By-Laws / Code of Ethics



The name of this organization shall be the Virginia Association of Activity Professionals, hereinafter known as VAAP.


The object of this organization shall be to unify the district activity professional associations through state representation; to promote educational and professional development through conferences and workshops; and to promote effective statewide communications.


SECTION 1. QUALIFICATIONS. Membership in VAAP shall be open to individuals employed or interested in the provision of activity programming in long term health care facilities, retirement housing, assisted living; adult day care programs and senior centers.

SECTION 2. CLASSIFICATION. There shall be two (2) classes of membership:

ACTIVE MEMBERS. There shall be two (2) categories of active members.

Active members. Active members shall be persons currently employed or maintaining certification as an Activity Professional or Recreation Therapist in the long term care continuum or those serving as a consultant/educator to activity professionals or as a Life member. Active members shall have the rights to make motions, vote, hold office and chair committees.

Life members. Any VAAP member who has attained 25 years of continuous paid dues shall be honored with free lifetime membership and enjoy the same rights and privileges of active members. To retain life membership, members must submit an application form, with name and address, on an annual basis.


SECTION 1. ANNUAL DUES. Active members shall pay annual dues as set forth by the Board of Directors. Membership year will be from January – December calendar year. Dues shall not be prorated for membership renewals.

SECTION 2. STATE MONIES. As decided by the Board of Directors, all state monies shall be deposited into banks located in Virginia. Designators will be the state Treasurer and the state President. The state Treasurer and state President and/or Board of Directors appointed Designee shall be bonded and the cost of bonding shall be borne by VAAP.

SECTION 3. AUDITS. An Audit Committee, appointed by the President, shall meet during the state conference. The appointees shall consist of VAAP members from at least three (3) separate districts, plus one representative from the Board of Directors. The Treasurer shall be available to answer questions at the Audit meeting.


SECTION 1. STATE CONFERENCE. There shall be state conferences presented by VAAP and one or more of the district associations. The purpose of the conferences will be for furthering education and for the Annual Membership Meeting.

SECTION 2. The conference location should rotate districts each year. Appalachian, Central, Hampton Roads, Historyland, Northern, Richmond, and Southwestern.

Any District may decline to host the conference when presented with the hosting options.
Hosting the State Conference may be shared with no more than two Districts.

SECTION 3. HOST DISTRICT (S). The Host District(s), shall follow the VAAP Conference Guidelines.

SECTION 4. CONFERENCE MONIES. The hosting district shall open a separate account at an approved banking institution for the purpose of accounting. The account shall be opened with matching funds from the VAAP. All persons having access to the Conference Account must be bonded.

The profits realized from the State Conference shall be divided equally between the Hosting Districts(s) and the VAAP. In the instance when two districts organizations host the State Conference, the two districts shall decide on the division of profits from their half of the profits.

Payment to the VAAP is due no later than six months following conferences.


SECTION 1. OFFICERS. The elected officers of VAAP shall be a President, a Vice President, a Secretary, and a Treasurer to serve a 2 year term. President and Vice President Elections will be held during odd years and Secretary and Treasurer Elections will be held during even years.

SECTION 2. QUALIFICATIONS. All elected officers of VAAP shall be members of VAAP and certified with NCTRC, NCCAP, or NAAP or have 5 years full time experience in the activity field. To be eligible for any elected office the nominee must have at least one year of Board service prior to nomination.

SECTION 3. VACANCY. A vacancy in the office of President shall be filled by the Vice President. The vacancy thus created in the office of Vice President, and any other vacancy shall be appointed by the President and approved by the Board of Directors.


The President shall:
Preside at all state Board of Directors meetings and all called meetings.
Preside at all annual Membership meetings.
Appoint all Committee Chairs and State Contacts with Board Approval for a term of 2 years.
Appoint all special committees pertaining to the Board of Directors.
Serve as an ex-officio member of all committees except the Nominating Committee.
Serve as liaison for VAAP members.
Assume other responsibilities as described in job description.

The Vice President shall:
Assume the duties of the President in the absence of the President.
Fill the unfinished term of the President.
Assume other responsibilities as described in job description.

The Secretary shall:
Record the minutes of all meetings and provide copies to the Board of Directors and committee chairpersons.
Be responsible for notifications of the Board of Directors meetings.
Be responsible for all correspondence not otherwise specified.
Assume other responsibilities as described in job description.

