Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 3224 - April 2017 Woodall’s Campground Management Q&A CONVERSATIONS ARVC’s Paul Bambei is Charting the Association’s Course into New Waters relationships. It’s now changed slightly to partnering relationships. If you’re a partnering state, you sign up for a dual-membership scenario where a member pays both the state associa- tion and us. We made a big decision as a board last year to allow choice and flexibility for each of the partnering states, and the overwhelming majority stayed as 100%partners.Butwhatwedidwaswe created a new layer that allowed them to get to as low as 75% and still stay as whatwecalladualmember,amember of their state association and ARVC. A couple of states (California and Wisconsin) chose to go their separate ways, and it’s going to be interesting to see how that evolves over time. I think they’re going to miss what we do and within a couple years they, hopefully, will come back. They’re very close to that 75% threshold, but they didn’t get there, so our policy now is very black and white. Youeithermaintainthat75%threshold or you don’t. WCM: Let’s shift gears a bit and talk aboutoneofyourthreetenets:Educa- tion.Youhavesomeratherbignewsto report on this front,right? Bambei: When Barb Youmans came in — about the same time I did back in 2010 — she was hired to revamp the educational program of ARVC. Being a former educator herself, she knew how to do it and the way she felt it needed to be done. It took us six years to get there, but our education program is WCM: So, as we sit here in a Florida hotel lobby during the RecreationVe- hicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) RV Leadership Conference, how would you describe the current state of af- fairs at ARVC, both for you personally and for the association in general? Bambei: I have no complaints.This is going into my seventh year and it was a bit tumultuous in those early years, a lot of things going on, but I’d say for the last three or four years it’s been very positive. We’re getting a lot of good things done. The board has been very helpful in setting a strategy that I think is futuristic, so I have very few complaints. WCM: Let’s take that one more step. If you had to critique your organiza- tion,what would you change? Bambei: What I’ve learned is our marketing is not as sophisticated as I know it can be.You have to approach it as a multi-touch opportunity. If you just think you can send one beautiful four-color mailer to a non-member and expect them to convert overnight, it doesn’t work. So our whole plan is to sequence the number of things that we’re going to do to stay in touch with not just the member but also with the nonmember, and hopefully over time convince that nonmember to come over. WCM: Is this in response, at least in part, to recent membership policy changes with regard to state affilia- tions? Bambei: We used to call it affiliation The senior management team at the National Association of RV Parks & Campgrounds (ARVC) — includ- ing President and CEO Paul Bambei, Senior Director of Education Barb Youmans, Senior Director of State Relations & Program Advocacy Jeff Sims and Membership Director Candra Talley — have been out in force in recent weeks, canvassing the various state and regional camp- ground association conferences to update park owners on the latest news and benefits emanating from the Denver,Col.-based organization. Among those conferences, Youmans and Sims were at the Northeast Campground Association’s (NCA) 53rd Northeast Conference on Camping and Trade Show, which wrapped up March 18 in Nashua,N.H.,while Bambei addressed attendees at the Wisconsin Association of Campground Owners (WACO) 54th Annual Convention and Trade Show in Stevens Point,Wis. Their message to those attendees — as well as in a lengthy conversation between Bambei and Sherman Goldenberg,publisher ofWoodall’s Camp- ground Management that took place at RVIA’s Leadership Conference — touched on three general areas of ARVC’s efforts on behalf of its some 2,900 members: Advocacy, Education, and Network Connection. Following is an edited version ofWCM’s interview with Bambei.