Affiliate Specific

[ Re-Affiliation Required Documentation ] 

NAMI Affiliate Mission Statement
Incorporation – Articles of Incorporation
Incorporation – Certificate of Incorporation
Bylaws – Current
Bylaws – Legal Review Letter
Advocacy Contact

NAMI Affiliate Mission Statement

Your mission statement must be in alignment with the mission of NAMI and NAMI Wisconsin.

NAMI Wisconsin Mission:

The mission of NAMI Wisconsin is to improve the quality of life of people affected by mental illnesses and to promote recovery.

NAMI Mission:

NAMI is a grassroots organization of individuals with mental illnesses, especially serious mental illnesses, their family members, and friends whose mission is to advocate for effective prevention, diagnosis, treatment, support, research and recovery that improves the quality of life of persons of all ages who are affected by mental illnesses.

Your mission statement should be short (as little as one impactful sentence and no more than a paragraph), clear, compelling and easy for people to remember.

Incorporation – Articles of Incorporation

  • Original “Articles of Incorporation” document
  • If the affiliate’s name has changed over time, be sure to include the amendment to the “Articles of Incorporation” that provided for this name change (filed with the Wisconsin Secretary of State’s office)

Articles of Incorporation usually contain the following:

  • Organization name
  • Address
  • Names of Incorporators
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Indication that the organization is not-for-profit
  • Notation that the organization will not engage in prohibited political and legislative activity
  • Instructions for distribution of assets upon the dissolution of the organization

For questions about these documents or incorporation, contact the Wisconsin Secretary of State’s Office – Corporations Bureau: (608) 261-7577

Incorporation – Certificate of Incorporation

Provide a copy of the official certification document provided by the State of Wisconsin (which includes the seal image and signature of the Secretary of State).

Bylaws – Current

Bylaws are written specifically for your affiliate and should include the following:

  • Mission
  • Definition and rights/privileges of membership
  • Financial parameters (dues, fiscal year)
  • Meetings (annual, regular, special, notice of)
  • Board of Directors (qualifications, term of office, nomination process, vacancies, removal, general powers, limitations of power, conflict of interest)
  • Directors’ Meetings (annual, regular, special, quorum, duties, consent to corporate action)
  • Committees (executive, standing, other)
  • Officers (president, vice president, secretary, treasurer)
  • Executive Director
  • Indemnification of officers, directors, employees, agents
  • Notice of meetings
  • Revision of amendments
  • Seal
  • Dissolution

Prior to the adoption of your affiliate bylaws, you must first meet the legal review requirements denoted by NAMI. This can be achieved in one of two ways:

  • Use the sample bylaws document found on our Affiliate Leaders Administrative Resources page developed by NAMI Wisconsin and reviewed and approved by both a pro bono attorney and NAMI. To ensure your affiliate will not require additional legal review, it is important to note that your affiliate CANNOT alter any of the legal language included in the document and should only fill in the designated areas with affiliate specific information. If any major changes or additions are made to the existing document, you may subsequently be required to complete an additional legal review. If you have any questions or concerns, you can contact either Kyira Hauer or Julianne Carbin at 608-268-6000.

  • Generate your own bylaws that include any and all required items listed above and have them reviewed by NAMI Wisconsin and then an attorney. If you require assistance in completing the legal review, please contact the NAMI Wisconsin office as we may have some resources to aid in this process.

Note: Once your bylaws have met the above requirements, bylaws must be voted on and adopted by your voting members and board of directors.

View sample verbiage, bylaws template, and a resolution template for your affiliate

Additional Information:

A detailed FAQ section provided by NAMI

NAMI Affiliate Bylaws Checklist

Bylaws – Legal Review Letter

A legal review letter is required for all affiliates, whether you develop your own bylaws or use the template provided by NAMI Wisconsin. If your affiliate elects to use the template, you will need to maintain the integrity of the document without making revisions unless specifically  noted. This way they can be reviewed by our legal team to be sure these changes are okay. If you elect to use the template provided without significant changes, you will be able to utilize the legal team working with our state office to provide your legal review letter. If you elect to use your own version of the bylaws or make numerous changes to the template document, you will be required to complete a legal review from an outside source. 

With regards to the legal review, the letter must be provided by a lawyer licensed in the state of Wisconsin and indicate the following:

  • The bylaws adhere to all relevant Wisconsin state laws
  • Instructions on any necessary revisions for total compliance

This letter should be sent on official letterhead, complete with the name, credentials and contact information of the reviewer and signed by your attorney. Your affiliate can then upload this letter directly to the Profile Center.

Additional Information:

NAMI's Detailed Bylaw FAQs

If you need additional support in completing the required legal review, please contact the NAMI Wisconsin office at 608-268-6000 as we may have additional resources to offer.

Advocacy Platform

National requires a person to be in the role of the advocacy contact so as to have people to refer callers to in those areas or know whom to contact with regards to various issues. This contact should be someone who feels confident in their ability to help people find resources in your community and engages in and feels comfortable with leading support calls.