FORUM

Letter to Membershi...
 
Notifications
Clear all

Letter to Membership from the Board

22 Posts
16 Users
53 Likes
1,403 Views
Tim Hille
(@14325)
Posts: 25
Eminent Member Admin Registered
Topic starter
 

I am posting this to the forum upon request from Duck - 

 

Subject: Another letter from the BOD

At a called Board of Directors meeting on 12/20/2022 a majority of the
Board voted to terminate the Club’s business relationship with B. Jan
Hoffman as editor of the Airmail magazine. This was a tough decision that
came out of a history of the editor as a paid contractor of the Club being
unwilling to accept direction regarding the editorial content of the
magazine, repeatedly publishing inflammatory opinion pieces and an
unwillingness to communicate with all members of the Board equally. This in
no way negates Mr. Hoffman’s contributions as one of the founding members
of the Airheads Beemer Club. Separating the responsibilities of the editor
from his role as one of the founders is tough but the distinction must be
made.

It is unfortunate that this Board has been divided over almost every issue
that has been presented. Some members are unwilling to look at change in
any way but as a bad idea. For the most part the feeling is that nothing
has been accomplished since this Board was seated over a year ago. This
frustration is felt by every Board member.

At the same meeting noted above, the three members of the Board that
remained after Tim Roberts’ precipitous departure voted to accept the
contract presented by Road Wolf Design to take over editing the Airmail.
This decision opens a new chapter for the Airmail which will include in
addition to the printed copy, a digital copy for those so inclined, a
coordination between website and print, and the ability to deliver the club
magazine to our out of country members at a reasonable cost for them.
Everyone’s Airmail will continue to arrive in the same time frame that it
has been in the past.

Yours,

Duck Koch

ABC 2059

Georgia Airmarshal

Director, Region 5

Chairman of the Board

 
Posted : 12/21/2022 18:12
Topic Tags
Edward Adams
(@rtpilot)
Posts: 30
Trusted Member
 

So that I/we understand this.

There was already a company on standby?? Before the meeting?? So This was preplanned by the three only?  

 A company had already been vetted prior to calling the meeting to oust the current editor?? - (who created your positions) - and the only 3 board members prearranged to accept this contract, with pricing, vetting, ready to be voted on PRIOR to the meeting?
   And to whom in the membership was this presented in advance? Was  the intent to investigate a paid company presented in a timely manner?  And what bidding system was used? Please present to the members how this process was initiated. Does anyone on the BoD’s have any connection to, or gain any income or business influence  to/from this company? 

Why is there so much dissension among the Board of Directors that someone has to leave because of the problems? 
What remedies are being prepared by the Board to restore confidence as well as fair, equitable representation of us?? 

I had no idea there was so much power bullying going on when I attended the meeting in Mo. Had I known I would have been holding a more powerful microscope on what the board was doing with MY money.  Well, now we see a lot of BS is happening. And the membership is waking up to take notice and start being nosy and demanding answers and accountability.

Ed Adams 

16,830

858-752-3669

eda239@yahoo.com

 
Posted : 12/21/2022 20:03
Joe Wilkerson
(@3495)
Posts: 4
Active Member
 

I guess I should read the fine print when the Airmail gets here because I seem to have a total disconnect about any issues brewing. Maybe we need a short message (bold print) from the BoD every month asking what we think about direction/decisions that are upcoming.  

As far as Jan not following your direction, what exactly was that? Who did he inflame and over what? For the life of me I can't remember Jan lighting me on fire, makes me laugh and smile every once in awhile.

Some one made note of Oaks tech section. They were correct it is only worth something if you have the index and saved all the Airmails. The chance of one of this months topics being about the problem you are having today is remote. The fact that we still have a tech section written by a dead guy sorta creeps me out sometimes. (No disrespect meant.)

 

Joe Wilkerson

Member 3495

Menifee, Ca

 

 

 

This post was modified 1 year ago by Joe Wilkerson
 
Posted : 12/22/2022 00:39
Brian Warner
(@brian-warner)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

It would seem, after reading volumes of material on the termination of B. Jan as editor, that the BODs has reached a point of ineffectiveness in representing the membership of the ABC.  This situation is not going to improve before it gets much, much worse.  I call for a complete dissolvement of the current BOD, a list of nominees for a new Board brought forth/approved by the Airmarshals, and a new election.  It would be my hope that the new BOD would be free of back biting, in fighting, and power grabbing so that the business of the ABC and its members could be addressed in a fair and adult manner.

