Well, that sounds like a losing proposition.
From 1977, Secret Society of Super-Villains #11, "A Changing of the Guard" Written by Gerry Conway, pencils by Mike Vosburg, inks by Joe Orlando. I had to go back and add "SSOSV" as a tag, since I've read multiple issues of these title, even blogged about them, yet have only a vague idea what the hell is happening in any given issue. This time, that's in part because there was a Secret Society of Super-Villains Special/DC Special Series #6 and an issue of Super-Team Family since the last regular issue. (I may have the special, somewhere.)
So, I haven't the foggiest why the Creeper was with the Society, but he brought the Wizard to the police--which may or may not be a heroic act, the Society's members dicked each other over all the time like that, and it could've been a power-play. Moreover, getting arrested was actually part of the Wizard's plan, to recover his Cloak of Invisibility, Power Glove, and Magic Prism. (The district attorney that let the Wizard take them out of evidence to "explain" them should be so fired...) The Wizard next catches up with the Floronic Man, who was on the verge of finishing his formula to wipe out all animal life on earth: Wizard isn't stopping him out of heroism, or even to save his own skin, but to retake leadership of the Secret Society! With his power objects again, the Wizard was able to so by force rather than by trickery as he had before--by counterfeiting millions of dollars with his magic! Roy Thomas stand-in Funky Flashman gets the worst of that deal, and is left on skid row in Gotham...
So, I think a villain could take leadership of the Society by having a great scheme, by brute force, or by bribery. Maybe some other ways, too. But that leaves me wondering why the villains were part of the Society in the first place? All the usual reasons don't seem like good ideas when you consider how generally untrustworthy the whole lot of them were. I also don't know why Captain Comet was usually the lead for this title, or why he had a holster...he had super-telekinetic powers or something, right? So did he carry a gun, too? A ray gun, maybe? Shrug.