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Like a private club does with its golf course or clubhouse, associations also look to see if what will make them successful in the future is to go back to what made it successful initially. We see the countless stories of clubs restoring their clubhouses or courses to their original design to be the entity it was crafted to be.  

At the 2015 National Club Association (NCA) fall board meeting, the board voted for NCA to reprioritize its efforts and restore the advocacy origins of the Association (see my Leading column from the spring 2021 issues) to focus on, in priority order, the National Club Association, NCA’s political action committee ClubPAC and then the NCA Foundation. Previously the NCA Foundation was prioritized over ClubPAC.

A restored focus on ClubPAC, correctly theorized by the board, would enable NCA to advocate for its members and the private club community much more effectively. During the last six years, we have grown ClubPAC’s resources from $6,200 with alarmingly few, if any, contributions to candidates, to $115,000 currently on hand while also having contributed $91,000 to candidates on both sides of the political aisle, something never done before.

We also changed the philosophy of our advocacy efforts. We are now positioned firmly as a nonpartisan lobbying organization being guided by a comprehensive policy agenda covering taxes, health care, labor, the environment and immigration.

Simultaneously, the NCA Foundation and its role changed dramatically. The NCA Foundation had served as the National Club Association’s charitable arm, funding programs to provide insight and analysis of the forces likely to shape the future club experience. Its beneficial contributions to the club community were plentiful. The commitment to the NCA Foundation by its board of directors and all the clubs, chapters, corporate partners, associates and individuals that contributed valuable time and resources was truly amazing and were a foundational reason why NCA is now broadly relevant within the club industry and beyond.    

As determined by the NCA Foundation board, operation of the NCA Foundation and its funding of NCA programs is not necessary for the continued success of NCA. All new programs and resources that would have been funded by the NCA Foundation, such as various publications, white papers and books, can and will now be funded through NCA. As such, the NCA Foundation board of directors approved to dissolve the NCA Foundation on Sept. 30, 2021, coinciding with the end of its fiscal year.

Prior to its dissolution, the NCA Foundation funded one final project that will investigate how each stakeholder—employees, members and board of directors—co-creates the value of a club. Members’ and employees’ behaviors and board of directors’ leadership will be measured to predict value co-creation. In addition, clubs’ financial performance will be evaluated to investigate how value co-creation will influence club performance. These findings will be detailed in a series of articles in subsequent issues of Club Director.

By making this decision to restore the association to focus on our advocacy beginnings, NCA is in its best position ever to serve and empower private clubs.