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Thread: Your AMCA Board

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    England
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    1,034

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    Thanks AFJ, and don't forget the VMCC Sprint section which allows me to blast across old British runways on my Harley '34VDR and 50WR race bikes. I'm a member of their Men of Kent section/chapter, and when you join the VMCC they advise the nearest chapter president so he can write you a personal letter inviting you to join. The membership system also tracks you when you move house so you can switch section/chapter. There are surely lessons the AMCA can learn here.

    The VMCC is set up as a UK company limited by guarantee, which means all members have to guarantee £1 (say $1.50) in the event of the club winding up. It probably also means all members have to receive all those reports and accounts mentioned. I'm sure our thrifty US members will see that such democracy has a cost.

    I'm not a member of the VJMC in the USA, but I understand that their Directors are voted in by their Board and Regional Representatives, about 80 in all, which would map against the AMCA allowing the Board and Chapter Presidents to vote in the Directors. Certainly the list of AMCA Chapter officers which Del Schumacher, our Director of Chapters, produces shows the couple of hundred Club activists that I see at meets, Road Runs, judging sessions and so on, and which provides essentially all the candidates for National Office. If you want to influence the AMCA, then I'd recommend you seek Chapter office as well as posting on this forum and writing to the magazine. If there is not a Chapter in your area then create one! It takes only eight founder members and some paperwork, and Del has produced a useful guide showing how to do it.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    252

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Slocombe View Post

    The VMCC is set up as a UK company limited by guarantee, which means all members have to guarantee £1 (say $1.50) in the event of the club winding up. It probably also means all members have to receive all those reports and accounts mentioned. I'm sure our thrifty US members will see that such democracy has a cost.
    There is no cost but the time it takes to scan it and post it in thread that is setup just for that
    Jeff Bowles
    Arkansas
    Membership # 14023
    1957 Sportster

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Posts
    404

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Slocombe View Post
    Thanks AFJ, and don't forget the VMCC Sprint section which allows me to blast across old British runways on my Harley '34VDR and 50WR race bikes. I'm a member of their Men of Kent section/chapter, and when you join the VMCC they advise the nearest chapter president so he can write you a personal letter inviting you to join. The membership system also tracks you when you move house so you can switch section/chapter. There are surely lessons the AMCA can learn here.

    The VMCC is set up as a UK company limited by guarantee, which means all members have to guarantee £1 (say $1.50) in the event of the club winding up. It probably also means all members have to receive all those reports and accounts mentioned. I'm sure our thrifty US members will see that such democracy has a cost.

    I'm not a member of the VJMC in the USA, but I understand that their Directors are voted in by their Board and Regional Representatives, about 80 in all, which would map against the AMCA allowing the Board and Chapter Presidents to vote in the Directors. Certainly the list of AMCA Chapter officers which Del Schumacher, our Director of Chapters, produces shows the couple of hundred Club activists that I see at meets, Road Runs, judging sessions and so on, and which provides essentially all the candidates for National Office. If you want to influence the AMCA, then I'd recommend you seek Chapter office as well as posting on this forum and writing to the magazine. If there is not a Chapter in your area then create one! It takes only eight founder members and some paperwork, and Del has produced a useful guide showing how to do it.
    TO: Steve Slocombe, the AMCA Board and AMCA members,

    The idea that it would cost money to send AMCA financial reports and other information to its members, which they would not wish to pay for is a non-starter in the argument. The quarterly magazine could (and briefly at one time did) include a financial summary. Expanded minutes and an AMCA news-to-members section could also easily be included - perhaps by dropping some of the "filler" currently being included. A members-only section of the AMCA website can easily contain meeting minutes, financial reports, and other news-to-members, information to sections and such.

    I don't know anything much about the VJMC, but if they do have regional representative voting it is slightly more democratic than the AMCA seems to be at the moment. Which is an issue that has come to the forefront through the lack of communication over the judging changing/revision issues.

