Future Plans for Sail America Outlined at General Members Meeting at Strictly Sail Pacific
Over 80 Sail America members attended the General Members Meeting April 18 at Strictly Sail Pacific. The meeting covered Sail America’s future plans, a presentation on the State of the Sailing Industry Research, an update on Grow Boating, an announcement of the 2008 Industry Conference and Regatta, and an update on Strictly Sail Shows.
Sail America President Bill Goggins opened the meeting with his President’s Report in which he thanked current and past Board members and committee members for their contribution and support of Sail America. He urged others at the meeting to get involved in Sail America and stressed that, “We are all Sail America.” Goggins acknowledged the challenges facing Sail America and the sailing industry but expressed optimism for our future. In discussing the market outlook, Goggins emphasized the need for companies to focus on flexibility, innovation, exporting, and thinking differently. In summing up, Goggins stated, “What lies behind us or ahead of us is secondary to what lies within us.”
Goggins then outlined Sail America’s key initiatives for 2008 that included:
- Achieve financial stability: Sail America has been losing money for the past few years and has depleted its “rainy day”
fund. Going forward, Sail America will be redefining its relationship with NMMA and focusing on achieving a balanced budget.
- Sail America-Owned Shows: Goggins emphasized Sail America’s ongoing commitment to the Strictly Sail Shows and thanked the Show Team for pulling off a great Strictly Sail Pacific show.
- Regrouping our Association: The Industry Conference and Regatta in June will help to unite our industry and will help members identify ways to achieve greater business success in the future.
- Marketing Outreach: The Discover Sailing DVD and website will be updated significantly during 2008. Sail America is also working closely with NMMA to better integrate sailing into Discover Boating.
- Environmental Stewardship: Sail America will play a more active role in environmental stewardship and promoting the green aspects of sailing.
The Sailing Company’s Group Publisher Sally Helme presented results from the State of the Sailing Industry market research. Sail America members can get a free copy of the research by contacting Trish Reardon at email@example.com.
Sail America Executive Director Jonathan Banks gave an update on Discover Boating and provided further information about the upcoming 2008 Sail America Industry Conference and Regatta in Newport, RI on June 11-13. Banks also briefed members on the court ruling that mandates EPA to establish permit requirements for the incidental discharges of every recreational boat by September 2008. Banks urged members to contact their Senators to Cosponsor S. 2766, the Clean Boating Act of 2008 that will permanently codify the 34-year exemption for incidental recreational boat discharges. To stay informed and get involved, go to www.boatblue.org or contact Mathew Dunn at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wayne Burdick, Sail America show chair, recognized the efforts of the show team and local show committee for a successful Strictly Pacific Show. Burdick confirmed that Strictly Sail Pacific will be located at Jack London Square for the foreseeable future and that Sail America will work with the Port of Oakland to create additional exhibit space for next year’s show. Sail America will continue to explore other possible sites for the long term. Burdick also announced that Sail America is close to reaching an agreement with Show Management to combine Strictly Sail St. Pete with the St. Petersburg Boat Show that will held Dec. 4-7, 2008 at the South Yacht Basin, St. Petersburg. This move has the full support of the major exhibitors and will help to create a larger and more successful show. Sail America will continue to be closely involved with the show.