Most of this column will be taken up with the highlights from the Winter
meeting of the NFFS Board of Directors, held in Arlington, TX on Feb. 1 and
Feb 2. A number of important decisions were made at that meeting which will
have an effect on our members. Please read the column that follows carefully.
If you have comments to make, please address them either to me or to any of
the Vice Presidents of the NFFS, all of whom were in attendance at the

By-Laws. The item which took most of our time at this meeting was the
revision to the current bylaws. The original NFFS Bylaws were written
sometime in the early 1980’s and have had minor revisions over time. However,
with the advent of the internet and email, these bylaws are hopelessly
antiquated, requiring, for example, that all business be conducted by mail
(US Post) or in person. Obviously, we have been conducting NFFS business by
electronic means for a number of years, but we are in technical violation of
our own rules. These and other changes were approved by the Board of
Directors, but they need your vote in order to be adopted. The current
bylaws require that at least 7 percent of the membership must vote in order
to make the changes. That may sound like a small amount, but in past
elections, we have struggled to get to that number. We need you to vote. In
the next issue of the Digest, I will present a review of the proposed
changes, and copies of the proposed new bylaws will be displayed on the NFFS
website, and you can order a copy from me or any other officer. I addition to
this review, you will have a ballot presented to you for your vote. Please do

Dues. The current dues structure was voted in by the officers who were in
office in 1996. In the ensuing 7 years, we have created a website, provided
scholarships to our young achievers, sponsored the National Cup and produced
a first class publication in FREEFLIGHT. Thanks to some other sources of
revenue, we have not had to raise dues to cover these expenses. However, the
time has come to do so. Effective January 1, 2004, the dues will increase to
$25 per year ($48 for two years) for Open Members. Other categories of
membership will also see an increase. A full description of these changes
will be carried in an upcoming issue of the Digest. You can renew your
membership under the current dues structure until December 31 of this year.
Anyone renewing after then will pay the higher amount.
Indoor National Cups. The Board of Directors is very interested in developing
National Cups in the indoor free flight events. To this end, Bob Mattes has
been in communication with members of the Indoor Community to determine the
specifications of what these cups might be. Although we are not finished yet
with this work, it is the Board’s intention to have at least one and perhaps
more Indoor Cups on the docket for 2004.

AMA Glider Event. The NFFS Glider National Cup has been hampered in a way due
to the lack of a towline glider event or events to add to the list, which
now contains only HLG and HHCatapult. The NFFS, through its competition
committee, has begun a project to define what such an event or events might
be. Bob Mattes has led the study so far, but it will be handed off to a new
Glider Study Committee headed up by Fred Terzian, who will be assisted by
Jackie Sheffer and Vic Nippert. Our expectation is that the proposal will be
ready for implementation as a National Cup event or events by 2004. If this
event tests well, then it would form the basis of a future proposal to AMA
for an official AMA towline glider event.

Organizational Changes. Several Years ago, the NFFS adopted an
organizational structure which placed a committee, known as the Planning and
Operations Committee, in line of command between the programs we offer and
the Board of Directors. At the Winter meeting the Board of Directors changed
that line of command and have redefined the role of the Planning and
Operations Committee to that of Planning and Development. In doing so, the
Board also placed this committee as advisory to the President and Vice
President and out of the line of command. The new structure, which can be
seen on the NFFS website, and which will be presented in a future issue of
the Digest, puts the operation of the NFFS more directly in line with the
Board of Directors. This is a subtle change, but one which should hold your
elected officers to more responsibility for the success of the NFFS.
Education Director. The NFFS has tapped Ed Wiley to be the Director of
Education for the Society. In his new assignment, Ed is the guy you contact
if you want to start an educational program in your school or YMCA or
wherever. Ed will work closely with Rocco Ferrario, who is our program
coordinator. In fact, Rocco has developed some great instructor’s kits if you
are a person or club who wants to get started in working with newcomers. This
is one area where the NFFS has put a lot of its energy in the past year or
so, and we need your help in making it even better. Contact Ed for more
information at <Ed>

In line with our increased interest in promoting programs for youth, we have
asked Walt Rozelle to increase the space given to youth programs in the
Digest. We have also increased the amount of space that is available in the
Digest so that Walt does not have to take away from existing coverage to add
Education content.

By the way, if you are an instructor somewhere out there and you have not
made contact to see what NFFS might have for you to assist, you should get in
touch with either Ed or Rocco. Rocco can be contacted at
I think that’s about all I can cram into this column this month. I will be
back next month with more details and a complete run-down of the bylaws
changes. Please prepare yourself to vote.
Thanks again.
Bob Stalick