President's Letter #197

I want to let all members know what is happening in the AMYA. This is an up-to-date status report on programs underway, some of which have been mentioned in my President's Letter, or will be, but which have not as of yet, due to Model Yachting  publishing lead times.

Task Committees: In any organization, I think real work is done more successfully in smaller groups than is possible by the Board of Directors or the Class Secretary Council (chaired by VP Colin Mosgrove). These small groups of five to eight, or so, members can be assigned to specific tasks or programs by the Executive Board. They can be chaired by any member of the AMYA with expertise or interest in the topic, and a board member is always a part of the committee, as well, although not always the Chairperson. The Chairperson is appointed, not elected. The AMYA Task Committees are new since January, and are just starting to gain some traction. They will be proposing some ideas that may require bylaw changes or other votes of the members, but many valuable things may also be done with board or officer action and be accomplished more quickly than trying to accomplish a lot at once-a-month Board Meetings. If you want to be on one of the committees, contact me for additional information.

So far:

  • The Bylaw Review and Revision Committee is chaired by Jack Ward, the Region 7 Director. The AMYA Bylaws are in my opinion and in that of the Executive Board (and many of you, as well), in need of some major refreshing. Most of what is there is the right thing but might be said in a different way, more clearly, or updated in some ways to reflect today's situations. This committee is charged with looking at all organizational aspects of the AMYA Bylaws, is made up of just selected members, and starts meeting next week. It will present a set of recommended Bylaw changes for a vote by the members in 2020. Once the project is turned over to the Board for action, the Board will disband, probably late this calendar year.
  • The Competition Committee is chaired by Chuck Millican. This committee is hard at work looking at all aspects of racing. They were formed in January and have a long list of priorities, including assisting with the Bylaws Review and Revision project in areas involving racing. However, they are advising the AMYA on everything we do: how we run regattas, class management, Racing Rules interpretations, etc. They will evolve to be a go-to source of advice and counsel for clubs, classes, regatta organizers, and other members. This one is a permanent committee, the functions of which include the development of the communication method(s) the AMYA will use to do this very important job.
  • The Helping Clubs Prosper Committee may try to find a more clever name, but for now, Helping Clubs Prosper is it. This, the newest of the task committees, is chaired by Jeff Hawley from Florida (Region 7). Jeff just accepted the chairmanship and is going to be assembling his committee over the next several weeks. This one will look at ways the AMYA can assist clubs. So, they will offer guidance on the questions that new clubs have when forming, such as: How do we structure our officer group? How many classes should we support? How can we promote our start-up club, having (almost) no treasury? These and several dozen other topics will be explored, and recommendations made, including the communication method(s) the AMYA will use to do this very important job.
Communications: The most important entity of the AMYA is our members, and close behind is the local club or fleet that might be a part of a larger organization, such as a yacht club or RC-boat hobby club. Your officers and board believe the AMYA needs to do more communicating. Region 5, under the leadership of Mike Eades, conducted a teleconference meeting of club contacts and the regional director in late May, where all shared success stories, asked questions, and helped promote RC sailing in that region. It is my hope that all seven regions will, over time, take up this as an important, regular meeting, which happens once or twice a year, chaired by the regional director.

Other opportunities: We (Michelle Dannenhoffer and I, the public faces of the AMYA) received an inquiry from a non-member wanting to get information on running a sailing program for youth. No such program currently exists within AMYA, but it should; we could use a little youth! (I am 70, so I'm not poking fun!)

This gentleman wanted to get the program from us, but now wants to work with us in developing a youth sailing training program. Obviously, we (the AMYA) would be interested in doing this around model-boat sailing, and maybe the guy who contacted us wants it for full-scale sailing, but I never turn down a volunteer!, but so far no Chairperson.

Who among you would be willing to step up and agree to lead this effort on behalf of the AMYA? Call or email me!

You will soon be receiving Model Yachting Issue #198, and news flash: we will also be printing (next summer) a very special issue of Model Yachting, commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the AMYA, the 200th issue of Model Yachting! Good stuff!

Smooth sailing; keep the neck strap on (so your don't deep six the transmitter!)

Mike Wyatt
AMYA President

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