Chico AquaJets Organizational Summary

The Chico Area Swim Association is a nonprofit organization that is governed by a volunteer board of directors made up of parents.  Board and head coach responsibilities from USA Swimming:

Responsibilities of the Board:

  • Care - exercise reasonable care in decisions as a steward of the organization.
  • Loyalty - must act in the best interest of the organization.
  • Obedience -be faithful to the organization’s mission and vision. Not permitted to act inconsistently with organization’s central goals (vision).

Specifically, board members:

·        Determine the club's mission (purpose) and vision (how they will realize the mission).

·        Select the head swim coach.

·        Support the head coach and review performance.

·        Ensure effective club planning.

·        Ensure adequate resources.

·        Manage resources effectively.

·        Determine, monitor, and strengthen the club's programs and services.

·        Enhance the club's public standing.

·        Ensure legal and ethical integrity and maintain accountability.

·        Recruit and orient new board members and assess board performance.


Responsibilities of the Head Coach:

  • Directs the efforts of swimmers in pursuit of goals.
  • Manages the daily business affairs and training.
  • Guides the long-term development of the team.
  • Responds to the challenges of a goal oriented program.
  • Supervises and evaluates assistant coaches.


Organizational Process

The work of the Board of Directors is driven by the following process (with detailed information relative to each process step detailed further in this organizational summary):

  • Review club mission and vision. Determine areas of need.
  • To address areas of need, develop strategic areas of emphasis for planning.
  • Ratify budget.
  • Implement a shared leadership structure by organizing committees to address the strategic areas of emphasis for planning.
  • Committees, directed by board members, develop goals and objectives to form the 2010 strategic plan.
  • Board meeting structure and board calendar are adopted to address the areas of strategic emphasis.
  • Evaluate efforts to realize the team mission and vision.


USA Swimming’s Club Excellence Program provides an excellent framework and strategy of implementation for club governance and will be embraced to further the work of board relative to carrying out our organizational process.  More information on the Club Excellence Program can be obtained via the following web address:

Mission = Purpose

The club mission developed in November of 2009 continues to be the focus for 2015 (will be revisited in Jan 2019:


Continuing a tradition of excellence in the sport of swimming … learn, compete, and enjoy!

Vision = How We Will Realize Our Mission

Board members and coaching staff used a variety of information to reflect on the work of the past year and calibrate the club vision (how we believe we will accomplish our mission), detailed below relative essential core content areas:

Instruction must include:

  • Continue to provide a variety of professional, quality, consistent instruction at all levels
  • Create a full and high quality continuum of instruction from SummerJets all the way through to Masters
  • Communicate the instructional philosophy clearly to all constituent groups
  • Communicate the process available for instructional feedback clearly to parents
  • Scaled instruction that focuses on fundamentals and matches individual skill levels

Competition must include:

  • Foster competitive opportunities and participation for new and seasonal swimmers to encourage deeper participation in the sport
  • Opportunities for progress monitoring relative to competition clearly communicated and made available to swimmers and parents
  • Continue to provide high quality feedback to swimmers relative to their results in competition
  • Continue to provide and support a variety of competitive opportunities for all swimmers, from dual meets, to invites, to high profile competitive meets

Environment/Team Identity must include:

  • Develop and encourage team cohesiveness through all groups, from SummerJets through to Masters
  • We are a community-based organization
  • Foster strong team identity efforts and ‘out of water’ opportunities for swimmers and their families
  • Specifically address senior ‘team-ship’/cohesion

Partnerships must include:

  • Develop and implement the Team Sponsorship Program
  • Alumni connection (CAJ Alumni Guild)
  • Create partnerships with community organizations that have similar values and objectives relative to serving kids and their families
  • Leverage USA Swimming association to guide, develop, and validate our efforts

Facilities provided that have the following characteristics:

  • Continue efforts for investigation/analysis
  • Continue to foster partnerships for future initiatives
  • Complete demographic study across a variety of teams and their facilities to use for a needs analysis inform future facilities planning
  • Form key community partnerships to promote collaborative efforts with respect to facilities (CARD, Enloe, Learn-to-Swim, etc)

Evaluation must include:

  • Cultivate a variety of data, not just a single source, to quantify the effectiveness of our efforts (demographic data over time, outcome of competition, parent questionnaire feedback, etc) to be used in continuous as well as annual evaluation
  • Use financial projections when planning events
  • Put formal business practices in place to facilitate effective record keeping and information management to be used in evaluation
  • Evaluate the dues structure annually
  • Conduct an annual review of the by-laws

Professional Learning must include:

  • Coaches and board members seeking out continued learning relative to latest research in best practices
  • Sponsor opportunities solicited for coaches to attend the professional growth opportunities that they see as essential to quality instruction
  • Opportunities for parent education (officials, timing, new parent orientation, etc)
  • Provide head coach with the opportunity to administer the professional learning budget

Leadership defined by the following characteristics:

  • Embrace shared leadership at all levels.  Provide all parents with the opportunity to engage the work of the team in a leadership role – decrease task orientation
  • Reduce ‘turn and burn’ when engaging parents in the work of the team
  • Develop leadership for SummerJets and Masters programs
  • Solicit thought leaders for best practices (USA Swimming)
  • Foster leadership among swimmers by encouraging community service opportunities
  • Engage senior swimmers as leaders for our younger swimmers

Communication includes:

