Although it's almost an aside, the yacht clubs could be the greatest force for change in our sport. I certainly understand why a concerted effort would be made to try to get them on board to grow the sport. Because of Garys' most frequent contact with those clubs, I can understand why he would think they are pro growth. The sad truth is that in many cases they are pro growth as long as we do it our way. The focus has shifted from attracting competitors to preserving the status and structure of the organizing authority.
I give Gary a big bow for trying. However, the attempt was doomed.
I have observed that Yacht Clubs, if you also include community sailing organizations and other groups like them, are the folks causing change and improving things. As more of them collapse in the face of shrinking membership with the changing demographics they are adapting. There are all sorts of out-reach and community-sailing programs showing up that would have been impossible a decade ago. There has also been a major generational shift in the top dogs at these clubs over the last ten years as the Boomers have moved into positions of power in even the most conservative and hidebound clubs. Change is coming, but it's slow.
US Sailing isn't any part of this, which is sad because it could be. However, I seriously doubt that it would make much difference either way. The hard work of building up a new generation of sailors falls primarily to those who actually sail and who reach out to include new people in our sport. That's done on a dock someplace where someone offers to invest time and effort in helping a beginner learn to sail, gets them interested, and brings them along. It tends not to happen in large national organizations. Could US Sailing offer some help with this? Sure. Do they do much? Not enough, IMHO.
Gary has visited and worked with a lot more clubs than his predecessor, including the Summit which a number of the members of clubs I work with attended and really enjoyed. Could Gary get the power based in US Sailing moved back to the Clubs and out of the hands of the Board? Certainly not easily. The bylaws (as DB has explained quite well) make that sort of change slow and painful. But, it probably doesn't matter all that much. Part of the reason I gave Gary a "B" as a grade was precisely his attempt to recognize officially through US Sailing what is obviously the case in the world - Clubs are the center of gravity of our sport, not US Sailing.
Clubs will either evolve or die. Some of the better ones are evolving quite well, others are fading away. Evolution at work.
Hey, I see you are still campaigning for a seat on the USSA Board.......