Update from USACK President; Governance Reform Process

Nov. 11, 2008, 12:16 p.m. (ET)

Dear USACK Members,

After much deliberation, the Board of Directors of USA Canoe/Kayak have voted to postpone the Committee elections in addition to Board elections.  The rewriting of the By-Laws and the restructuring of the Board of Directors will almost certainly require thought about the proper structure of the Committees.  So, we felt this was the best course of action.  Our Annual Meeting currently set for December 6-7, 2008 in Charlotte, NC will be postponed, per Section 2.06 of our By-Laws, until January 31-February 1, 2009, which is within the 60 day postponement limit.  We will still have a regular Board meeting in Charlotte on December 6-7, 2008 as well as Committee meetings.  Our intention is to have the final version of the Bylaws posted to the membership for a 30 day comment period starting December 31, 2008.

In the meantime, we have organized a task force whose sole purpose is to study and recommend best practices in governance and present the Board with recommended new set of By-Laws and Nominations and election procedures and Committee structure and procedures.  Their first draft of these is due by December 6-7, 2008 for review by the Board and Committees.  The task force is composed of:

* Anne Blanchard, a sprint paddler and former USACK Board President whose day job is serving as a legal aid attorney in Connecticut

* Jamie McEwan, an Olympic medalist in slalom in 1972 and still competing; is a writer living in Connecticut

* Cliff Meidl, two-time sprint Olympian and motivational speaker who works as a money manager in the LA area

* Risa Shimoda, a long time whitewater paddler and activist who is a consultant in the DC area and the chair of the USACK Freestyle Committee

* Chuck Wielgus, former Executive Director of USACK predecessor USCKT and presently ED of the highly successful USA Swimming NGB in Colorado Springs

This group will be supported by staff members from USACK and USOC:

* Eric Parthen, Director, NGB Organizational Development at USOC; he has worked with more than 30 similar groups at other NGB's

* Bob Gambardella, Director, Sport Partnerships at USOC, is the primary contact at USOC for USACK and also has extensive experience in NGB governance

* David Yarborough, Executive Director of USACK who has worked with the USOC for the past three years to understand the requirements of the USOC reform.

We are very excited for the future of USA Canoe/Kayak and we hope that you are equally excited.  Our goal is to attract qualified Board members who can help us attract resources and sponsorship in these trying times.

Please visit the Community section of our website to view David Yarborough's blogs on the progress of the task force.

Gina Sanchez, President
USA Canoe/Kayak Board of Directors

To view 1st letter by Gina Sanchez dated October 21, 2008, click here>>