- a. To acquaint every member of the United States Army with the objectives of the USAWOA. This includes the men and women of the Active Duty Force, the Retired Community and members of the Army Reserve and the Army National Guard.
- b. To increase the overall membership of the USAWOA.
- c. To organize an active chapter on every Army post, camp and installation in the Continental U. S. and Overseas to include installations having the minimum number of personnel assigned to form a chapter.
- d. To rejuvenate inactive chapters.
- a. This program is effective from the first day of the annual meeting month and will terminate on the last day of the month preceding the annual meeting.
- b. If this program is to succeed, it shall require the concerted efforts of the National Headquarters, National BOD, region officials, chapter officials and chapter members.
- a. National Board of Directors: Overall management of the membership program. Through the Staff Liaison Representative, the BOD will ensure chapter participation in this and other programs and develop procedures for organizing new chapters and rejuvenating inactive chapters. The Executive Committee has overall responsibility for administering this program, including the maintenance of statistics, purchasing of prizes, disbursing of funds (if required) and monitoring the overall effectiveness of the program.
- b. The Region officials acting as representatives of USAWOA Headquarters will visit military installations within their respective regions to assist in achieving the goals outlined in paragraph 1, above, along with the responsibilities mandated by the BOD.
- c. Chapters. The Chapter President is responsible for all functions relating to the successful development of the chapter. As outlined in Chapter IV of this manual, the
- Chapter President will appoint those committees deemed necessary for an efficient chapter operation. For the purpose of a good Chapter Development Program, the Membership and Public Relations Committees are considered the most important.
- (1) Membership Committee. The chairman of this committee should coordinate the overall chapter participation in a development program. Aggressive members with outstanding knowledge of all aspects of the USAWOA should be appointed to the committee and serve as key members in soliciting membership. The committee chairman should see that a membership Task Force is organized, outlining a plan for conducting a membership campaign, and, in doing so, should consider the following:
- (a) Establishment of realistic goals based on potential membership.
- (b) Obtaining local commander's backing.
- (c) Local incentives and awards.
- (d) Provisions for an aggressive publicity campaign which should be implemented by the Public Relations Committee.
- (e) Procurement of necessary literature and materials from USAWOA Headquarters.
- (f) Obtaining a bulk mailing permit from the local Post Office in the event a valid mailing list is available for use in the campaign.
- (2) Public Relations Committee. Adding tremendously to the success of this program would be a developed Public Relations Plan, as implemented by the Public Relations Committee. The plan could include, but not be confined to, the following:
- (a) National Publicity: Preparation and submission to National Headquarters of stories, photographs and articles for publications in the Army Times and NEWSLINER.
- (b) Liaison with Local Press. Liaison should be established with the Editors of both post and off-post newspapers. Visits should be made weekly to keep them advised on what the chapter is doing.
- (c) Liaison with Local Radio and TV Stations. Most local radio and TV stations will give you time on the air to announce special programs, dates and times of meetings, the fact that you are having a membership campaign and any other interesting program or accomplishment.
- (d) Liaison with Post Information Officer. Establish a close working relationship with your Post Information Officer. This individual can help you considerably. Discuss your programs and seek advice.
- (e) Speakers Bureau. Select outstanding speakers from within the chapter and appoint them to speak at Commanders' Call, Officer Wives' Clubs, local posts of the VFW, American Legion, DAV, etc. Invite outside speakers to chapter meetings to add interest and stimulate attendance.
- (f) Develop Displays. Many chapters have developed excellent displays. Determine the best place for the displays and obtain permission from the local commander. Small displays, if properly constructed, can be as effective as large displays. Brochures should be placed at key locations, i.e., manned information booths, post exchanges, Officers Clubs, etc.
- (g) Use Bulletin boards. Every post has several bulletin boards; obtain permission from the local commanders to use them. Keep the information current.
- (h) Develop an Awards Program. Recognize outstanding accomplishments.
- (i) Develop a web site and post current events, chapter minutes and meeting times.
4. LEVEL OF ACTION.
National Headquarters cannot become involved in state legislation. In those states where we have active chapters, it is recommended that a Legislative Committee work closely with the representatives of other Associations such as AUSA, MOAA, etc., in seeking passage of state legislation of benefit to USAWOA members in the particular state. Chapters proposing to undertake such action must first obtain concurrence of the National BOD.
5. PROPOSALS/LETTER ISSUES.
We look to chapters for the information and recommendations to the Legislative Committee of all proposals and letter issues. Copies of proposals and letter issues are forwarded to the Department of Defense and selected members of the Congress.
- a. A proposal is usually an issue of long standing which may or may not require legislation to resolve. Actions which cannot be taken solely within the Department of the Army usually lend themselves to proposals.
- b. A letter issue is usually one of short duration and can be acted upon within the Department of the Army.
