As volunteer leaders for NIRSA, we are thankful for all members. Our profession continues to have a profound impact on student success in large part because we engage as a professional association to promote best practices, collaborate through networking, and practice lifelong learning. In the more than 70 years of the Association’s existence, we have always enjoyed a highly engaged membership that cares deeply about the profession. That tradition and culture continues today.

The Board of Directors recently engaged members to gather feedback about two proposed Bylaws amendments under consideration: one that establishes a new dues parameter and another that expands the Assembly scope of discussion beyond ‘national’ (United States).

We are pleased to share that over 500 members actively engaged in learning about the proposals through regional conference presentations, some state workshops, a webinar, and an online feedback form. At the Association’s recent Board meetings in San Antonio, we reviewed member feedback with the help of the Bylaws Committee before finalizing the proposed bylaws amendments to be presented for a vote by eligible members in January of 2020.

After carefully reviewing all feedback, the NIRSA Board is proposing two amendments to NIRSA Bylaws:

  • Establish 0-3% as the range of dues increases within Board authority. Annual increases exceeding 3% would require approval by Members.
  • Delete references to ‘national’ in the description of the Assembly.

Why are we proposing these updates?

The update to the dues section of NIRSA Bylaws will allow the NIRSA Board to focus more on what matters to members—affordable programs, responsive leadership, and meaningful advocacy for the profession. An established range for annual dues increases will enable the NIRSA Board, NIRSA Finance Committee, and NIRSA HQ staff to develop multi-year budgets that allow for better long-term planning.

We believe the update to the Assembly description is consistent with NIRSA’s role in supporting campus recreation professionals in Canada and emphasizes the Assembly’s role to focus on the profession.

For additional information on the proposed amendments, please read the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) and review the proposed language on the NIRSA website. We also encourage members who are eligible to vote on bylaws amendments to reach out to any member of the Board with questions.

Read the FAQs

Elections launch January 16

Ballots will be sent by email to all members who are eligible to vote on January 16, 2020; members will have until January 29 to complete their ballots.

We want to sincerely thank the Bylaws Committee, Audit & Finance Committee, and Member Network for their robust efforts to design a thoughtful proposal and communication plan that engaged over 500 members and ensures the financial health of NIRSA. We also want to thank all NIRSA members who engaged in learning and providing feedback about the proposals.

Learn about the NIRSA Board of Directors here.

Chris Denison, Ed.D is currently the Recreation Services Director at the University of Northern Iowa and Chair of the 2019-2020 NIRSA Member Network. You can email him at