Friday, January 21, 2011

"Open Letter to WAC Members"

In regards to one of the situations described in my recent post Controversy, we haz it, Part II, Joe Waldron sent out this "Open Letter to WAC Members" last night:
An open letter to members of the Washington Arms Collectors:

I realize many of the individuals on this e-mail list are NOT WAC members, but I have no way of knowing who is and who isn’t.  If you are not a WAC member, just ignore it.  (And why AREN’T you a WAC member?)
For those who do not know me personally, I was a member of the WAC board of directors from 1995 to 2003, and president of WAC from 2003 to 2007.  I currently hold the position of Immediate Past President of the WAC, as well as serving as your legislative chairman.
In my time on the WAC board, I have seen polarization within the board, and in some cases significant friction among and between board members.  Some of these disputes were resolved with the passage of time.  In others, the members took the appropriate action via the election process to weed out those elected officials that were/are less than fully productive.
The elected officials of WAC or of any other organization are there to provide a service to YOU, the membership.  They’re not supposed to be there for personal aggrandizement or to settle personal grudges.  Human nature being what it is, none of us are perfect.  We all make mistakes, as I’m sure I did when I was a WAC elected official.  But those lapses should be rare. 
Over the past several months, several incidents have occurred or situations have developed that I believe have the potential to do great harm to the WAC.  And it appears it is always the same five board members who are those who are creating this climate of hostility and risk.  Among these situations are:
            The board’s decision to expel from the WAC Mr. Dan Frank, a former board member and at the time of his expulsion, editor of the club magazine, the Gun-News.  The board did NOT FOLLOW procedures as outlined in the by-laws to expel Mr. Frank, thus denying him the fundamental right of due process. 
            The fact that certain votes regarding Mr. Frank’s status were taken in secret, in direct violation of standing club policy of many years.  Sometimes board members are called upon to make tough decisions.  On those occasions, I expect – and you should demand -- the board members to demonstrate the moral courage and integrity to stand by their votes – publicly.
            In any Washington corporation where members have voting control of the organization, the members are the ultimate authority.  The board cannot override a vote of the members.  Yet that is exactly what five board members HAVE ATTEMPTED TO DO with the recent member-approved by-laws changes.  They rejected the vote of the members, CONTRARY TO ADVICE OF CLUB COUNSEL, in what I believe is a violation of state law.

It is time to restore sanity, it is time to restore civility, to the leadership of the WAC.  I believe if the board follows its current path, it will lead our club to ruin.
In the next few days you will receive the February issue of the Gun-News.  It will contain your ballot for the 2011 election of WAC’s leadership.  I believe the outcome of THIS ELECTION is as critical to the future of the WAC as the 2010 mid-term and 2012 presidential election will be to the future of the United States as we know it.
I urge you to participate in the electoral process.  I urge you to vote your conscience.
I believe the following individuals, all of whom I have worked with in varying capacities over the past several years, are those BEST SUITED to move WAC forward and restore adult leadership to our club:
President      Leland Bull
Secretary     Woody Mathews
Directors     Bill Burris
                    Alan Gottlieb
                    Rick Verzal
                    Kirby Wilbur
                    Dave Workman
Note the directors I have recommended are listed in alphabetical order.  Each has his own unique background, interests and talents.  Each can make a positive contribution to OUR club.  Again, I believe these individuals are the ONES BEST SUITED to lead the WAC in the coming years.
Thank you for reading this far!  And thank you for your consideration.  The WAC is celebrating its 59th birthday this year.  With your active participation in selecting responsible and responsive leaders, and with the grace of God, we will survive for another 59 years and more.
Joe Waldron
Immediate Past President


Anonymous said...

I'd ask any members with questions about the WAC webpage or allegations about the webmaster (me) at last weekends (1/22, 1/23) Puyallup show to email me directly at be happy to talk/type with you. I wasn't at the show because of family commitments on my 49th Birthday. -Boyd Kneeland
boyd at seanet dot com

D.W. Drang said...

I hadn't heard of any issues with the web site...