The Board shall consist of twenty-four members to be appointed by the President and of the Director ex officio. In addition to any powers and functions otherwise granted to it by this chapter, the Board shall establish the policies of the Foundation, within the framework of applicable national policies as set forth by the President and the Congress.
The persons nominated for appointment as members of the Board (1) shall be eminent in the fields of the basic, medical, or social sciences, engineering, agriculture, education, research management, or public affairs; (2) shall be selected solely on the basis of established records of distinguished service; and (3) shall be so selected as to provide representation of the views of scientific and engineering leaders in all areas of the Nation. In making nominations under this section, the President shall give due regard to equitable representation of scientists and engineers who are women or who represent minority groups. The President is requested, in the making of nominations of persons for appointment as members, to give due consideration to any recommendations for nomination which may be submitted to him by the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges, the Association of American Universities, the Association of American Colleges, the Association of State Colleges and Universities, or by other scientific, engineering, or educational organizations.
The term of office of each member of the Board shall be six years; except that any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of the term for which his predecessor was appointed shall be appointed for the remainder of such term. Any person, other than the Director, who has been a member of the Board for twelve consecutive years shall thereafter be ineligible for appointment during the two-year period following the expiration of such twelfth year.
The Board shall meet annually on the third Monday in May unless, prior to May 10 in any year, the Chairman has set the annual meeting for a day in May other than the third Monday, and at such other times as the Chairman may determine, but he shall also call a meeting whenever one-third of the members so request in writing. The Board shall adopt procedures governing the conduct of its meetings, including delivery of notice and a definition of a quorum, which in no case shall be less than one-half plus one of the confirmed members of the Board.
The election of the Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Board shall take place at each annual meeting occurring in an even-numbered year. The Vice Chairman shall perform the duties of the Chairman in his absence. In case a vacancy occurs in the chairmanship or vice chairmanship, the Board shall elect a member to fill such vacancy.
The Board may, with the concurrence of a majority of its members, permit the appointment of a staff consisting of professional staff members, technical and professional personnel on leave of absence from academic, industrial, or research institutions for a limited term, and such operations and support staff members as may be necessary. Such staff shall be appointed by the Chairman and assigned at the direction of the Board. The professional members and limited term technical and professional personnel of such staff may be appointed without regard to the provisions of title 5 governing appointments in the competitive service, and the provisions of chapter 51 of such title relating to classification, and shall be compensated at a rate not exceeding the maximum rate payable under section 5376 of such title, as may be necessary to provide for the performance of such duties as may be prescribed by the Board in connection with the exercise of its powers and functions under this chapter. Section 1873(a)(3) of this title shall apply to each limited term appointment of technical and professional personnel under this subsection. Each appointment under this subsection shall be subject to the same security requirements as those required for personnel of the Foundation appointed under section 1873(a) of this title.
The Board is authorized to establish such special commissions as it may from time to time deem necessary for the purposes of this chapter.
The Board is also authorized to appoint from among its members such committees as it deems necessary, and to assign to committees so appointed such survey and advisory functions as the Board deems appropriate to assist it in exercising its powers and functions under this chapter.
Portions of Board meetings in which the Board considers proposed Foundation budgets for a particular fiscal year may be closed to the public until the President’s budget for that fiscal year has been submitted to the Congress.