Executive Roles Defined

The Executive Committee of the Ottawa West-Nepean Federal Liberal Association

The OWNFLA Constitution Article 1.0 states that the Executive Committee of the EDA shall have an Executive Committee composed of:

1.1.1. a President;
1.1.2. an Executive Vice-President;
1.1.3. a Treasurer;
1.1.4. a General Secretary;
1.1.5. Vice President: Membership;
1.1.6. Vice President: Fundraising
1.1.7. Vice President: Policy
1.1.8. 15 Directors-at-large;
1.1.9. the Liberal Member of Parliament for the Electoral District, the nominated candidate if there is one, or the defeated candidate in the last election or by-election if a new candidate has not been nominated;
1.1.10. the immediate Past President of the EDA;
1.1.11. the President of the federal OYL Club for the Electoral District, if there is one;
1.1.12. the President of the APLCO Association, if any, within the Electoral District;
1.1.13. the President of the Women’s Liberal Club or Association, if any, within the Electoral District; and
1.1.14. the President of the Senior’s Liberal Club or Association, if any, within the Electoral District.
1.1.15. the immediate past Liberal Member of Parliament for Ottawa West-Nepean who is a current member of the Electoral District
1.2. The table officers of the EDA shall be those people elected to the positions listed in 1.1.1 – 1.1.7
1.3. At least one person twenty-five years of age or under shall be on the Executive Committee of the EDA, plus the President of the Young Liberal Association, if there is one, in the Electoral District.
1.4. The Presidents of those Provincial Liberal Associations whose boundaries overlap those of this EDA shall be non-voting, ex-officio members of the EC.

General responsibilities of all Executive Board Members

Executive members must be prepared to attend at least one (1) monthly evening meeting. The day of the monthly meeting will be set by each newly elected Executive. Meetings generally run for two (2) hours. Additionally, all members are expected to join one (1) working committee which should also meet monthly and may take on additional duties as activities arise such as a policy, community or fundraising event. Table Officers (President, all VPs, the Treasurer and Secretary) may also meet once a month. Executive members who miss 3 meetings in a row without good cause will be asked to leave the executive. Members of the Association who wish to get involved but cannot make these time commitments are encouraged to get involved with Committees that allow more flexibility in time commitment.

Following are more details that relate to specific roles on the Electoral District Association (EDA) Executive. Refer to the Liberal Party of Canada (Ontario) (LPC(O)) Handbook on EDAs for more information.


The various roles of the EDA President can be divided into two basic categories, external and internal functions. Internal functions are those activities within the association and external are those directed outside of the association.

The President

• Should have a working knowledge of all Liberal Party governance documents;
• Unless otherwise determined by the Executive is the public spokesperson for the EDA should the need arise and is the voice of the EDA at Executive Board or regional meetings;
• Must ensure that the EDA complies with non-financial reporting requirements of the Canada Elections Act;
• Should try to attend all meetings as they arise, whether convened by LPC(O) or LPC;
• Should encourage other members of her/his Executive to accompany her/him to Executive Board meetings, regional meetings, and other meetings where one is not required to compete for a delegate position;
• Should use the services of the Outreach officer, Regional President, and Area Co-coordinator assigned to your EDA whenever possible;
• Attend regional meetings or send a designate;
• Attend training courses or send a designate;
• Communicate regularly with the designated outreach worker regarding: Coming events with the Riding, Scheduling of Annual General Meetings, reporting changes to the Executive, discussing possible changes to the constitution, and any other issues which may require assistance or support.


The internal functions of the EDA President can be extensive. Unlike the external functions which are largely determined by the Elections Canada, the Liberal Party of Canada and the Liberal Party of Canada (Ontario), the internal functions are governed in some part by the EDA’s constitution but more likely by precedent. Below is a list of many of the administrative tasks for the EDA President:
• Preside at all Executive and/or Board meetings and EDA meetings;
• Ensure that the EDA sets regular meeting dates for the coming year;
• Seeks Executive approval to set the date for the annual general meeting (AGM) and any delegate selection meetings that may arise;
• Together with the Executive Secretary, set agendas for Executive/Board meetings and make sure they are sent out well in advance to all members of the Executive/Board;
• Ensure that the EDA creates a Strategic Plan for your EDA and work to see that it is followed;
• Communicate! Make sure you share with your EDA what you experience at Executive Board meetings. Share all communications you receive from LPC(O) and from your regional President. Keep everyone informed. Members want to feel connected to the central party and you are their conduit;
• Encourage members to run for positions on the EDA Executive;
• Encourage members to run for delegate positions for conventions;
• Know the rules of the EDA’s constitution and party Governance and ensure they are followed;
• Conduct the meetings and business of the EDA in a professional manner;
• Have the Vice-Presidents or Directors lead or join committees. This is a positive way to encourage participation, build skill, and have more members involved;
• Ensure members are engaged in the activities of the EDA;
• Monitor committees’ progress and conduct regular follow-up;
• Executive members and chairs should all report to the President;
• Have all necessary powers to ensure the daily functioning of the Association.

