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Update from the SSA Executive Committee

The purpose of this letter is to update the membership on the status of the SSA financial crisis, and answer some of the questions we have received over the past week from concerned members.

On September 11, 2006 evidence of actions by the SSA ex-CFAO was turned over to the Society’s attorney and the Hobbs Police Department, which will now begin an investigation. If cause for instituting criminal action is found, all information will be forwarded to the District Attorney. Our attorney will institute a separate civil suit if appropriate.

If fraudulent activity is proven, the SSA will pursue all legal means to recover lost funds. Among those is our business insurance policy, which has “Employee Dishonesty” coverage.

We have had many questions regarding the status and security of the over $1 million in SSA funds supervised and held by the SSA Foundation. This money resides in an account separate from SSA operational funds, and is invested with Fidelity. State-ments from Fidelity accurately reflect corresponding SSA financial statements. There is no indication endowed SSA funds (restricted or unrestricted in use) are missing from the SSA Foundation.

Some members have questioned whether or not to renew their SSA membership. Please continue to support your Society through this crisis by doing so. Dues revenue will enable the SSA to keep important programs such as publication of SOARING magazine, advocacy of glider pilots’ rights, Badges and Records and the SSA National Soaring Convention intact, as we work to resolve our financial issues. Importantly, the current crisis has no impact on the SSA Group Hull and Liability Insurance Program.

Appropriate state and federal withholding tax reporting forms have been completed, and will be submitted to government agencies shortly and (with the support of the SSA Foundation) accompanied by payment of all taxes due. At that point, SSA will have fulfilled all of its responsibilities relative to back taxes. State of New Mexico authorities have already informed us that no interest or penalties will be imposed. We are working diligently with the IRS to mitigate federal penalties and interest.

In closing, we want to express our sincere thanks to all of the many SSA members who have contacted leadership with appreciation, suggestions and encouragement. We will continue to keep you informed.


C. Dianne Black-Nixon, Chairman of the Board
Jim Skydell, First Vice Chair
Doug Easton, Vice Chair
John Volkober, Vice Chair
Dean Carswell, Secretary

Posted: 9/13/2006