BTN Editor Elizabeth West moderates Liberty Mutual’s Michelle DeCosta, ACT’s Jennifer Steinke and Roadmap’s Jeroen van Velzen
The candidates in the Global Business Travel Association's only contested
2013 election appear to be split on the association's most controversial issue of the year.
Altour senior vice president of sales Doug Payne and Concur senior
director of marketing Christopher Juneau are vying for the one open GBTA Allied
(supplier) member-at-large board of directors seat, to be voted on by Allied
members. Payne is running for re-election. They have landed on opposite sides
of proposals to alter GBTA's bylaws, notably addressing how the
association's board of directors should be derived. Direct (buyer) members will
vote on the proposals during GBTA's annual convention, to be held next month in
Payne in his platform statement indicated that he supports the proposal
favored by GBTA's board of directors, which would bring the number of board
members to 14 (from 13), including seven Direct members (down from nine) and seven
Allied members (up from four). That proposal, titled Proposal A on the ballot,
also stipulates that the association's president always would be a Direct
member while the vice president always would be an Allied member.
Adoption of Proposal A "will ensure
that our association remains a buyer-lead association with a greater voice on
the board for our Allied members," Payne wrote. "It will preserve the
Allied Leadership Council (ALC), whose leader will become the elected vice
president of the association. The ALC has been the key source of our funding
and innovation over the past 35 years and is the only council within GBTA that
truly represents the interests of all Allied members, having representation
from each Allied member industry silo."
Proposal A also would create additional steps for proposed bylaw
changes. Currently, a vote by two-thirds of Direct members can amend bylaws.
Under the current board's proposal, bylaw changes would need approval from
three-fourths of a quorum of the board, and two-thirds each of Allied and Direct
Juneau in his platform statement did not directly address the proposed bylaw
changes, but on a LinkedIn group wrote that he supports the changes proposed by
NetApp travel manager Mark Ziegler. That proposal, titled Proposal B, seeks to
adjust the bylaws by requiring that all four Allied board seats be filled via
elections and that the association disband the Allied Leadership Council. Doing
away with the ALC would, in turn, eliminate the practice of automatically
seating its appointed president and vice president to GBTA's board.
However, Juneau appears to have posted the LinkedIn comment about three
weeks before GBTA on June 24 unveiled the board-supported Proposal A. When
contacted by BTN, Juneau indicated in
an email that he would "pass" on making any statements, citing GBTA
policy that Allied candidates running in association elections are prohibited
from speaking with the press. Payne did not return calls seeking comment.
A third option on the ballot allows members to vote for no changes to
the board's current makeup.
Other elections to be held during the convention will not be contested. Dominion's Donna Kelliher is running unopposed for
GBTA president and CEO while Johnson Downie
director of business services Christle Johnson is running for the vice
president position. St. Jude Medical global travel
director Denise Truso and Oracle global travel global process owner Rita Visser
are the only two candidates running for the two Direct member-at-large board
seats to be filled this year.