2023-07 – RE Update by Peter Schneider

What’s Next?

As the calendar marks the year’s halfway point, the Region, surprisingly, finds itself in a lull. The second quarter was very active: hosting Solo events, including the ProSolo at the Meadowlands and events with the Northeast PA Region at Pocono in conjunction with SCCA-NNJR’s Joe DeLuca and Linda Gronlund Freedom Major RoadRace and two RoadRally events, a TSD rally and a Trek in association with the Highland Coalition.

Now that we enter the third quarter, things are slowing down until competitive activities start in late summer and early fall. But that does not mean the club has to be idle.

Managing the Region is a year-round activity.

You should have noticed a new look and feel if you have logged onto the Region’s Website in the last month (www.SCCA-NNJR.Com). Darrell Anthony has redesigned the site, replacing outdated software, and will continue to make changes and updates as the months go on.

Last weekend, several members got together and cleaned out the Region’s Storage unit to provide financial savings to the club by eliminating the unneeded monthly cost. Over time the items in the storage unit had become obsolete, or their useful life had expired. Insurance Waivers over ten years old (seven years or younger must be retained) were shredded. All Minor Release Waivers will be forwarded to the National Office per new policies implemented by the National, as all Minor Release Waivers need to be retained for seven years after the individual has turned 18.

I have just completed a review of our Region’s email list and contacted all individuals that have not opened/read our monthly e-newsletter over the last 12 months; those that did not express an interest in receiving our announcements have been removed. This reduced the Region’s monthly costs associated with maintaining the Constant Contact Database/Marketing System and the unwanted emails sent out by the Region. We last did this exercise 5 years ago. The source of emails on our mailing list comes from those that have attended our events, Region Membership, non-members that have attended Track Night in America that live in Northern New Jersey, and those that sign-up from our website, often via family and friends.

The true unsung hero of the Region is the Treasurer, Jason Evangelista; he keeps track of the Region’s funds and files our taxes and state incorporation paperwork. Without his efforts, we would not be able to keep our Region’s Charter with the National Office, and without an active and valid Charter, we cannot sanction events and obtain insurance to conduct events.
You might have noticed a new article on the National Website about how to get involved with the National Board of Directors (BoD) (You Should Run for the SCCA Board of Directors – Sports Car Club of America?) For those that aspire to that goal in the future, the best way to start is to get involved with our Region leadership team. My own involvement with the Region started in 1988 when I joined SCCA to obtain my ProRally License. Joe DeLuca, the Regional Executive at the time, noticed my name on the Region’s new members’ Mailing labels supplied by the National Office and called me about taking over the Region’s Rally Program.

Over the years, I have served on the Region’s Board as a Program Lead, Trustee, Assistant Regional Executive, and now Regional Executive. I have also served eight years (over two terms) as the NEDIV RoadRally Steward and five years on the National RoadRally Competition Board. While on the RoadRally Board, I spearheaded the effort to modernize the RoadRally Safety Steward Program and updated several of the Club’s RoadRally Process Manuals. Working with the National Staff and other members of the RoadRally Board, we implemented SCCA’s first Learning Management System online Safety Licensing tool, which is now being rolled out to other programs, including Solo, Flagging and Communications, and in the near future RallyCross.

In January 2022, I started my three-year term as Area 1 Director on the BoD, following in the footsteps of Bob Dowie. Whether I run for a second three-year term starting in January of 2026 will depend on many factors: how I feel about my effectiveness in the position, who might want to run for the position in 2024, and if the existing BoD members value my contribution to the management of the Club. As one of the thirteen members of the BoD, I can only do so much. My focus has been to improve transparency to the membership, challenge the old saying ‘Secret Sports Car Club of America,’ and focus on the entire membership and not just the ‘chosen’ programs that get all the attention. I believe in the saying, ‘Anything you’re not allowed to ask questions about is something you should be asking questions about.’ While some of my questions/suggestions have been addressed, I am still waiting for several to be answered, or even allowed to be asked. So ask your questions stay curious and get involved with the Region and the Club, be the next generation of leaders, without you there is no SCCA.

So ‘What’s Next?’ Who among you will look ahead and start down the path of club leadership? If you are interested, contact me at RE@SCCA-NNJR.com, and we can chat.