1. This Chapter is a constituent member of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, an unincorporated organization (hereinafter, "Phi Beta Kappa Society"), or its successor-in-interest, and shall be known as the Delta of Iowa or as the Cornell College Chapter.
  2. This Chapter is under the general supervision and control of the Phi Beta Kappa Society. The purpose of Phi Beta Kappa is to recognize and encourage scholarship, friendship, and cultural interests, and to support excellence and integrity in the pursuit of the arts and sciences. Chapter activities encourage liberal education, scholarship, and concern for the responsible uses of knowledge. Individuals elected to membership commit themselves to advancing the goals of Phi Beta Kappa.
  3. The membership of the Chapter shall consist of charter members, members in course, alumni/ae members, honorary members, active members, and associate members. A citation of the qualifications of each person elected to alumni/ae or honorary membership shall be entered upon the minutes and submitted for record to the Secretary of the Phi Beta Kappa Society. A full report of all members elected, expelled, or recorded as having resigned or died shall be sent annually to the Secretary of the Phi Beta Kappa Society.
  4. This Chapter shall, by suitable bylaws, provide for the election of officers, the selection of members, the conduct of its meetings, and such other matters as may be deemed proper, provided that said bylaws shall contain nothing inconsistent with this Constitution or with the Constitution and Bylaws of the Phi Beta Kappa Society.
  5. his Chapter is organized and is to be operated exclusively for charitable and educational purposes within the meaning of Internal Revenue Code §501(c)(3) (references herein to the Internal Revenue Code, hereinafter "IRC," include the corresponding section(s) of any future United States tax code).

    No part of the net earnings of this Chapter shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable to, its directors, officers, members, trustees, or other private persons, except that the Chapter shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth herein. No substantial part of the activities of the Chapter shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and the Chapter shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements), any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office. Notwithstanding any other provision herein, the Chapter shall not carry on any activities not permitted to be carried on (a) by an organization exempt from federal income tax under IRC §501(c)(3), or (b) by an organization, contributions to which are deductible under IRC § § 170(c)(2), 2055(a)(2), or 2522(a)(2).

    Upon the dissolution of this Chapter, after paying or making provision for the payment of all of the lawful debts and liabilities of the Chapter, the assets shall be distributed to one or more of the following categories of recipients, as the Chapter shall determine:
    1. A nonprofit organization or organizations which may have been created to succeed the Chapter, as long as such organization or each such organization shall qualify as an organization described in §501(c)(3); and/or
    2. The Phi Beta Kappa Society, provided that it shall qualify at the time of distribution as an organization described in IRC §501(c)(3); and/or
    3. A nonprofit organization or organizations having similar aims and objectives as the Chapter and which may be selected as an appropriate recipient of such assets, as long as such organization or each such organization shall qualify as an organization described in IRC §501(c)(3); and/or
    4. The Federal government, or to a State or local government, but only if such assets will be used for a public purpose.


Historical Note: There is no known record of the Chapter's original Constitution. In 2002 an inquiry to the Washington office of the Phi Beta Kappa Society elicited the following response from Nan Coppock-Bland, Director of Chapter Relations: "Our files for the Delta of Iowa Chapter contain no constitution, but I found a request for one from the national Phi Beta Kappa secretary in 1932. None was received--probably because no one could find it."

The Chapter had been governed by by-laws alone at least since the 1950s. The current Constitution was adopted in 2002 to clarify the Chapter's relationship with the Phi Beta Kappa Society and its status as a tax-exempt organization under the Internal Revenue Service Code.