Transcript for the NAFA Candidate Chat January 17th, 2019

 

EmmaMak

Hi, I'm the NAFA Elections Chair, Emma Mak, and I'm moderating tonight's third and final candidate chat.

Those joining us who wish to ask the candidates a question, a reminder that this is a moderated chat, so please send a private message to me.
You can do this by typing //pm EmmaMak and then your question.
I'm also available on Facebook Messenger if you'd prefer to interact that way.

EmmaMak

Steve Corona, Kathy Haney, and Darla Quintern are joining us tonight. Hopefully Dana Hanson will be on shortly.

EmmaMak

Candidates please make your opening remarks. Oh there's Dana Hanson! All candidates are on.

SteveCorona

Hello to the NAFA community! Thank you for joining us this evening and to Emma for moderating the chat tonight. I look forward to discussing the topics in our sport with you and my fellow candidates this evening.

DanaHanson

Good evening everyone. Thank you for taking time from your busy schedules to join our chat. I look forward to hearing what's important to you and any concerns you have as NAFA forges ahead. I also appreciate an opportunity to get to know you and for you to learn more about me.

DarlaQuintern

Hello everyone! I believe I can bring a fresh perspective and positive attitude to the board and am excited for this final chat tonight.\

KATHYHANEY

Hello everyone, Thanks for joining us on our final chat. I am looking forward to letting you all get to know me a little better

EmmaMak

Question from Emma Mak 1. At times the BoD discusses issues that are not meant to be made public. Are you willing to commit to keeping these private discussions totally private, and if yes, why do you think this is important?

DarlaQuintern

Yes I am willing to keep it private and sometimes it is important to keep things private that you are working on until you find a solution/action, then inform everyone.

DarlaQuintern

Sometimes details need to be worked out or a plan of action before sharing the information with everyone else.

DanaHanson

In my job on a daily basis I deal with protected information. Confidentiality and trust are often needed to promote free exchange of information and to inspire confidence from those with whom you deal. In some cases, information discussed could be damaging if it were inappropriately shared, and frequently private discussion include sensitive material. Finally, its a matter of maintaining integrity as well.

SteveCorona

During my time on the BoD there have been some topics that needed this level of privacy and I am 100% committed to keeping these types of discussions private. I think this is important because of several factors. This protects people from accusations that until further investigated may or may not have merit. With the speed of information on social media these days, whether accurate or not, once a claim is made it is very difficult to set the record straight. The other component that plays into this is trust. We must all be able to trust one another on the BoD to carry out our work. Depending on the subject matter, once a resolution is reached, then the appropriate information can be disseminated to the community.

KATHYHANEY

Absolutely. there are some things that need to be taken care of in private and some details are not necessary to be shared by everyone.

EmmaMak

Question from Emma Mak 2. Do you think that an elected board member should represent their region or the whole of NAFA? For your chosen answer, how would you make sure you did this?

SteveCorona

I believe that an elected board member should represent the whole of NAFA. One of the privileges of sitting on the board is learning how different regions operate and the board is made up of members from all different regions. It's great exposure to the nuances of how the game is played across North America. I also believe that we are elected because we have a strong understanding of the policies and procedures and the decisions we make effect the entire flyball community.

KATHYHANEY

I think the board members should represent the whole of NAFA, but should also bring the perspective of their different regions into the equation. Board members should also reach out and listen to any regions that are not currently represented on the Board. Even though NAFA has one set of rules and regulations, different regions have different issues and have certain ways of doing things.

DanaHanson

I believe it is important for board members to represent the whole of NAFA. We don't have 20 + board members to ensure that all regions are represented and doing so would represent a major change in structure. While it is not possible for me to travel to every region, I have raced in four NAFA regions over the past several years and believe most people in those regions would be comfortable reaching out to me. As a board, we float ideas out to competitors for comments, and we receive that feedback for review. In addition, our contact information is shared on the NAFA web site so that individuals have access to us. Still, I don't believe it's possible for me to know unique issues experienced in far away places unless those are brought to my attention. I believe having board members from diverse locations helps promote accessibility to the board.

DarlaQuintern

I think that you need to represent all of flyball, but if need feedback from flyball people you would most likely consult the people in your region. As a board member it is important to involve the flyball community as a whole, and not make it unilateral. It is important to meet and chat with as many flyball competitors as possible serving on the board. This chat forum could be used when issues are presented to the board where we could get the community's input. NAFA is for everyone and the bod needs to do a better job with communication and reaching out to flyball competitors.

EmmaMak

Question from Emma Mak 3. Do you think it's the responsibility of clubs themselves to grow the sport, or is it the responsibility of the board, or both?