In some instances, responses are simply courtesy letters, while others will provide an informal answer to the issue(s) we are concerned with. The Executive Director will provide the delegates at the Meeting of the Members a report of responses that are received, thus providing further guidance on each of the issues.
7. PREPARING PROPOSALS:
Utilize plain bond paper and, if possible, type one proposal on one sheet of paper.
- a. Clearly define the issue. Quotations from the particular regulation, policy letter, proposed legislation and/or public law is desirable.
- b. State clearly and concisely WHY it is an issue.
- c. HOW does it affect service members and how many (estimate)?
- d. WHEN does the issue have the greatest effect on the service?
- e. If possible, recommend a solution; however, it is essential to completely justify your position on the issue.
8. FORWARDING OF PROPOSALS:
National Headquarters will provide you with the deadline for submission of proposals, although a proposal may be forwarded to Headquarters any time during the year.
- a. Matters of importance to the chapter and the Association should be discussed and prepared for presentation to the general membership.
- Create the opportunity and atmosphere for a solid, meaningful exchange of ideas and convictions with your chapter officers, away from the telephone and interruptions of daily routine. Share your own conclusions with them and absorb what they have to say. These are the first tangible steps toward building an eventful year ahead.
- b. Plans for the general membership meeting should be made and a tentative agenda drawn up based on information they have gathered between meetings and from previous minutes.
Any officer of the chapter may forward a proposal; however, a statement must be included as follows: "This proposal has been voted upon by members in attendance at a chapter/special meeting and is forwarded upon approval of the President of the chapter."
10. PROPOSALS ADOPTED AT THE ANNUAL MEETING OF THE MEMBERS.
The National President or the Executive Director is responsible for the distribution of all proposals and letter issues to the Army Staff, DOD, members of the Congress, Army Times and other periodicals and to all USAWOA Chapters. Publication of the proposals in the NEWSLINER will reach all members.
11. ACTION BY MEMBERS.
Proposals and letter issues can be effectively utilized as a "sales tool" in signing up more and more members. Distribution to hospitals, open messes, barbershops, and other strategic facilities on an installation will aid in "getting the word out" on USAWOA. Utilize copies of the proposals/letter issues to the maximum extent.
12. REQUESTS TO WRITE.
From time to time, a request to write to your Congressman or Congresswoman on a particular issue is published in the NEWSLINER. If the USAWOA legislative program is to be truly effective, please encourage every member of the chapter to write individual letters. Form letters and/or petitions are not effective. If the issue is appropriate, you may wish to invite dependents and others to write supporting the cause.
13. ANALYSIS OF PROPOSALS.
Within chapters, and at any convention, a careful analysis should be given to those proposals/letter issues previously adopted at the Meeting of the Members prior to developing any new proposal. For maximum effectiveness, we should develop reasonably sound proposals, keeping the number to a minimum, with other issues going to letter issues. From information gathered on Capitol Hill and from sources in the Pentagon, it is recommended we not "shotgun" our proposals. Be realistic and stand firm on good proposals. For maximum effectiveness, keep your legislative program on target with current legislation and issues, as they surface, either in the DOD or Congress. This type of activity keeps us alive and moving.
INVITATION OF U. S. CONGRESSMEN AND DIGNITARIES TO CHAPTER FUNCTIONS.
As we continue to gain recognition and credibility on Capitol Hill, it is imperative that all chapter officials become familiar with correct procedures to follow when they intend to invite a United States Congressman or dignitary to be the guest speaker at a chapter function. The following guidelines are furnished for this purpose:
- a. When a program is planned to take place on a military installation and it is the intent of the chapter to invite an individual in the above-mentioned category to be the guest speaker, APPROVAL must first be obtained from the installation commander.
- b. A copy of the invitation to the individual and his response must be provided the installation commander and an additional copy forwarded to National Headquarters.
- c. Once the Congressman or dignitary has accepted a chapter's invitation to participate in the function, the Chapter President, or a delegated representative, must work closely with the installation commander's office regarding protocol essential to the visit.
- d. In all instances, an invitation to be a guest at the function must be extended to the installation commander. He will also be invited to accompany a chapter official or member in greeting the individual upon his/her arrival on the installation.
- e. If a last minute cancellation is made by the Congressman or dignitary, the installation commander must be notified immediately. In addition, if for some unforeseen circumstances dictates the cancellation of the chapter function, coordination must be affected with the commander's office prior to notifying the congressman or dignitary.
- f. It is well to remember that the USAWOA has a high visibility and as long as a chapter functions on any Department of Defense Installation, we must ensure we do nothing to reflect negatively upon the commander, the chapter or the Association. If there is any doubt in this area, the Executive Director at National Headquarters should be contacted for further assistance and guidance.