Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Friday, March 19, 2004

US O' Federation board


An email arrived today:

After six years, Nancy Koehler is stepping down from her USOF board At-large
Competition position. I think it would be nice to get someone who is
team-savvy to fill that position, and you were suggested as someone who
would be an excellent addition to the USOF board. I agreed and volunteered
to ask you.

Being on the USOF board means....

I haven't replied yet.

My first reaction was -- no way. I don't want to be on the board. I've been asked maybe 3 or 4 times over the last 20 years and I've always declined.

I've got two main reasons for not wanting to be on the USOF Board. First, I've got a limited amount of time to devote to orienteering and I prefer to spend that time at the local level. I make maps, set courses, set up training sessions, write newsletters, etc. for the local club. That is what I enjoy and I think it has more direct benefit to the sport than if I was a board member. I've had a rule that I work at the local level since the mid-1980s. I've stuck to it with one exception -- working at the Texas Junior O' Camp. Second, I don't think it'd be any fun. I've known several people on the board and many of them didn't enjoy their terms. One person actually dreaded going to national events where a board meeting was being held because of the meeting.

I can think of two reasons to be on the board. First, someone asked. Second, I have a professional interest in how boards function. At work, I've done a lot of writing and analysis of how boards work well and what happens when they don't work well. But, I've never actually been on a board of any kind. So, it might be interesting to see a board from the inside.

I haven't yet replied. I don't intend to express any interest in being on the USOF board. Maybe my reply to the email should be "what is the pay?"

posted by Michael | 8:34 AM


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