    You state, "If you want to influence the AMCA, then I'd recommend you seek Chapter office as well as posting on this forum and writing to the magazine. If there is not a Chapter in your area then create one! It takes only eight founder members and some paperwork, and Del has produced a useful guide showing how to do it."

    You seem to indicate then, that, in your view, it is only Chapter officials who can provide candidates for the AMCA National Board. The above statement seems to me to suggest that unless one is active in the operation of an AMCA chapter, that comments on this forum or letters to the magazine from ordinary members are ignored by the AMCA Board.

    While I have been a continuous member of the AMCA for 33 years, I have never sought any elected or appointed position with the AMCA or a Chapter of it because I have always strongly believed that only citizens of the USA, in good standing, of a national club - The Antique Motorcycle Club of America - chartered in the USA, should hold office in the AMCA. And I am not a citizen of the United States, nor am I resident in the USA.

    I am Canadian and a citizen of Canada, resident in the province of Ontario.

    I have attended a number of AMCA events in the USA over the years, and always found myself to be a well-thought of and considered guest at these Meets and Road Runs. Interestingly, during these visits, a number of AMCA officials, including 2 previous National Presidents, one founding member and several national Board and Museum Board members have asked my opinion on various AMCA matters. As a guest in the USA, I have always tried to be diplomatic and helpful in regard to antique and vintage motorcycling matters, of both the club and museum aspects, since the world-wide vintage motorcycle movement is a small, specialized one and we need to help one another where we can.

    You may ask why I have not formed a local AMCA Chapter in Ontario, Canada? Simply because a Canadian Vintage Motorcycle Group was formed in the 1960s and it was the obvious club for a Canadian to join in 1970. Then it was a local unorganized group of 40 or so individuals in Toronto, Ontario. Today there is a membership of over 1800 and 29 individual sections across Canada. My organizational and voluntary vintage motorcycling talents were for 35 years given (in many different jobs and responsible positions) to developing and improving the national vintage motorcycling club in my own country. And I still am involved as a volunteer with CVMG-founded (and self-supporting) Canadian Vintage Motorcycle Museum which has operated successfully for 15 years. Perhaps this heavy volunteer involvement in Canadian vintage motorcycling matters encouraged those AMCA officials to ask "how things were done up in Canada". All I can say is that my thoughts and advice were always given in a hopeful and positive manner, simply telling what had worked - and what had not worked - for the CVMG, the AMCA situation might be different, and require different solutions.

    However, may I suggest that close - and detailed - communication with all members of a club is essential. And it has to be two-way communication. The executive of a vintage motorcycling club, particularly the President, have to have their finger on the pulse of the club and their ear tuned to the groundswell of opinion on each and every issue. In small clubs this can be done by personal contact, in larger clubs a network of formal and informal opinion gathering has to be used. In any club there should be a process of nomination and election of officials of the club by the membership as a whole, since the member of an organization, be it antique motorcycle club or country, is the highest rank in that organization, and deserves all rights and privileges.

    While I am a Canadian, I agree with American Benjamin Franklin who considered the rank of citizen as the highest rank in the US - to which I would equate that of member in the AMCA. Any officials are, as Ben concluded, servants of the membership.

    As a long-time AMCA member I am quite happy to hear from any AMCA member or AMCA official, at any level, who might wish to discuss the various issues and potential solutions facing the AMCA and the AMCA Foundation at this time, with an eye to moving towards amenable solutions.

    Al Johnson (AFJ)
    AMCA #674
    Address, phone # and email address are in the AMCA Rosters.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Georgetown TX
    Posts
    196

    Thumbs up Bottomline during Challenging Times

    Have you got the impression yet that us cranky old bike riders have trouble pulling together in clubs, and that the AMCA dues are a bargain? For completeness the AMCA has 10,000 members, no full time employees, and is run by an 11 member Board (down from 15) with no fixed premises. We have 54 Chapters which do not cover the country. Directors are elected by the Board for three year terms, with the officers (President, Secretary, Treasurer) elected likewise for one year terms. We have a fine quarterly magazine and a growing virtual library. AMCA judging, while a minority interest, is a key technical strength of the club. We use a 35 year old definition of 'antique'. The Club is 95% US members and domestic dues are $30.