The Treasurer shall:
Keep accurate records of all state finances.
Present a financial statement at each scheduled meeting of the Board of Directors.
Present books for yearly audit.
Receive and process all dues.
Keep a list of current VAAP membership.
Assume other responsibilities as described in job description.

SECTION 5. REMOVAL FROM OFFICE. If an officer misses participating in more than two meetings of his/her term, the Board of Directors, by a majority vote taken at a regular scheduled meeting, may declare that office vacant. The vacancy thus created shall be filled as prescribed in these bylaws. The member in question must be notified in writing of the pending vote.


SECTION 1. NOMINATING COMMITTEE. a Nominating Committee of three (3) shall be nominated by the VAAP President from among the Board of Directors. The Nominating Committee shall elect their chairperson.

SECTION 2. NOMINATIONS. Each district should submit a suggested slate of officers to the Nominating Committee Chairperson at the Board meeting in April. The Nominating Committee Chairperson will finalize the slate and present it at the July meeting. At the State Conference prior to election year during the VAAP General Membership meeting, volunteers or nominations from the floor will be accepted for the officers of VAAP President, VAAP Vice President, VAAP Secretary and VAAP Treasurer. Names will be placed on the ballot after meeting the requirements as determined by the VAAP Bylaws.


The Nominating Committee Chair of the VAAP shall send ballots to all members.

Any Board member who is on the ballot may not be a member of the Elections Committee.

Results will be announced at the Annual Membership Meeting. The Board will be notified first of the newly elected officers.

Plurality shall elect.

SECTION 4. CAMPAIGNING. No person nominated for an elected position on the VAAP Board shall actively campaign for the position. The opportunity to address individual positions to the membership will be sent with the ballots.


SECTION 1. COMPOSITION. The Board of Directors shall consist of elected state officers, two (2) representatives from each district, and the chairs of the standing committees, sub committees and may consist of the NAAP state contact, the NCCAP state contact or other individuals representing associations that the board deems necessary. Each member shall have one vote. All members of the Board shall be active members of VAAP.

SECTION 2. DUTIES. The Board of Directors shall:

Serve as the governing body of VAAP.

Authorize the expenditures of all state funds.

Determine the boundaries for each district.

Have the authority to adopt special rules or standing rules to govern its proceedings.

SECTION 3. MEETINGS. The Board of Directors’ meetings will be held on dates agreed upon the Board of Directors, or can be called by the state President as needed.

SECTION 4. QUORUM. Seven members of the Board of Directors who represent three different districts shall constitute a quorum on issues that require board approval. In the event that a quorum is not present, see Article IX, Section 4.


SECTION 1. COMPOSITION. The Executive Committee shall consist of the elected state officers and, two (2) district representatives from two (2) different districts other than the districts represented by the elected officers.

SECTION 2. MEETINGS. Meetings shall be called at the discretion of the President or of two (2) officers.

SECTION 3. DUTIES. The duties of the Executive Committee shall be to attend to the business that may arise between board meetings and to perform any other duties assigned to it by the Board of Directors. Action may be taken by email vote as well as in session vote. All actions taken by the Executive Committee shall be reported at the next board meeting and be recorded in the minutes of the board meeting.

SECTION 4. QUORUM. A quorum shall be three (3) officers and one (1) district representative, on issues that require the Executive committee approval.


SECTION 1. THE APPOINTMENTS SHALL BE: Awards, Government Relations, , Professional Development, and Ways and Means. The President will appoint positions with the approval of the Board of Director. Appointed positions may vary as needed.


The Awards Appointee will oversee awards presented by the association.

The Government Relations Appointee shall actively track and report to the Board of Directors legislative and regulatory issues effecting the profession at all levels of care.

The Professional Development Appointee shall oversee educational opportunities offered by the association.

The Ways and Means Appointee shall present fund-raising ideas to the Board of Directors for approval, carry out projects as directed, and oversee the sale of VAAP merchandise.

SECTION 4. SPECIAL APPOINTEES Special appointees and liaisons may be appointed by the President when deemed necessary for the good of the association.


Proposed amendments to these bylaws may be submitted in writing by any member of VAAP to the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors will submit proposed amendments to all members. A two-thirds vote of ballots returned will amend these bylaws.


