BMW Motorcycle Owners of America
P.O. Box 3982, Ballwin, MO 63022
voice: (636) 394-7277 fax: (636) 391-1811

comments@bmwmoa.org

January 2001 Board Meeting

BMW MOA Board of Directors Meeting
January 27-28, 2001
St. Louis, MO

Present: Paul Glaves, President; Jim Shaw, Vice President; Deb Lower, Secretary; Rob Lentini, Treasurer; Directors Tom Harbrecht, George Glascock, Ted Verrill, Don Hamblin, Matt Parkhouse; Ray Zimmerman, Executive Director; Marilyn Roberts, Executive Assistant and Recording Secretary; Ed Youngblood, Consultant; Sandy Cohen, Managing Editor; Ray Monroe, Advertising Manager; Gray Buckley, 2001 Rally Chair; Susanna Parkhouse, Rally Liaison; Greg Hutchinson, Club Coordinator; Nancy Sulfstede, Bookkeeper; Robert Munday, member.

Approval of the Agenda - Under Unfinished Business, Paul Glaves requested the addition of "Board Committee Structure." Jim Shaw moved, seconded by Don Hamblin, to approve the agenda as amended. Motion carried.

Approval of the November Board minutes - Paul Glaves amended the minutes to include a change to the motion by Harbrecht and Lentini on page 5 near the bottom, which should have been a motion to recess, not to adjourn as written. Rob Lentini moved, seconded by Jim Shaw, to approve as amended the minutes of the November Board meeting. Motion carried.

Executive Director's Report - Ray Zimmerman
Ray discussed the four financial graphs presented to the Board in the Board books: cumulative to date, cost of sales, other expenses outside cost of sales, and net income. The purpose of the graphs is to show actual verses budget as the year progresses, and to show a new tool the Board members can expect to see at each Board meeting.

Ray presented a plan to increase the per diem rate for volunteer staff and paid staff using JTR (Joint Travel Regulations) rates. The increase would bring the current rate of $10 per day up to $19 per day and would increase per diem costs to BMW MOA an estimated $3600 per year. At the new rates, Board members would be paid a flat $57 for a typical 2-day Board meeting, which includes a catered lunch on Saturday. Discussion indicated an uneasiness to proceed with the increase and Paul Glaves referred the subject to committee.

Ray presented a spreadsheet indicating multi-year membership costs. Over a 20-year time, there is an approximately half million-dollar reduction in income from multi-year members verses one-year memberships of the same length. Paul Glaves requested the percentage of the normal annual dues covered by interest earnings on the $375 lifetime membership.

For the Board's information, a chart of BMW MOA contracts, including expiration dates, was provided. The Board requested that the following columns be added: Managing Editor, Advertising Manager, magazine production, and affinity programs, including royalty payments and how many members participate in each affinity program.

Ray gave an overview of our current benefits. After some indication that The May Agency would no longer provide Progressive insurance to our members at a discount (5%), it is now apparent that The May Agency will. The May Agency will also work with local clubs in regard to their rallies, but the rate depends on alcohol availability and GS rides. Progressive Insurance recently sent a letter to BMW MOA members insured with it indicating that a copy of their AMA membership card would be required to maintain coverage with Progressive. This letter was sent to BMW MOA members in error and it should have asked for a copy of the member's BMW MOA card. John May, owner of The May Agency, is working this issue. Rob Lentini suggested that, to inform the members, an explanation be sent to Ambassadors via Sue Rihn-Manke and also put on the website.

In addition to the MBNA card offered to BMW MOA members, BMW NA also has a card, which carries a $100 annual fee. However, unlike the BMW MOA card, users of the BMW NA card accumulate points toward the purchase of a new vehicle, which can also include a new motorcycle. Jim Gaffney of MBNA indicated that he can work with us on a no-fee card that will accumulate similar points but the royalty paid to BMW MOA may be less. This card could not be used by the organization to accumulate points for a motorcycle to give away at the national rally, for example, but individual members could accumulate the points. Paul Glaves asked Ray to also look at some other affinity card providers.

Nation Safe Drivers, providers of Towbusters towing service, is willing to provide a better program. Currently, our members pay $34.95 per year for the service. Two options were presented. If BMW MOA provided 100% participation (i.e., the service would be included as part of the annual dues), the product would cost $8. If participation was on an optional basis the product would cost $16-$18 for service similar to what we have now. Because we cannot afford to give the service as part of annual dues, and because non-U.S. members could not use the service, Ray will pursue the latter option as well as looking at other providers, such as MTS.

Ray reported on his recent visit with BMW NA executives, along with Sandy Cohen, Ray Monroe and Court Fisher. The meeting was positive in nature and all parties want to move forward with a positive attitude. Regarding a document presented to us by BMW NA staff on their view of club initiatives, it was suggested that we draft our own initiatives to be approved via teleconference or at the April Board meeting. This topic was continued in executive session.

