INF: New President – New Focus on online visibility

Armand Javier, INF President elected 2016

French naturist Armand Jamier was on Saturday 19 November 2016 elected as new President of the International Naturist Federation, replacing Sieglinde Ivo, who has served as the INF President for a number of years. The outcome was emotional for some, one delegate even broke  into tears when the  result of the secret balllot was announced.

Armand Jamier, the new INF President, is 51 years old and currently President of the French naturist association. His candidacy was announced only minutes before the vote was about to take place  In contrast, Sieglinde Ivo had followed the bylaws and distributed her details and intentions to all the heads of delegations thtee months ago in three languages.

In the future, this practice of last minute fielding of candidates can no longer take place. A motion was proposed and accepted that from now on, if there is a candidate that has been lawfully proposed, a contestant can not be proposed in the last minute before the vote.

Armand's decission to accept the nomination was influenced by the general sense among even the countries controlling  the majority of the votes, that it was time to shift gear and work more aggressively for naturism also in the online world of news and social media. Something the past leadership team had not seen as very important.

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In the photo above, French Armand Javier, the new INF President, is seated as number four in the front row - next to Gregers Moller, the delegate from Thailand, who despite his single vote several times during the Congress took to the floor and urged the INF leadership to speak up and be seen and heard more as the defender and promoter of naturism world wide.

As treasurer, the old office holder Rolf Beat Hofstetter was challenged by the young dynamic President of the New Zealand fraction,  Wendy Lowe. But in this vote, the majority of the votes went to Rolf Hofstetter. Sending a signal that wheras change was needed, drastic changes was not desirable.

The delegates clearly spent much time during the three day congress fiddling about with minor statute adjustments and the like. However, looking back, a bunch of good motions were approved which makes the future for INF look very promising.

  • It was decided that the Leadership of INF will be expanded from currently the Executive Committee (EC) which is a triumvirate of the President, the Vice president  and the Treasurer to fully include also two members from the Central Committee (CC) who are a bit old fashioned named Assessors. One of the two, Huub Gieser, is Assessor for EU countries, the other is Kay Hannam from New Zealand who was reelected as the Assessor for Non-EU countries.
  • Another decission was to introduce two new leadership positions to promote and protect naturism. The two people that the INF will start looking for soon must be familiar with both traditional and new media public relations. Their jobs will be to coordinate the PR efforts of all the member federations to work as one orchestrated body to disseminate in the media, the social media and the general public that naturism as fun, harmless, good for you and practised by millions world wide.
  • It was also decided that the INF must communicate statistics about how many users take benefits form the INF passportshould and where benefits are offered to cardholders.
  • Member federations now also have the right to request a statement from the Leadership of INF on any matter to be used in influencer activities like press releases on the local level, showing international support and awareness about a local issue.
  • A shared library of marketing plans and other business development projects will also be established, allowing for instance Naturist Association Thailand to download and modify for local use a marketing initiative that was successful in for instance Australia.
  • Making up to 5000 euros available yearly for support of indisputable scientifìc research into the  benefits of naturism including compiling available research already undertaken and updating results of previous research projects.

On the first day a proposal to allow naturist federations in individual US states access to become membersuccessful of the INF was accepted by majority, but the delegates were later informed that as the proposal would mean changing the statutes of the INF,  simple majority was not enough. It would have needed 2/3 majority and it did not obtain that many votes.

The new President declared, however, that he would focus hard on bringing the US naturist organisations back. There are mainly three players, the AANR representing most resorts and clubs in the US, the Naturist Society and the dynamic Young Naturists of America.

It is not known where the next INF congress will take place. The statutes were changed to stress that at least every tenth year, the Congress should take place outside of Europe. But it could be more frequently if proposals for hosting elsewhere were accepted.

The session ended with a nude photos session with all the delegates. Some observers were also invited, which allowed Malaysian Chew Tok Wha and American Claudia Kellersch to join in.

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The evening was set aside for a stylish dinner in black and white. After the dinner, a female band filled the dance floor and  not too far into the evening the stylish outfits dissolved into black socks and bare buttocks. With the local hosts leading on.

From all sides there was praise for New Zealand as wonderful hosts. A tremendous job well done!

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FACTS

The INF Congress was attended by 28 delegates representing naturists in 33 countries.

Worldwide, an estimated 16 million people practice naturism. Of these, 5,8 million naturists live in Europe.

France alone earns an estimated 300 million euros on naturist tourism every year with 3,5 million naturists vacationing in that country.

INF is financed by 160.000 paying naturist members of Naturist clubs or Naturist associations around the world with the exception of the United States of America.

Naturist Association Thailand was given 1 vote at the INF World Congress in 2016 - the lowest number of votes among all delegates,  based on its  2016 number of 100 paying members.

In comparison, Holland commands with 60.000 naturists 34 votes.

 

Previous stories on INF:

Second day of INF … is there a battle within?

INF struggling ro restructure

NAT attending INF congress in New Zealand

 

Comments

  1. Profile photo of Glenne Findon
    Glenne Findon

    Thanks Gregers for your insightful reports on the INF congress. Hopefully the new INF President will bring the INF into the modern age of communication which has been lacking for quite a while. I have read more about this congresses proceedings from you than ever before which is much appreciated.

    1. Profile photo of Gregers Moller
      Gregers Moller Post author

      Thanks a lot Glenne! I enjoyed it so much here and I think we did a good job. The Wellington Naturist Club did a tremendous job. I saw Wendy going home today, drained to the last drop of energy. I think they all need time to re-charge. June was also tireless. And Kay. And Donna. Just amazing. But they gave all a fabulous experience. Dso and I will never forget this experience.

  2. Profile photo of Mike and Juan
    Mike and Juan

    Hi Gregers, thanks for your comprehensive report. We are also members of BN and I see that Nick C and his wife (from BN) were at the conference from the pic’s you posted.. Surprisingly I cannot find anything about the conference at all on the BN website or forums. I hope they will provide as much information as you have to British Naturists.

    1. Profile photo of Gregers Moller
      Gregers Moller Post author

      Yes, I met Nick and his wife, absolutely great people! They left me a few examples of information material that you have in BN which we plan to translate to Thai and use here in Thailand.

      Nick’s – or rather BN’s – proposal to engage two professional communication people to assist the leadership in coordinating the promotion and defense of naturism was a key-motion. They will start looking for the right persons very soon, I believe.

    1. Profile photo of Gregers Moller
      Gregers Moller Post author

      This is a very realistic goal. We – Chew from Malaysia and I – discussed with the Leadership how to establish federations in locations where formal establishment of a registered association is not possible. And we found a way that makes this possible.

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  4. Profile photo of Sat
    Sat

    Thanks Gregers. Please keep me updated . Getting a federation in place is one of the first steps to make it a formal process.

    Cheers

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