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Life in the Motor Cities Gruppe

PORSCHE 356 REGISTRY ELECTIONS. Our Own Vic Skirmants is Running for Election.

November 6, 2020
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The 356 Registry is holding their Trustee Election this fall and it is a very important one. The Motor Cities Gruppe endorses Vic Skirmants, Cliff Murray and George Bryan. Please Read their Candidate Statements below and look for your electronic ballot in your email on November 15th.

Please Note: You must have a current email address on file with the 356 Registry in order to receive the electronic ballot. Their will be no ballets provided in the Registry magazine, only electronic ballots or paper ballots will be used. To obtain a paper ballot, instructions are at the bottom.


Vic Skirmants 810-688-2059  skirmants@hughes.net

I am running once again for trustee of the 356 Registry. When I stepped down, some stated that I had served too long. As a co-founder of the Registry in 1974, I thought being a part of its governing body made sense to maintain a historical reference. Why were certain decisions made and why did the trustees determine that they were necessary? What sounded good then but did not work out in practice today?

I left because I thought new people could bring a different perspective to how the Registry operates. I now see that was not a great idea. Losing sight of history, and letting personal grievances cloud one’s judgement is not for the good of the Registry.

New rules need to be applied to make the Registry Talk forum fair to all participants. I have received some good suggestions for the upcoming revisions for the website. We must have more information before spending $100,000 for a new website before any decisions are made. When I was a trustee there was a long-standing policy in place: the bank balance always had to be maintained to fulfill all obligations to the members’ prepaid subscriptions. I also believe we need to make decisions on spending money that benefits a majority of members. Do we really know how many members use the Registry website on a daily basis, or is this a benefit for 20 percent?

I would like to see the Registry work harder to solicit new members and maintain renewals by a presence at major Porsche events. Yes, it does cost some money, but we have missed all three Rennsport events at Laguna Seca, where there were over 80,000 Porsche spectators plus entrants and crew members in attendance at the 2018 event. Building the membership first requires everyone to renew! We must consider methods to make renewing on time easier.

At one time in the past there was a ruling that you could not become a trustee until you had put on a Holiday. Today there is not a single trustee listed that has put on a Holiday. Remember, they make the rules that Holiday chairmen must fulfill. It is a two-year process to pull off a successful Holiday, and a big financial risk to the Holiday chairman, and I would like to see the trustees pull together to put on a great venue.

I will appreciate your vote of confidence to help build the Registry back to a fair and equitable CAR club that we can all enjoy together.


Cliff Murray, 610-246-2438  cmaxcliff@gmail.com

I have been a Porsche 356 fanatic since 1959 when my father gave me my first ride in our new 356. I was seven. There were two more 356s, a 912, and his last Porsche, a 1967 911 S. He moved on from Porsches, but I owned two 356s that I restored and drove until I bought my dad’s 911 S in 1974. I always wanted to have another 356, and in 1994 I stumbled across a 1957 Speedster resting in a barn for 30 years. That is when I joined the Registry, and by 2003 I was attending Holidays and other events in the Speedster. I have added a few others since and enjoy racing my 1960 Devin D Porsche against my friend Vic Skirmants.

Article 2 of the Registry Bylaws explains the purpose of the club: “B. The enjoyment and sharing of goodwill and fellowship engendered by owning a Porsche automobile manufactured between 1948 and 1965 and engaging in social or other events as may be agreeable to the membership. C. The preservation of the highest standards of operation and performance of the marque by sharing and exchanging technical and mechanical information concerning these 1948–1965 Porsche cars.” This is the most important responsibility of our trustees. Over the passage of time the methods required to accomplish these goals must change to keep pace with an ever-changing world around us. I have long felt that our well-meaning trustees have fallen behind at keeping pace.

The Registry’s website and forum are a critical tool to attract more new younger members who expect interactive websites that are filled with easily searchable technical and social information. Without a top-notch internet presence our club will continue to experience declining membership. We are now at 6,500 members, down from a high of 8,000 not long ago. Our incumbent trustees have failed to recognize the need for improvements to our online presence and we are slowly dying because of this failure. I have long been a regular poster on Talk and try my best to help with 356 technical matters. I also own a business that has had a website for over 20 years and I believe we need professionals, hopefully with club website experience, for our project.