A strategic plan time-line using Microsoft Project and an outline with chapters and sub-chapters was presented to the Board. Each chapter included a brief description, which is not cast in stone and can be changed by those who author the individual chapters. Regarding who would author the chapters, Paul Glaves shifted to a new agenda item, Board Committee Structure, which is located under Unfinished Business. Ray will pencil in the appropriate standing Board committee for each chapter; where there are holes, Ray will use the ad hoc committee. The Board was asked to submit comments (not to include wordsmithing) about the strategic plan outline and chapters to Ray as soon as possible.

Weekly staff meetings are held at the Chesterfield office. A summary of the meetings to date was provided to the Board.

Managing Editor, Sandy Cohen, gave her report. RFQs for both printing and production have been sent out. The report included an analysis of production bids and recommendation. The Anonymous book is on schedule for a March 1 mailing. This year's version of the book will include a dealer locator map. A new printer was used for Anonymous book sales flyers, resulting in considerable savings. Sandy accompanied Ray Z., Ray Monroe and Court Fisher to New York to visit with BMW NA representatives.

A discussion of why the Flea Market is not on the website followed Sandy's report. Ted Verrill offered the following reasons: 1) members view the Flea Market as a member perk, 2) the protection from fraud offered by limiting the Flea Market to members (as opposed to opening it to the world via the website) is a benefit, 3) it would be a nightmare to administer on the website, and 4) not all of our members have Internet access. In response to a suggestion that the Flea Market be promoted as a member benefit, Ed Youngblood suggested changing the name to Member Mart to reflect its membership nature.

Ray Monroe presented the Advertising Manager's report. The year 2000 was another record-breaking year in ad sales, with sales up 14 % over last year. Two large advertisers have cut their advertising by 50%, but new advertising will make up the loss. Anonymous book sales are up 17% over last year. Ray and Ray Z. will be going to Americade this year.

BMW MOA Foundation Report - Jim Shaw
The Foundation has received approximately $20,000 in donations; half of that is an earmarked donation. The Foundation is coming together as a maturing, formal organization, which will fill the need for a charitable organization. Motorcycle safety will be the Foundation's primary direction and the Foundation will provide the rider education course at the Redmond rally. The Foundation is also actively promoting fund raising, and is asking chartered clubs for a $1000 donation, as well as soliciting Foundation Trustees. Fund raising is in character for a charitable foundation. The Foundation has two banners for loan, which are in the keep of Roger Wiles, and it has a speaker's bureau. Deb Lower is chair of the Nominating Committee, which is looking for candidates. Current Trustees will be asked to continue to serve the Foundation.

Consultant's Report - Ed Youngblood
Ed gave an overview of his objectives and summarized the recommendations contained in the twenty (20) reports presented to the Board. Action has been taken or started on many of the recommendations and the association is positioned to move forward with strategic planning under the direction of Ray Z. Ed was presented with a framed vintage BMW motorcycle print signed by Board and Staff in appreciation of the services provided to the association during the last year. 

Club Coordinator - Greg Hutchinson
Greg reported 197 "soft" club renewals, soft meaning the inclusion of those clubs that did not renew by the deadline but that he knows will eventually renew. The charter certificates will be mailed soon. Greg would like to see online renewal of club charters for the year 2002; the technology is there. So that clubs may be better informed, Greg is working with The May Agency to provide liability information. Greg may be able to provide Ray Z. with forecasting and planning software that will run on top of the iMIS database. In response to a question from Jim Shaw about the President's meeting at the National Rally, Greg plans to send an advance mailing to clubs so that the presidents can prepare questions and concerns for the BMW MOA Board, staff and possibly a BMW NA representative. Another thought is to have an additional President's meeting in conjunction with a Board meeting.

Website Report - Ted Verrill
The URL for the Roads database is close to being finished. This database is a compilation of good riding roads sent in by members. The site has a new Member Profile author. Steve Huber is in the production chain and new material is put up within 12 to 24 hours of being submitted. Ted is looking into technology and pricing for a secure site; one problem is securing the connection at the Chesterfield office where the confidential information would be downloaded.

Consumer Liaison - Rob Lentini
Business is slow and steady and picking up. Rob will compile the results of his warranty survey done on the Internet BMW Riders mailing list and send it Ray Z. for presentation to BMW NA.

Finance Report - Rob Lentini
Paul Glaves thanked Sue Rihn-Manke for a profitable National Rally in Midland. Net income through November 30 was $83,000 more than budgeted.

