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Jack R.
Jack R., Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  OH/TX Practicing Attorney focusing on Family Law, Foreclosure, Landlord-Tenant Issues.
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We have a local recreational club with a board, dues, etc.

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We have a local recreational club with a board, dues, etc. Currently we have a board member who is also a committee chair. As committee chair, she is in charge of hiring judges for our competitions. Being a liscensed judge herself, she hired herself as one of the judges for one of 5 of our shows. We are now having to address this issue. Some see this as a conflict of interest, and others do not. I am asking for an outside opinion on this issue so we can address this in the best interest of the club.

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In corporations board members are prohibited from what is called "self dealing" to otherwise obtaining a benefit without approval from the board. Self dealing is defined as

 

"The conduct of fiduciary that consists of taking advantage of his or her position in a transaction and acting for his or her own interests rather than for the interests of the of his or her clients.

 

If your chair cannot get approval from the club board then she should not participate as a judge.

 

From a practical perspective as long as your chair has no interest in the outcome, and no interest in the participants of the competition I do not see anything wrong with her participating. The questions amounts to whether she can judge a competition in a fair and unbiased manner.

 

A conflict of interest requires that there is some advantage to be obtained, or some factor affecting objectivity that exists such that a fair result could not be achieved without suspicion.

 

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