    Thank You Steve....Very good summation above. The rest of us are members also. This is our club also. There are many who appreciate the time it takes to try to run an all volunteer organization that is so large. Our growth and these current issues are just signs that this club has a much greater value than it is credited for ...and of a bigger better AMCA in years to come.

    I'll issue a challenge here to all members.....Let's raise our dues voluntarily so we can hire some staff, get our own office facility and get these officers some help to continue getting the job done. I can't take my wife out for supper once and spend less than 30 bucks....unless I am cheap on the tip for the great service I already got?

    Steve Klein
    AMCA Member 12176
    Cherokee Chapter
    Georgetown TX

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    England
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    Dear Al, thanks for your helpful reply, and note that the AMCA has previously had a Canadian, Pete Gagan, as President. The nature of the old bike environment seems to mean we join multiple clubs, so you are member of a Canadian club as well as the AMCA, and nearly all our European AMCA members will also be members of their National old bike clubs.

    Dear Steve, thanks for the suggestion, but you know the inertia in our Club means those ideas will take a long time to get implemented.

    That brings me on to COMMUNICATIONS, or lack of them as many of you seem to be saying. The AMCA Board recognised a couple of years ago that we needed to do a better job, and there are several mechanisms in place you may be unaware of. Of course we have the letters pages in our magazine, and we've seen some pretty strong views expressed there over time.

    Then there is this Website, where there is more shooting from the hip and use of handles instead of names. We're planning to upgrade this whole site this year, and make it easier to remove spammers, but remember the whole world and not just members listens in, even if they cannot post comments.

    Then we have the Board minutes published in the magazine, and next time you'll see the mass of operational detail covered by your 11 volunteers in a nine hour meeting at Eustis.

    In an effort to provide more timely information, for the last year President Rocky Halter sends out a one or two page summary note a few days after the Board meeting to Chapter Presidents and Newsletter Editors. I include this in my monthly-ish Email newsletter to my Chapter members, nearly all of whom are on Email. We now demand all Directors have Email addresses, and all our Chapter Presidents except a couple are also on Email. In the last two or three years we've seen most Chapter Newsletters move from printed to Emailed, thus saving money and providing a simultaneous and timely report to members.

    We have also allocated a named Board member to each Chapter, usually the nearest. In my case I Email my four Chapter Presidents a month before each Board meeting, and tell them what I think the main topics will be and ask if they want to raise questions or have items we can learn from.

    At the annual Presidents' meeting in Davenport, Chapter Officers get together for a couple of hours to get fresh info from the National and ask questions and exchange best practice.

    That's not bad, but concentrated of course on the more active one-third of our membership that belong to Chapters, and the one-third registered on this forum. As I've said before, that probably leaves several thousand people just enjoying old bikes, receiving their magazine, paying their dues, and not participating in Chapter or Internet activities.

    Your Board will commission another membership survey this year, and last time we did it there was a very high response rate and numerous lessons learned. This is the chance for every member to have their say, so please respond and look for the summary of feedback in the magazine. If you have ideas for even better communication, please suggest them here or in replying to the membership survey.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Norway
    Posts
    253

    Default Club organization

    Have been a member of AMCA since 2005 and I`m following this AMCA forum on a daily basis.
    As Steve I joined AMCA mostly as my main focus with my hobby is on older US made motorcycles.
    I have been a member of the NVMC http://www.nvmc.no/ (Norwegian Vintage Motorcycle Club) for almost 30 years as well as I am a member of the HDOCN http://www.h-docn.no/ (Harley Davidson Owners Club Norway) and several smaller brand related clubs.
    To compare with AMCA I chose to use the two first mentioned clubs, NVMC and HDOCN.
    NVMC established in 1974 have 3500 + members (our population is 4,6 mill!!!), we have one guy fully employed as secretary running “the office” and our archives as well as we have a board selected by those members attending the annual board meeting (or volunteering to it) free to all to join. Annual board meeting report as well as the club`s financial report is published in our magazine issued every second month in full colour`s on glossy paper. The content of our magazine is depending on input from the clubs members to the magazine editor being a part of the board.
    Our club is as AMCA divided in regional branches where some of are running their own meets & rallies. Each year there is one main event partly run by the club in cooperation with one regional chapter volunteering to the job. This makes the event to take place in various parts of the country allowing more of the members to attend. Our main swap meets are part of vintage car swap meets located in various parts of our country. There is enough meets to keep you busy trough most of the year.