Investment Report - Rob Lentini
Our portfolio has gone up $100,000 in the past three and a half weeks. In addition, the principle has changed because of recent additions of $25,000 to each of Baron, Legg Mason and Janus. We continue to dollar cost average when possible. Our cash position changes daily, depending on when checks hit the bank; the payroll has stabilized. The market will probably remain stable for another 3 or 4 months, and we might invest more in May or June after our cash position has grown.

Rally Committee Report
Each member of the Rally Manual Committee has a copy of the Rally Manual. Susanna will work with Marilyn Roberts to update the manual when needed. Over the next year Marilyn will transition into overseeing and providing backup support for the rally chair. Susanna expressed concern that in the future, the job of National Rally chair may be too large for a volunteer to handle and that rally chairs may be hard to find. More input and responsibility from the Chesterfield office may be necessary. Paul Glaves agreed that the office might have to provide more ongoing support to make the job more doable. In the past, rally chairpersons have been relatively autonomous. The rally is a part of MOA and to provide oversight, the office and the Board will have to have more direct involvement in the rally. Ray Z. pointed out that we shouldn't lose sight that we are a volunteer based organization and that our flavor comes from our volunteers.

Rally Chair, Gray Buckley, reported that the logo and final artwork are in process. Overflow showers and swimming have been arranged. Because Mailboxes Etc. has canceled, Gray will find another company. Two hundred and fifty motorcycles are registered to take the Rally Train; the cost has not yet been determined. Everyone who signed up for the Rally Train on the original list is still on it unless they requested removal. There has been a request for a maximum cap on the amount large families have to spend on rally fees. Gray has been approached to sell advertising on the rally page of the website and on wristbands. Gray will work with Ray Z. and appropriate committees. The fairgrounds will dispose of used oil generated in the oil change area, but no degreasers are allowed on the ground. Obtaining a liquor license is a complicated issue but it's simpler if the organization is non-profit. The Oregon club, which is non-profit, is serving as the state representative.

Rob Lentini presented the National Rally draft budget, which was constructed by Gray, Ray Z. and Nancy Sulfstede. It is conservative, with a proposed profit of $32,000. A previous rally budget containing all zeros was submitted at the November Board meeting and approved along with the MOA and Publications budgets. Don Hamblin moved, seconded by Tom Harbrecht, to amend the rally budget with the developed rally budget. Motion carried.

There is controversy between the website and the magazine as to which medium will publish what rally information, and what the flow of information should be. Ray Z. indicated that this is a larger problem than we realize. He has been in communication with Ian Schmeisser (Rally Marketing), Sandy and others and it is a communication problem. Paul Glaves instructed Ray Z. to set up a teleconference to include Sandy, Ian, Ted, Gray, Ray Z. (and Paul if necessary to resolve disagreements). Rally information needs to be in the magazine.

Unfinished Business

Board Committee Structure - Paul Glaves
The former Finance Committee and the former Operations Committee were combined into one: Finance and Operations Committee. Appointed to this committee were Paul Glaves, Deb Lower and Rob Lentini.

The former Publications Committee was renamed Communications Committee. This committee was also re-tasked to include the magazine, the website and other communications tools. Appointed to this committee were Don Hamblin, Jim Shaw and Ted Verrill. Ian Schmeisser, Sandy Cohen and Ray Monroe were appointed as ex-officio members.

The Rally Committee was renamed Events Committee, which will also include the former Rally Site Search Committee. Appointed to the committee were Tom Harbrecht, George Glascock and Matt Parkhouse. Susanna Parkhouse was appointed as an ex-officio member.

Ray Zimmerman is an ex-officio member of all standing committees.

An organizational chart, including committees, was requested. An ad hoc committee, consisting of one member from each standing committee will work with Ray Z. relative to committee structure and the organizational chart.

Jim Shaw moved, seconded by Don Hamblin, that the Board ratify the president's plan for the standing Board committees. Motion carried.

Announcements
The next Board meeting will be held in St. Louis on April 21-22, 2001. Rob Lentini moved, seconded by Tom Harbrecht, that the Board meet for only one day in April. Discussion: Board members and invited volunteer staff would travel on Saturday morning; the Board would work into the evening and fly home on Sunday. Ray Z. suggested leaving Sunday morning as a working window in case business was not concluded on Saturday evening. Don Hamblin suggested committee meetings on Saturday morning. Motion carried. The April Board meeting will begin at noon on Saturday, April 21.

The Board was in open session until late afternoon on Saturday, recessed to an Executive Session, meeting reconvened on Sunday morning in open session to hear the Rally Chairman report before moving back into Executive Session with adjournment at noon. The board did not reconvene into open session, as there were no items to report from the executive session.

Respectfully submitted,
Marilyn Roberts

Reviewed and approved by Deb Lower, BMW MOA Secretary
February 18, 2001, 2000


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