In November 1916 the former college section of the Texas State Teachers Association was reorganized as the Association of Texas Colleges in order to provide for duly accredited representation of participating members. C. A. Nichols, of Southwestern University, was the first president. In the 1960s the organization changed its name to Association of Texas Colleges and Universities and relinquished its power to accredit colleges. One of the major goals of the association is the promotion of the needs and benefits of higher education to the general public. The group also serves as a forum for communication among college presidents. The charter prohibits the group from engaging in political lobbying. To join, a school must be fully accredited by the Commission of Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Affiliate memberships are available to schools classified by the Southern Association as candidates for accreditation. In 1994 the Association of Texas Colleges and Universities had 121 members, representing independent, public senior, community, and public technical colleges. Members meet annually. The association elects a president, a vice president, and a board of directors. The board has six members elected at large for three-year terms and representatives from the Independent Colleges and Universities of Texas, the Texas Association of Community Colleges, and the Council of Public University Presidents and Chancellors. Funds are obtained through membership dues, which are calculated by a school's enrollment. The retirement of many of the presidents and chancellors, who championed the organization from the 1980s through the early 2000s, as well as financial strains on higher education across the board also influenced the decision to terminate the association in 2008.