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Some New NRA Officers

Here’s what we know from today’s Board meeting:

  • Carolyn Medows is NRA President
  • Charles Cotton, 1st Vice
  • Willes Lee, 2nd Vice.
  • Wayne is re-elected as EVP.
  • John Frazer is re-elected Secretary and General Counsel.
  • Craig Spray remains treasurer.
  • Chris Cox remains head of ILA.
  • Joe DeBergalis is head of General Operations.

I don’t know for sure if Ack-Mac is out, but the Board is still in Executive Session.

Just an aside, I don’t know what the terms of the contracts are, obviously, but while I think NRATV has a number of personalities that ought to be shit canned, and the rest refocused on gun rights, I wouldn’t throw out everything. I might be biased, but I’ve always liked Cam Edward’s show. While I’m no big fan of the Angry Dana strategy, I think it helps to have a woman spokesperson for NRA, and even Angry Dana could be an asset if she could be coached to be less angry and focused on NRA’s mission. So I would say if contracts permit, bring some of those assets in-house and turn them into what they should have been. But keep real metrics. Push what works and throw out what doesn’t work.

29 Responses to “Some New NRA Officers”

  1. Countertop says:

    I actually have no problem with Dana or Cam being consultants to the organization. But NRA branded programs (NRATV, etc) whether run by outside groups or consultants, need to be the property of the NRA. Period. And there needs to be close and effective management of the resources being spent.

    I also have no problem with either Chris or Wayne’s salaries. Sorry, but they are high profile and effective leaders of a major organization. Their salaries pale in comparison to what they could make elsewhere in DC.

    And, salaries should be set based upon what the market demands. If someone is wiling to be a full time instructor at the NRA for 14 years earning $28k, why should the NRA pay any more than that?

    Frankly, I can’t imagine how someone could live in Northern Virginia on that salary (which is why Mr. Lander had 3 other jobs) but as long as competent individuals are taking those kinds of jobs, why should the NRA be looking to spend more (or alternatively, pay the organizations leadership less and really limit its ability to get stuff that matters done).

    • Sebastian says:

      My field might bias me, but in my field you get what you pay for. And it’s better to spend the money to hire good people, give them an environment where they can succeed, and work hard to retain them, than paying bargain basement prices for shit talent who will burn you.

      • Countertop says:

        I fully agree, which is why I have no problem with Chris or Wayne’s salary. It also makes me question someone who willingly worked at the NRA for 14 years and is now complaining about how much they were paid. Like I said, I can’t imagine surviving here on $28k a year, let alone staying in that position for 14 years.

        I know lots of people who work/ed at the NRA. Most eventually move on to other jobs and see it as a great opportunity to get experience. Its sort of like working at the Chamber of Commerce. The value for the employee – at least in the public policy side – comes from the experience you get and the relationships you foster, which will be repaid down the line in other jobs.

        Frankly, I don’t know what a competitive marketplace salary for a firearms instructor is. Especially if its a full time position. I’d love for it to be super high. But unless your doing specialized police of military work, I can’t imagine it is. Yet, Mr. Lander’s letter seems to treat it as if it were an essential part of the NRA’s core mission deserving of a far higher salary than the marketplace would suggest.

        • Dannytheman says:

          I know Andy. He and his wife worked at NRA together! So they had two pays from there. He also worked weekends training others in multiple disciplines.
          I want to note that you fail to understand the passion in some individuals. I can’t speak for Andy, but he was willing to sacrifice a lot for the cause.
          E&T went through the Carry Guard debacle and frustration caught up.

      • 234 says:

        If Wayne was a good leader, he would be worth the money.

        The problem is, Wayne appears to be doing a bad job.

  2. BC says:

    Personally I think Cam and Colion Noir are genuine treasures, while Dana should be shot out of a giant circus cannon into the sun.

  3. dwb says:

    NRA TV needs to be managed in a way to maximize eyeballs. They are probably better off sponsoring DemoRanch, hickok454 and other channels so people like Matt Carriker dont have to shill with Shaving Club ads. They should be reaching out to actual content providers. NRA sucks at providing content. Or, AckMack did anyway.

  4. I’m sure Carolyn Meadows is a wonderful person. I know she is a self-described gun totin’ conservative lady from the South. If her comments at the Meeting of the Members was any indication, she just loves that nice young Wayne LaPierre.

    She is also, I understand, in her 80s and has an ill husband.

    Could they have picked anyone less likely to be anything more than a figurehead?

