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ACBL Membership Meeting, Sunday July 24, Marriott Wardman Park, Washington DC
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We have the scheduled ACBL Membership meeting. We know the time and place.  From

Board of Governors and General Membership Meeting (Sunday, July 24)

All members of the Board of Governors are invited to attend the Summer NABC meeting and the annual ACBL membership meeting at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington DC.

Date: Sunday, July 24

Time:10 a.m. – noon

Here are minutes of a previous (perhaps typical) ACBL Membership Meeting:

* * * * *

ACBL Membership Meeting

The meeting of the Board of Governors was recessed. At this point, the annual membership meeting of the American Contract Bridge League convened.  Bruce Reeve, ACBL President,presided over the membership meeting. Reeve presented his President’s report, and commented on his activities as President.

Treasurer’s Report

Jerry Fleming, ACBL Treasurer, presented the Treasurer's report. (Exhibit 1)

Being no further business, the annual membership meeting was adjourned. The Board of Governors reconvened from recess.

* * * * *

2016's Membership Meeting -- What Can We Do?

What is our 2016 opportunity? ACBL says the following about a Regular Membership Meeting (see

An annual membership meeting is scheduled to be held during the Summer NABC. Resolutions and motions adopted by a majority vote of those present and voting are referred to the Board of Directors and the Board of Governors for further review and possible action.

A quorum at any meeting consists of at least 250 members representing a majority of districts provided that no more than 20% of the required 250 members present belong to any one district.

So all we can do is pass resolutions and motions, and all that happens to them is they "are referred to the Board of Directors and the Board of Governors for further review and possible action."

But I bet we can't even pass resolutions and motions without a quorum present!






The local District is District 6, so no more than 50 of the members needed for a quorum can be from District 6. That means we need at least 200 members present from the rest of ACBL, at least twelve Districts besides District 6 must be represented.

The Membership Meeting takes place during the Board of Governors meeting; at least some of the 125-plus Board of Governors members will be present (see, five from each ACBL District, plus all ACBL past presidents and all past Board of Governors chairmen, who are also members-at-large of the Board of Governors), but presumably:

  • not all BoG members will be present
  • not all BoG members who are at the BoG meeting will stay around for a quorum call at a Membership meeting
  • not all BoG members who do stay will be amenable to anything threatening the status quo,

so if you want action on any specific items, you probably need to show up yourself, and ask all your like-minded ACBL member friends to be there as well.


Even if we manage to assemble a quorum for the Membership Meeting, unless we have consensus on the specifics we want, we will not get any motions or resolutions passed.

As for what we would like to do, Ray Yuenger commented on a previous 2016 Annual Meeting thread,,

As I write this, there are 142 comments (note there are now 252 comments) in this discussion. One of the topics of discussion is what agenda items would motivate ACBL members enough to attend a meeting during a nationals and to vote. I quote or paraphrase without comment from the discussion the following 34 proposed agenda items in order of their appearance without consolidating similar proposals. Forgive me if I overlooked or misstated your proposal.

Gary [[Hann]], you want to whip these up into a set of motions, or does someone else want to consolidate them into an agenda that will compel ACBL members to attend their meeting?

<list skipped>

Don't despair -- we can put these in categories, I chose eight:

Proposed Agenda Items in Categories:

Bridge scandals and solutions:

  • 22. Invite Boye Brogeland to speak.

ACBL governance

  • 4. Revamp the governance structures.
  • 15. Redistrict the districts.
  • 21. Arrange to have existing districts annexed into adjoining districts when district director dies or retires.
  • 13. Appoint a committee to study reducing the size of the BoD and the election process.
  • 2. Reduce the size of the BoD.
  • 5. Bar re-election of any current BoD members.
  • 6. Impose term limits for the BoD.
  • 7. Change who votes for the BoD.
  • 28. Provide for representation of clubs on BoD.
  • 29. Consider whether bridge teachers should be represented on the BoD.
  • 30. Discuss BoD members representing different constituencies (i.e. players, units, club owners) or holding different portfolios & competencies (marketing, technology, local bridge, international bridge, etc.).
  • 33. Reduce the number of units and the size of the BoG.

