I became addicted to skydiving in 1981. Since then, I have been a jumpmaster and instructor for AFF and S/L and an AFF Evaluator. I have written numerous articles, published around the globe, a book on AFF and skydiving software. I have won National Intermediate Championships in 4 and 8-way, participated on World Records and organized at Boogies and Invitational events. I plan to give back even more to our fine sport of skydiving.
The canopy ride is one of the most dangerous parts of a skydive. I will make the time spent under a perfectly good canopy safer. I will establish a resource that represents the collective knowledge of our industry with respect to landing patterns, canopy performance, canopy control and collision avoidance.
I will reduce the shortage of jumpmasters. I will work with the Board, DZOs and membership to enhance certification process by scheduling well-attended courses, expanding course materials and making the learning environment friendlier.
USPA should adopt a question pool for all license and rating exams. Anyone may submit questions via my web site. Questions will be user-tested.
I will pursue publishing the annual financial statement in Parachutist, add fiscal data to USPA's web site and monitor USPA's investments.
If a miracle in voter turnout occurs, I will donate one dollar to the US Team Trust Fund for every vote I receive over 2000.
I will continue to communicate with members via email, web sites (www.MakeItHappen.com and www.Divemaker.com), rec.skydiving and phone. My email address, Aerosoftware@MakeItHappen.com, is always open.
-- Jan Meyer, D7833
Jan's statement on the rec.skydiving newsgroup November 6, 2000.
I will listen with an open and fair mind to any and all concerns you may have about USPA or skydiving in general.
I will be your advocate in areas that I have knowledge in. In other areas, I will direct you to the BOD member that has the specialized knowledge.
I will be direct and honest in communicating with you or anyone else.
In any controversy, I will tell you exactly how I see a situation, how I perceive others to see a situation and work towards a resolution that works for all parties involved.
I will tell you when I don't have or know an answer and then will seek out an answer.
I will be civil and respectful to all persons, regardless of insults directed towards me, my friends or beliefs.
My motivation for wanting to be on the USPA BOD is one of frustration. I feel USPA has not moved fast enough to embrace new technology and leverage it to augment skydiving safety. These are some of the ways I envision the USPA of tomorrow:
- active participation on open forums such as rec.skydiving Many of my long time friends tease me about posting here, esp when someone writes a cheap- shot insult. I see rec.skydiving as a virtually untapped resource of fruitful communication among new and old jumpers. It is the new-age bonfire. At the very least, USPA should be making postings about Service Bulletins, events, proposed rule changes, certification courses etc. I do not know the reasons USPA do not make 'official' announcements here. Maybe it is because rec.skydiving is not an 'official' forum. That is a lame excuse. You do not have to be an 'official' anything to disseminate information here. I posted information I independently gathered from manufacturers about lines snagging on grommets, well before anything came out in print. I was gathering this information after my friend, James Martin, died. I was sitting on lots of information when the second incident happened in Eloy. Almost all of the manufacturers commented that they didn't realize how frequently line snags occurred until they heard the 'compiled' list of incidents from me.
- online resources Many organizations publish feature articles online, as well as in print. USPA should do the same. Usually, members only have access to these articles. USPA should be leading the way in compiling other online resources, similar to the resources listed on my FREE JUMPS page. I would like to see this taken another step forward. I would like to take the individual links or content, with permission of the authors, assembled in a grand master list of information. For instance, we could gather all of the articles written about canopy packing, canopy performance, canopy emergencies, canopy control, canopy traffic, canopy patterns, canopy right-of-way and canopy landing and list, link or provide them all in one central location. This will help disseminate much needed information to many jumpers.
- online course registration and a way for interested jumpers to let USPA HQ know that they are interested in such-n-such course in some area. This would function the same way a 'sign-up' sheet at Quincy does. A jumper posts 'I want a BIC course in Kansas.' Then another jumper says, 'yeah me too.' The courses then get scheduled based upon 'jumpers' demand, not whatever way the courses get set up now. This may reduce the large number of course cancellations we see today.
- interactive 'fun' exams These would be online exams that cover skydiving history, trivia, rules, world records, equipment etc. People LOVE this stuff. It can be used to educate and generate interest in the many skydiving disciplines.
- online 'dry-regulation' type stuff This covers the SIM, Competition Manual, mission statements for USPA Team Fund, Safety Fund and whatever other funds, as well as the annual financial statement, monthly income statement, balance sheets, course materials etc. This is one area USPA has done something in, but the timeliness of publication can be improved.
This is just part of my vision of the future of skydiving. You may think this is 'my agenda'. In a way, it is. I have special expertise and a historical track record in all of these visions I have briefly mentioned. My skill and experience is what I bring to the table. These are some of the areas I know I can MakeItHappen in (whether or not I get elected.)
Of course, I didn't mention how I helped Skydance gain/maintain airport landing access by testifying in Yolo County court house, how I organized loads of all experience levels since I had about 400 jumps, how I mentored 'wanna-be' organizers, how I taught AFF for several years, how I participated on World Record events, invitational events, or how I look out for the new jumpers. I didn't mention that I have a MS degree in physics, an unfinished PhD in aerospace engineering, have several published technical papers on deployable recovery systems (aka parachute systems), wrote a book on AFF, used to publish Sport Parachutist Safety Journal (now online for FREE), maintain a list on skydiver email addresses (for FREE), maintain a list of FREE JUMPS, am compiling a pool of questions for each exam USPA administers and jump nearly every weekend.
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