DarlaQuintern

It is a shared responsibility. But feel strongly that Nafa needs to do more with promoting to the public. My club is a big supporter of publicizing the sport and for example have put on several demos at various venues.

KATHYHANEY

Definitely both. It takes the clubs to get information out to their local areas by showcasing flyball in a positive way and the board is there to back them up and help with information.

SteveCorona

I think it falls on both NAFA and the clubs to grow the sport. At the NAFA level we have marketing material, maintain the web-site and various social media pages but thats a pretty high level view. Any inquires that come in from people interested in joining flyball are sent to the regional level so that they get the most relevant information. I think the clubs can promote themselves and the sport by performing demonstrations, trying to get local media coverage (print or TV) of tournaments and being good ambassadors to visitors that may come out to a tournament or practice.

DanaHanson

Great question that I've heard in the past, with an answer attached that I somewhat objected to. I believe the behavior of individual clubs can greatly impact the direction of our regions. Clubs and their members are the front line - the face of NAFA. A positive experience with one can do a lot to encourage participation. But given the declining entries and increased number of alternative activities to flyball, I believe it is important for NAFA to explore ways to maintain its competitor base and grow it. We need loyalty from competitors, and to do that we need to make flyball their preferred sport.

KATHYHANEY

The Board supports the local clubs and helps people locate clubs in their areas. It is a team effort for sure

EmmaMak

Question from Tammy Bonas 4. In early days of NAFA there were very meaningful reasons why regional directors served "at the pleasure of" vs being elected offices. Would you consider a change to this structure?

DarlaQuintern

I am open to new ideas! And would consider other thoughts on this matter. Regional directors play important role in flyball and hosting tournaments and we need to do a good job in supporting them!

KATHYHANEY

I do not think the regional directors should be elected, but I do think that the Board should get more input from the team captains before selecting a regional director. I have been more than happy with all of our Reg. 6/16 directors since I have been playing flyball, but always curious as to how they got in that position without much input from their regional team captains.

DanaHanson

I would be willing to listen to any argument put forth for doing so, although my immediate reaction is that I would have concerns that I'd want to see addressed in any case made for that. The executive director relies on these individuals to support much of our operations in areas too distant for him or her to touch. While all serve in a voluntary capacity and none our employees, I

SteveCorona

The RD position is a very demanding volunteer position that actually reports to the Executive Director. In a way, they "work" for the ED. They approve schedules, handle complaints, attend most every tournament, and are the eyes and ears of the Region they serve just to name a few of their responsibilities. It's been my experience that people aren't lining up to fill the role of RD. With that said, if a proposal was brought forth to make this an elected position with term limits such as the board has, I would certainly take it under consideration. At this time, according to our by-laws, they are appointed by the ED and require board approval. It would take a major rule change to make this an elected position.

DanaHanson

Sorry, not done. I believe it's important for the ED to assemble a team that is effective. I would equate this to being able to select my own team at work rather than someone choosing for me. I have been saddled with some pretty ugly choices made by others in the past.

EmmaMak

Question from Tammy Bonas 5. In the past the board has made some changes without going to delegate vote and without having the item on the agenda. Do you agree with this approach?

DarlaQuintern

In general, no. But I think that would depend on the issue and how quickly action needs to be taken.

KATHYHANEY

I do agree with this approach depending on the situation. Some minor changes should not require a delegate vote, while a controversial change would require one. The Board should be able to make decisions as to what needs to be sent out for public discussion and delegate votes.

DanaHanson

Judgment is required as to what matters should be brought to a delegate vote. Any time judgment is involved, there is room for second guessing. We have been called out on the handling of some matters during my own tenure. Still, I believe there are changes that can be made without bringing every one to a delegate vote.

SteveCorona

In order to operate efficiently not every item that the board votes on or makes changes to can go to a delegate vote. It would bring things to a standstill and really isn't necessary in all cases. I believe we are evolving into at the very least getting feedback from the flyball community when it comes to "hot-button" issues and we are working on greater transparency at all levels. However, with such a large community of people you will never satisfy everyone with every decision. We strive to make the best choices for the greatest number of people and their dogs that we can.

EmmaMak

Question from Karen Oleson 6. How familiar are you with the NAFA rulebook including bylaws? Have you ever read it in its entirety?

DanaHanson

Yes I have read it in its entirety, although its been some time. With respect to the rules of racing, at one time I did a comparison of ours to a competing organization. I'm fairly certain I still have scribbled notes around here somewhere. It is important to be familiar with the rules, but it is perfectly acceptable to need to pull open the rules for reference in some situations and as I have seen officials do on many occasions.

