USA Water Ski & Wake Sports (USA-WSWS) is affiliated with the International Waterski & Wakeboard Federation (world governing body) and is recognized by the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee and Pan-American Sports Organization as the national governing body of organized water skiing and wakeboarding in the United States. The mission of USA Water Ski & Wake Sports is to advance, support and service all towed water sports through widespread recreational participation, education, promotion and sustained worldwide competitive excellence.
The organization has a staff of seven, serves 14,000 members and has an operating budget of approximately $2 million.
Additional relevant information regarding USA Water Ski & Wake Sports, including its bylaws and financial statements, are available on the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports website, www.usawaterski.org
The Executive Director is accountable to the Board of Directors for management and direction of all USA Water Ski & Wake Sports activities. This position is a combination of leadership, adhering to prudent fiscal controls, a touch of inspiration, solid strategic planning, hands-on work and proven sales and marketing skills. It is meant to be a highly visible position requiring frequent public involvement, volunteer interaction, presentations and cooperative programming within the water ski industry. It is a “roll up your sleeves” role.
PRIMARY DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Membership Growth and Development
- Member Benefits: Solicit input from the board, members, water sports industry leaders, other national governing bodies, and non-member recreational water skiers to identify appropriate membership benefits and turn-key methods in which each of the organization’s 500 clubs can either increase their membership at a local level or increase the number of clubs.
- Membership Solicitation: Identify potential members, establish new member categories and services, solicit members through direct mail, online activities, sponsors, events and maintain and frequently communicate with this membership and potential membership database.
- Membership Marketing: Review the organization’s membership development marketing programs geared to increasing membership and further participation among the recreational water skier. Work with members and volunteers on developing the plans for continued roll out of these programs and set benchmarks for success. Meet with industry leaders to understand and cooperate with their methods of identifying and then creating frequent touch points with the nine million participants in these water sports disciplines to further engage them. Develop additional marketing programs to better identify and engage this group of recreational skiers to find value in USA Water Ski & Wake Sports’ family, services and membership.
Communications, Sponsorship and Sport Development
- Public Relations: Further develop the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports public relations/communications plan to increase the visibility of the organization’s assets of internationally renowned water ski champions, recreational water skiers and the benefits of college scholarships for water skiers. Develop a network of sport industry professionals both in the U.S. and internationally for the exchange of information and generation of interest in local water ski events; develop advertising campaigns capitalizing on electronic, digital and print media; build a stronger social network gaining national recognition and prominence.
- Digital marketing and social media: Oversee organization’s digital marketing, website and social media efforts.
- Liaison with United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOCP): Continue with a solid working relationship with the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee and the International Water Ski and Wakeboard Federation (IWWF).
Sponsorship Development: Develop and organize corporate sponsorship initiatives, special events, and promotions; solicit private foundations, public entities, individuals and corporations for sponsorships, in kind goods/services and cash investments.
- Sport Development: Support national and team coaches in each discipline to plan, implement and evaluate programs as they relate to the high-performance goals of USA Water Ski & Wake Sports. Ensure there are programs at the grassroots level, that are adequately funded, that ensure a successful pipeline of talent for international competitions and to fulfill the objectives of the organization.
- Office: Manage the day-to-day business operations of the National Headquarters operation, ensuring procedures support quality service for the membership and the public. Lead and manage the Headquarters staff to best serve the members and promote our sport. Assign staff members appropriately to support the mission of the organization.
- Financial & Accounting: Prepare and monitor the annual budget and financial controls, oversee proper accounting, develop and maintain membership programs, and ensure appropriate sponsor partnerships and fulfillment.
- Insurance: Work with insurance broker to provide best coverage options for USA-WSWS sanctioned events, membership and assets.
- Legal: Seek out and secure legal advice to ensure our organization and operations conform to all legal standards.
- Compliance: Work with U.S. Center for Safe Sport and USOPC on all compliance. Lead the organization through annual audits.
- Other: Work with the board of directors and assist each sport discipline’s board of directors and volunteers with guidance to accomplish the mission of the overall organization and of the specific sport disciplines. Work closely with boating industry executives and other trade and membership associations affiliated with water skiing. Educate and interact with the board and members on new initiatives which can be used for USA Water Ski & Wake Sports in building greater relationships with even more water sports participants, activities and organizations.
- Education: Candidates must have a bachelor’s degree with preference in business administration, public administration, sports marketing or related field. An advanced degree is a plus.
- Knowledge and Experience:
Functions: The position requires experience in marketing, specifically membership development/affinity programs/customer development, market research, event organization and management, fundraising and sponsorship sales, in a small organization. Hands on experience with bookkeeping/accounting/budgeting, advertising, social and digital media and communications. This individual needs to be comfortable with athlete promotion and development. Candidates should have had previous work experience managing a customer database. An understanding of software programming is a plus.
Association Management: Candidates should have had successful association experience in managing and leading a volunteer board of directors and volunteers, as a whole.
Sports Industry: Candidates should be knowledgeable of the sports and recreational industry, preferably familiar with sports executives in national governing bodies, colleges, and sport manufacturers. Experience participating in a water sports discipline is preferred but not required.
Sport Development: The overseeing of elite level athlete management and development is preferred but not required.
- Other qualifications:
Business Acumen: The Executive Director must be capable of working with diverse groups of people including government officials, business industry leaders, community leaders, amateur and professional sport leaders and participants, and the general public. It requires multiple skill sets, including volunteer board experience, sports administration, extraordinary communication, visionary skills and fiscal management.
Personal: Candidates should have a high level of energy, accessibility, a commitment to the benefits of a healthy outdoor lifestyle, commitment to a heavy workload and schedule, solid management skills and have well-developed public speaking and presentation skills. USA Water Ski & Wake Sports is a small organization in which the Executive Director must be flexible and willing to do whatever is needed. Strong written, oral and electronic communications skills are essential for success.
Proven successes: Candidates will be asked to detail their history of ongoing success and share the steps in their decision-making process. We are seeking a leader capable of bridging multiple interests yet guiding all factions towards increased participation and promotion of water sports activities.
We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital or veteran status, or any other protected class.