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IMBA World Summit 2010 Resources - Better Together: IMBA’s Newest Chapter and Grassroots Programs

Post-Summit Resources

Better Together: IMBA’s Newest Chapter and Grassroots Programs


IMBA Regional Directors


Meet IMBA’s regional directors and learn the nuts and bolts of IMBA’s new grassroots support initiatives, including the revamped Chapter Program. These initiatives represent a major evolution in the way clubs can partner with IMBA. You will also learn about Regional Leadership Advisory Councils, TEAM IMBA and what IMBA’s regional directors and field staff can do for you.

Session Notes:

There are currently five regions in the regional director program: Pacific Northwest, Rocky Mountain, Midwest, Southeast, and Mid-Atlantic, with plans to expand the program all across the country. Each region has a local director who enables IMBA-affiliate clubs and organizations by making Trail Care Crew visits available, helping to grow club capacity and base, attending events, and helping to develop, build, and design trails.

The key elements of the regional IMBA programs are as follows:

Regional Leadership Advisory Councils

Regional Leadership Advisory Councils (RLACs) are made up of a group of 10-15 volunteers who work with the regional director to augment local advocacy organizations. Volunteers are members of the bike industry, retailers, and people with knowledge and access to resources, rather than club presidents. RLACs act as the eyes and ears of mountain bike advocacy.

Goal of the RLAC is to build organizational capacity on the club, state, and regional levels: Access to resources, share best practices, fundraising, events, connecting resources with opportunities.

IMBA's Model Trails Program

Rather than just riding existing trails we need to build new, multi-use trails that meet a specific need, and are designed and built in cooperation with the community. IMBA's model trail program includes:

Ride centers: Regional destinations that draw riders to the area. IMBA is moving towards an application process to become a ride centre, with gold, silver and bronze levels.

Gateway trails: Trails that get new riders on bikes—especially kids and families.

Flow trails: Mountain bike specific trails that work against the bike. They include features like berms, pumpable drainage, alternate lines, technical features and jumps.

Bike parks: When integrated into the community, they will be the next generation of soccer fields. We need to build approachable parks in a risk-managed environment that get people on to bikes, and trails.

IMBA’s Chapter Program

The chapter program is IMBA’s newest initiative to create a unified voice for mountain bikers. Rather than compete for members with local clubs, the chapter program will link member databases, thereby increasing both organizations’ bases. To fund the program, membership dues will be split 60/40. In return, IMBA will reduce administrative burdens, and provide chapters with the tools for success. These include:

  • Create business efficiencies: insurance, co-branded product.
  • Joint membership: membership merge between IMBA and clubs, co branding on merchandise, fulfillment and customer service.
  • Chapters will have access to IMBA’s data management via CiviCRM. This will allow contact management, mass emails, event registration, reports, etc.
  • Organizational support: sample bylaws, policy manual – how to manage volunteers, tax filing assistance, accounting assistance, preference in grant making and support, IMBA staff support.

Becoming an IMBA Chapter

If you’re interested in becoming a chapter, talk to your regional director to see if your club qualifies. Once you complete an initial application and get board approval, you will be asked to fill out a final application. For more information send a message to info [at] imba [dot] com (info [at] imba [dot] com.)

IMBA's chapter program is supported in large part by a generous grant from the SRAM Cycling Fund.

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