Changing ROA to Meet Today's Challenges by ProQuest


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             ltgen dennis m. mccarthy, usmc (ret.) • roa executive director

    Changing ROA to Meet Today’s Challenges
                e have just completed a most successful Mid-Winter                 ited the voting “franchise” to a tiny percentage of
                Conference and Reserve Component Expo, with                        members who attend national meetings and show up
                great attendance and outstanding presentations. Ad-                to vote.
    ditionally, the National Council joined hands with the Execu-             •	   Our complex governance scheme demands more par-
    tive Committee (ExCom) and our past national presidents to                     ticipation than today’s Reservists can afford, resulting
    issue a loud and clear call for immediate action to balance the                in an organization dominated by retirees. Serving Re-
    budget and implement many of the ideas proposed by our na-                     servists feel disconnected and powerless.
    tional president for modernizing ROA’s governance processes.
        What drove this remarkable coming together?                        What did the ExCom and National Council call for?
        First and foremost, ROA members understand that the                 •	 Begin now to increase revenue and decrease expendi-
    nature and mission of the Reserve Components has changed                     tures so we can bring the budget into balance in five
    dramatically and that ROA must keep pace. The character and                  years or less.
    intensity of service expected from serving Reservists today is          •	 Amend the ROA constitution and bylaws to permit
    significantly different than what was expected before the mas-               each member to vote for the president and president-
    sive Reserve call-ups triggered by Operation Desert Storm.                   elect, and each section member to vote for his or her
    Since that time, service on land, sea, and air around the world              service vice president and other section officers.
    has become routine for Citizen Warriors. Much of the Selected
    Reserve of each service is now a significant part of that service’s    What will these changes require?
    operational force.                                                         Finding an annual net gain of almost $900,000 to balance
        During this same period, activity in most ROA depart-              the budget will be a multiyear process. Every member and in-
    ments and chapters, including participation in local meetings,         terest group in our Association will need to make sacrifices.
    has declined significantly. The activity that still exists often re-       Increasing revenue will mean raising dues for Term and fu-
    volves around retirees rather than currently serving officers. All     ture Life Members, and seeking greater financial participation
    of these changes have a direct impact on the essential nature of       from current Life Members. The “sustaining Life Member”
    our Association and on the type of governance structures that          program—which hasn’t officially started—attracted a n
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