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Budget issues



I've been reading the messages of the last week with great interest. I'm
glad we are talking about this in front of everyone, and look forward to
reading most messages. Anything is better than another metal vs. fiberglass
crossboom thread.

I think at the end of the day the problem and solution is plain. We do not
have enough members, and therefore not enough money to build the things we
all want. I don't think expecting more donations from existing members is
the only, and certainly not the best, way to solve this problem. We need to
sign up new members! Notice I said we. Not the BOD, not AMSAT, not the Area
Coordinators. Us. You. I.

Talk up AMSAT and satellites. Link the two in every conversation with
potential members. Make a habit of having some blank membership applications
with you at a hamfest or club meeting. If you do a demo somewhere, pass out
applications, and offer to take them right there to send in. Ask your club
to make a donation, or join as an organization. Tell them they can earmark
any donation other than membership for ARISS, Echo, or Eagle. If any of you
have ever been in sales, you know you have to ask for the sale. I'm not
suggesting being pushy, but ASK for the donation or membership.

If you use the satellites, if you use the amsat.org remailer, if you enjoy
the -bb, you should join. Now. Even if you disagree with something you see
happening. Joining is the ONLY effective way of creating change. I can not
believe the arrogance of non-members voicing their opinion on here about how
AMSAT (us, you, I) do things.

I am going to personally accept the challenge of signing up new members. I
will sign up 10 new members by the end of 2003. I do several hamfests, and
lately several demos, so I should make this goal with no problem. Can we all
set a goal of at least one new member this year?

Now, my challenge to the BOD, and I hope they see this, is to help us sign
up these members. Give us a little something tangible we can use to sell
AMSAT. Let new members get some sort of bonus. Maybe a "Working the Easy
Sats" with 1 year, or InstantTrack with a 2 year sign-up. We'll make the
effort, you give us something we can dangle as a carrot. I've been asked a
dozen times in the last few hamfests why we don't do this, and I can't
answer it. ARRL seems to make it work, can we?

73, Drew KO4MA


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