Regional Director

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Mike
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Regional Director

Postby Mike » Tue, Nov 06 2007, 11:08 AM

We should think about this a little bit.
Next year the AKA votes for a new director for our region. Region 6 is: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin.
The regional director is our liaison with the national AKA.

Do we care who the regional director is?
I think we should give a little thought to what a regional director can do for us.
If we think the position is useful, maybe we should run someone from the club.

Off the top of my head, the director:
  • Should be announced at all festivals that he/she attends and should be available for questions and should also promote membership in the AKA.
  • Help to make sure that there are enough competitions in the region, pushing people to organize more comps if needed.
  • Help to promote festivals in the region and nearby regions via emails to all the members. Really encourage turnout at the festivals.
  • Drum up some sort of regional spirit for National Kite Month.
  • Encourage inter-club cooperation for a couple really big festivals. Or even a really big mega-club fly.
  • Spread the joy: get more people flying kites. The more the merrier!
  • Maintain a region 6 web site with festival info, clubs in the area, maybe a regional calendar with times and dates of club flies. That would help when traveling with your kites in the trunk.

What do y'all think?
Don't be shy; post any thoughts you have. Newbies, please join in the conversation.

Have you had problems with the AKA?
Do you wish the AKA would do something different?
What would be good for the AKA to do?
Before Denny got so busy with non-kiting things, I thought he would be great for the job. Who do you think might be good for the job? Any volunteers?

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Babbman
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Babbman » Tue, Nov 06 2007, 02:09 PM

We should care very much who our rep is.

Regardless of who that person is, they should be as active as possible in generating excitement, participation, education and anything else necessary to promote kiting in our region.

I cannot say anything good or bad concerning our current director as I don't know him that well and have only been in kiting for a year and a half. I have seen Bob at various festivals though, including some in our area, which is good.

Chris (aka Babbman)

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety...
Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759

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Mike
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Mike » Tue, Nov 06 2007, 03:17 PM

20 views so far and only 1 response?
Come on folks, lets hear some chatter out there!

Al, have you heard of anyone who is thinking of running? Is Bob going to run again?

Ann
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Ann » Tue, Nov 06 2007, 04:23 PM

I haven't heard of anyone who might be interested in running. The AKA forums have some specific areas dedicated to regional information as well as some really good general information for those new to kiting or the AKA. The website can be found at AKA.kite.org

I agree with Mike's statements and hope to read more commentary on this topic.

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TheBigKiteGuy
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Re: Regional Director

Postby TheBigKiteGuy » Tue, Nov 06 2007, 04:25 PM

Mike wrote:Al, have you heard of anyone who is thinking of running? Is Bob going to run again?


I will have to let Bob answer if he is planning on running again. I have not heard of anyone else thinking about running.

It is both a great job and a terrible one. You get to meet many wonderful people, and are usually greeted with open arms. But there are also people who never think you do enough and some who try to get you to take sides in disputes between clubs / members. You have a say in how the association is run, which is either good, bad or both. You get praise for things you had no control over, as well as getting beat up, also generally over things you had no input / control over.
My biggest criticism came after I was no longer RD and had no way of addressing the complaint.

I felt that showing up at as many festivals as possible was important, but would never have been able to spend the time and money I did on travel if I was not single. The geographic size of the region is a major challenge. I did better by some parts of the region than others.


Over all it is a great job, but it has its dark moments. I did it for six years, which shows that it has its rewards
Alan Sparling

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Babbman
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Babbman » Tue, Nov 06 2007, 04:55 PM

"Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin."

This is a rather large area. As Al said... being single is almost a pre-requisite in order to be able to attend to and cover this area.

Is this a voluntary position? Any reimbursement?

Is there a reason that they don't break up the region into some smaller areas that a person could pay more attention to?


Chris (aka Babbman)



They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety...
Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759


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TheBigKiteGuy
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Re: Regional Director

Postby TheBigKiteGuy » Wed, Nov 07 2007, 07:43 AM

It is a volunteer position, it cost me several thousand a year to pay for all the travel I did. Smaller regions would mean more RDs which would make the conference calls unmanageable. Twenty people on a call is enough.
Alan Sparling

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Mux11
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Mux11 » Wed, Nov 07 2007, 09:01 AM

I think this discussion is very valuable and would agree that putting heads together would be good.

As a NewB and having the bite of the bug and addicted to kiting I found out about AKA, IKE and a couple other groups simply because I sought them out.
I have learned over about a year that there was a local kite club in my area but has been disbanded for some time, 5 years or so. I would like to have more 'closer' regular flys and have been working on a festival for the area as they are about a 2hr drive to get to one. Not that Im unwilling but the wife and kid seem to over rule flying kites some how :).

With that said what I would expect in an RD of an organization that seems to be as well put together as the AKA are the following. These are not statements saying that they are not happening mind you.
- Visibility at events
- Open communication (replies within a reasonable amount of time and information provided timely)
- Encouragement for participation and recruitment
- Open to suggestions

I also thought the territory was large but I have also noticed that a majority of fests and flys have taken place in one general area of the region. I also know that my general area seems to spend less dollars on hobbies type activities vs some of the other metros that surround the area. I have had conversations with friends that cannot believe that I spent even $50 for a kite, only because there perception of kites are dime store plastics.

Soo. lots there, I know. and im more than happy to share more of my thoughts if there’s any interest.

I look at it this way the stronger the club, either the IKE or AKA level the more I can have opportunities to enjoy the activity that I really enjoy, Kiting.
-James Davenport IA

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Babbman
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Babbman » Wed, Nov 07 2007, 09:01 AM

TheBigKiteGuy wrote:It is a volunteer position, it cost me several thousand a year to pay for all the travel I did. Smaller regions would mean more RDs which would make the conference calls unmanageable. Twenty people on a call is enough.


I guess I would see it more as a hierarchy rather than a flat org chart... regional directors who conference in as they do now. Local or State directors who conference in only with the regional director... would make things more manageable for the RD (in theory) and would provide better and more personal coverage to the individual states... I just cannot see how having 1 person cover 4 or 5 states is doing the organization all that much good.

Just my opinion though...


Chris (aka Babbman)



They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety...
Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759


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Mike
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Mike » Wed, Nov 07 2007, 09:40 AM

Mux11 wrote:I look at it this way the stronger the club, either the IKE or AKA level the more I can have opportunities to enjoy the activity that I really enjoy, Kiting.
-James Davenport IA

Well put!

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Mike
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Mike » Wed, Nov 07 2007, 09:50 AM

Babbman wrote:I guess I would see it more as a hierarchy rather than a flat org chart... regional directors who conference in as they do now. Local or State directors who conference in only with the regional director... would make things more manageable for the RD (in theory) and would provide better and more personal coverage to the individual states... I just cannot see how having 1 person cover 4 or 5 states is doing the organization all that much good.
Just my opinion though...


This seems like a good idea. It seems impossible for an RD to attend events in Indiana and Minnesota on a regular basis.

There is a lot of overlap in the festivals that IKE attends though. While most of our fests are in Illinois, we attend several in Wisconsin. We also visit a couple in Ohio, Michigan and Iowa. Maybe a Rep for two states would work? With Milwaukee and Chicago so close, it seems a rep for both WI and IL might work well.

If there is a hierarchy, maybe we could reduce the number of RDs and have fewer then 20 in that conference call.
There are 12 RDs for the U.S.. The sport kite commission gets by with 6 reps to cover the U.S. Using the same 6 areas for the RDs makes sense to me.

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Re: Regional Director

Postby TheBigKiteGuy » Wed, Nov 07 2007, 09:10 PM

I know that there was a lot of discussion on the board last year about assistant RDs (I don't remember what they really called them). I also don't know where that stands now.
Alan Sparling

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Mux11
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Mux11 » Thu, Nov 08 2007, 08:33 AM

only because I havnt a clue, does our RD participate in Ike events? watch this board?

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Babbman
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Babbman » Thu, Nov 08 2007, 08:44 AM

Mux11 wrote:only because I havnt a clue, does our RD participate in Ike events? watch this board?


Bob has been at several IKE events and we've seen him at non-IKE events also. As far as participation on the board, I'm not sure...


Chris (aka Babbman)



They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety...
Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759


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Draftnik
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Draftnik » Thu, Nov 08 2007, 03:49 PM

Does the AKA have something describing the position?

Bob's done a good job, and Paul Fieber before him as RD's. Don't know beyond that cause we'd didn't belong to the AKA.
TTFN,
Draftnik

Barbara
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Re: Regional Director

Postby Barbara » Wed, Nov 21 2007, 02:43 PM

The AKA does have a regional directors handbook. You can find it on the AKA site, go to members, scroll down to members only, to club house, enter your email address and then your AKA number, that gets you in.
In addition to the handbook that is publically acessible, once you are on the board there is a manual of how to survive on the board that I wrote 2 years ago and updated last year.
One of the big items an RD does is to review the requests for sanctioning/insurance. That needs to have a 1 at most 2 day turn around.
Although it is nice if the RD can attend lots of events, the RD can still do a lot for the region without traveling every weekend. If you think region 6 is big, take a look at 7, 8, and 9. And, what about 12 (?) that has Hawaii, then you have 13 for the rest of the world.
For instance, every RD receives an AKA banner. Most will loan that banner to a club for their use at a major fly.
Every RD has access to the bulk email system to send a message to every member in their region. Every club should take advantage of this, for every fly or other event. For instance when MAKR registration opens, I ask the RD's of regions 5-6 & 7 to send out a message. Some RD's send a "newsletter" every week. Now, several of the regions are having a section set up on the forum for comments and questions. This is especially nice when the RD has a quesiton and wants to get some comments, or for events that may attact flyers from several regions.
If you are planning a major festival, contact the AKA office, Mel Hickman and request that extra copies of Kiting be sent to you. Don't forget the get a stack of membership application forms.
And, most of all, use email to contact your RD with any question, comment or concern. We were (not fondly) chatting about how difficult it was to do the job in the pre-email days.
The biggest skills an RD needs to bring to the job (true all volunteer), is a willingness to listen and change their mind as facts come in, not to champion one style of kiting and be blind to the needs of the rest, and work well with others while still looking out for their region. some rd's are very active on the AKA board, some end up chairing committees. As a new RD, you probably would not. You might serve on a committee.
Barbara


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