I just got off the phone with Steve Johnson. Boy, was I surprised!
He called because I Wrote a Letter(TM) this morning asking about the HQ
We talked for about 20 minutes about the situation (and his vision of
the club as a whole,) and the most important thing I think I got out of
the conversation was that there will be _no_ linkage between wherever HQ
is and wherever our national events are held, be it Runoffs or Nats.
He said those contracts are made after receiving bids from interested
parties, based on the merits of the overall proposals. One or the other
will be going out to bid, soon (I think he said Runoffs) for the next 3
years, for example.
In this day and age of faxes and email, it probably doesn't matter to
99% of the members where they send their checks or where SportsCar
magazine comes from.
I'd hate to lose any key staffers in such a move, but if a move saves
the club literally millions(!) of dollars over the next few years, those
dollars could then improve member services, be used to recruit new
members, and help avoid dues increases (which SJ agrees are already
plenty high enough,) a short-term loss of a staff member or three may be
worth it. I don't think they make a lot of money, anyway, so any of
them could be lost to "better" offers with no notice, with or without a
It's still too bad that this had to come out as a (well-founded) rumor
rather than being discussed ahead of time, but I guess I can forgive the
staff, too, for not wanting to hear 60,000 different opinions on the
subject, followed by 60,000 rebuttals, ad infinitum. I got the
impression that SJ has been talking to lots of folks at the events he
attends to get a grassroots feeling about all sorts of issues, including
this one, so the study hasn't been done in a complete vacuum.
Finally, I guess the BoD is elected by us to represent our interests
(I've never paid a lot of attention to the structure of the club, to be
honest.) They will have the available information, and will make an
informed decision. SJ seems confident they will make a good decision.
I hope he's right.
I'm surprised there's so little bandwidth being used up by this
subject. Maybe that's an indication that it's not as big an issue as "I
P.S. The stories are true. This guy really does speak to the members.
He even answers his email!
Chuck Schultz / Mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
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36260 / It's not the thing you fling, but the fling, itself!
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