Month: May 2016

1997 IEEE President objects

Yes, please add my name to the list of those who want the defeat of this change!

Charles K. Alexander, PhD, HDr.Eng., LFIEEE, P.E.
1997 IEEE President and CEO
2013 IEEE Undergraduate Teaching Award
Director,  the Center for Research in Electronics and Aerospace Technology (CREATE)
Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering – Washkewicz College of Engineering
Cleveland State University


Ballot Objection Position from 4 Past IEEE Presidents

IEEE members, please vote NO on the proposed IEEE Constitutional Amendment.  IEEE is a volunteer led organization.  One of the proposed changes to the Constitution is to add the Executive Director (ED) to the Board of Directors.  But, this is unnecessary because according to IEEE Bylaw I-306.2, “The IEEE Executive Director shall attend meetings of the Board of Directors and shall be an active participant in their deliberations.”  And since the ED is a paid employee of IEEE, whose total compensation is about US$1 million a year, the proposed change would weaken the statement that IEEE is a volunteer led organization. (ED compensation was US$965,322 per latest publicly available Form 990.)

As the Board sets the ED’s compensation, adding the ED to the Board, even if in a non-voting capacity, diminishes the value of the statement that IEEE is a volunteer-led organization. The change is unnecessary and unwise.

Other proposed constitutional changes have been described by the proponents as minor; as just enabling changes, but, the changes they would enable have not been specified.  The “problems” described by the proponents, even if real, can be solved by means other than changing the constitution.  Therefore, please vote NO.

Submitted by:

  • Cleon Anderson, 2005 IEEE President
  • Chuck Alexander, 1997 IEEE President
  • Troy Nagle, 1994 IEEE President
  • John R. Vig, 2009 IEEE President


To direct folks to this position statement you can use:

The opposition web site for 2016 is:

And for ongoing independent discussion of the future of IEEE, join the Yahoo group:



Problems of Principles

My concerns are more on the principals of the proposed changes, rather than the details.

1. The Board will put forward the list of new proposed Directors. This sounds like a conflict.

2.  400k + members will vote for every (maybe more if competition is allowed) individual Director.  It is unrealistic to expect all members to spend time educating themselves on the merits of so many candidates.  In the US people from Texas don’t elect Senators from Florida.

3. Regions, Divisions and the Assembly have no control of the Board. Kind of dictatorship.

4.  All important changes are pushed in the ByLaws and the Board has the final decision what those are.

In other words, the Board will control who gets on the list of the new Board, and what would be the process, without any oversight.  Even if this Board is well intentioned, there is no guarantee that a future Board will not be self serving.

Tony Ivanov
2016 Washington DC Section Chair