That's pretty much my situation.
Originally Posted by 28thNY
As for the original post, a man I greatly admired wished to be buried in his officer's uniform, and I was honored to fire a volley over his grave. Having lived most my life in the DC area, I don't have the same feeling for rank as he did, but that doesn't necessarily make me right.
On a broader level, I think we as a community face some leadership challenges, which get tied up in the issue of rank.
On the authenticists' side, only a few organizations have the size, structure, and experience to stage events of any size. I think that's why we see many more adjuncts than stand-alone hard core weekends. But that may just be the price you pay for a certain level of standards. The adjuncts at least provide -- beyond the fun -- an opportunity to work and play well with others and learn more about event logistics.
The bigger umbrella organizations on the other hand face an age issue. By conflating club rank with military rank, the presidents, VPs, treasurers, secretaries, safety officers, &c &c choke off advancement for younger reenactors, many of whom will end up leaving for the ranks of authenticists. Thus, over the years the umbrella organizations have come to look less and less like the armies of 1861-65 and more and more like the gerontocracy of 1860.
In a way, this is an easier challenge to meet than that facing the authenticists. Simply split the two chains. The old guys can keep doing the club business while tapping youngsters to take on field duties. The appearance of events like Cedar Creek and Neshaminy would change overnight if the most visible players on the field were suddenly the right age for a soldier in 1863.
Some might object that youngsters lack experience for field command. They did then, too. Youngsters also lack the baggage of 30 years of doing things the same way.
Just before I made the decision to retire from my real world job I felt a slight pang of regret, thinking of all my valuable experience. But then I realized that my experience was perhaps more valuable to me than to employees 20 and 30 years younger, and that for others long experience is indistinguishable from complacency.
The biggest test of leadership isn't how long you can stay on the job, but how effectively you replace yourself.
M. A. Schaffner
Midstream Regressive Complainer