ASPRS Past President Roger Crystal was recently named ASPRS Membership Development Leader. This adjunct staff position was approved at the April 30, 2010 ASPRS Board Meeting in San Diego, California after the ASPRS Membership Committee determined that the ASPRS Regions could use additional help with their grassroots membership recruitment and retention efforts.
As Membership Development Leader, Crystal will work with ASPRS Region Officers to determine what kind of assistance is needed in each Region; take action on what is needed; and help articulate what "value" the Society brings (or could bring) to potential new members. “The Board believes that this approach will help all of our 17 regions, but particularly the smaller regions who don’t have as many people to work on membership,” said ASPRS President Carolyn Merry. “Our goal is to increase active memberships by 10% over the next 36 months and student and associate memberships by 100% over the next 36 months.”
Crystal expects his initial areas of concentration to be:
1. Supporting existing Member Champions and find ways to identify additional Member Champions.
2. Targeting non-member university/college faculty and encouraging them to become new members of the Society, with an expectation that they would expose their graduate and undergraduate students to the benefits of becoming student members.
3. Following student members as they finish their schooling and enter the workforce, and find ways to keep them engaged with the Society.
4. Working with the Regions (Regional Membership Officer and Committee) to pursue lapsed members and develop/maintain a data base on why these individuals leave the Society.
5. Exploring opportunities for using external support services that have expertise in addressing membership issues.
Progress reports will be given at the quarterly ASPRS Executive Committee meetings and twice yearly Board meetings in order to provide updates on the effectiveness of the efforts and to identify policy and/or resource issues to be addressed.
“We are pleased that Roger has agreed to contribute to the future of the Society through this important position,” said ASPRS Executive Director James Plasker. “He has many years of experience working on membership in the Columbia River Region and is well respected throughout our community. I believe he will be able to extend his expertise to other ASPRS Regions and systemically improve regional membership recruitment and retention.”
Founded in 1934, ASPRS is an international professional organization of 6,000 geospatial data professionals. ASPRS is devoted to advancing knowledge and improving understanding of the mapping sciences to promote responsible application of photogrammetry, remote sensing, geographic information systems and supporting technologies.