Today, October 16, is the one year anniversary of the Strong Towns Membership program. Launching a way for individuals to sponsor the organization on a monthly or annual basis was a huge step toward to our long term solvency. We are proud to report that membership will comprise about 15% of the income in our 2015 budget - not a shabby start for 15 months of part time capacity building.
We have a long way to go though to get to the 60-70% income mark we need to not over rely on speaking engagements and one time grants (otherwise known around here as lottery winnings and transfer payments). The strength we gain from memberships allows us to be the independent voice so greatly needed out there in the world today. More and more people are picking up on the Strong Towns message, which is all the more reason we need to continue to refine its core and tailor its delivery to new audiences.
Even more importantly, our National Gathering proved that the future of our organization's intellectual and on the ground effectiveness will rise with our growing membership.
We've always known this movement would be built one member at a time. Over the next 48 hours, we need to push it a few more notches forward. As of this morning, we have 394 members and we need your help getting to 400 by tomorrow.
Those 394 members are from 49 states, 7 provinces and several more countries abroad. What state are we missing? Delaware. So this is a special challenge to you readers in Delaware (or if you know someone in Delaware) - make us 50 states today!
Sign up today at www.strongtowns.us/membership and also help push us over the 400 member mark.
I receive messages every day from folks saying "I'm not a member, but am a long time reader..." We love all of you out there reading, listening to the podcast, even writing your own blogs with threads from Strong Towns - however, if you have to start your emails to us in that way, there is an easy remedy: www.strongtowns.us/membership - We'll both sleep better tonight if you do.
Our membership levels start quite modestly on purpose, just $25 a year to become a Member or $7 a month to become an Advocate. We get a ton of email and always prioritize our members first since you are making this happen. There are way more requests for help than we have time to give, in part because we have to do many other things to pay the bills right now.
Help us, help you, by kicking off year two of the Strong Towns Membership program by joining today.