Events are the most fun way to enjoy your 356 and the club should stay strongly focused on Holidays and smaller events alike. How the club should promote and support events should be looked at again because we still don’t have as many as I would like.

Our magazine is fantastic. We need that traditional method of communication to keep our traditional members informed and engaged. Many people who do a lot of reading online also like the paper magazine. I do.

If elected trustee I pledge to report on all trustee activity and decisions. Nothing should be secret. I will answer member questions. No hiding. We should also resume open meetings at Registry events and have courteous communication with the members.


George Bryan, 706-495-7704  georgembryan42@gmail.com

I appreciate the opportunity to introduce my 356 associations and myself and to offer a few points I believe are important for the club. I retired from the US Army as a Colonel. I founded Klasse 356; reproduced 356 parts; was awarded the coveted Outlaw badge by Gary Emory for an A coupe I built; raced a 356 in SCCA E Production; raised about $20,000 for the Registry cancer fund by hosting several Bull Sessions; am a recipient of the Registry Spark Plug Award; am a member of the 356 Southern Owners Group and the Florida Owners Group 356 clubs; served as Registry classifieds moderator for two years; built engines and restored cars that have won class and best of show at past Holidays, driving them as far as Sedona, AZ, and Park City, UT, and back to Georgia; and am co-founder of the Helen, GA, 356 Mountain Party, serving as co-chair or chair of these informal Holiday equivalents for all five events.

Continuity and growth for the Porsche 356 Registry are primary trustee responsibilities, but it shouldn’t be top-driven. Members need to step up to help out, trustees need to encourage their participation, be communicative, and continually solicit member input. I desire to see club membership expand and provide opportunities for better trustee/member dialogue, car talk, and camaraderie. I will support efforts that members enjoy that add value to their 356 knowledge base and club social pursuits. I pledge to foster a positive exchange of ideas, information, and knowledge between members and trustees, especially online.

I think trustee votes should be recorded, including how each trustee voted, and posted in print and online for members to read, providing more transparency to the membership. I participated in the recent member-proposed bylaws amendment, which specifies duration of trustee positions and tenure. This provides more balance for and outreach to all qualified members to run in future elections, thus, bringing in new ideas and fresh eyes keeping us always moving forward in changing times.

We should include summaries of the online 356 Registry Business Forum and top five 356 Car Talk discussions in both the club magazine and monthly email communication; highlighting the main online topics, particularly concerning policy and key items addressed by members. This would better integrate online communications with the magazine. Both important venues should be separate but integrated, current, and continually improved.

Online participants are, to me, the most engaged club members we seem to have. Integrating topics from online into printed publications provides a more inclusive sharing of current information with the members who are not active participants on the forum. Hopefully, sharing online highlights in the magazine will stimulate more members to participate in club activities online, which is the direction we need to be moving for the future.

The best way for us to encourage new members to share our passion for 356s is to be the best at what we do. I’m all in for that.

Thanks.


Electronic Voting, Nov 15 – Dec 1.

Voting will again be offered through a secure electronic service. As last year, all members with an email address on file with the club will receive an email invitation to vote online at a secure site through Electionrunner.com. This invitation will be sent out on November 15th. Online voting will be open from that date until December 1st; you must vote within those two weeks of receiving the email invitation. (Tracking of voting last year showed that the vast majority voted within a day or two of the email invitation.) This schedule should allow every member to have received their magazine and read the candidates’ statements (which will also be posted online at the website).

Printed Mail Ballots, due by Dec 15.

No ballots are included with this magazine. Members without email access or who prefer to mail a ballot can request an original paper ballot by writing or by calling the membership office. We will mail one to you to be filled out and returned to our accounting firm by December 15th. Only original ballots properly filled out will be valid.

If you want a paper ballot to mail: Email to

membership@porsche356registry.org

Call 651-433-0165.

Write to request:

Box 356, Stillwater, MN 55082 (USA only).

To read all of the candidates statements, please click HERE

Again, look for the email from the Registry on November 15th and please consider the above candidates for election to the Registry Board of Trustees.



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