SECTION 1. ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING. A general membership meeting shall be held annually at a time chosen by the State Board. This meeting shall be presided over by the State President. The meeting shall be open to all VAAP members,

SECTION 2. PURPOSE. The purpose of the Annual Membership Meeting is for:

A yearly review of the VAAP by the President, elected officers and board appointees.

Installation of newly elected officers.


The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern this association in all cases to which they are applicable, and in which they are inconsistent with these Bylaws.


Revised and Updated
October 2009; April 2014, July 2019

VAAP Code of Ethics

Code of Ethics


The Virginia Association of Activity Professionals (VAAP) is a professional organization committed to promoting quality of life in geriatric settings. All active members are expected to adhere to the standards listed here in addition to the general principles of ethical conduct endorsed by all other health-related disciplines. As the code of ethics of this organization, this document establishes principles that define the ethical behavior of its members. All members of the Virginia Association of Activity Professionals are required to adhere to the Code of Ethics. The following declaration establishes principles that define the ethical behavior of members and is called the VAAP Code of Ethics. The Code of Ethics will serve as the basis for processing ethical complaints initiated against members of the association.

I. Professional Responsibility

All members have a responsibility to read, understand, and follow the Code of Ethics. They are expected to adhere to these standards in their professional practice in order to maintain their membership.

II. General Standards

The member strives to enhance the development of the profession by seeking to improve professional practices through teaching, service, advocacy and leadership
The member recognizes the need for professional growth and continuing education.
The member neither claims nor implies professional qualifications exceeding those possessed.
The member applies continuous Quality Improvement practices.
The member provides only those services for which they are qualified by training or experience.
The member shall honor all financial commitments made to the VAAP, i.e. membership fees, education/conference fees, and ways & means.

III. Resident/Client Relationship

The member guards the rights and individual dignity of the resident/client and promotes their welfare.
The member does not condone or engage in discrimination based on age, color, culture, disability, ethnic group, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, or socioeconomic status.
The member does not bring personal issues to the resident/client relationship.
The member shall advocate on behalf of the resident/client to receive appropriate activity services.
The member must ensure that residents/clients of various functioning ability levels have equal access and are provided appropriate activity services.
The member respects their resident/client’s right to privacy and confidentiality.

IV. Professional Relationship Standards

The member has a responsibility to the institution in which s/he performs service to maintain the highest standard of professional conduct and services to their clients. The acceptance of employment implies that the member is in agreement with their general policies and objectives, and therefore, provides services that are in accordance with them. If the member finds that the institutional policy and service systems hampers residents/clients potential and/or prevents access to service, the member must seek to cause the employer to change such policy and/or systems.
Ethical behavior among professional associations is expected at all times.
The member must seek professional review and evaluation on a regular basis.
The member must establish interpersonal relations and working agreements with other department personnel and define relationships, responsibilities and accountability in regard to their common residents/clients.
The member, who supervises activity staff, must be responsible for in-service development for activity staff, inform their staff of department ethics, and core value and program goals, and provide staff with practices that guarantee the rights and welfare of each resident/client who receives their services.
The member who supervises activity staff must be just and fair with staff, give credit when it is due and give counsel when work performance is below standard.

V. Educational Standards

The member shall continue to complete educational sessions both academic and continuing education, in order to keep abreast of quality activity programming, and if certified to meet education standards set forth by certifying organization.
The member shall report accurately and fairly the educational sessions attended and the credit received.
The member shall refuse to participate in falsification of any educational documents.

VI. Experiential Standards

The member shall meet federal and state regulations regarding standards to be a qualified director of an activity program before marketing oneself as a professional in the provision of activities programming.
The member will avoid any falsification or misrepresentation of one’s employment record.
The member shall function at the highest practical level of one’s ability and skill to the benefit of the residents/clients.

VII. Resolving Ethical Issues

Members are responsible for understanding and following this Code of Ethics. Lack of knowledge or misunderstanding of an ethical responsibility is not a defense against a charge of unethical conduct. It is the responsibility of the VAAP Board of Directors to review such charges. If it is found that a member is not adhering to the VAAP Code of Ethics the membership may be rescinded or denied. If the member is also a certified professional through a national accreditation organization the member’s unethical conduct will be reported to their certifying organization.