Brian Warner

17826 

 
Posted : 12/23/2022 10:41
Linda Cicero
(@cicero)
Posts: 2
Active Member
 

At the risk of being flamed I see this move as positive for the magazine and maybe even the club as the magazine is part of the pubic face of the club. I acknowledge the founding contributions of B. Jan and salute the considerable time and effort that he took to work for the cause. I also understand, only through my reading of the magazine, that the editor seemed increasingly comfortable in indulging his writing impulses as if the club magazine was his own soapbox and memoir. Just as I might leave a warm campfire when the conversation becomes so onerous I might prefer the cold to a kind of talk that makes me or my friends feel unwelcome, I could often leave large parts of the magazine behind. You'll notice my Airhead number is pretty recent, 5 digits after all. I finally joined when my trusted airhead mechanic retired, closed shop, and left town. I've always tried to learn how to best maintain my bike and agree with this group's aims including to do the work myself when possible. I like getting my hands dirty and fixing things. My Airhead friends have been open and helpful since the day I bought my R80G/SPD 34 years ago. I come to the club and the magazine especially for the articles about airheads, maintenance tips, Tech days, campouts, gear evaluations, and ride reports from members.  

Most boards can't and don't act with fiat and personal vendetta, even 5 people have to have painful conversations and come to a vote to make these kinds of difficult decisions. And I bet they knew there would be blowback from something like this. I might only have 10 or 12 years of riding left but as long as I can I'll be wanting to ride that G/S. I hope there is an Airheads community that continues to come together over spanners and beers. 

Linda Cicero

16117

 
Posted : 12/23/2022 16:26
9425, Scott Rabeler, Eric Zwicky and 9 people reacted
Celia Williams
(@shayeandcelia)
Posts: 5
Active Member
 

@cicero  Thankyou Linda for your comments on getting a new Airmail editor. I agree that Airmail needs a new editor for many of the same sentiments you expressed.

Celia Williams, Florida

 
Posted : 12/23/2022 17:50
Scott Rabeler, Eric Zwicky, Brian Scott and 3 people reacted
David Lund
(@14825)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Man oh man!, I just looked up Road Wolf Design.
I'll bet dollars to donuts that costs will go up using that firm vs standing pat.
This is a slick outfit, bound to charge the club through the nose. They'll empty the ABC treasury right quick.
I like the print Airmail, and I like the ABC Digest emails. Are they "cutting edge"? No. But they don't need to be.

Breaking News: Our bikes aren't cutting edge either.

This whole thing sucks. B. Jan was doing an okay job, and when I came across something he wrote that didn't sit well with me, I rolled my eyes and moved on, not writing in and complaining, hoping to get the guy fired.
What kind of person does that? Vindictiveness is a terrible trait to have.
But it seems it's been made acceptable in recent years. Take that any way you think it's meant!

It wouldn't take much effort to keep Oak's column in the print version while leaving it out of the online version of Airmail.

I published an eight page printed bulletin for years, with an accompanying online version that had MORE content than the printed version. It wasn't that difficult to make the two versions. I'd pay higher dues for a printed Airmail that included Oak's column.

As for my having any confidence in the current Board of Directors?
They have a lot more explaining to do if they want to regain the trust of the entire membership.
So far, there seems to be an evasiveness permeating their actions and responses.

I hope for the best. But this is not the fate of the free world hanging in the balance. So lighten up!

Regards to all,

David Lund
Gainesville, Georgia
ABC Member #14825

 
Posted : 01/04/2023 19:30
Brian Scott, Edward Adams, Dave Strachan and 4 people reacted
David Horton
(@david-horton)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Long-time Airhead enthusiast; somewhat recent member.

I second Georgia Yankee's comments that

  1. It is acceptable to have different content levels in the digital and print versions, and
  2. Some members (myself included) would pay a bit more to keep Oak's articles in the printed Airmail

Sharing technical knowledge and experiences is a significant part of owning an Airhead.  Therefore, I also support initiatives to encourage the creation of new tech articles.

 
Posted : 01/04/2023 22:38
Edward Adams reacted
jack klauschie jr
(@jarthur)
Posts: 17
Eminent Member
 

Mr. Hille and Board members:

Oak's Articles - As I understand the Board's decision, the on-line version of Airmail will be the same as the printed version. If this is correct the Board has made a deliberate decision to abandon Oak's articles and content. Please confirm or clarify this for the benefit of members.

Road Wolf Design - Please provide to members how much will be paid to this company to produce the Airmail. Circulating or posting a copy of the contract would be appropriate to maintain transparency for members.

I look forward to the Board's responses.

"Inflammatory opinion pieces" in the Airmail - For the life of me I have no idea what this phrase references. Encouraging members to express their beliefs on issues relevant to the Club is not inflammatory. 

Jack 

Member # 16475

 
Posted : 01/08/2023 19:49
Edward Adams reacted
Richard Koenig
(@4937)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Thank you to the board of directors for the work you do.  I don't know what the rules are for not-for-profit organizations, but when i was on our local town board (one of 5 members), you had to anounce that a meeting was being held if a quorum (3 or more members) got together, either personally or on line.

