The State Central Committee (SCC), as the governing and policy making body of the Utah Republican Party of Utah (UTGOP) is a deliberative assembly. The fundamental rights of deliberative assemblies require all questions to be thoroughly discussed before taking action requiring the assistance of a Registered Parliamentarian while conducting all of its meetings. As a deliberative assembly, “the leader’s role is to facilitate the group in making decisions. The focus is on the will of the members, not the will of the presiding officer.”
After being elected Chairman of UTGOP in 2017, Rob Anderson “contacted the Republican National Committee (RNC) to ask for the best Parliamentarian in the RNC Western States region and they recommended Professional Registered Parliamentarian, Carrie Dickson.” She has since served as the official parliamentarian for Rob Anderson as he conducts the meetings of the UTGOP SCC. (For the record, Carrie Dickson has been providing her services as a professional parliamentarian to the UTGOP for years).
The National Association of Parliamentarians (NAP) is the national body that certifies Professional Registered Parliamentarians, including Ms. Dickson. According to their website, “NAP’s members are Professional Registered Parliamentarians…who have reached the highest level of proficiency in the practice of parliamentary procedure.”
On October 16, 2017, I filed a 43 count complaint with the NAP Ethics Committee against Professional Registered Parliamentarian Carrie Dickson regarding our UTGOP SCC meeting held on September 9, 2017. Because of the extent of the complaint and the intervening holidays, the NAP President granted a 30-day extension for the committee to conclude its investigation.
According to the NAP, each of the examples given in the Ethics Complaint was reviewed individually based on the Ethical Standards in Relation to Clients cited in the complaint. In conducting this review, the committee considered the narrative in the complaint, the response from the respondent, the circulated agenda for the meeting, the script prepared by the Parliamentarian, the Utah Republican Party Bylaws, and the Utah Republican Party Constitution.
A parliamentarian’s work includes two essential components of effectively preparing for and presiding over a meeting. (1) Follow the agenda, and (2) handle motions fairly and consistently. And let’s be clear, the parliamentarian may give an interpretation of a rule, an opinion on a rule, or even be asked to cite a rule, but never rules. The parliamentarian is an advisor and therefore makes no final decisions. Decisions are the Chair’s job…These are just as much his mistakes as they are hers…it just so happens the complaint was filed against her.
Upon the conclusion of its investigation, the NAP Ethics Committee reprimanded Professional Registered Parliamentarian, Carrie Dickson, for the following:
It is important to note that when a Professional Registered Parliamentarian prepares a script to assist a presiding officer of a deliberative assembly, and something goes wrong, either the advice given to the presiding officer by the Professional Registered Parliamentarian is incorrect and the presiding officer acts on the advice…or the presiding officer ignores the advice of the Professional Registered Parliamentarian and acts on his own. Neither of these outcomes properly serves a deliberative assembly in the conduct of its affairs.
While in these cases, Chairman Anderson was not served properly by the Professional Registered Parliamentarian, Carrie Dickson, he has consistently chosen on countless other occasions to ignore Professional Registered Parliamentarian Carrie Dickson’s advice resulting in State Central Committee meetings devolving into chaos. Here are just a few examples of Chairman Anderson’s apathy toward our governing rules precedence including the UTGOP’s Constitution, Bylaws, and Robert’s Rules of Order, as well as our parliamentarians apathy or ignorance of our rules:
Additionally, Mr. Anderson has also exhibited behavior unbecoming an officer of the UTGOP, including:
Statements about Carrie Dickson
The Ethics Committee of the National Association of Parliamentarians drew the following conclusions:
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