ACBL Management

  • 3. Dismiss the CEO.
  • 34. Identify BoD members responsible for financial stewardship and evaluating management.

ACBL future direction

  • 23. Have a Roundtable discussion featuring experts and successful bridge organizers/administrators from other countries discussing what works in their organizations.
  • 24. Discuss how to introduce bridge to youth.
  • 25. Differentiate marketing bridge by age group.

What we can improve in ACBL now

  • 18. Conduct a detailed review of the ACBLScore plus history.
  • 19. Conduct exit interviews of ACBL members.
  • 20. Have “mystery shoppers” playing in tournaments.
  • 31. Does the ACBL need an outside publicity firm?
  • 32. Is marketing program productive?

ACBL openness/transparency

  • 10. Remove the shroud of silence.
  • 8. Publicize the CEO’s contract.
  • 9. Publicize the ACBL’s budget.
  • 26. Publicize all ACBL employment contracts.
  • 27. Open BoD meetings to all ACBL members.
  • 14. Establish a timetable for reports on technological progress.

ACBL finances

  • 34. Identify BoD members responsible for financial stewardship and evaluating management.
  • 1. Make all BoD positions non-compensated in every way, shape and form.
  • 16. Give every BoD member access to the detailed budget, all employment contracts, and all vendor contracts over a specified value ($50,000 seems fine).
  • 17. Give BoD authority to approve all contracts of a specified size.

ACBL Tournaments (NABC's)

  • 11. Consider tournament directors retiring.
  • 12. Hold nationals at the most popular sites.

About These Categories and Proposed Agenda Items

  • Many items above could appear in multiple categories, one (#34) does.
  • Many of you would choose more or fewer or different categories, feel free to do so.
  • Perhaps many other specific suggestions appeared in the 109 comments that followed Ray's reading of the first 142. Perhaps some of you would like to scour those comments and add to the list of 34, feel free to do so.

What Next? How do we prepare for this July 24 Membership Meeting?

But remember that we have only nine weeks from today to July 24, and if we want to present ideas/concepts/calls to specific action which have broad-based ACBL Member support to the ACBL Board of Governors and Board of Directors, we need to get busy formulating appropriate motions and resolutions, and have them vetted -- presumably at least by interested ACBL Members who are Bridge Winners members and participating in these discussions (and subsequent polls?).

Gary Hann offered to write a governance/openness motion, three comments of his from the previous thread:

I would suggest formulating a Motion for Washington (I won't be there), requested the immediate downsizing of the BOD to 8 Members by redrawn districts, and 1 at-large Member representing Clubs. Nine is more than enough to transact business.

The second part of the Motion should be that ALL BOARD MEETINGS ARE OPEN TO ALL ACBL MEMBERS AND ALL CONTRACTS INCLUDING EMPLOYMENT CONTRACTS ARE PUBLISHED (there would be a very narrow carve-out for a very few disciplinary or personnel matters, but with publication of the results of such closed deliberations). Sub-Committees could and should have member input.

= = = = = = = = = =

I've written many ACBL Motions when on the BOD and BOG; several were paradigm changing.

If enough people wish, I will attempt a draft which will be formulated to appeal to the greater good of the ACBL rather than to any narrow interest group or groups.

We must realize that a few other things will change, such as GNP (NAP) and GNT, which would now have triple the representation? (i.e., 3 teams in the Open Flight from each of 8 Districts). Also, the District boundaries will engender a ton of wolf whistles and complaints, as such proposed change always does, not to mention the Western Conference and the “Eastern Alliance” (please remind me the name?) :)

= = = = = = = = = =

Note - I've just come up with a seemingly brilliant plan, which keeps most everything intact that is dear to Districts, while simultaneously drastically reducing BOD Meeting cost. I will publish it in a few days as an Article.May 5 (Article/post still unpublished)

Do any of the rest of you want to step up, propose a motion or resolution on a specific topic in a SEPARATE ARTICLE/POST (NOT as a comment to this post), see if a consensus develops in the BW member comments to your post, then submit a consensus motion/resolution as a poll?

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