The NATSO Foundation Adopts a New Vision and Bylaws and Elects a New Chairman

To achieve a cohesive vision and strategy, the NATSO Foundation board voted at its February board meeting to adopt new bylaws that align the NATSO Foundation more closely with NATSO. The bylaws reflect a new composition of the board members as well as a new mission.

The NATSO Foundation and NATSO boards will continue to operate as two distinct entities. However, the bylaws changes allow for more continuity between the groups. In particular, the NATSO chairman will serve on the NATSO Foundation board and as part of the foundation’s Executive Committee, and the NATSO Foundation chairman will serve on the NATSO board. Other changes include that at least one member of the NATSO Foundation board must be a past chairman of NATSO who is also a regular, active NATSO member, and NATSO’s Leadership Development and Nominating Committee will also serve the NATSO Foundation.

Since its inception in 1990, the NATSO Foundation has focused on education and improving the lives of those involved in the truckstop industry. With the recently adopted bylaws change, the foundation continues with that mission but expands the focus to five distinct areas. In 2011 the foundation will implement this bold new vision by tackling a concrete action plan for delivering business intelligence to travel plaza leaders. Here are some of the highlights:

1 Advance, promote and improve the travel plaza and truckstop industry through education, communications, meetings, and research and development.

• Provide education uniquely tailored to truckstop and travel plazas through many of the speakers at The NATSO Show and content delivered in StopWatch magazine.

• The Executive Summary of the 2011 Travel Plaza Trends and Forecast Report released at The NATSO Show 2011 will help members make sound decisions about their businesses. This research will be updated annually (see related article on page 15).

• The McLane – NATSO Foundation Travel Center Index will be published quarterly to allow operators to benchmark sales figures against competitors in 18 product categories. The first report was unveiled at The NATSO Show 2011 (see related article on page 14).

2 Assist travel plaza and truckstop owners and management in achieving excellence for their industry, customers, communities and society.

• Resources on better serving customers, such as providing healthy food options and complying with new Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations, will be made available to the industry (see related article on page 22).

• Government grants and tax benefits for alternative energy investments mean that businesses can reduce taxes while saving on energy costs. The NATSO Foundation recently published a guide on truckstop electrification grants and has plans to publish a similar guide on energy-saving investments, such as lighting.

3 Administer an industry scholarship program.

• Industry scholarships are awarded every year under the Bill Moon Scholarship Program to deserving NATSO member travel plaza employees and their dependents.

4 Foster knowledge and understanding of the travel plaza industry.

• The Travel Plaza Industry’s Hall of Fame was established to honor those who have contributed significantly to the travel plaza industry. These individuals’ notable achievements are highlighted to serve as a source of pride and inspiration for the industry.

• Safety initiatives, such as the foundation’s emergency preparedness toolkit for travel plaza operators, reflect the industry’s commitment to a safe environment for both employees and customers.

5 Further other charitable causes that involve issues of concern or significance to the travel plaza industry.


This article originally ran in Stop Watch magazineStop Watch provides in-depth content to assist NATSO members in improving their travel plaza business operations and provides context on trends and news affecting the industry.

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Amy Toner's photo

Amy Toner

Toner markets NATSO products, services and meetings. She is the content editor of NATSO's core websites, Stop Watch magazine and Highway Business Matters biweekly articles. In addition, she provides creative services across all departments. Toner joined NATSO in 2006. Prior to joining the association, she served as director of membership services at an association for ambulatory surgery centers. Toner lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband and son. More
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