Relevant Skills

• Experience within the Liberal Party and on the Executive of the EDA;
• Knowledge of the political process;
• Organized and able to help set direction for the Riding;
• Sensitive to people of different backgrounds and experiences;
• Leadership and good management ability: confidence, able to chair meetings appropriately, facilitate discussion, mediate, engage people; and
• Bilingualism is an asset as OWN is a bilingual area.


Executive Vice President

The Executive VP ‘s main responsibility is to be the backup person for the President. In other words, when the President is not available or needs to delegate activities to other Executive members, the VP shall be fill in for the President. That may include chairing meetings, attending meetings as official representative of the Executive, being official liaison with community organizations or the MPs office. The VP will usually have signing authority along with the President and Treasurer for cheques and other official documents. The VP may also take on responsibility of chairing or organizing specific activities that are important to the EDA.

Relevant Skills:

• Organized and able to help set direction for the Riding;
• Knowledge of the political process
• Sensitive to people of different backgrounds and experiences
• Leadership and good management skills as those listed for President; and
• Some experience within the Party and the EDA.

Recording/General Secretary

The General Secretary of the EDA, on the instruction of the President, shall call and set the agenda for all meetings of the EDA as well as establish the venue for meetings. The General Secretary shall keep minutes of each meeting and shall distribute such minutes of each meeting before the subsequent meeting for ratification. The General Secretary shall keep a record of all EDA correspondence and ensure that the Riding constitution remains compliant with the provisions in both the LPC and the LPC(O) constitutions.

Relevant Skills:

• Strong listener with good writing skills;
• Well organized;
• Able to focus during lively discussions; and
• Confident to ask questions.

Treasurer / Financial Agent

The Financial Agent is responsible for administering its financial transactions and reporting them, as required by the Canada Elections Act. Although it is not a legal requirement, a Financial Agent should be experienced in managing finances. The role requires a strong ability in controlling, recording and administering financial transactions as well as creating financial reports.
Only an individual who is eligible to vote and has the capacity to enter into contracts in the province in which the person ordinarily resides can be a Financial Agent. The Financial Agent’s responsibilities and obligations:
• ensures all invoices are paid in a timely manner according to the instructions of the Executive
• maintains records of incoming donations and transfers of donations from LPC (Liberal Party of Canada)
• communicates with LPC to ensure direct donations are receipted
• complies with Elections Canada in regards to fundraising events
• reports monthly to the executive on the financial status of the EDA (Electoral District Association)
• completes appropriate spreadsheets in compliance with the bank statements to produce financial statements
• provides the EDA’s auditor with copies of all transactions to ensure accurate yearly records are filed with Elections Canada
• offers advice to Executive members in regards to financial matters and their compliance with the Canada Elections Act
• liaises with the campaign team during an event in regards to financial transactions

Relevant skills:

• An understanding of financial accounting and banking
• An understanding of the requirements of the Canada Elections Act
• Ability to present financial information to the Executive and the membership at an AGM

Vice President Membership

The main role of the VP Membership is to recruit members in the Riding and maintain accurate up-to date membership records that can be obtained by consulting regularly with LPC(O) and or directly through Liberalist. Party memberships can be purchased both online at Liberal.ca or by filling out a paper form and submitting it to LPC(O). LPC(O) maintains member records through the National Membership Registry (NMR) Database which then feeds membership information into Liberalist daily. All membership applications received in the Riding must be sent (payment attached) to LPC(O). Memberships are only valid when received and verified by the PTA office. Riding Presidents receive regular notification of members, supporters or volunteers who sign ups via the web site and LPC(O) provides updates on memberships received in the office. The VP Membership can ask to be added to the list to receive notice of new members. It is the role of the VP Membership to reach out to new members by welcoming them and engaging them such as by asking how they would like to get involved in the EDA. Coordination with the Volunteer Coordinator is important.
Themed membership drives have proven to be a great way to sign up new members and renew those that have lapsed as well as engage Liberal minded people in the Riding. ‘Associate’ membership status is for those members who live outside the boundaries of the Riding, as defined by Elections Canada. These members may sit on the Riding Executive Board if elected and contribute fully, but they may not vote in a Riding AGM or Nomination meeting. It is important for the VP Membership to maintain up-to-date information about associate members. The National Membership Rules can be found on the LPC(O) website.

