Skip to main content
Robert Reed
| Robert Reed | Latest News

Robert Reed accepts nomination for Cal4Wheel president

Update December 31, 2021:

My goals for our Association currently include:

  1. Getting us back into the “Land Use” business by:
    1. Contracting for NRC(s): I know the BOD has been trying to find acceptable contractor(s) and I will continue this effort if it has not been completed by the time we have our elections. This could include additional advertising, direct outreach to selected individuals, and possibly recruiting from within our Association.
    2. Interns: The possible use of interns has been floated within the BOD. While I’m NOT opposed to this, we need to remain focused on long term solutions such as filling our NRC contracts which may be augmented with interns.
    3. Possible stipends for volunteers: We need to face the reality that with the current labor situation in our nation today that we may not be able to find suitable contractors or interns for quite some time. We need to be ready to mobilize and motivate volunteers to attend meetings, review documents, comment on plans, etc. in support of our land use efforts. To do this we need to facilitate the development of our volunteers including possible training in: Public Speaking; Comment Writing; Communication; etc. We also need to be prepared to help with any expenses that the volunteers incur on our behalf. This kind of program needs to be managed such that we get the right people into the right place at the right time. We also need to coach them on reporting back to the BOD, etc.
    4. Taking full advantage of the Foundation’s new ability to fund lawsuits: This is a fantastic new capability to be run through our Foundation which should allow it to take tax deductible donations and to direct them toward specific lawsuits to defend our rights to recreate on public lands.
    5. Cooperation: Align ourselves with other organizations where our goals and objectives overlap. Our recent alignment with EcoLogic is a perfect example. This won’t be joining others to “just be a member”, these will be alliances with a true quid pro quo.
    6. Political activism: We need to get back into political activism. We used to be very big in this, but it’s been some time since we’ve done much in this area. Maybe we want to bring back the “Adopt-A-Politician” effort that we once used to promote very actively. This would rely heavily on our volunteer effort too, involving training, possible reimbursement of expenses, etc.
    7. Communication: All of the above relies heavily on, and revolves around COMMUNICATION. I can’t stress this enough. We must simply get the word out and keep getting it out on what we’re doing and where we need help. We need to reach out to and empower our volunteers. We must keep the members informed of what’s going on to the maximum extent possible. We have a great Social Media Team and I intend on using them!
  2. Enabling the BOD to be more “Agile” and to respond quickly by:
    1. Further developing the ability to act in between Board meetings without waiting for weeks or months to have a meeting in order to take action on an issue. This of course must be done in compliance and within our by-laws and procedures. Zoom is a proven tool and we’ll continue to use it.
    2. Follow up on commitments that we make, and COMPLETING them in a timely fashion, rather than coming back and talking about them every three months and not making any progress. I’ll remind the action owners of their commitments and responsibilities between meetings and ask for written responses to be submitted at meetings.
    3. Tracking our progress on issues using metrics where ever possible. This will enable us to determine what is working and what may not be working so that we can adjust our activities as necessary to get the best return on investment.
  3. Continue to ensure that the BOD remains to be good stewards of our members money while using it to properly and efficiently support our goals.
  4. Fully supporting our volunteers. As you see from the above our volunteers are core to our activities and programs. We must:
    1. Find new ways to appreciate and develop our volunteers.
    2. Enable our volunteers to perform public outreach (show who we are and what we do), etc.

Yes, this is ambitious and I can’t do it all alone. What I can provide is the leadership and vision to take us in the direction of meeting these goals and developing and using volunteers to the maximum extent possible.

Why should I be President?

As you can see from the above there are a lot of things that I would like to continue and others to further develop. I believe that we need continuity of leadership in our Association. We have a relatively new Treasurer who is still learning the job; We have a relatively new President who has done a great job in overcoming insurmountable issues. I have worked with him in the background providing advice and suggestions. I will continue to work with him as our incoming immediate Past President in the manner that our founders intended. We have a very strong complement of District Vice Presidents which I will work with. I understand the budget and know how to work within it, I understand the by-laws, SOPs, and I WILL WORK within them. I know how to do this job, I’ve done it before, and with your help I CAN DO IT AGAIN!

If you have ANY questions, don’t hesitate to contact me by email at:

Two years ago, Jack Chapman was elected President of Cal4Wheel. Just a couple weeks after his election COVID hit and everything went downhill from there. We were in a lock down, businesses were closed, things we had taken for granted for years were suddenly gone. Cal4 was not immune from the effects of the pandemic, our events were cancelled and with that, sources for much of our income dried up. Jack inherited the worst set of conditions that any President of Cal4 has ever faced. If that weren’t enough, he had a few members of the board of directors (BOD) that weren’t working with him and in fact took every opportunity they could to undermine and discredit him. Most of the people who were orchestrating this are now gone from the board but a couple remain as sitting members of the BOD. The fact that any member of the BOD could take part in something like this is reprehensible and is totally unacceptable in our organization.

At the North District meeting in early October, I nominated Jack to continue as our president for another term. Since that meeting, Jack has reconsidered and is looking at laying the foundation for the next phases of his life that will take him into retirement. Don’t get me wrong, Jack has done a fantastic job weathering the storm that he was dealt by nature and from within the board (which should NEVER happen).

