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Local UPA Chapters
Coming Soon to a Town Near You!
The effort of creating Local UPA Chapters is moving forward. The goal of the Chapters is to provide you with a platform for networking and skill development in the comfort of your own neighborhood. The focus is on truly local activities connecting usability professionals with each other. Some examples of what a Local Chapter may offer are; Business meetings with invited speakers, Usability lab tours and Usability roundtables, where you can bring interesting usability problems to be solved jointly,.

The first three pilot Chapters are well on their way of becoming officially recognized Local Chapters of the UPA.

  • The Minnesota Chapter, led by Lucy Suits <l.suits@worldnet.att.net> became the the first UPA chapter. Their petition was approved by the Board on November 30th..
  • The Toronto Chapter, lead by Steve Macko (Steve.Macko@Cognos.COM) has held a number of planning meetings and plans to submit their petition for Chapter recognition early in the new year. 
  • The UPA Chapter of Linköping, Sweden, lead by Åsa Granlund (Asa.Granlund@era.ericsson.se) was approved by the Board on December 28.  The picture below was taken at
    the first organizational meeting of the Linköping Chapter: 

So why not join the effort and start a Local Chapter in your town? These seven easy steps are an excerpt from the UPA Chapter Manual which will help you build the necessary infrastructure and also advice you on how to make your chapter grow and prosper. Here is the short route to get you started:

1. Contact the UPA office or a member of the UPA Chapters Committee and they will inform you how to access the Chapter Guidelines and other information that you need in order to start a local Chapter. You will be assigned a Chapter Sponsor who will also continue to help you create your Chapter bylaws and guide you through the process of getting approval from the UPA Board of Directors for Chapter status.

2. Round up three to five volunteers in your area, who are interested in starting a Local Chapter. This is the core team that will help you prepare the constituting meeting.

3. Write a tentative plan for future meetings and other chapter activities to present at the constituting meeting.

4. Organize a constituting meeting with at least ten people that are prepared to become UPA members, if not current members, and support the Local Chapter. Ways of rounding up people may include; e-mail invitations, kick-off meetings, announcements in news groups, newspaper ads, or asking the UPA office for a list of prospective members in the area.

5. Create a petition to form a Local UPA Chapter and have it signed at the meeting (with each name printed or typed next to the signature) by at least ten members requesting to be recognized as a local Chapter of UPA. Include also suggested Chapter name, Chapter boundaries and interim Chapter officers. The list of officers shall include a President, a Secretary, a Treasurer, or a Secretary/Treasurer, and additional officers as approved by the Chapter. Have the President also sign the Charter.

6. Find volunteers who will help develop the Chapter Bylaws in accordance with the suggested guidelines in the UPA Chapter Guidelines, or decide to adopt the template Bylaws for Chapters.

7. Submit the Bylaws to the Chapter Council, Chapter Sponsor and Chapter membership for review. After all changes have been made, submit the Petition, along with the Chapter Charter, proposed Bylaws and the proposed boundaries of the Chapter to the UPA Chapters Committee and UPA Board of Directors for approval.

To learn more about Local Chapters please contact:

Martin Rantzer (Martin.Rantzer@swipnet.se) or

Janice James (janice@simplyusable.com).