  5. Charlie Foxtrot says:

    The NRA Board of Directors dug the NRA’s grave today. The vote for Wayne LaPierre was unanimous and unopposed. The politburo has spoken. NRA members asked for accountability and transparency, and got a Soviet style response instead. I guess none of the open letters to the NRA Board of Directors mattered.

    Good luck with fixing the NRA’s finances with this type of PR. While cutting Ack-Mac would be a rather rational response, this also leaves the NRA without a propaganda machinery. I guess the last hope now is the ethics committee, where a lot of things were referred to and will eventually die.

    By the way, Dana Loesch already has a position within the NRA (in addition to the contract with Ack-Mac). You guys are really focusing on the wrong things here.

    These are worth reading if you actually care:
    Open Letters (Plural) to the 2019 NRA Board of Directors
    https://www.ammoland.com/2019/04/open-letter-to-the-2019-nra-board-of-directors

    • Sebastian says:

      I linked to that earlier.

      • Charlie Foxtrot says:

        It seems only a few read the open letters and even less understood them, hence I posted them again.

        • dwb says:

          People read them. That is not the issue. My view is that a lot of people thought Ack-Mack and allies were trying to destroy the NRA from the inside. Airing dirty laundry to the NYT is in many ways as bad or worse than being anti-gun, its arming the enemies. NRA needs to present a united front and show strength at a time when Bloomberg enemies are seeking to exploit wedge issue to divide the gun rights lobby. I think WLP should have gone years ago and NRA strategy needs major reform. Still, I would have voted to excise Ack-mack, and allies who were talking to the NYT, excise like the cancer it is, then I would have brokered a deal to support WLP provided there was a reform (and succession) plan, and I would have presented a united front. And no part of the latter would be public because again, there is no upside to airing dirty laundry to the anti-gun media gleefully on NRA death watch. Proof of reform will not be in a vote or change of figurehead leadership, it will be demonstrated in actions. we shall see.

          • Charlie Foxtrot says:

            The NRA is dividing the community just fine on its own and doesn’t need any help from Bloomberg with that. Your argument for supporting secrecy and inside dealing and using outside threats to hide betrayal and outright corruption is exactly what is wrong about the NRA. It seems you have NOT read them, or you simply don’t care.

            I am a member of the USCCA and a Life Member of the NRA. Please explain to me how I can continue to support the NRA, given what the NRA has done to harm the USCCA’s business?

            I am also one of those NRA members that fell victim to one of the NRA’s state-level scams. When the NRA Annual Meeting was in Nashville, the Tennessee legislature enacted a Guns In Parks bill, preempting local bans in parks. The City of Knoxville violated this law and enacted a ban for Chilhowee Park. The NRA sued, did a lot of fund raising on the lawsuit, did a lot of nothing in the courts, and then settled by allowing the City of Knoxville to continue to violate that law. Shortly thereafter, the law was rewritten with the help of the NRA to make that violation lawful. Now, you need a lawyer to understand when you can carry a gun in a local park in Tennessee. The NRA Annual Meeting will be in Nashville again next year and you can find out yourself how quickly you can get arrested and charged in that liberal city, thanks to the NRA. Given this betrayal, please explain to me how I can continue to support the NRA?

            Note that I haven’t even mentioned bump stocks and red flag laws.

            The NRA Carry Guard insurance was a legal and financial disaster. I don’t think that anyone will be denying this now, after all the information came out about it that the NRA leadership wanted to hide from its members.

            The NRA Carry Guard training destroyed the NRA’s Training Division. I don’t think that anyone will be denying this now, after all the information came out about it that the NRA leadership wanted to hide from its members.

            I am not even going to talk about the NRA’s state of finances and the fact that membership dues and donations were wasted and now have to make up the debt the NRA is in.

            There are a lot more problems that I could talk about that the NRA leadership wants to hide from its members. There is zero transparency and no accountability. The trend of declining donations and membership dues will continue. The NRA is dying. Ignoring the problem doesn’t get it fixed. Pointing at Bloomberg and telling members to shut up, which seems to be the NRA’s strategy, makes it actually worse.

            There won’t be any reforms! Why should Wayne LaPierre do anything that harms his ongoing sweet deal. He is still getting his millions and the Board is a bunch of yes men/women.

            • dwb says:

              Lawsuits are always an expensive gamble. SAF has a comparative advantage in this over the NRA, a very good track record, but has still lost a fair share. Anyway, the anti-gun world has much bigger problems than the City of Knoxville, like the City of New York or Baltimore.