At the Central District meeting a few weeks ago, I was nominated in absentia to represent you as the next CAL4 President. To say the least, this was a surprise to me. After thinking long and hard about this and hearing from people in each district and out of state asking me to accept the nomination, I have decided to ACCEPT the nomination to potentially be your next President. I am uniquely qualified for this position (more detail below). I have held various positions in the Association and I want to help get the Association back into the “Land Use” business, and I want to work to bring the BOD back to center doing their jobs, and will strive to STOP the backstabbing and backhanded dealings and any other conduct that is unbecoming. I will also enforce the by-laws and Standard Operating Procedures.

Remember, Cal4 is a business. We are an organization governed by governmental laws, corporate by-laws, and organizational Standard Operating Procedures, the procedures that govern how we conduct nearly all aspects of our business. If we don’t adhere to our governing documents, we run the risk of descending into anarchy which can jeopardize the organization, and its goals. Given this, YES there are a set of us that become quite vocal when we see our procedures not being followed and/or the organization being taken advantage of.

Some of my qualifications and accomplishments:

  • Over 35 years as a member of the association and over 15 years as a Life Member
  • 2 years as Sierra Trek Co-chair 
  • 2 years as Sierra Trek Chair
  • ~10 years as Sierra Trek Registration Chairman
  • Chaired Feather River Fun Days the first year Trek was cancelled
  • ~1.5 years as President of the California League of Off-Road Voters (CLORV)
  • 2 years as North District Vice President
  • 6 years as President of the association, during which I:
    • Led the selection team and hiring of our office manager
    • Led the selection teams and awarded contracts for TWO natural resource consultants
    • Represented Cal 4 with the Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame selection committee for ~5 years, during which time several of our members were inducted
    • Worked with the South District in authorizing Operation Desert Fun in 2004, and defended it against organizations that didn’t want us to have the event
    • Brought “openness” to the Cal 4 budget process, introducing procedures that are basically still followed today
    • Authorized the creation of the South District Events Checking account, making it easier for the SD to conduct business
    • Brought reciprocal agreements to bear with several off-road organizations trading space at our events with space at their events (CORVA, ORBA, United, etc.)
    • Represented Cal 4 at the National OHV Lobby Day in Washington D.C. including meetings with ~ 6 congressmen and the Honorable Gayle Norton (Secretary of the Interior)
    • Selected by Congressman Richard Pombo to be an official greeter for First Lady Laura Bush during a campaign event for him. This was a direct outcome of meetings that I attended with him representing Cal4.
    • Secured donation of a camping trailer which we raffled off as a fundraiser
    • Paid off the mortgage on the building
    • Reestablished the life member CD after paying off the building
    • Implemented the requirement to carry insurance on the raffle vehicle after discovering that we hadn’t been carrying insurance on the vehicle for years. We’ve had insurance on the vehicle every year since.
    • Got booth space at SEMA donated to Cal4 starting in 2009. This ran through ~2014 when the donation went to 50% of the cost of a booth at SEMA
    • 4 years on the BOD as immediate Past President
    • Worked with Del Albright on the initial formation of Friends of the Rubicon surveying the first work to be done in May of 2001
    • 8 years as State Merchandise Chair over which time I had gross sales of $131,623 against $57,896 in expenses for a net profit of $73,727 during my tenure before turning it over to Steve Gardiner
    • Ed Dunkley medal of honor winner (2007)
    • Led the Audit Committee for the past two years
    • Led the committee recommending that we establish a commercial line of credit against the building to have as a tool in future lean years. The BOD approved this proposal and the Treasurer is currently implementing it.
    • Personally drove ~250,000 miles over the years in support of Cal4 activities with <10% being reimbursed
    • I’ve been told that “I understand the Cal4 budget better than anyone”. I would add to that statement “except for possibly one or two people”

Other qualifications with application to CAL4:

  • Spent over 40 years as an engineer working at a large government laboratory:
    • Over the course of my career, I have written and managed many multi-million dollar contracts including the RFP process, awards, and execution
    • At retirement I was a Section Leader with a staff of over 100, and was managing annual budgets of ~$35M
    • Worked with various government regulators and audit teams

My opponent says that “I am the past.” Well, from above I think I’ve made some pretty good contributions to the Association in the PAST and will continue to make them into the future. I seriously doubt that my opponent could name three things that I’ve done before reading this. I currently HAVE the skills necessary to lead the association and the processes to get us back into the land use business while growing and preserving our Association with honesty and integrity. I’m not sure my opponent has the skills, knowledge and abilities to do this, but that’s your decision as delegates.

Another thing to think about: go back and review the FAILED by-laws from our last Convention. Several of these were authored by a person that my opponent cites as a mentor. The problem is that some of these proposals seemed vindictive and targeted specific individuals on the BOD. How deep does this run, and does my opponent share the views of these failed amendments?? Just something to add to your thought process.

If you put your trust in me to lead this organization again, I WILL work with Jack in the manner that our founders intended that a president and past president should. Together we will all get the Aasociation back into the land use business and back to the organization we are capable of being. I will do everything I can to END the bickering and infighting on the BOD. I will faithfully enforce our Code of Conduct and strengthen it as necessary. Together, WE CAN DO THIS.

If you have ANY questions, don’t hesitate to contact me by email at:


Download a sample copy of the In Gear