I'm no longer an officer of our club (although I do chair the Education Committee), but my observations are very similar to yours. The students in my one-day Tech classes are a diverse group, and usually include one or two teenagers. I recently completed an eight-week General Class license class, and of the five that were regular attendees, three were 20-somethings and two were women. The last time I scrutinized our club roster about 25% were women.
As far as leadership goes, finding club officers is a problem, but I don't worry about that anymore. I think officers should serve until they're tired of doing it, then just quit. If the club is serving a valuable function, someone will step forward. If not, then it probably isn't really all that valuable and will just fade away.
CW Geek, Ham Radio Instructor
Station Manager, WA2HOM at the Hands-On Museum (www.wa2hom.org)
Read my ham radio blog at http://www.kb6nu.com
On Aug 9, 2013, at Aug 9,5:21 AM, Norman Schklar <norman@...> wrote:
> I'm on the board of Gwinnett Amateur Radio Society in North Georgia, www.GARS.org. We meet in Lawrenceville, GA. Our membership has been slowly creeping up for the past 5 years. Just recently we started having one day HamCram classes. I think two so far in 2013. There have always been four or five in the area (Atlanta) each year, just not sponsored by GARS. We had about 20 in each class. Good rate of licenses issued. We give the test early evening after the HamCram. This has helped some with membership, but a good part of the registrants have a special interest in EComm and either don't care for the club thing, or Join ARES which is a separate group in our area. About 85% of ARES are members of GARS. About 50% of GARS belongs to ARES.
> Our club is 35 years or so old. They went through the 2 meter Phone Patch days with membership of close to 400. We went down to about 125 and now back to the 250 mark. We're healthy financially and program wise. Field Day is 8A with about 100 members showing up during the 30 or so hours (setup untill take down). We have a January Hamfest (we call it TechFest, it's inside and the emphasis is on modes, methods and clubs).
> I think like a lot of clubs, new members are Technicians and it's hard to get some to upgrade and participate in HF activities. But recently we've had an increase in upgrades, so more interest in HF. I've also noticed more pre-grey hair folks. And the interest of the female community seems to be increasing. Not by large numbers, but increasing.
> We've had the same leadership team for probably 4 years and before that it was 5 years. So not a very big turnover in leadership. That is both a good thing and a bad thing. We have a hard time getting members interested in a leadership positions. I'm thinking because we don't force change, the memberships don't expect it and tend to compare stepping into leadership with the seasoned folks that are already there, and it's scary. If we forced change every year, then it would always be replacing a relatively "newbee". We don't have trouble rounding up volunteers for projects, but to take a leadership position is another issue. I'm wondering if any of you have had experience in moving from a open nomination to a progressive or succession role? I'm thinking that if we tried to move to a method where officers move up the chain, we might get more folks involved. I've always thought that the strength of a volunteer organization is the executive committee or board and committee chairpersons. It's not just any single officer.
> And of course, there is always the need for meeting programs. We've held a couple webinar/Skype type meetings where the presenter was remote. Our sound crew is good at making the two way audio/video work. So we have been able to get out of the BOX on programs. But can always use suggestions on programs.
> So, how's it going in your organization?
> Norm Schklar, WA4ZXV
> Norcross, GA www.GARS.org