    HDOCN established in 1986 have 2200 members, a selected board of volunteers, a members office run by a volunteer, a really nice magazine in full colours on glossy paper with 5 annual issues, regional branches with their own vice presidents and regional rallies.
    The HDOCN magazine have for years been run by the same volunteering Editor who write some of the material based on loads of travelling as well as some is written by the members of the club.
    The club have a library free for all members to use as well as they have regional meets and one main event each year.

    Unfortunately none of the above clubs have a working web forum as AMCA`s tough NVMC have their own page with Facebook intended to take care of discussions etc.

    Both club boards are involved in important lobbying towards our government and both clubs have close relations with insurance companies offering specialized insurance at very reasonable prices for their members.

    Obviously neither of those clubs or their magazines get any better than what the input of their members makes them to.

    Having last year attended my first AMCA meet at Davenport I must say I`m very impressed with the meet and those organising the event. I did also attend the banquet getting a presentation of the board and heard what they had to say, very interesting indeed.
    As with AMCA the members voices have been raised quite high in NVMC at some occasions when the board have taken “unpopular” decisions like some years back buying out on of our oldest surviving motorcycles to prevent it from leaving the country. This bike now belongs to the club.

    A friend of mine once said every club needs someone with the guts of getting un-popular to get any better, which I think is true.

    Sverre
    AMcN
    http://AmericanMotorcyclesNorway.blogspot.com
    And then there is the idea that we are here on earth to get a certain amount of things done before we die.
    This is a great theory.
    If it is true, I am so far behind that I will never die...

    AMCA-3489

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    millsap,tx
    Posts
    33

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    I strongly disagree with fellow Cherokee Chapter member Steve Klein , that club dues should be raised and staff hired.This club was built on volunteerism,not paid managers and who knows what else or who else the progressives would like to spend the member's dues and fees on.The club needs fiscal moderates or consevatives running this club.and those who believe in openess.

    When the club increases its membership,it just has to print more cheap paper membership cards and more of its great magazine. The club's local chapters put on the road runs and swap meets. The chapters do a great job of organizing these meets and don't need the club's board or commitees getting in their way. I go to 3-5 national meets a year and other than the judging everything is run by the local chapter hosting the event, it is all done with volunteers and I have never been to a bad meet or run.

    Just thought I would add my 2 cents worth.Hope to see all you at our chapters national road in the Texas Hill Country put on by local chapter volunteers.

    Ken Kaustian
    membership # 2065
    newsletter editor and board member cherokee chapter

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Georgetown TX
    Posts
    196

    Wink Differing Viewpoints and Church Economics?

    Quote Originally Posted by longhorn View Post
    I strongly disagree with fellow Cherokee Chapter member Steve Klein , that club dues should be raised and staff hired.This club was built on volunteerism,not paid managers and who knows what else or who else the progressives would like to spend the member's dues and fees on.The club needs fiscal moderates or consevatives running this club.and those who believe in openess.

    When the club increases its membership,it just has to print more cheap paper membership cards and more of its great magazine. The club's local chapters put on the road runs and swap meets. The chapters do a great job of organizing these meets and don't need the club's board or commitees getting in their way. I go to 3-5 national meets a year and other than the judging everything is run by the local chapter hosting the event, it is all done with volunteers and I have never been to a bad meet or run.

    Just thought I would add my 2 cents worth.Hope to see all you at our chapters national road in the Texas Hill Country put on by local chapter volunteers.

