the proposed Bylaws Amendment, along with Executive Council Candidate details, and Nominating Committee Candidate names.

Update to the Bylaws Amendment Proposal (June 24, 2021)

by the Executive Council and Bylaws Team

During the last few months we have heard quite a few members express confusion and concern regarding some of the proposed Bylaws Amendments. The Bylaws Team and the Executive Council have heard this feedback and have made the decision to significantly reduce the number of Bylaws Amendments that we are proposing for this election cycle. 

2021_Bylaws(Proposed)PDF Document | 89.6 KB

This Bylaws Amendment project started in the fall of 2019 after a Mazama member raised a concern about the Mazama membership requirement to summit a glaciated peak. It was this single issue that was the focus of the Executive Council at that time as they initially reached out to committees and leaders within the organization, and as they created a Bylaws Team. Throughout the process of exploring the removal of summiting a glaciated peak as a membership requirement, the Executive Council and Bylaws Team thought it was worthwhile to rework our Bylaws to remove outdated language and to reduce the amount of operational specificity to allow for flexibility. We realize that the number of changes proposed seem significant, and that we need more time to engage the community to ensure the proposals are well understood prior to the election. We sincerely appreciate the feedback we have received and would like to thank everyone who has been involved in this process.

For the 2021 election, there will be one Bylaw Amendment on the ballot—

Article III – Members, Section 1, item will change from:

Annual member – Any person who has climbed by foot to the summit of a qualifying mountain,  on the sides of which there is at least one living glacier, shall be eligible for annual membership. (current)


Annual member – Application for membership shall be open to any person who supports the purpose statement in Article II* and whose values are congruent with those of the Mazamas. Continuing membership is contingent upon being up-to-date  on membership dues. (proposed change)

Your Executive Council is proposing this change for the following reasons:

  • To be a more welcoming and inclusive organization
  • To provide an opportunity for everyone who supports our mission to choose to become a full, contributing member to the Mazamas
  • To acknowledge that our organization has evolved, and like other alpine organizations we have expanded our offerings to include hiking, street rambles, backpacking trips, backcountry skiing, canyoneering, nordic programs, and kid’s camps. All of our activities are connected to our core mission and many folks who engage in these programs would like to become members.
  • Due to climate change we must acknowledge that the glaciers are receding and maintaining the membership requirement may not be viable for the long term.
  • Eliminating this requirement has the potential to increase our membership numbers and it opens up opportunities for foundation funding and a variety of grants we’re currently not eligible for since we are an exclusive organization due to having a prerequisite for membership.

Changing our membership requirement to fully share the opportunities of membership shows we are confident in who we are. We want people to share the experiences we’ve  had ourselves of personal growth, and wonder of the mountains. We want them to volunteer and dedicate themselves to making the  Mazamas the amazing community it is, and to inspire each other. 

We encourage you to vote in favor of this Bylaws Amendment in October.

*Article II: The Mazamas is organized and shall be operated exclusively for charitable, educational and scientific  purposes as defined in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. In furtherance thereof,  the object, business and pursuit of the Mazamas shall be to promote mountaineering, climbing safety, and the exploration of the alpine environment, especially in the Pacific Northwest, by providing  educational and training opportunities related to mountaineering and the alpine environment; collecting,  preserving and disseminating scientific information, memorabilia, data and knowledge concerning the  same; supporting the conservation and preservation of the natural environment; providing and promoting  climbing, hiking, outings, expeditions and other activities; and encouraging good fellowship and the  representation of the interests and concerns of its members. [Note: Provided as a reference for the reader; Article II remains unchanged.

Voter Guide

The Voter Guide is your complete resource for all information needed for this special election. It will include the Bylaws Amendment proposal along with statements for and against.

If you would like to submit a comment the deadline is July 14. 

Submit Comment

Look for the Voter Guide on August 1, 2021.


Online Voting

The Mazama Bylaws Amendment vote will be administered via an online voting system. If you would like to opt-out of online voting, please complete this form by August 15, 2021.