It’s healthy for organizations to take a close look at themselves and consider whether they are best positioned to carry out their mission for the membership. The IAFC board of directors did just that; last month in Reno, we spent three days with a professional facilitator experienced in association, government and corporate structure.
To be clear, these sessions weren’t to make changes. Rather, they were to carefully consider whether, in the board’s opinion, a formal governance summit or similar formal review process was necessary. To help us reach that decision, we went through an exhaustive review process:
- We looked at our strategic focus for the IAFC.
- We evaluated our organizational and governance options.
- We considered the programs, services and value propositions we offer the membership.
- We considered how the necessary delivery system can best meet your needs as current and emerging leaders in the fire and emergency service.
We discussed what you’ve said your values in our industry are: integrity, professionalism, responsiveness, collaboration, diversity and inclusiveness, safety and innovation.
We broke down into small groups and considered many questions, then came back to the table and shared our thoughts.
All board members had their say. In the end, the final decision was unanimous: a formal governance summit or official task force is unnecessary at this time.
We affirmed the current legal autonomy of the eight regional divisions, formally asking the leadership of each to consider ways to better position themselves to meet the needs of their members while developing strategies to strengthen their relationship with the IAFC.
We did identify some areas for further discussion, including the size and composition of the board of directors, as well as the treasurer’s position. I appointed several board working groups to examine these; more background about how these discussions came about and specifics about the working groups is available.
Fire Chief Rhoda Mae Kerr
President and Chair of the Board