FLORENCE, AL -- Steven Schechner of Capital Vending & Distribution (Florence, AL) sees the past two years in bulk vending in terms of "consolidating the progress" made in the previous lean years and creating a blueprint for future gains. "I hope I'm leaving the association in a stronger position for the future," Schechner told Vending Times.
Schechner will complete his two-year term as president of the National Bulk Vendors Association, which will hold its general meeting and trade show in conjunction with the 2014 Amusement Expo. The coin-op shows and NBVA meetings will take place at the Las Vegas (NV) Convention Center and adjoining Las Vegas Hotel March 25-27. This is the fourth year that the NBVA events will collocate with Amusement Expo, which is sponsored by the Amusement and Music Operators Association and American Amusement Machine Association.
"Having spent two years working with NBVA's executive committee, its administrator Amy Contre and association members, I feel we have a stronger organization," the NBVA president said.
According to Schechner, proof of strength is evident in the gains made in member participation. "We have an increasingly active membership," he said, "and more and more people are stepping up to the plate to find their niches in the association by volunteering to join or chair committees, and by simply offering suggestions."
Schechner also cited the successes of the collocated trade shows. During his tenure as NBVA president, the bulk vending sector has fortified ties with the AMOA, which represents jukebox and games operators, and AAMA, whose constituency consists of machine manufacturers and distributors. The alignment was viewed with some controversy five years ago, but most doubts have been offset by increasing success over the past four years. As Schechner pointed out, the collocated shows have not only added value by broadening equipment options for existing NBVA operator members, but they have also introduced novelty vending to the music and games segment.
"It has very much been a win-win for both operators and suppliers," he said.
Long active in NBVA affairs, Schechner also sees his term as president as a validation of sorts. "I always wanted to see if a regular operator -- yours truly -- could run the association," he said. "And we proved that it could be done, and done successfully."
Schechner orchestrated NBVA's first roadshow, a risky move for a small group. However, the educational symposium, held in Atlanta last July, beat expectations by attracting two dozen participants.
Still, Schechner sees challenges for the incoming president, who will be elected in late March. The association, he explained, still has to work on building membership and educating new members.
A new president and officers will be elected at the NBVA General Meeting on Wednesday, March 26.