The Day in the life of the SCIRA Office …

At the recent Sailors Open Forum, a question was asked about what the SCIRA office does…. While this answer is a bit complex, I’ll try to break it down so Snipe sailors can get a feeling for what goes on in the office daily and year-round.

Believe it or not, I’ve now been in this position as Executive Director for 23 years. Big changes have happened since the first trip to the 1993 Worlds in Porto Alegre with the help of Commodore Terry Timm and Vice Commodore Horacio Garcia Pastori. Class officers and members have helped usher in many of these changes.

  • The Class transitioned from phone and faxes to email & the internet
  • www.snipe.org was one of the first Classes to create a website (thanks to Alex Pline & Steve Keckler)
  • The Class moved membership registration to an online system saving the class postage & printing costs, and is now hosted on a cloud based system
  • Global Measurement program and measurer’s guidebook was created
  • Implementation of sail royalties, realizing over $100k in revenue since its inception in 1996
  • Implementation of Snipe merchandise helping spread the brand & loyalty of members as well as gaining $50k
  • Created a regatta management package that is sent to all major regatta organizers
  • Dedicated websites have been created for Worlds, European and WH&O regattas

At the recent Sailors Open Forum, a question was asked about what the SCIRA office does…. While this answer is a bit complex, I’ll try to break it down so Snipe sailors can get a feeling for what goes on in the office daily and year-round.

Believe it or not, I’ve now been in this position as Executive Director for 23 years. Big changes have happened since the first trip to the 1993 Worlds in Porto Alegre with the help of Commodore Terry Timm and Vice Commodore Horacio Garcia Pastori. Class officers and members have helped usher in many of these changes.

  • The Class transitioned from phone and faxes to email & the internet
  • www.snipe.org was one of the first Classes to create a website (thanks to Alex Pline & Steve Keckler)
  • The Class moved membership registration to an online system saving the class postage & printing costs, and is now hosted on a cloud based system
  • Global Measurement program and measurer’s guidebook was created
  • Implementation of sail royalties, realizing over $100k in revenue since its inception in 1996
  • Implementation of Snipe merchandise helping spread the brand & loyalty of members as well as gaining $50k
  • Created a regatta management package that is sent to all major regatta organizers
  • Dedicated websites have been created for Worlds, European and WH&O regattas

 

photo1The day-to-day business varies. Emails to be read/responded to start each day with inquiries from members, National Secretaries, Class officers and World Sailing. The recent months have been busy helping regatta hosts prepare for the Women’s Championship, WH&O, European and World Master events by verifying membership of all sailors and boat registration & MDS status. Planning for these regattas begins 9-12 months prior with the drafting & approval of the Notice of Race and the creation of information for the website as well as promotion for the events through the website, social media and the National Secretaries. Following the events, the website must be updated with the results as well as articles and photos for the Snipe Bulletin.
 
The Snipe Bulletin is now quarterly, and the request for submissions and the layout, printing & mailing is coordinated the months prior to printing.
 
For the major events, the agendas are coordinated with the Commodore and General Secretaries as well as soliciting information from the National Secretaries prior to the meeting. Minutes are taken by the Executive Director and distributed to attendees for approval. For the bi-annual Board of Governors meeting held at the World Championship and the National Secretaries meeting, proposals and coordination are involved.
 
Changes in the Class Constitution and Bylaws now allow the Board to vote on ballots throughout the year, so ballots and discussion are managed in the SCIRA office to allow the Board to make informed votes on the proposals submitted.
 
photo4The SCIRA office interfaces with ISAF/World Sailing on many fronts; most recently to work to ensure the Snipe remains in the Pan American Games and to propose and agree upon the country qualifiers that event. Annually the Snipe Class has to submit a class report to World Sailing with statistics, champions and other information. SCIRA has been working with World Sailing on suggesting revisions to the regulations for women’s and junior world championships as our events have not met World Sailing minimums and we cannot award these World titles. To encourage and support youth & women’s sailing, the SCIRA office is working for a solution.
 
photo3Each November, the Treasurer and Executive Director work with the Board to create the budget for the coming year. Annually the Financial Statements are published in the Snipe Bulletin and of members may ask for a copy at any time. In addition, coordination with the nominating committee for the election of officers per the Constitution is handled within the SCIRA office from September to December each year.
 
Currently the Rules Chairman and Executive Director are finalizing a 6-year project with ISAF/World Sailing to convert our rules to the ISAF template and we plan to have the Rulebook ready in January of 2017. This has been a huge undertaking as the Snipe still allows people to build a boat from wood, which makes our rules and general restrictions a bit more complicated. Since 2005, Sherri Campbell has joined the SCIRA office and as a certified public accountant, has provided a higher level of financial oversite and support SCIRA. New fleets charters have been issued once the Bylaw requirements are met. Coordination with builders and sailmakers on any rule changes or issuance of sail numbers or sail royalties is a monthly occurrence. Our office is located in Point Loma, with the Quantum sail loft in the same building and North and Ullman Sails close by. Management of the MDS status with the owners, builders, National Secretary, Chief Measurer and Rules Chairman is a constant task. A few years ago all 30,000+MDS’ were scanned in the office as digital files.
 
photo5Members submit orders for building plans, books and Snipe merchandise which has to be billed & packed for delivery. Often the Class office receives requests for historical research of a boat or other information as well as phone calls with people interested in joining the Class or looking for a Snipe. Costa Rica has recently begun to build Snipes and is interested in creating a fleet. The Class office also works with regional officers to expand into areas such as Slovenia and Austria. So as you can see, the office work varies from day to day, but the work is never finished. It is a privilege to work with SCIRA members and as a Snipe sailor myself, this truly is the best boat!

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