“We begin at 8 a.m. today and adjourn Thursday at 2 p.m.,” said Scott Shultz, president/owner of Robinson Outdoor Products and chair of the Archery Trade Association’s Board of Directors. “What we do in between can be just another meeting or it can be the wildest, most impactful Board meeting we’ve ever had.”
Shultz’s challenging and inspiring words opened the ATA’s Board of Directors meeting this summer, which was attended by most of the 18-member Board and several invited leaders from the archery and bowhunting industry. The ATA Board meets each April and June. The June meetings took place over 2½ days in Tulsa, Okla.
“It’s clear ATA initiatives are benefiting from an engaged board and that many of our guests attending the board meeting contributed greatly to the topics that applied to their expertise and professional experiences,” said Jay McAninch, ATA CEO/President. “It’s nice to hear people, especially retailers, who are energized just by attending one of our Board meetings. And we’ve received a lot of that kind of feedback since we returned from Tulsa.
Shultz asked attendees to focus on making archery as mainstream as golf, soccer and fishing. He also asked the group to imagine a society in which archery is part of every high school and college curriculum.
“Ours would be a different world if archery were as common as soccer and baseball,” Shultz said. “But we can’t simply decide to make archery mainstream. We have hard work to do, and we must have a strategic plan. As we discuss promoting archery and making it mainstream, expanding the ATA Show, offering archery programs and getting involved in consumer shows, remember that these are not individual items. We must consider them together.”
To that end, McAninch clearly envisions an ATA that will focus on pushing recreational archery into the mainstream, while continuing to support and grow the industry’s revenue king: bowhunting.
“I think it’s going to be fun to help our guys learn to capitalize on recreational archery and increase sales in that category,” said McAninch. “But bowhunting is the workhorse for most shops and the ATA continues to do what it can to keep the needle moving upward through programs like Explore Bowhunting and the upcoming Explore Bowfishing and various other initiatives that carve out avenues for growth.
Before the June ATA Board meeting adjourned, Shultz noted 11 important meeting items and decisions made. The Board:
- changed elected terms for ATA board members from three years to four years, and for Board officers from one year to two years;
- is poised for the biggest and best ATA Trade Show ever (set for January 8-10, 2015, in Indianapolis);
- approved and planned a Congressional bow shoot in Washington D.C.;
- planned the archery and bowhunting summit (set for December 3-5, 2014, in Louisville);
- approved a strategic planning meeting with industry leaders to set the course for the next decade;
- discussed the opportunity to interact with National Rifle Association and become a partner in the Great American Outdoor Show;
- considered the opportunity to work with Quality Deer Management Association on the new National Deer Alliance;
- committed to helping retailers get involved in recreational archery through the Retail Archery Academy;
- accepted an award from Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation;
- received updates on the Release Your Wild campaign and Archery 360 website about the 16.8 million people reached on Facebook;
- and listened to a presentation by Jim Willem, new president of The Pope and Young Club.
Check archerytrade.org often for more details about the months ahead, future ATA Shows, and other important topics covered at the ATA Board meeting.
To learn more about ATA leaders, check out ATA’s board and committees page.