On Jan. 4, the ACUI Board of Trustees voted and unanimously approved the ACUI Regional Audit Task Force recommendations.
During the last 18 months, a group of regional directors, both past and present, have served on the Regional Audit Task Force. Through an extensive series of research and outreach efforts, they strived to answer one primary question: What is the most effective and efficient way to deliver regional programs and services to the Association’s membership?
Task force members did not come to the table with a preconceived idea of what a new regional structure might look like, but hoped to work alongside the membership to research and explore possibilities.
During the last year, hundreds of ACUI members completed surveys and participated in focus groups, town hall discussions, SWOT analysis, and conference sessions. In addition, the task force conducted extensive research in to regional programming trends and attendance figures. They closely examined statistical and historical research on trends in membership, programs and services Association-wide.
Through these efforts the Regional Audit Task Force developed a series of recommendations. In 2012, their recommendations were revealed in a series of presentations to the ACUI Leadership Team, regional leadership teams, Association-wide town hall meetings, and at each regional conference. In July 2012, the Board of Trustees provided a preliminary endorsement of these recommendations.
The approval of the task force’s report accomplishes one of the goals in ACUI’s strategic plan: “Conduct an audit of regional structures to ensure current practices effectively meet member needs.”
It also responds to some of the questions that have been asked for years, specifically:
- Are 15 regions the right amount for ACUI?
- Are the boundaries fluid enough?
- Would a different regional structure better serve the mission, programs, services, and our members?
- What resource savings would come from a different regional structure?
While these conversations were thought-provoking, creative, and positive, regional directors have known that a discussion regarding regional boundaries had the potential to be a hot topic and must be open, inclusive, and well thought out. They also understood that ACUI’s regional structure has remained largely unchanged for the last 50 years (the last change occurred in 1963).
I want to personally thank the Regional Audit Task Force members for their work. It was not an easy task. Their recommendations will help shape the future of ACUI programs and services, volunteer engagement, regional boundaries, finances, and regional culture. Collectively, they provide a blueprint which addresses many of the challenges facing the Association today and is a well-considered plan and vision for ACUI. I also want to thank the members for their input and collaboration; member feedback helped to shape many of these recommendations.
In the next year, a newly formed Regional Restructuring Task Force comprised of volunteer leaders from across the Association will begin the process of implementing these recommendations. They are equally committed to keeping the lines of communication open and conducting an inclusive and transparent transition.
Thank you in advance for your support as we begin this transition. This an exciting time for the Association, for our regions, and for the members we serve.
The full report is available for download. You can also view the September Bulletin article.
View summary info:
The Board of Trustees established a Regional Restructuring Task Force charged to develop implementation plans to address all approved restructuring recommendations. The full charge is available for download. The members of the task force are:
- Laura Ballou, University of Rochester
- Kristine Day, University of Michigan–Dearborn
- Brenda Evans, University of Massachusetts-Lowell, Co-chair
- Jeremy Hamlett, California State University—Northridge
- Scott A. Reed, Virginia Tech
- Jeremy Schenk, Missouri State University, Co-chair
- Dave Teske, ACUI
- Dave Timmann, West Chester University
- Zack Wahlquist, ACUI
- Jill Zambito, Director, Northern Illinois University
Updated April 11, 2013