Delegates Post Meeting Report and the Official “Communication” from the GCSAA

Clay Center Country Club Kansas
Last week I was in Kansas for the GCSAA Delegates meeting and I would like to give you a short update on what happened.

Most of day was talking about changing the By-Laws, the By-Laws were sent to an Law firm that recommended a number of wording changes. The one that was discussed the most was about voting at the GIS, having the candidates that are running for the BOD be voted in for each position separately instead of the two top vote getter. Then if a appointment for a 1 year term is needed there will be a vote for that position instead of the President appointing someone. The other changes were about membership classifications.

The Code of Ethics were revised and all items that were not legally enforceable were struck.

National Golf Day this past spring was a success and the project on the Mall was a lot of fun for everyone. Next year the group would like to do a bigger project. Meeting the Congress members of course was the main reason for Golf Day.

GCSAA is setting up a political action committee or PAC in order to gain access to members of Congress that can help the game of golf.

A certificate program for Turf Equipment Managers and Assistant Superintendents is being worked on.

Any questions please let me know.

Russell Dooge, CGCS

One last thing, please let me know who you would like to be Superintendent of the Year and the reason why. Thank you Russ

Complete Delegates Post Meeting Communication from the GCSAA

Key Messages

  • Association Report -GCSAA CEO, Rhett Evans briefed delegates on the state of GCSAA. He thanked the delegates and the chapters for their incredible support of the GCSAA Disaster Relief Fund. To date, total donations raised is $150,000. Chapters have contributed over $60,000. Overall, GCSAA remains on solid financial footing. In 2017, GCSAA is projected to have $18,066,000 in revenue and $17,963,000 in expenses. The Golf Industry Show remains the largest revenue generator for GCSAA. In 2017, the GIS net revenue was $3.88 million. The association expects to have a successful show in San Antonio. GCSAA continues to put its resources to work in areas that are focused on its members – research & environmental programs, field staff, career services, and advocacy & outreach, which have collectively experienced a 60% growth in funding since 2012.
  • Rounds 4 Research Auction – The delegates celebrated the success of the top 5 chapter fundraisers in the 2017 R4R Auction. Chapters are encouraged to find a champion – a delegate, the president, chapter executive – someone who will spearhead the initiative in their chapter. 2018 Auction will be April 30-May 6. Chapters just need to recruit the rounds to donate – EIFG administers the rest of the program. Call or email Mischia Wright, Associate Director, EIFG at 800-472-7878 or [email protected].
  • State BMP Implementation – The delegates received an update on GCSAA’s goal to have all 50 states with a BMP in place by 2020. GCSAA thanked the chapters that have been working diligently within in their states to make this goal a reality. Ten states have a BMP in place, with 3 more set to come online this Winter. The State BMP initiative is gaining steam and we expect to hit the goal by 2020. Chapters/superintendents are encouraged to contact GCSAA through their field staff for assistance or additional information.
  • Government Affairs Briefing – The Government Affairs team brought the delegates up-to-date on three key priorities and asked for all members to get involved in GCSAA’s advocacy efforts. They can do this by:

