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TAKING STOCK - From The National Executive Director

Posted By Vance Van Petten, Monday, August 15, 2016

The PGA is just about to hit a milestone: 7,500 members. It feels like a good moment to take stock of where we stand, both in terms of our finances and the challenges we have ahead.

A few facts to bear in mind: The PGA’s budget has grown slightly over the past two years, but still stands in the neighborhood of just over $4 million. The PGA (whose budget includes that of the the PGA Foundation, representing our charitable arm) is of course a not-for-profit organization. We have no shareholders and pay no dividends. All revenue is invested in the organization, with a goal of improving our level of member service, increasing the impact we can make on the industry, and safeguarding our financial future.

Once upon a time, the Guild had a reasonably healthy financial reserve. But the 2008 financial crisis decimated that reserve, and rebuilding it remains a key priority for Guild leadership, hence the substantial slice of the expense "pie” given over to that goal. The Guild’s biggest expense is, of course, its staff, which has grown to keep pace with the PGA’s membership and the growing range of services it offers to the industry.

On the other side of the equation, you’ll see that member dues continue to be the bedrock on which the rest of the Guild’s revenues stand. While the Guild’s income from the Producers Guild Awards continues to be essential for our continued operation, the Awards "slice” has actually shrunk in relative terms, due in part to the growth of our Produced By conferences in both Los Angeles and New York. It’s important to note that the conferences are produced as break-even events, and the revenues generated by the conference slice—as well as by the awards slice, for that matter—represent not just ticket sales, but considerable sponsorship dollars as well. (The comparatively small "sponsorship” slice only represents sponsorship income not allocated to a major event; the real impact of our sponsors is considerably greater than its portion here would seem to indicate.) If you require any greater specificity about the Guild’s finances, any PGA member is welcome to review the full budget at the Producers Guild offices, with the guidance of our Treasurer, Christina Lee Storm.

As I’ve said before, working for thousands of producers (or even one producer) is a demanding job. Producers are accustomed to keeping a very watchful eye on their budgets. The flipside is that every one of our members is oriented towards maximizing the value they get for their expense, whether that comes in the form of seminars, job forums, networking events, screenings, or any other 

PGA benefit. I’m proud that our programs—created and staffed by dedicated member-volunteers—consistently deliver that value. It’s why we’ve kept growing. And it’s why I’ve never been more excited for what lies ahead for the PGA.


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