In the ten years I have been on the Governing Committee, there have been any number of members that have been elected to the AHA GC. Some have had name recognition, others wanted to be on the inside and still others were/are doers. These categories are not mutually exclusive. The AHA Governing Committee serves as a sounding board and advisory panel for the AHA, and as such it needs more doers.
Each year the AHA GC set the objectives and goals for the AHA. It takes feedback from local clubs and suggests directions and identifies where scare resources should be utilized. The GC serves as feet on the ground support during the annual conference, identifying and introducing speakers, responding to member inquires during the member meeting, identifying and vetting future AHA GC nominees and a host of other managerial and advisory roles.
Over the years the GC as a group has become more organized and effective. Through ideation it has identified the need to recognize clubs for more than just good beer and created the Radegast Club award (http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/community/clubs/radegast-club-of-the-year/
) to reward clubs for their work on experimenting, learning, educating and performing volunteer work. Exceptional clubs work hard and can make an impact on their community. The award was developed to encourage these sorts of ”good behaviors” that reflect well in the community.
The Research & Education Committee (http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/community/research-and-education-fund/
) is another idea that was identified and launched through the AHA GC efforts.
Once proposals are vetted and agreed upon within the annual meeting with the AHA, the AHA GC appointees then goes to the Brewer’s Association Board of Directors and pitch these ideas to secure their place in the objectives for the AHA and to obtain the necessary funding. It has been the job of the two AHA Board appointees to present any new financial/personnel needs for the AHA and to ensure that its voice is heard. Over the last several years, in part due to the GC’s increased effectiveness, the AHA has been able to add two new employees and has been able to put more funds into member benefits. Now members are serviced faster and staff can support the increased member benefits.
The eight different sub-committee’s (http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/membership/aha-governing-committee/
) is where a lot of the work gets done outside of the monthly conference calls and the annual meeting at the conference. Here the AHA really benefits from tangible consultative work from this diverse group of 15 elected volunteers.
Members should take the time to read the bios of those who are running. Consider the skill sets, backgrounds and vision each member that is running provides and keep a score sheet. The AHA GC needs doers, people who can manage processes, give the time necessary and who listen to their fellow members and work toward making the organization more focused, more member friendly and useful.
Everyone should be able to find candidates that speak to them.
I am exceedingly proud of the work of the AHA GC as a whole, and I am humbled to think that I have had some small part in the AHA’s overall success as well as helping be a part of the renewed direction and focus of the GC as an organization. I anxiously look forward to this years new crop of GC members and hope that as a whole they continue to build upon what already currently exists. That, and the newbies have to bring the beer to the annual meeting with the goal of impressing the current members :-)
So vote if you haven’t already – it really matters. You have until Monday to make your voices heard.