Relevant Skills:

• Well organized with ability to keep records and use Liberalist;
• Good communications skills that encourage engagement of members;
• Creative to assist with recruitment of new members; and
• Bilingualism is an asset.

Vice President Policy

The VP Policy is responsible for assembling and chairing the EDA Policy Committee. The Policy Committee should include members from the Executive as well as from the general membership. The chair should have a strong, demonstrated grasp of the rules of procedure. Any policy goals and/or activities pursued by the Policy Committee within the Riding must also be approved by the EDA Executive.
The VP Policy should strive to keep the EDA Executive, the general members and the PTA Policy committee informed about developing trends within the community by serving as an intermediary between the various components. A regular update in the EDA newsletter or on the EDA web site is a good option for improving communication and feedback and identifying current Issues. The Committee should develop a list of policy issues that it believes further discussion and debate would be beneficial. Committee members can then be assigned topics of interest in order to conduct further research. This research should be summarized and prepared for the next general meeting or policy forum where issues can be further discussed and resolutions proposed. The VP Policy should consider a number of options such as town halls, panel discussions, discussion groups, debates and policy socials for engaging the Liberal EDA membership, its supporters as well as general members of the community by planning events that stimulate and encourage input and discussion
The VP Policy is encouraged to document and share results with their EDA Executive, their Area Policy Representative and VP of Policy. Use regional meetings to gain support and share ideas for improving resolutions. Notification will be given when policy resolutions are to be submitted by EDAs to LPC(O) for prioritization and submission to LPC.

Relevant Skills:

• Confident to chair meetings and work with a committee;
• Ability to undertake both operational and strategic planning;
• Understanding of public policy and the public policy process; and
• Strong communications skills including an aptitude for writing.

Vice President Fundraising

While all Executive members are expected to help fundraise towards a financially robust EDA association, the VP Fundraising is expected to coordinate the efforts. In addition, the fundraising chair is expected to help procure the necessary funds to run a well-financed campaign for the next general election, whether in support of a Liberal MP or to elect a Liberal MP. The VP Fundraising should establish a committee to develop an annual plan for fundraising which may include both small and large events. Together with the President, the Treasurer, and VP Membership, the VP Fundraising is responsible for coordinating at least one Victory Fund Drive in the Riding per year.

Relevant Skills:

• Experience in fundraising;
• Understands the Laurier Club and Victory Fund;
• Good knowledge of Liberalist;
• Able to lead, inspire and organize a committee to raise money.


Each EDA determines how many Directors it will have. OWNFLA currently has 15 positions for Directors. Of those, three will be designated as Outreach, Communications, and Election Readiness Chairs with specific responsibilities.
Directors should bring a variety of skills and interests to the Board that will complement the backgrounds of other Board members. The Board generally should reflect the community as much as possible including gender, language, minority and ethnic representation. Directors should be prepared to attend regular meetings and chair or work on committees.

Relevant Skills:

• Good communicator- both listening and spoken;
• Respect for others;
• Desire to engage and work with others;
• Able to attend regular meetings and commit time to committee work or extra activities; and
• Time and interest in working on committees and activities.

Outreach Chair

The Outreach Chair manages and leads the EDA’s outreach program, which encompasses all activities undertaken by your Riding association for the purpose of connecting with and earning the confidence of the larger community in your Riding beyond known Liberal members and supporters. Whereas campaigning during an election necessarily focuses on identifying and getting out the Liberal vote within the confines of a writ period, outreach is about changing hearts and minds. It involves gradually and respectfully building trust, mutual understanding, goodwill and relationships, demonstrating to our fellow citizens that Liberals truly share their values, care about the same issues and offer real solutions.
Outreach is the core job of EDAs between elections. It has to be done locally, by people meaningfully engaging with people. Effective outreach starts with listening. Identify key segments within your community. Speak with both opinion leaders and ordinary citizens from each target segment to learn the circumstances that define that grouping, their concerns and the issues that matter to them. Only then, start to consider how federal Liberals might be able to help and possibly champion those issues in a way that aligns with Liberal values.
Finally, visibly demonstrate those values in action through appropriate outreach activities. The activities of the VP Outreach and Committee will work closely with the VP Policy and the Volunteer Coordinator as well as the Seniors and Youth representatives on the Executive.

