Directors serve 3 years; VP & P 2 years; VP succeeds to President. One must have served time on the Board to move into the VP spot and on to Pres. Terms are staggered such that 1/3 of the Board rotates off and 1/3 new each year.
Board orientation for all board members (new and current) is held Saturday afternoon during the conference - a day after the election which is held on Friday morning. All board members must participate.
It is important that Board members make Board calls and gatherings as well as the annual conference. International Board members usually do not (because of cost) participate on the Board phone conference calls. But attending the conference each year in which you serve on the Board is important and expected.
The Board has phone conference call periodically (every other month or so) and one calls into an 800 number - so there is no cost other than the hour and a half in time. They have been scheduled on Fridays at 9:30am eastern - although each year the Board agrees on what time is best for that group. Agenda's and support material comes to you the weekend before the event. This may take a 15-30 min. of preparation.
At the end of January each year the new board meets in person for their Strategic Planning Meeting at the conference hotel for the year (e.g. in Las Vegas 20001) Spouses are welcome to come along though the daytime meetings are for the Board only. Costs to attend are mainly carried by each Board member though NSSA pays for at least one night's lodging, breakfasts and lunches and one dinner for attendee and any spouses.
The purpose of this meeting is to check on the progress towards our strategic plan (created one to three years prior). The Board has agreed on a mission and vision, set a few goals in that regard and has established standards for seeing progress towards those goals. Beyond that the Executive Director is the chief 'paddler' toward those goals though he/she may enlist the aid of Board members, members, committees to achieve the goals as needed.
In March each year we have had spring events. But there is no Board meeting in connection with these. You are asked to assist a little with the administration of the event should you attend.
In preparation for the annual conference Las Vegas 2001, Monterrey, Mexico in 2002), the Board members do some of the work for preparing and conducting the conference. Board members do not pay a conference fee but do work prior and or during the event. Their spouses are also welcome to work and, depending on what they do, may also get their conference or social events free in exchange. The Board has come in as early as Sunday before the Wednesday start of the conference to prepare and one or two of those room nights are paid for along with lunches BUT this seems to be changing such that board members arrive just the Tuesday before. They depart on Sunday like other conference attendees.
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Time required is not overwhelming. Again you are not ‘doing’ what it takes to run the association (staff does that) you are putting your judgment and thoughts towards the main goals of the association and marking progress towards those large goals. Your are ‘steering’ the association (staff paddles).
The calls though regular are not time consuming – a hour and a half every two or three months. You may have 30 minutes of reading materials to go over to prepare for the call. If you take on a special project that may take a little time. (Certainly the President spends more time always). The Spring events are no problem you participate fully. The annual conference does require some advance time and time at the conference. How much you participate in the conference depends on the actual committee job you have and how you set it up. Some just focus on the committee (by choice) others aim to participate in much of the conference. It is largely up to you.
The reason most often given for wanting to come on to the Board is 'to give something back to the industry and association'.
The main benefit to participating and serving on the board is Leadership - it is a leadership building experience that carries over to your own business and community. Of course being on the Board puts you in closer connection with other top NSSA individuals and leading schools - and that has also been seen as a great value. I think most who've served would say that they got back equal or more than they gave in time and money. Done right, you depart the board be a better leader in your business, industry and community.
If by chance the items outlined will be too intensive for the amount of time you have to give, (and it shouldn’t be) of course we should discuss that. The President and other board members can be contacted to discuss this and time requirements as well.
If you have other questions contact the Executive Director or President