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USA Shooting Adopts Governance Reforms

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado (April 25, 2016)

At its March 12, 2016 meeting in Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA Shooting’s Board of Directors unanimously and positively approved comprehensive reforms in the governance of USA Shooting.

In response to a Complaint filed with the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) by athletes and other members of USA Shooting under Section 10 of the USOC Bylaws, representatives from USA Shooting and the Complainants worked with a Blue Ribbon Panel of experts appointed by the USOC to review and make recommendations on how to incorporate best practices and increased operational transparency into the governance structure of USA Shooting. This work resulted in the development of Amended and Restated USA Shooting Bylaws and Governance Implementing Provisions that were adopted by the USA Shooting Board.  

“USA Shooting is moving forward to put these changes into effect, with focus on the best interest of our athletes and the long-term success of the Olympic shooting sports,” said USA Shooting Chief Executive Officer Robert Mitchell. “We’re optimistic that these changes will help bring us closer together in fulfillment of our mission to prepare athletes for success in competition.” 

“All of the members of the BRWG worked very hard to develop these bylaws,” said AAC Representative Mary Weeks.  “I think the final product addresses concerns the Complainants raised regarding USA Shooting’s obligations as an NGB under the Ted Stevens Olympic and Amateur Sports Act and USOC bylaws and policies, and positions USA Shooting for even greater success in the future.”

As a result of the reforms, USA Shooting’s Board of Directors will now transform from a 15-person to a 10-person Board, consisting of: (1) the athlete who is the USOC Athletes Advisory Council (AAC) representative; (2) one athlete elected by the athletes from the disciplines of rifle, pistol, shotgun and Paralympics; (3) a representative of USA Shooting coaches/officials; (4) a representative of USA Shooting member clubs; (5) the senior USA Shooting representative elected to the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF); (6) the Chair of the newly formed USA Shooting Advisory Council; and (7) four independent directors with no ties to USAS within the preceding 2 years.  The new Bylaws thus reduce the number of constituency-based Board positions and also provide that no employee of USA Shooting may be a voting member of the Board of Directors.

The Governance Implementing Provisions call for the new 10-member Board to be seated January 1, 2017, with staggered terms. Directors may serve a maximum of two 4-year terms and committee members may serve a maximum of two 2-year terms.

The USA Shooting Athlete Advisory Council will refine election procedures for the USOC AAC position and the discipline athlete representative to the Board. The coach/official director and newly-created club director position will be elected by those constituencies. The Advisory Council will elect its chair, who will serve on the USA Shooting Board. The Advisory Council will consist of representatives from allied and community-based organizations as well as other organizations and individuals providing significant resources to USAS.

The process for nominating and electing the four initial independent directors involves the formation of a 3-person Search Committee, with one representative appointed by each of the USOC AAC, the USOC National Governing Bodies Council, and the USOC.  The Search Committee will provide a minimum of eight nominees to the USA Shooting Board of Directors by September 1 for election at the Board meeting on October 1.   In the future, the four independent directors will be elected by the Board based on nominees proposed by the USA Shooting Nominating and Governance Committee. 

Five standing committees will exist as part of the new governance structure: (1) Nominating and Governance; (2) Finance and Compensation; (3) Audit; (4) Judicial; and (5) Ethics.

The governance and operational changes also include a new section of the Bylaws containing procedures for the resolution of complaints and grievances filed with USA Shooting. These procedures adopt the model proposed by the USOC for national governing body bylaws.

The governance reforms also provide for increase in overall organizational transparency through the publishing of policies and procedures, governance documents, meeting minutes, and financial reports on the USA Shooting website.

As a result of the adoption of the Amended and Restated Bylaws and the Governance Implementing Provisions, USA Shooting and the Complainants entered into a Stipulation of Dismissal and the Section 10 Complaint has been dismissed. 

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