              I also dont think that the NRA (or any (.org or .com) ) should be in the business of “protecting” other businesses or revenue streams, even if those streams are internal. Revenue streams are darwinian – new better ones crop up, sometimes cannibalizing the old. Healthy competition, even among internal businesses, is what leads to better products and makes the world a better place.

              I personally think that NRA Carry guard is an inferior product, which is why I have US Law Shield. I am not sure Carry Guard was a “disaster” – there are several organizations in this space like US Law Shield, USCAA, and others, all competing for my $$. NRA felt compelled to compete for $, the alternative was stay out of the market and completely lose $ – which is worse. NRA carry guard was poorly executed and its an inferior product, but trial-and-error is a pretty typical way new ventures figure out what the market wants. Nobody knows what customers really want until they sign up. Most new ventures lose money for a while until the business model matures (see also: Amazon and Tesla). if NRA Carry guard improves their product, I will switch. That is also how the market operates.

              • Charlie Foxtrot says:

                The NRA spends more on Wayne LaPierre’s salary than on 2A lawsuits. It’s a scam! The boogeyman (Bloomberg) is always more important than real-world problems (City of Knoxville), because it’s a scam! They certainly can make more money with the boogeyman.

                The NRA Carry Guard Insurance was a net LOSS for the NRA. It apparently did cost them millions of Dollars. It was also bogus in terms of an insurance.

                The USCCA was kicked out of the 2017 NRA Annual Meeting TWO WEEKS before the meeting, because it competed with the new NRA Carry Guard Insurance. The USCCA founders are NRA members, by the way. The NRA bylaws nowhere mention an insurance business.

                Duane Liptak (Magpul and NRA Board Member) needs to have both fingers crossed that Wayne LaPierre doesn’t decide one day that that the NRA is getting into the plastic magazine business.

                The NRA is supposed to be a nonprofit organization, yet everything in the NRA is about making profit and finding ways to put it into the pockets of its cronies. Well, that’s why they are now getting investigated.

  6. rd says:

    My thoughts. This was years in the making. The NRA Executives let themselves willingly be captured and swindled(?) by the insiders of Ack-Mack. The much vaunted 76 member NRA board wasn’t capable of; or didn’t exercise the oversight a real corporate boardroom should. This has happened before to many businesses and charities. Many of them didn’t survive.

    I hope the NRA learns and creates the corporate governance mechanisms to fix the problems. They need real audit and oversight groups. Independent and autonomous groups. Several different oversight groups. Maybe you shouldn’t put celebrities and over the hill activists on the board? Or balance them by making sure you have a real working core of a dozen real independent board members? Put the celebrities on no work, all glory board committees like judging the most 2A sandwich and pies? The real board members will need to work really, really hard, especially in the next thirty months. Maybe the NRA will survive if they are smart, fast, and RUTHLESS. Because Bloomberg, Cuomo and the Left are ruthless, and they have a head start.

    I can see not wanting a professional board. The average “Corporate Executive” would sell out to Bloomberg in two seconds flat. They would betray the NRA just like Tillerson did the BSA. (And another dozen similar betrayals). The average corporate executive is more interested in acceptance by their colleagues than any Second Amendment. You would have a board supporting a semi-automatic ban just to be accepted to the right dinners and cocktail parties.

    If they survive, Wayne and the others should move aside over the next few years to Executive Emeritus positions and let the youngsters get experience.

    • Charlie Foxtrot says:

      Keep dreaming about changes in the NRA. As proven today, they will be mostly cosmetic. Also, please inform yourself about the structure of nonprofit organizations as governed by laws. The Board is supposed to provide independent oversight, yet it is stacked with LaPierre loyalists that retroactively sign off on everything. Also, we have already been betrayed, so I am not sure what you are talking about.

      For comparison, the AARP is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit with four times the annual revenue ($1.6B) of the NRA. It has 12 members on its Board of Directors. The average size of a nonprofit Board of Directors is 9. The NRA’s Board of Directors size (76) is insane and that is on purpose!

      • Erl says:

        You hit it on the head there with just how unmanagable the board size of the NRA Board of Directors is. Instead of 76 it should be about a dozen at most.