DarlaQuintern

Honestly, I have not read it in it's entirety. But I have read many sections of it in order to have correct information as needed. And I am also always keeping up to date with all of the new changes coming in. As a board member I will do my due diligence to consult it as necessary.

SteveCorona

I am extremely familiar with the rulebook and its bylaws. It's actually part of my job as Chairman to understand the policies and procedures set forth in the rulebook and to comply with its regulations. As a Supervising Judge, I mentor up and coming judges and feel I understand the rules of our sport extremely well also. I am asked questions from competitors at every tournament I attend as to my views as a NAFA representative or am asked to clarify or provide a better understanding of a rule or why a certain call may have been made.

KATHYHANEY

I have not read it in one sitting, but I think I have read most of it at one time or another. If there is an issue that I need clarification on, it is easy enough to look it up. I feel confident that I am aware of most of the rules and regulations and would not have a problem finding out an answers I need at any given time

EmmaMak

Question from Emma Mak 7. What is it about NAFA that makes it the flyball organization you would like to be contribute to in a leadership role?

EmmaMak

Last call for questions

KATHYHANEY

When I started NAFA it was the only game in town. Back then as well as now I had the impression that it was a well run organization that was concerned with the wellbeing of it's members and the game of flyball. I have met so many people, both locally and countrywide that I have enjoyed being around and I would love the opportunity to help keep this organization moving forward and advancing the sport of Flyball

KATHYHANEY

Meant to say, When I started playing flyball NAFA was the only game in town

SteveCorona

To me it's about giving back to the sport I love...playing with my dogs, my teammates and the friendships that have been made over the years. It's about making this sport as fair and enjoyable to every participant that plays. We are an extremely high profile organization in the sport of flyball around the world and I believe I have the skill set necessary to represent NAFA in the best light possible. There are many opportunities that come with being on the board whether this is interacting with the media, running the business side of NAFA, or being a gracious competitor in the ring, its all about the dogs, handlers, and making NAFA flyball the sport of choice to people who are being flooded with a host of other dog sport choices.

DarlaQuintern

NAFA is made up of other flyball competitors to assist and promote the sport of flyball which we all love. I am enthusiastic about helping to grow and evolve the sport and continue it for many generations. It would be my pleasure to bring my can-do attitude to the NAFA board

DanaHanson

It's difficult for me to respond without sounding cocky or as though I'm taking jabs at any other organizations. NAFA has the longest standing record of sanctioning tournaments. While it is rich in history, NAFA in recent years has embraced some exciting changes. Your board comprises individuals with diverse backgrounds and opinions. Amidst quite a few differences, board members have a great deal of respect for one another. I'm rambling in what would probably be better stated in bullet points. It has been an honor to serve for the past three years, and I would be honored to work with more of these fine individuals.

EmmaMak

Candidates please prepare your closing remarks. NAFA 2018/2019 Election ballots should have been delivered to your email inbox if you are a Club Owner, Regional Director, Approved/Supervising Judge or Board Member. If you have not received the ballot email, or if you have any questions about the election, please contact elections@flyball.org. Polls opened December 1, 2018 and close Monday January 21, 2019 at midnight CST. Results will be announced at the NAFA AGM on January 26, 2019.

DarlaQuintern

Thank you to Emma Mak and everyone that has attended this chat tonight. I appreciate this opportunity to have everyone get to know me better. While serving on the Bod I would work hard and do things to the best of ability for all participating in flyball.

DanaHanson

Thank you all again for joining this evening. Thanks to all the other candidates for their willingness to serve this great organization and for sharing in these chats. I rest assured that your board will move forward with its sights on bringing its best every day and making flyball better. Goodnight to all.

SteveCorona

Id like to close by saying that its been an honor and a privilege to have served the NAFA community for the past 3 years and I look forward to continuing to do so if re-elected. I believe in my relatively short time on the board we've made some exciting changes and a few that we've learned our lessons on and how to move forward with a better understanding of what our community wants from its board members. Thank you for your questions and I wish my fellow nominees all best in these elections. Thanks again to Emma, the NAFA Election Committee and those who participated in tonight's chat and to those who will be reading the transcripts at a later time. Good night.

KATHYHANEY

I love flyball and am ready, willing and able to help keep NAFA stay the great organization that it is. Having played for over 14 years and running my own club for 10 of those years I believe I have some pretty good insight into how to keep NAFA going srtong. I hope to be given the opportunity to give back to the sport and to help it grow even stronger.

EmmaMak

Thanks to the candidates and the members of the NAFA community for their participation this evening and throughout the election process. This concludes tonight's final of three chats. Please make sure you vote! Good night!