President's Letter for Issue 168 (Summer 2012)
by David Brawner

Starting with this issue, annual membership renewal forms will now be delivered along with your copy of Model Yachting roughly a month before your membership renewal date. The form will be attached to your address label when it comes time for you to renew. To help you know when to expect this form, you'll see that our new label format now includes the date your membership expires.

The reasons for this change are for upward scalability and cost savings. Because we are no longer sending these forms in a separate mailing via first class mail, we are saving both on postage and the labor costs associated with printing and stuffing the envelopes. Our Data Manager, Doug Hemingway, has worked closely with our printer, Graphics Plus, to make this project a reality. Thanks to our new database, as membership grows we can scale upwards without additional labor cost.

My travels this past quarter included a trip with Treasurer John Skerry to meet with Membership Secretary Michelle Dannenhoffer, in Florida, to discuss unwinding some situations set up by prior administrations. We really need to stress again that the Ship's Store has not been an AMYA entity since last year. The store was separated from the AMYA to be ensure we were not operating outside the guidelines of our non-profit status.

The Ship's Store is now considered a supplier, not unlike any of our other advertisers in Model Yachting. We have had to do a balancing act because of this situation. While the Ship.s Store is the provider for back issues of Model Yachting under a licensing agreement, we felt we could not comply with the IRS guidelines by continuing to provide a full page Ship.s Store ad/order form free of charge. We reached the conclusion that a 1/4-page ad indicating where members can get back issues of Model Yachting was acceptable and would keep us out of trouble in case the IRS comes knocking. Keep in mind that Michelle can provide any back issue that you desire.

Our financial situation continues along the path that we set in January of last year. We have nearly reached a goal of increasing cash reserves to an amount equal to six months of operating costs. This goal will be reached earlier than expected, due to operational savings and proper cash management by our Treasurer, John Skerry.

In this issue, you'll get your first look at the motions and nominations for the upcoming ballot. I am pleased with the fact that the entire current team will be returning for another term. There is a motion on the ballot to bring the RC Laser class into compliance with AMYA by-laws, which also rightfully acknowledges the interests of the builder and distributor, which has invested so much in this class. The basic principle that this boat is sailed as it comes out of the box remains. This stability will lead to continued growth in this already popular fleet.

Speaking of the RC Laser, I had the privilege to again be the race director for RC Laser Midwinter Regatta in Marco Island, Florida. There were some really big eyes when we set a course and sent them out in winds of 20 knots, gusting to 30. The entire group did a great job of not only surviving but also competing really well in those conditions. A special thanks to Rocky and Mary Lee Cale for making sure that in preparation for the event, every detail was taken care of. We had a great time. Thanks for letting me be a part of it again.

The day after the RC Laser regatta, I got to spend the morning at the Naples MYC with the Micro Magic fleet. Then I made the quick trip up I-75 to Punta Gorda, Florida, to sail EC12s with the Suncoast MYC in the afternoon. If I get to spend any extended period of time in Florida next year, it would not be hard to adapt to their sail-every-day attitude. Perhaps, I should consider adult supervision!

Much to our benefit, the San Diego Argonauts haven't figured out that a week has only seven days in it. Hence, San Diego Race Week is nineteen days long. Yes, Nineteen! Starting August 1, it will include ten classes and nine national championships. Check out their website (www.sandiegoargonauts.com) for all the up to the minute details. Lisa and I are looking forward to getting there in time to see some of the ODOM NCR and then participate in the Santa Barbara NCR. This is the time of year that my regatta season really gets rolling. We are a few weeks away from EC12s at the Commodores Inn in Stowe, Vermont. Feel free to join me for breakfast in Bristol, Vermont, at Snap's Restaurant on Friday at 10 a.m. Two weeks later, the Chicago MYC is holding its five-day event in Vernon Hills, which includes Js, Santa Barbaras, and EC12s. How could I resist my first chance to race a Santa Barbara? There will then be a few weeks to figure out what I learned about Santa Barbaras before shipping the boat to San Diego for Race Week. Recently, there has been a lot of interest voiced in getting the Marbleheads from the 70s and 80s back on the water, competing. Contact the Marblehead Class Secretary, Standley Goodwin, regarding the upcoming activity in that class. Many people are anxious to blow the dust off those older Classic Marbleheads. Sounds like a great idea to me.

Get your batteries charged, grab a friend, and I'll see you at the pond soon.

David

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