Relevant Skills:

• Respect for people of different backgrounds and experiences and ability to build trust and strong community relationships;
• Good listener and organizer;
• Knowledge of the community that the EDA serves; and
• Confidence to initiate new activities and establish new relationships.

Communications Chair

The Communications Chair is responsible for ensuring that EDA communications with members are timely, regular and consistent. The Communications Chair should chair a committee who will work with other executive members especially the President, VP Membership, Outreach Chair, and VP Fundraising to do the following:
• Maintain the Riding website and Facebook page;
• Send out a newsletter to members on a regular basis;
• Prepare and send out Information related to Riding and Liberal Party activities, notices for fundraisers and other Riding events to members and, where appropriate, to the general public; and
• Keep abreast of changes to Liberalist, especially as it relates to communications with EDA members

Relevant Skills:

• Strong communications skills, especially related to social media, Facebook and webpage design;
• Able to coordinate a team to maintain various communications within the EDA;
• Understand and able to extensively use Liberalist; and
• Bilingualism is a big asset.

Election Readiness Chair

An Election Readiness Chair is critical for pre-writ planning in advance of general elections. A multidisciplinary role, the Election Readiness Chair will have to liaise with every other committee chair in order to ensure that the EDA will be fully prepared for the coming campaign. You will want to work with the President, Treasurer and VP Fundraising to get a sense of what kind of funds your candidate and their team will be working with. Fundraising should not be left until the last minute. You will also want to work with the VP Membership and the Outreach and Communications Chairs to get a sense of how many people will need to be contacted before the writ drops to make the ask for sign locations and volunteers.
As the Election Readiness Chair, you should be putting yourself into the shoes of the next campaign manager. Your job is to make life as simple for that person and your next candidate as possible. In the months leading up to the campaign you should be scouting potential candidates to ensure that your EDA has the best possible person to represent them. Other key role responsibilities include plotting potential canvassing routes, using Liberalist and Elections Canada data to figure out which polls in your Riding need the most attention in order to win/keep the seat, liaising with local party members on the location of the campaign office, and scouting potential supporters and members to volunteer for the campaign.

Relevant Skills:

• Confident organizer and leader;
• Able to work well with others;
• Able to analyze data; and
• Confident using Liberalist.
As much as possible, the Directors of the Executive Board should include the following:

Volunteer Coordinator

The Volunteer Coordinator is a position that endeavours to engage people in the life of the association, the Party and the Member of Parliament. The Coordinator and a committee- working closely with other association committees and staff of the Member of Parliament if relevant- need to maintain a database of potential volunteers, identify volunteer jobs, and link the volunteers on the database with appropriate skill sets as required, often on an ad hoc basis. Such activities can include help with organizing and staffing events, membership renewal, coordinate letter packaging and delivery, and mail outs as well as data collection and analysis. The Committee should communicate with the list of identified volunteers regularly whether there is an immediate need or not. Along with the VP Membership, they will develop a protocol to “meet and greet” new members and volunteers. Ideally, the Volunteer Coordinator will develop and maintain a telephone tree of volunteers to help communicate with the membership.

Relevant Skills:

• Flexibility and able to work under stress
• Able to use Liberalist
• Good organizer and strong communicator
• Good team worker
• Bilingualism is an asset

Seniors Representative

A Seniors representative is a Director 65 years or older who represents concerns and interests of seniors in our community. S/he will work with the Outreach Chair to engage seniors in activities. The Seniors representative will also liaise with the National Seniors Commission.
A Youth representative is important to help engage youth (14-25 years) in the EDA. The Youth representative will liaise with the Youth Club if it exists. Youth are a natural pool of resource talent for an EDA. An active and successful youth outreach program builds Riding associations, growing its membership, its volunteer cadre and its donor base.

Indigenous Representative

An Aboriginal/Indigenous representative is a Director of indigenous heritage and is interested in acting as a representative for that community on the Board. The Director will bring issues of concern and interest from the indigenous community to the Executive and also be the liaison with the National Aboriginal Commission.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *