The Board revisited their agreed upon norms and renewed commitment to upholding them.
Treasurer Wesen reported on ASCA’s finances. The full report will be reviewed during the Board’s April 20, 2023, meeting.
The Board voted to increase the following fees effective 30 days after notification to the membership of the increased fees (member/non-member).
– Individual Dog Registration Transfer of Ownership: $20/$40
– Duplicate Individual Dog Registration Certificate: $15/$30
The Board approved the acceptance of a loan offer from Guarantee Bank & Trust, which is currently being facilitated by President Gann. More details will follow once the loan is secured.
The Board verified that ASCA’s rule books are safely backed up to the cloud.
System Liaison Wesen gave an update on the progress of the Information Technology Committee. They continue to familiarize themselves with the system and ASCA’s needs moving forward. The work on the user portal will remain paused until further notice.
After a thorough discussion on how to improve the process for other (foreign) registrations, the Board recognized the need to increase the pedigree research fee to more accurately reflect the effort required to conduct this research. The fee will be raised to $100 for full members and $150 for service members.
The Board is considering having the Business Office send out this years’ invitations to Finals via email, depending on our ability to create reports that list the emails of qualifiers and alternates. To accommodate this change, it will be imperative that ASCA competitors ensure their email addresses are up to date with ASCA.
The Board adopted the updated Strategic Plan for 2023-2024. The plan can be viewed on the ASCA website at the following link: https://asca.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/11/Strategic-Plan.pdf
The Board met with Conformation Committee Member Gail Karamalegos to discuss the formatting of the Illustrated Breed Standard and explore strategies to market it effectively.
The Board met with the office staff and the Office Manager regarding the state of the office.
To better serve our members and ensure staff can work productively, the Business Office has updated its phone hours. Starting immediately, calls will only be accepted from 10 am to 4 pm Central Time. This will provide our hardworking staff with two uninterrupted hours each day to focus on tasks that require their full attention. To expedite your request, we encourage you to contact the office via email whenever possible.
The Board reviewed ASCA’s financial status to assess the feasibility of hiring an additional employee. Alongside this, they proactively sought ways to elevate the workplace experience for our existing staff. The Board prioritized the goal of enhancing morale while also streamlining cost-effectiveness by exploring alternate work schedule options and reallocation of current responsibilities.
The ASCA Lifetime Achievement Award for 2023 will go to Marie Murphy (Diamond Aire). She was nominated by Heather Borde-Oslie, Melissa Borde, and Kathy Sianko due to her remarkable contributions to ASCA, particularly in the ASCA junior program.
The Board approved Senior Breeder Judge Kristina Churchill to be the evaluator for Most Versatile Aussie and Most Versatile Junior at the 2024 Nationals.
The Board approved Kathy Peycke to be the Merchandise Co-Chair for the 2024 Nationals. She will be working with Liz Gibson.
The Board evaluated the Nationals Advisory Committee’s comparison of proposed National Specialty sites. The Kern County Fairgrounds in Bakersfield, California, Island Grove in Greeley, Colorado, Fonner Park in Grand Island, Nebraska, and Brazos County Expo in Bryan, Texas were all considered. Moreover, Director Wesen is currently investigating two promising sites in New York.
In line with this, the Board voted to return to a rotation policy for the National Specialty. The specific rotation, however, will be determined at a later date following additional research on the Nebraska site by Director Creelman and further investigation of the two potential sites in New York by Director Wesen. The Board is committed to making the most informed decision to benefit the ASCA community.
The Board is exploring the potential of a long-term contract with Lionel Remillard for the use of his National Specialty entry application. Plans for further discussions will be determined once the Board has had an opportunity to speak with Mr. Remillard regarding this matter.
The Board met with ASCA’s Legal Counsel to address pending legal concerns, including our relationship with a vendor and an appeal regarding a prior Board decision.
Director Busquets presented an employee handbook that she has been working on, with the help of ASCA’s legal counsel. The handbook was well-received and will be put up for a final vote during the Board’s meeting on April 20, 2023.
In an effort to significantly minimize expenses, the Board evaluated a comparison of insurance policies for ASCA. Director Gann has been leading this effort and will continue to explore all available options to ensure that ASCA can secure comprehensive coverage while keeping expenses as low as possible.
The Board is exploring methods to recognize titles earned by our members from other organizations, such as Barn Hunt. Director McCabe will be researching this further.
We encountered a significant obstacle in our efforts to establish a PayPal account for ASCA. In addition to our Employer Identification Number, PayPal requires a social security number of an owner of the organization, which is not possible for us to provide since we are a non-profit entity. We will continue to explore alternative options to provide you with the best possible payment options for our events and services.
The Board voted to temporarily suspend the hard copy publication of the Aussie Times magazine for one year, beginning with the July/August issue. Full members will still be able to access the digital version of the magazine through the user portal on the ASCA website. The Board will assess ASCA’s financial status annually, starting with the spring meeting of 2024, to determine whether to continue the suspension or resume hard copy publication. This move is expected to result in a substantial cost savings of approximately $104k for ASCA.
The Board conducted the draw for the order that Affiliate Clubs can choose dates to host a pre/post-show/trial at the 2024 Nationals. We are still seeking additional Affiliates to host events. Please reach out to Denise Creelman if your club is interested in contributing to the success of the 2024 Nationals.
The Board reviewed proposals from ASCA’s Fundraising Coordinator Cynthia Downing to seek corporate sponsorships and to explore the creation of a for-profit arm for ASCA. The Board was impressed with her ideas and approved of her moving forward with these initiatives. To ensure full compliance, Ms. Downing will be consulting with ASCA’s CPA and Counsel before proceeding. The Board is excited about the potential benefits of these proposals and looks forward to seeing the positive impact they could have on ASCA’s fundraising efforts.
A motion was presented to propose an amendment to the bylaws that would allow for electronic ballots to be sent to the membership in the future. The Board recognizes that this change could provide significant cost savings for ASCA, as the current postage costs for mailing out ballots range from $3,500 to $4,500, depending on the number of ballots going out of the US and the postage rate at the time of mailing. After careful consideration, the Board unanimously voted to include this proposed change on the 2023 ballot for the membership to vote on. The Board is committed to seeking ways to reduce expenses for ASCA while maintaining the integrity of the election process.
The Board enthusiastically approved allowing member Cassie Parker to lend her considerable expertise as a non-profit accountant to ASCA’s Business Office in a consultative capacity. Ms. Parker will be working with the Assistant Manager to provide guidance on best practices for bookkeeping duties, ensuring that ASCA’s financial records are up-to-date, accurate and compliant. The Board is confident that this collaboration will be beneficial to ASCA’s operations and looks forward to seeing the results.
The Board addressed committee renewals and appointments, ensuring that ASCA continues to function effectively. The updated listing of committee members can be viewed on the ASCA website at the following link: https://asca.org/asca/committees/
The Foundation Board met to review the finances of the ASCA Foundation and to sign the annual conflict of interest statement.
The Board conducted a thorough review of the employee evaluations and determined appropriate salary increases.