    Ken Kaustian
    membership # 2065
    newsletter editor and board member cherokee chapter

    Good evening Ken;

    I knew when I suggested such It would get a swift response That's what makes our AMCA such a great club...differing viewpoints with one overall common interest.

    Keep in mind that per Board Member Slocombe's recent communication in the preceeding pages our main source of revenue is membership dues and our largest expenditure is the magazine. We all agree that we all get a great magazine and I would submit we have a great website and Forum...all for a mere $30 US annual. I also would submit that all organizations whether public or private, conservative or liberal, have spent significant amount of time in more than one attempt to cut expenses to deal with annual deficits. Steve stated that we had a deficit in 08, 09 and our expectation and inpending annual budget for 10 is in the same direction...negative territory. I call this "Church Economics". It takes so much to pay for the bare necessities and after all cuts can be made the only way to balance the ledger is what comes in the collection basket on Sunday regardless of how well the serman was received by the members.

    I find it quite satisfactory that we get all that we get for what we pay as compared to other organizations that I am a member of that I recieve far less value and far less quality communication and access to other members. The difference is a strong membership who participates in The Forum, supports our events and the tireless efforts of National and Chapter directors who do a ton of work out of their own pocket. My hat is off to all of them.

    See you in Kerrville TX at The AMCA National Road Run in two weeks Ken...Can I borrow $25?

    Steve Klein
    AMCA Member 12176
    Cherokee Chapter
    Georgetown TX

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    millsap,tx
    Posts
    33

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    Steve,I will loan you $25.00,but you must pay me $10.00 interest for a 10 day loan.See ya at Kerrville.


    Ken Kalustian
    # 2065
    Cherokee Chapter

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    England
    Posts
    1,034

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    Dear Steve and Ken, I shall also see you at Kerrville, and looking forward to it.

    Are we ready to talk about Board SECRECY and CONSPIRACY yet? I've heard stories about the bad old days when there were two or three regional power blocs who voted in unison, but I haven't seen it in the four or five years I've been on the Board. My previous experience is with company boards, where everyone shares the same technical backgrounds and long time company experience, meetings are decided solely on technical and economic criteria, and the danger is of 'group think' where unlikely events are overlooked. No such chance with the AMCA Board - there are 11 volunteers from all over the country, with totally different backgrounds and experience, and always fresh opinions to be put forward. As I've said elsewhere on this forum, it's going to be hard work to arrange a conspiracy among such a diverse group of people.

    CONFIDENTIALITY however is something different. In 2007 the AMCA Steering Committee was formed and I'm a member. We're thinking about the future of the Club, and Emailing various off-the-wall ideas to each other. Many of these are labelled confidential because the membership at large might misunderstand the purpose of this thinking. For instance, in 2007 in an effort to 'push the envelope' I Emailed the Steering Committee with the idea that we should define antique the same way eBay does - five years old (and collectible as two years old and broken). I couldn't get anyone to budge from our 35 year definition, and that is how it stayed. There may be a big potential for a Club covering from the manufacturer's warranty running out to 35 years old, but it will not be the AMCA.

    CONFLICT OF INTEREST is also worth mentioning here. There is a written Board Policy, and we have to declare any commercial interest and refrain from comment on any financial deal where we have a direct interest. Board members are not shy of asking about potential conflicts in any agenda item. As an example, I was asked to attend the October 2008 annual meeting of FIVA, a Brussels-based lobbying group for historic vehicles, because I live nearest. My expenses then had to be approved by the Board, as this was not a planned expenditure. The minutes show the expenses were approved unanimously with one abstention, and that of course was me.

    On OPENNESS, in the Board minutes you will see the word 'discussion', but there is no current intention to replay who said what. Likewise in a Board vote of say 10-2, the minutes do not name those on either side of the vote. The BMW Club broadcasts its Board meetings on the Internet, but my guess is we'll be waiting a while for that in the AMCA. My general advice is to join or form a Chapter, seek office, ask questions, understand how the Club works, and communicate clearly your plans for change. The Board is still open to questions from those who don't fully understand what is going on, and suggestions for improvements to help make our good club a great one.

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