The surveys have been instrumental in a variety of ways for the AHA. We are especially heartened by this years response. The major difference this year was both the Forum and the direct email that Gary Glass sent. In years past we only requested action via TechTalk, but now with both the Forum and the email, our response rate more than tripled (3,000 responses and growing!) and we have better information of who "we" are.
And Fred, one other "conflict of interest" item that has always bummed me out - we (the Governing Committee) are not eligible for the Lallemand Scholarship that is given away each year at the National Homebrewers Conference. From the website (http://www.beertown.org/homebrewing/scholarship.html
This two-week course (valued at $3,350) is provided at the Siebel Institute of Technology campus in Chicago, America's oldest and most recognized brewing school. The winner also receives $1,000 towards any expenses while in Chicago, one of America's most exciting and vibrant cities.
Members of the AHA Governing Committee, Brewers Association Board of Directors, staff of the Brewers Association, Siebel, Lallemand, and anyone who has previously been awarded any scholarship to the Siebel Institute are ineligible.
I didn't know that the first couple of years, and then Gary spelled it out and I was bummed