I am writing on behalf of Fargo Moorhead Practical Shooting Association (GP24), as the out-going Club Secretary.
We are a small club of about 20 members who are passionate about hunting and shooting, particularly USPSA. We host 7-10 matches per year, with approximately 30 shooters at each match. Weather and time permitting, we try to get a 2-gun and/or Steel Challenge match in as well. A high percentage of our club members travel to numerous Level 2 & 3 matches per year, plus the occasional Level 4.
We had our annual meeting on January 7. I volunteered to write this letter to voice our club’s concerns.
Our meeting was 2 hours long. After addressing our typical annual agenda, we spent a great deal of the meeting discussing the club’s future in relationship to USPSA.
As a club, we are disappointed with the behavior of the board and the direction (or lack thereof) that the organization seems to be taking. We are currently without elected representation on the board, so our only means of expression is through the fees we pay to USPSA. Scott may have been in the wrong, but we think he was unfairly targeted. He was not the only board member to disregard some of the by-laws (e.g., maintaining confidentiality, being RO-certified, upholding the organization’s reputation, etc.). He was just more honest about his actions, only breaking confidentiality with the intent of bettering the organization with much-needed transparency. His honesty made him an easy target for a Board resistant to change and progress.
FMPSA discussed at length and considered all our options as a club. At one extreme, we could continue as-is, actively recruiting new club members and encouraging them to join USPSA and running 7-10 USPSA matches next year. At the other extreme, we could drop our affiliation with USPSA and run outlaw matches or matches affiliated with another shooting sport. We decided on an approach somewhere between the extremes.
Here are the steps we are taking as a club:
1. We will encourage individuals to maintain their USPSA membership. Without membership, they are unable to vote for change.
2. We will continue to actively recruit new club members and encourage them to join USPSA. We believe in the sport and want to share it with others.
3. We will continue to run USPSA-affiliated matches and submit all scores to USPSA.org.
4. With the exception of our annual super-classifier match where we only shoot 5 or 6 classifiers, all fees to USPSA will be withheld until it is time to re-affiliate with USPSA.
a. The super-classifier gives new shooters a chance to get an official classification with USPSA. We don’t want our decisions as a club to penalize new shooters. Classification is a strong recruiting tool to get our new shooters committed to USPSA.
b. As stated before, we are passionate about USPSA, and want to support the organization as much as possible. If at the end of the year, FMPSA (and the rest of Area 3) is properly represented in a functional board of directors leading a healthy organization, we will pay the remainder of our match fees and apply for re-affiliation. We hope to have a long future with USPSA.
Personally, I am very committed to USPSA. I’ve been an RO for 6 years and CRO for 2, and have worked many major matches, including the 2019 Lo-Cap Nationals. Last year, I became a Life Member and I really want to see USPSA be around for at least as long as I am. I am retiring this year and look forward to helping at more matches this summer and beyond. My summer schedule is quite full with USPSA and other hobbies. Several months ago, I planned to add CO Nationals to my schedule. But I have no interest in attending an event where USPSA employees bring disrepute to the organization by verbally attacking its volunteers.