The American Motorcyclist Association has announced its plan to reduce the number of corporate-elected seats on its board of directors. If you’re like this author, and don’t follow the politics of the AMA, you’re probably saying to yourself, “there’s corporate-elected seats on the AMA?” Yes, now doesn’t that explain some things? Previously there were six corporate-elected seats on the AMA Board of Directors, which meant that motorcycle companies controlled 50% of the Board’s voting power. This new measure, which was ratified on February 13th, will reduce that number to four seats, or 33% of the voting power.
The two new open seats will be “at-large” member positions, which mean they are open to members of the general public. The remaining other six positions will continue to be filled by individual and regional representatives.
This restructuring sounds like a positive move by the AMA and a chance for the association to distance itself from corporate involvement, and to try and correct the organization’s slow decline into Dante’s lowest circles of hell. Talking about the changes, Jim Williams, Vice Chairman of the AMA Board of Directors said the following:
“Allowing a relatively small number of corporate members to control 50 percent of the Board was simply not in the best interests of the 240,000 individual members of the AMA. With the reduction from six to four seats, the corporate-elected members continue to provide input, guidance and expertise to the oversight of the AMA, but we believe greater representation by the directors selected by the individual members more clearly reflects the AMA membership.”
It would seem the entire board is aware of the influence the corporate-elected members were having on the direction of the AMA. Williams is a corporeate-elected board member, and represents Kawasaki’s interest in the AMA, but he was the person behind the proposal, which was unanimously voted into action, even by the other corporate-elected members.
The AMA Board of Directors’ is currently comprised of the follwoing six corporate-elected members: Jim Williams (Kawasaki), Jon-Erik Burleson (KTM), John Ulrich (Roadracing World), Andy Goldfine (Aerostitch/Riderwearhouse), Michael Lock (Ducati), and Scott Miller (Harley-Davidson), who has been recently appointed to replace Erik Buell. Both Michael Lock and Andy Goldfine are coming to the end of their terms. It would seem logical that it will be their positions that get replaced by the “at-large” Board seats.