From what I have read, at the meeting in which the editor was fired and replaced, there may have been discussion among the 3 who voted for the change before hand.  Or there may have been discussion among just two, and the third agreed and voted as such.

The board gets to vote and the majority rules.

But it would have been nice if this had played out over several meetings, with a proposal to look into other editors, then reporting back as to what the options were with discussion, followed up with a third meeting of voting for the proposal.  Folks would have then had an opportunity to voice their concerns.

The board members are all good people.  After all, they all ride airheads.

 

 

 

 
Posted : 01/13/2023 07:40
Billy Mearns
(@5059)
Posts: 6
Active Member
 

Full disclosure, so you may understand the lens though which I view the world, I am an old tree hugging, socialist hippy. I have ridden an airhead for 51 years. I think I joined the Airheads in the early 90’s and quit a few years later due to B. Jan’s “Luddite Creed”. I rejoined a few years back when friends assured me his political opinions had been expunged. This has been mostly true. I suspect if one shares B. Jan’s views (not that there is anything wrong with that) his little snippets may go unnoticed. I have followed this issue for many years. It is not new. I don’t know who is on the BoD but I know several Air Marshals who have, over the years, expressed displeasure with B. Jan’s social and political comments. I don’t want them in my motorcycle magazine. I don’t know if we are going to a better place, but changing direction (editor) has long been wanted by many (majority???). And that’s all I have to say about that.    

 
Posted : 01/15/2023 08:15
Brian Scott, Bill Potter, Scott Rabeler and 1 people reacted
Hans Christian Reumschuessel
(@allemande)
Posts: 2
Active Member
 

Hello fellow Airheads,

I find this conflict alarming and see the club going through a destructive pattern right now. In my view, the club needs to completely modernize its public appearance and organizational structure. The magazine looks amateurish and the website is rather unattractive, too, although the forum aspect is done well. As for the Oak issue, I find that condition to be unacceptable as well. The club must move forward with other sources of tech articles. Why is Matthew Parkhouse in the BMWMOA magazine but not in the ABC?

A board does have the authority to hire and fire personnel- that is one of its responsibilities. Yes, there are rules that should be observed, such as walking quorums and proper agendas but no editor, not even Mr. Hoffman, can claim exemption. Change is good!

I would like to see some information about the bylaws, such as term length of board members, and other laws that govern the board. There does seem to be an issue with transparency and communication with the board, which is hard to reach.

One other thing: I read somewhere that the Airhead bikes do not appeal to a younger demographic, but in my opinion that's just not true. Just like the re-emergence of vinyl records, turntables, even cassettes in the music world, these bikes (especially /5, /6 and /7) are eye catching with their styling and mechanical designs. But it is a question whether this club really wants to include a younger generation (my gut feeling is that it does not). At the recent national rally in MO I drove by the Airheads camp and got some pretty weird looks as I was cruising by on my R18. Didn't even stop to say hello. The vibe was pretty unfriendly. Just saying...

As a lifelong rider with four Beemers in the stable, including a R60/6, my vote is to replace Mr. Hoffman and initiate a round of changes that include updating the magazine, modernizing the online presence and social media outreach, clarify the bylaws about term lengths and board responsibilities and improve communications with club members.

Happy riding!

Hans

#16997

 
Posted : 01/15/2023 11:49
Brian Scott, Edward Adams, Scott Rabeler and 2 people reacted
Tim Hille
(@14325)
Posts: 25
Eminent Member Admin Registered
Topic starter
 

It is precisely the fact the Mr. Hoffman would not do these things that he was asked to step down.  He refused and was replaced.  He was asked in the notice of termination of his contract to continue to contribute to the club and the magazine, instead he has chosen to tear it apart.  As for term limits and bylaws, those are posted on the web site.  As for transparency from the board - I would point to the monthly publication of minutes from the board meetings in the Airmail Magazine.  

 

Thank you for your respectful and thoughtful comments.  

 
Posted : 01/15/2023 13:28
Doug Lambert
(@elpha)
Posts: 14
Eminent Member
 

@14325 Where in the minutes does it indicate you were looking at bids for a new editor? You still haven’t disclosed what amount you have agreed to pay for the editing. How many bids did you receive and from who?

 
Posted : 01/15/2023 14:06
Edward Adams reacted
Tim Hille
(@14325)
Posts: 25
Eminent Member Admin Registered
Topic starter
 

That will be in the minutes un the February issue.  

 
Posted : 01/15/2023 14:07
Brian Scott reacted
Page 1 / 2

Advertisement

Scroll to top