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      February 01, 2001:

-Bowling Membership Leaders to Take Single Membership Organization Concept to Boards, Delegates

02/01/2001 - Bowling Headquarters
      The executive committees/councils and executive directors of American Bowling Congress (ABC), Women's International Bowling Congress (WIBC) and Young American Bowling Alliance (YABA) met with the Single Membership Organization Task Force (SMOTF) January 28 and agreed to present resolutions to the respective member organization boards to encourage the pursuit of the single membership organization concept.

      They also agreed to include a report of the single membership organization to delegates at the ABC and WIBC conventions this spring.

      Feedback concerning the concept will be solicited at the conventions and throughout the summer. The ABC and WIBC boards will review the feedback at their fall board meetings, with possible legislation to be considered at their 2002 conventions.

      Membership leaders agreed to this plan of action after considering a summary report on the concept and the results of a legal and financial due diligence investigation and review. Conducted by a team of experts with extensive backgrounds in non-profit associations and consolidations, the due diligence study did not identify any significant or material legal or financial liabilities that would prevent a consolidation of ABC, WIBC, YABA, USA Bowling and Bowling, Inc. This consolidation would form a new single membership organization representing the sport of amateur tenpin bowling in the United States.

      Representatives from USA Bowling, Bowling Inc. and the Bowling Proprietors' Association of America (BPAA) also attended the meeting and reviewed the details of the proposed Single Membership Organization Concept.

Single Membership Organization Concept

      ABC, WIBC, YABA, USA Bowling and Bowling, Inc. would be dissolved and consolidated into a new single membership organization representing the sport of amateur tenpin bowling in the United States. Its proposed structure, as follows, is designed to serve member needs and allows an ability to respond quickly to changing environments for greater member opportunities.

      The National Board would consist of 23 elected members. Initially, the board would be comprised of six ABC, six WIBC, two YABA, five athletes, two BPAA and two At-Large members. Within four years, the majority of the National Board would be elected by the entire membership. Equity in representation across gender lines would be assured through Nominating Committee policies.

National Staff
      The executive positions for ABC, WIBC, YABA, USA Bowling and Bowling Inc. would be eliminated and a single executive staff for the new membership organization would be established.

      State and local associations would be restructured into zones and regions, with paid staff to handle the administrative duties. This structure represents an increased commitment to service in the field. This would assure that local needs and activities continue to be met, or expanded.

      Zones would be comprised of multiple regions. The number of regions and their borders would be determined by overall membership size, density and geography. A region could be comprised of a single state, or multiple states. Individual states would not be split between two or more regions.

      Trained, paid lane inspectors in each region would maintain the integrity of the game and ensure consistent service across the country. Area processors throughout each region would handle various administrative duties.

      Local and state tournaments would be encouraged. However, if warranted, local tournaments may be consolidated to create a larger participant base. Additional opportunities for competition would be available through regional and zone events. The existing national tournaments for men, women and youth would continue to be conducted.

Awards and Recognition
      Awards and recognition will continue as part of the new organization. After an evaluation of existing award programs and seeking member input, a consistent, nationwide program would be developed to recognize members for their bowling achievements and contributions to the sport.

      Volunteers will be an integral part of the new organization and the key to the success of the sport. Volunteer roles would be restructured so they can focus on programs and services they enjoy and that have a direct impact on members. Many current clerical or administrative duties would be relegated to regional office personnel.

      Regional and local bowling councils with diverse representation of all ages and genders would be established, with their activities focused on members. Volunteers on regional and local bowling councils would be instrumental in providing input and direction for consideration by the National Board of the new organization. The councils also would participate in projects such as (but not limited to) hall of fame / recognition, tournaments and coaching.

      National, state and local meetings would be replaced by zone forums. These forums, which are open to the entire membership, are designed around members' needs and provide an opportunity for all members to have their voices heard regarding the decisions that govern their sport.

      Attendees would be able to vote on National Board positions, recommend the establishment of (or additions to) the rules of the game, discuss or debate issues and offer suggestions for the National Board's attention. Additional activities would include workshops and seminars for volunteers and members. Manufacturers, sponsors or other companies which offer a potential service to our members also would be invited to exhibit or conduct a seminar.

      The SMOTF was appointed in January 2000 by the respective membership organizations of the ABC, WIBC and YABA to study the feasibility of a single membership organization.

Comments and feedback can be directed to:

Therese Abair, Project Manager, SMOTF
P.O. Box 221304
West Palm Beach, FL 33422
Phone - (561) 689-6411
Email - [email protected]

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