Lodge Secretary – Skills, Personality Traits, Roles and Responsibilities

Richard H. Ryder, 2018

The following is a dynamic list of potential skills, roles, and responsibilities for a Lodge Secretary.  The lists are not to suggest that every Lodge Secretary possess everything listed, but rather to raise one’s awareness of areas for self-improvement. Some lodges may have other members who fulfill some of the roles and responsibilities that may in practice, default to secretaries.  This list is not exhaustive and will be periodically updated. Some of the items below were derived from the Lodge Secretary Training Presentation developed by R.W. Stephen Cohn, conversations with current and past Lodge Secretaries, and personal experience.

Roles

  • Communications Manager
  • Relationship Manager
  • Time Manager
  • Project Manager
  • Recordkeeper
  • Bookkeeper
  • Team builder
  • Meeting Assistant
  • Publicist
  • Writer
  • Scribe
  • Arbitrator
  • Diplomat
  • Confidant
  • Advisor
  • Mentor
  • Leader
  • Organizer
  • Liaison
  • Public Speaker
  • Bylaws Expert
  • Grand Constitutions Source
  • Protocol Source
  • Application Software User
  • Social Media Student
  • Photo Organizer and Editor

Skills and Personality Traits

  • Effective note taking, listening, speaking, and writing
  • Detail orientated
  • Patience
  • Relationship building
  • Accuracy and attention to detail
  • Time management
  • Ability to prioritize
  • Ability to organize large amounts of data
  • Able to instill trust
  • Sound judgement and discretion
  • Strong proficiency with Masonic Online Registry Interface (MORI)
  • Working knowledge of word processing, spreadsheet, and publishing software applications
  • Understanding and possible working knowledge of photo storage, sharing, and editing
  • Understanding of appropriate web site content
  • Understanding of and comfortable using social media
  • Understanding and comfortable using mail distribution groups
  • Basic understanding of sound bookkeeping practices

Responsibilities

  • Record and transcribe meeting notes, and present them to the lodge at the next meeting
  • Generate and distribute monthly notices in a timely and accurate manner, with input from the Master
  • Receive and record dues payments and other monetary receipts
  • Maintain accurate and complete membership information on MORI and local database
  • Issue dues cards in a timely fashion
  • Receive correspondence from outside the lodge (ex. Grand Lodge, members, district officers)
  • Fully understand lodge bylaws, grand constitution, and Masonic protocol
  • Process membership applications and keep candidates informed about meetings and events
  • Read applications for membership during monthly communications
  • Procure and distribute candidate kit contents
  • Ensure recently raised Master Masons sign the lodge bylaws
  • Assist the Master in creating investigation committees
  • Procure, when authorized, Past Master jewels and aprons
  • Provide monthly report (control sheet) on membership statistics
  • Complete Grand Lodge Return of Officers
  • Prepare for and meet with District Secretary prior to DDGM official visit, ensuring records are in order
  • Apply to Grand Lodge for dispensations, when necessary and required
  • Process demits, suspensions, reinstatements, certificates of compliance and prior membership
  • Provide required reports to Grand Lodge: IRS 990, Age 89 Report, Grand Lodge Dues Form, Annual returns (i.e. vouchers), Recapitulation.
  • Be aware of and comply with IRS filing requirements
  • Remit payments to Grand Lodge, when necessary and required
  • Help ensure receipt and timely distribution of awards and medals, including the following: Veteran’s Medal, Service Awards, Past Master certificates, Master Rookie and Master Builder Awards.
  • Assist in preparing for official visit of the District Deputy Grand Master and fraternal visit of the Grand Master or District Deputy Grand Master
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