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Chapter Delegates Discuss Member Growth, BMP Guide at Annual Meeting

01 Dec 2016 10:14 AM | Tony Dierkers (Administrator)


Eighty-two delegates from 84 chapters convene at GCSAA headquarters


2016-Chapter-Delegates-imageLawrence, Kan. (Oct. 18, 2016) – Membership engagement and growth, advocacy efforts and an upcoming best management practices guide were among the key topics of the 2016 Chapter Delegates Meeting. The 82 delegates from 84 chapters also heard from nominees for the 2017 GCSAA Board of Directors. The two-day meeting, held Oct. 11-12 in Kansas City, Mo., and at GCSAA headquarters in Lawrence, Kan., also offered delegates the chance to discuss issues and provide input in small group sessions and during a "town hall" session.

While one third of attendees were first-time delegates, many of the veteran delegates return for the opportunity to make a difference for the association and profession.

"It's good to come and meet new people," said Sean Wilson, CGCS at The Club at Falcon Point and delegate for the South Texas GCSA. "You feel like you are truly a part of changing things for the better."

For five-time delegate T.A. Barker, CGCS at Fore Lakes Golf Course and a member of the Intermountain GCSA, the annual delegates meeting allows him to hear about the different challenges and the common concerns superintendents face around the country.

"We are all a family," Barker said. "We come here facing different issues, but we are a family and we come together to help each other out."

The event opened with updates from GCSAA President Peter J. Grass, CGCS, and GCSAA CEO Rhett Evans, as well as check presentations to chapters that participated in Rounds 4 Research in 2016. The second day offered staff presentations on key initiatives, including:

  • Membership engagement and growth: Plans to increase member engagement include strategies across all classifications. Contact with new members will increase, with personalize messages sent at one, three and six months after joining. There will also be focused efforts on moving Class B members up to Class A, creating new member packets specifically for the equipment manager (EM) class, and strengthening the connection between student members and local chapters. Potential bylaw changes to the definitions of the EM class and International Superintendent Members could broaden growth opportunities.
  • Government affairs: The Grassroots Ambassadors program continues to grow, and government affairs efforts are currently focused on the issues of H-2B, Mega 16 initiative, WOTUS and the overtime pay rule. Discussions were also held on engagement through the use of the #golfvotes hashtag on social media during the upcoming election season, participation in the 10th anniversary of National Golf Day in 2017 and options for expanding GCSAA advocacy efforts.
  • Best Management Practices Planning Guide and Template: Delegates got a sneak peek at GCSAA's BMP Planning Guide and Template, which will be launched at the 2017 Golf Industry Show in Orlando. The tool will provide a road map for golf-centric organizations at the state level to develop and implement BMP programs. The goal is to have BMPs for all 50 states by 2020. Delegates were provided with talking points to help promote the program.

The business portion of the delegates meeting concluded with presentations from and breakout sessions with the candidates for the 2017 board. The election will take place on Feb. 9 at the GCSAA Annual Meeting in Orlando.

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