    • GCSAA now has a Political Action Committee (GCSAAPAC) to support advocacy efforts on behalf of the membership. The GCSAAPAC will distribute money to Congressional champions who help advance GCSAA’s Priority Issue Agenda. Delegates and members can get involved by volunteering to sit on the PAC Board, or by contributing.
    • Attend National Golf Day on April 24-25, 2018. Registration opens on January 1. There will be a community service project on the National Mall again, and a Congressional reception at the Capitol Visitor Center.
    • Be a Grassroots Ambassador – GCSAA is entering the 4th year of this important program that matches a member of Congress with a GCSAA professional member. GCSAA has 305 Grassroots Ambassadors. There are still districts open and in need of a volunteer. Check out the Ambassador page on or contact Michael Lee, Manager, Government Affairs, for more information. January 1 also kicks off the GCSAA Advocacy Network which offers GCSAA members who are not Ambassadors the opportunity to support the association’s larger grassroots army. Watch for a survey in GCSAA This Week.
  • Task Group Updates – Each year, GCSAA has numerous committees and task groups that meet to help guide the association. The delegates heard from three task groups with exciting new programs. GCSAA is focused on growing its value proposition with current and potential members. GCSAA asked these task groups to help increase the value students, assistants and equipment managers get in their membership by enhancing learning and networking opportunities.
    • Equipment Manager Task Group – the task group helped launch two new certificates in 2017. Metalworking and Fabrication; Fundamental of Turfgrass Operations. This brings the total of certificates available up to 8. The task group will continue to work towards a new Certified Golf Course Equipment Manager designation.
    • Student Task Group – The student task group provided feedback on a new online mentoring program; suggested free student web membership (which is now a reality) and helped with a new marketing piece aimed at high school students and their parents.
    • Assistant Superintendent Task Group – Exciting news from the task group a new Assistant Superintendent Certificate Series is getting ready to launch. These certificates are aimed at helping assistant superintendents market their expertise and knowledge, although they are available to everyone. The Agronomic and Business exams will debut by the end of 2017. The 2018 task group will further define the remaining certificate criteria for content relative to communication/leadership, and environmental management.
  • Election Process – The delegates learned about proposed bylaws changes that would alter the current election process. The proposed changes are based on feedback from past delegates to make the election process clearer and to put the control back in the hands of the members/delegates. The changes would affect the election of directors and the process to fill the seat of a Director who either resigns, or has been elected to the Secretary/Treasurer position.

    • No proposed changes to President, Vice President or Secretary/Treasurer election process.
    • Each open director position would be voted on one at a time.
    • Proposed bylaw change would require an immediate vote by ballot for any vacancy that might occur due to the unexpired director’s term in the Secretary/Treasurer election. This unexpired term would be voted on after the open position(s) for director(s).
    • A proposed change to the bylaws will also address how to fill a term due to a resignation on the Board. Currently, the President appoints a replacement. The change would be to have the President appoint a replacement until the next election. The membership would then vote on the replacement.
  • Governance Updates – The delegates received an update regarding proposed changes to the GCSAA Bylaws, and updates made to the GCSAA Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct Guidelines.

    • Proposed Bylaws Changes – delegates heard about proposed changes to the definition and requirements of the ISM membership designation, the changes to the election process and adding references to the Chapter Delegates Meeting and dissolution of the association. These changes would require a 2/3 vote at the Annual Meeting.
    • Code of Ethics – GCSAA revised its Code of Ethics. All items that were not legally defensible were struck.
    • Professional Conduct Guidelines – The items that were struck from the Code of Ethics as not legally enforceable were moved to the Professional Conduct Guidelines.
  • Interactive Meeting – Delegates took part in small group discussions and an interactive Town Hall with the GCSAA Board of Directors.
  • Candidate Presentations and Breakouts – the candidates for the 2018 GCSAA Board of Directors gave presentations and visited delegates in breakout rooms. The delegates were awarded ample time to interact and ask questions of the candidates. Those running for the 2018 GCSAA Board of Directors are:

    • For President – Darren J. Davis, CGCS
    • For Vice President – Rafael Barajas, CGCS
    • For Secretary/Treasurer
      John R. Fulling, CGCS
      Mark F. Jordan, CGCS
    • For Director (six members are on the slate for two director positions)
      T.A. Barker, CGCS
      Kevin P. Breen, CGCS
      Nelson J. Caron
      Kevin P. Sunderman
      Rory Van Poucke
      Jeff L. White, CGCS
  • There are two open positions for director, with Kevin P. Breen, CGCS being at the end of his two-year director term and Kevin P. Sunderman is completing a one-year appointment.
  • Both secretary/treasurer candidates, John R. Fulling Jr., CGCS, and Mark F. Jordan, CGCS, are in the middle of their two-year director terms, so the unsuccessful candidate for secretary/treasurer will remain on the 2018 Board of Directors for the second year of their two-year term.
  • Under the current election process the remaining year of the successful secretary/treasurer candidate will be filled by appointment and since Keith A. Ihms, CGCS, was appointed to fill the rest of the first year of Johnny Walker’s two-year director term, following Walker’s resignation from the board earlier this year, the second year of that director position will also be filled by appointment.
  • If the delegates approve the proposed bylaws changes to the election process, these two one-year terms would be voted on by the assembly at the Annual Meeting.

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