  7. rd says:

    We need the NRA. If it doesn’t survive, the politicians will believe gun rights are a loser proposition and abandon us faster than the French Army in June 1940. They will “See Which Way the Wind Is Blowing,” and sell out to Bloomberg in nothing flat. Bloomberg has billions. We only have the fear of our united vote power, and spokespeople like the NRA SAF and the like. We need the NRA. IF it falls, politicians will be fleeing like the Iraqi Army at Mosul. A bumpstock ban is a bump in the road compared to what the Anti-Gunners really want.

    We may regroup, realign, punish the traitors, and throw the bums out, but what happens in the meantime? AWB Bans? Universal Background Checks? Semi Auto Bans? Firearm Registration?

    We need the NRA to stay strong and survive.

    • Charlie Foxtrot says:

      Well, this was the reason for “throwing the bums” out now. We failed!

      Remember, the money you give to the NRA today will primarily be used to recover its debt, cover NRA employee pensions and retirement liabilities (e.g., LaPierre’s golden parachute), cover lavish salaries, pay lawyers, pay the inevitable settlement with Ack-Mac, and pay potential fines to New York State.

      Maybe, just maybe, the American gun owner will realize that they actually have to get off their asses, instead of just delegating the fight to an organization that picks their pockets for personal enrichment. I would like to see a 2A rally during the 2020 election cycle with more than 100,000 gun owners. Heck, 80,000 just visited Indy this weekend to see the President and to fondle guns on the exhibition floor.

  8. Stephen says:

    I would love to believe that they bought unanimity with a compromise commitment for reform – e.g. we’ll vote them in with agreement that this will be last term, etc. Those things happen, but we’ll see how well this prediction ages. I’m cynical of it myself, but it’s the only hope I can hold onto at this point.

    • Richard says:

      Let’s hope. We probably need to follow a longer version of the 72 hour rule here. The key things to watch would be what happens to AckMac, if there is any action on at least looking into the allegations of self-dealing etc, and getting the corporate charter out of New York. The second of these will be the hardest to track from the outside. It will not be obvious whether anything is going on until some time passes. Key question is how much of the alleged inappropriate activity is AckMac related and how much is NRA Central. I don’t know and I am not sure anyone outside knows either. AckMac action will probably be obvious.

      • Stephen says:

        There’s a plausible theory out there that, since the AckMac suit only goes back two years within context of a problem that has lasted decades, the suit is a token gesture to provide a narrative of BoD upholding fiduciary duty in the face of NY AG, but that nothing will change with PR firm. Or was ever intended to change.
        Agree on wait and see, it’s all speculation at this point.

    • Charlie Foxtrot says:

      FYI: The NRA board’s ethics committee supposedly reported they had met on Sunday to discuss three cases referred to them. Those cases could result in sanctions against the accused or even expulsion. However, the names of the accused and the accusations weren’t made public. The accused can either choose to have a hearing before the hearing committee or go straight to the board. The ethics committee and the audit committee were supposedly referred the no confidence in Lapierre/other officers resolution from the members meeting yesterday.

      The problem I see here is the lack of transparency and accountability. This looks more to me like things were referred to committees, so that they can be swept under the rug. The unanimous and unopposed vote is really, really bad PR for the NRA Board of Directors, given all what happened. It pretty much gives the middle finger to concerned NRA members.

  9. 6.5-06 says:

    Shuffling deck chairs on the Titanic comes to mind.

  10. Kermit says:

    Cotton is a good-ol-boy all-compromise-Republican type. He was instrumental in getting Texas’ CHL program passed and off the ground, yes, but I wound up getting banned from his forum years ago for not sitting down and shutting up when the push to expand into open carry was getting going. His argument was that we should be happy with what we have, and entrench without expansion, because expanding was dangerous and we could lose it all. He was a leader once and all, but he became a scared little lamb instead of a leading sheepdog like once was. And he perma-banned me for calling him in it in private messages.
    I trust Wayne LaPierre more to know which battles are winnable and which aren’t, and I don’t trust LaPierre; the only thing I trust Cotton to do is show his belly.
    If he’s 1st VP now, I can only hope he’s rediscovered the spine he once had.

  11. David says:

    Definitely Cam is an asset (and I’m biased too). I like the way his show was refocused on gun issues. Cutting it to 30 minutes probably helped with that and the fact it is only a 1/2 hour leaves you wanting more. I think Dana can be an asset too if she would smile a little more. Bring Cam and Dana in house, keep the other programming like Love at First Shot that are sponsored by manufacturers and targeted at first time shooters, and keep the ability to watch the episodes of programming that originally ran on Outdoor Channel and NRATV would be an asset too.

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