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Elections and appointments

RCN elections and appointments

You can make a difference by getting involved.

You can get more involved in the RCN by putting yourself forward as a candidate for RCN Council or a committee, board or forum. As a member, it's important to make your voice heard by voting in RCN elections.  

Become a candidate

As a member of Council or a committee, board or forum, you'll have the chance to be more involved with the RCN and influence the issues that really matter to members and the wider profession. You'll also expand your own skills, knowledge and experience – all of which you can use and share in your workplace.

You can serve on:

  • Council or a board: you'll be at the top table of the RCN, where you'll make sure the organisation is governed well and accountable to its members
  • a representative committee: you'll be the eyes and ears of members, making sure their views are represented at all times
  • a forum steering committee: you'll stay at the forefront of UK developments in your nursing specialty
  • a branch committee: you'll work closely with members at local level

Election or appointment?

Some roles, including Council members and the President and Deputy President, have to be elected positions by law. Our boards and UK representative committees are also elected roles. Branch committee members are elected annually at the branch general meeting. We run an appointment process for our forum steering committees and for some casual vacancies.

Your commitment

Most roles require you to attend a certain number of meetings per year either in person or remotely, as well as some commitment and time in between meetings.

You can find out more about specific roles by reading the role descriptor. Role descriptors are always made available on the RCN website when roles are announced. If you have more questions after reading the description of the role, you can email the RCN Governance Team at

Before you put yourself forward for an RCN role, you must speak with your manager and seek their support. Our staff will also speak to your manager (or tutor if you’re a student) if it helps.

The RCN is committed to equal opportunities. If you have special requirements when applying or standing for election please email us at so we can support you.

How to run a successful election campaign

To be in with a chance of getting elected, you need the support of RCN members. This requires a good campaign. Get advice and information on how to campaign effectively and how the RCN will support you with your campaign.

Members at RCN Congress

Vote in an RCN election

To vote in an RCN election:

  • you must be an RCN member
  • you must meet any eligibility criteria unique to an election.

Information about the candidates for any upcoming election is always made available on this section of the website during the voting period to help you make an informed choice.

You will be asked to vote in one of two ways – by post (for any member of RCN Council including the President and Deputy President) or electronically via a link from an email (all other elections).

Where possible, ballot papers for Council member elections will be included with your RCN Bulletin, Student Magazine or Health + Care magazine. You will need to return your filled out ballot paper in the paid envelope before voting closes.

If you have lost or mislaid your ballot paper please email us at to arrange a replacement.