  • Regular and comprehensive communication from coaches and board
  • Provide additional opportunities for new swimmer/family orientation to team, meets, etc.
  • Communicate the mission and vision, strategic areas of emphasis for planning, the plan, and leadership structure to all members
  • Establish and encourage effective lines of communication between parents and the coaching staff as well as the board
  • The website is used to communicate key information
  • Team policies are clearly communicated to members
  • Communicate a clear calendar of events
  • Improve PR through press, local news, etc.
  • Establish/develop better partnerships within our community

Strategic Areas of Emphasis for 2011 Planning (Continued in 2015 - will be revisited in 2019)

Board of Directors Areas of Emphasis for 2011 - 2015 Planning

The vision was reviewed to determine areas of strong performance versus areas of need.  From the areas of need, the following general strategic areas of emphasis for 2011 planning were generated:

1.  Embrace shared leadership and foster/cultivate leadership among membership.  
Providing opportunities for folks to provide leadership for the team will help create more of a sense of ownership and buy-in into what we are doing on behalf of the team.  This involves avoiding just giving out to-do lists but rather engaging parents to find out what they would like to do for the team and letting them lead it.  

2.  Communicate policies, procedures, and work of the board and team more effectively.
Communication is the key to engaging and expanding our work as a board and a team.

3.  Continue to use information that is available to us (budget, feedback, etc) and cultivate new avenues of information (5 year plan, etc) to provide focus for our efforts and replace working off of hunch/hypothesis with fact.

We need to make sure that our efforts are focused and provide the kind of results that will validate our efforts. 

4.  Aggressively look for opportunities to improve and change our approach and implementation of Board work so we can realize improved results for the team.

We should always be looking at our work and looking for opportunities to improve.  


Coaching/Instruction Goals and Objectives for 2015 Planning

While considering the organizational mission and vision, salaried coaching staff developed their own goals and objectives for 2010:

GOAL: Maintain quality coaching staff for all swim groups.

  • Continue to work with masters coaches to create a cohesive program.
  • Develop strong leadership for the summer swim program at PV Pool.
  • Continue on-going coach educational opportunities.  

GOAL:  Improve coach/parent communication with families across all swim groups.

  • Hold seasonal parent educational/communication meetings with each swim group.
  • Hold seasonal new parent educational meetings.
  • Encourage communication between parents and coaches.

GOAL: Maintain number of swimmers in the water each month of the year.

  • Compare to historic numbers.
  • Follow up with families leaving the program.

GOAL: Continue to encourage swimmers of all levels to participate in meets.

  • Provide team meets for swimmers of all ability levels.  (duals, invitationals, qualifying, national)
  • Go to affordable meet locations.
  • Provide team travel opportunities.

GOAL: Maintain and increase the number of male swimmers

  • Provide competitive opportunities not only in meets but in practice and social activities.
  • Provide seasonal varsity group for high school level seasonal swimmers.
  • Encourage meet participation.
  • Put fun into every practice and event.
  • Develop strong coach/swimmer bonds with the male swimmers.
  • Win NVAL's.

2015 Board Committees & Leadership Structure

To address the strategic areas of emphasis developed as a result of examining our team vision, the Board has developed the following committees:

  • Parent/Family Communication
  • Fundraising
  • Team Sponsorship
  • Facilities
  • Meet Director
  • Operations

Committee directors and members are responsible for the following:

  • Developing objectives and actions for the strategic plan to achieve committee goal(s) that are based on realizing the club vision.
  • Researching and recommending appropriate course of action.
  • Carrying out the work of the committee.
  • Providing the board with regular progress and ‘next steps’ reports.
  • Recruiting additional assistance as needed (parents, community members, others not on the board may be recruited to contribute to the work of committees).


2015 Board Meeting Structure Summary

The following general agenda structure has been developed to expedite the work of the Board of Directors:

·        Secretary: Approval of Minutes from Previous Meeting

·        President’s Report

·        Coach’s Report

·        Treasurer’s Report

·        Committee Reports

o   Fundraising

o   Facilities

o   Parent Outreach/Communication

o   Team Sponsorships

o   Meet Director

o   Operations

·        Additional Business

The following norms will be observed during meetings and while representing or otherwise conducting the work of the board:

·        We will respect coaching and board responsibilities as delineated by USA Swimming (see page 1).

·        The team vision is our guide for action and decision-making.

·        Any board member who cannot be at a board meeting will contact the secretary in advance and prepare another committee member(s) to present relevant progress and next steps.

·        All opinions are valid, will be heard and respected.  Speakers will not be interrupted.

·        We strive for consensus.

·        The work of committees will be conducted during meetings only when specifically noted in the agenda.

·        We will follow an agenda and make brief, cogent reports and presentations.

·        We will seek out opportunities for expert consultation and professional development outside of our organization.

·        Members commit to being on time to all board meetings.

To inform committee work between meetings, board minutes will be distributed to all members directly after each meeting. In the absence of the president, the vice president will facilitate the meeting agenda.

2015 Board Calendar Summary

Board meetings will be held on the second Tuesday of each month.  Following is a summary of the 2015 Board Calendar:

·        January

o   Approval of Organizational Summary

o   Approval of Budget

o   Presentation of Committee Objectives and Actions

·        February through August

o   Committee Reports

o   Additional Business

·        September

o   Committee Reports

o   Start of Review and Data Collection for Year-End Evaluation

·        October

o   Board Evaluation (Goals and Objectives Met?)

o   Coach’s Evaluation  (Goals and Objectives Met?)

·        November

o   Review Summary Findings of Evaluation

o   Revisit Club Mission and Vision

·        December

o   Meeting of the Membership

o   Election of Board Members

o   Review of Upcoming Organizational Summary

o   Review of Upcoming Budget