As had happened with Fleet Admiral Wetsch,
problems facing the Smith Administration convinced others that they could do better. The
Vice Regional Coordinator of Region One, Commodore Jeannette Maddox, decided to make a run
for Commanding Admiral of STARFLEET, in the 1988 elections. Unlike 1981, however,
this campaign was quite civil and mild. Nonetheless, the election was a memorable one.
Fleet Admiral Smith, who had decided to run for re-election, later withdrew himself from
consideration when he decided to take a new job. However, when that job offer fell
through, he announced that he wished to again be considered for re-election. However, the
Admiralty Board ruled that once Fleet Admiral Smith had withdrawn, he was not eligible to
return. Therefore, Commodore Maddox ran unopposed and gained the majority of votes cast.
The Maddox Administration can be credited for bringing Star Trek fandom from
out of our parents basements and into the mainstream. During her four year
Administration, STARFLEET made great strides in a variety of areas, becoming once
again the premiere Star Trek fan club on the planet. She also stressed Community
Service, which both helped people and gained STARFLEET local and national media
attention. This included expanding the STARFLEET Scholarship Program started under
the Smith Administration. Star Trek: The Next Generation was entering its
third season and drawing still more fans. By late 1989 STARFLEET boasted over four
thousand members. STARFLEET Academy now boasted eight schools (though far
more courses!) and Commandant Lerman showed no signs of slowing.
The Maddox Administration took office with STARFLEET being close to $7,000 in
debt. By the end of their first year, that debt had been paid off. Fleet Admiral Smith had
requested in late 1988 to return the Membership rate to $10.00, and this was put into
place by 1989. Also, the "Family Membership" came into being, which allowed two
people to share a CQ and Handbook for $17.00 (or three or more
for $20.00), with each person receiving their own certificate and membership card. This
helped gain more members by allowing families to join under one membership for $20.00.
To help stabilize finances, the Maddox Administration
discontinued the color Communiqués of the Smith Administration and to
black-and-white format with Issue #31 in February 1989. However, each issue was distributed
on time and by August of 1990, the Communiqué grew into a magazine-size
format. As finances improved, a colorized cover was eventually added and the CQ
went from Third Class to First Class mailing, dramatically reducing mailing times and
improving the delivery success rate. The "Caption Contest" in each
issue brought laughs and encouraged people to exercise their sense of humor while the
Cover Art contest showcased the best in STARFLEET member artistry. With the passing
of Gene Roddenberry on October 24, 1991, Issue #48 was dedicated as a Special Issue and
contained various memorials and memories of the founder of Star Trek.
One major change during Fleet Admiral Maddoxs first term was the abolition of
the Sector Chiefs Committee in May 1989 led, surprisingly enough, by the Northwest Sector
Chief himself, Rear Admiral Thomas C. Davis. Admiral Davis argued that the five Sector
Chiefs (one each for NW, SW, NE, SE, and Pacific [covering R11 in Australia]) were just an
additional layer of reporting bureaucracy and not really needed. With their abolition, the
Regional Coordinators now reported directly to the Chief of Operations. Admiral Davis was
not long out of a job, however, as Fleet Admiral Maddox selected him to replace Admiral
Ackerman as Chief of Operations that same year.
The Maddox Administration also saw the first "affiliated group" join STARFLEET
the STARFLEET Marine Corps under Commandant Robb Jackson. Now, those members
seeking something other than being a member of a starship crew could choose to be a
Marine. STARFLEET Academy also added a Marine College. SFMC
was the first of many such groups, including the Rangers and SEALS,
but only the SFMC experienced serious growth and maintained its official
"affiliated group" status. The Klingon Assault Group (KAG) formed
as an independent fan club for those of the "Klingon persuasion", though it
maintained close ties with STARFLEET during their early years, including regular
articles in the Communiqué.
STARFLEETs Technical Services team was reorganized in May of 1991 with
the creation of the STARFLEET Department of Technical Services under Rear Admiral
J. Scott Spadaro. One of their first acts was to finally allow chapters to officially
"serve" in the 24th Century. The actual "first TNG
chapter" is in dispute, but Spadaro, with the help of Captain Chris Wallace, did help
launch the USS Starchaser in Region Five, the first Galaxy class
starship in STARFLEET and one of the first TNG groups.
Fleet Admiral Maddox ran for re-election in the fall of 1990 against Admiral Bryan
Ackerman, a member of Steve Smiths EC. Admiral Maddox was re-elected with a 75%
majority and Admiral Ackerman soon resigned from STARFLEET to start his own group, The
Federation. Also, a new STARFLEET Constitution was ratified by the Membership
at this time. This Constitution included a change to the structure of the Executive
Committee, the first since Fran Booth in 1984. Reflecting the growing importance of the
Shuttle Program in the future of STARFLEET, the Director of Shuttle Operations
Command was elevated to the Executive Committee. To maintain the odd-numbered balance of
the EC, the Chief of Computer Operations was also elevated, in a way returning the Chief
of Personnel (which was renamed to Computer Operations and removed from the EC in 1984)
back to the Executive Committee. Equally important was an Amendment that elevated the Regional Coordinators to the Admiralty Board.
Many chapters complained that when their RC was also the CO of a chapter, they
either ignored their Region due to their CO workload, or acted to benefit their own
chapter at the expense of others. Vice Admiral Thomas C. Davis, Chief of Operations, circulated a fact-finding petition on not allowing RCs to also serve as chapter COs, but
the general consensus of the EC and RCs was to continue to allow RCs to serve as COs.
However, the Senior Captains Network was officially retired at the start of 1990
when Director Janis Moore noted that participation was so low as to not warrant keeping
the program alive.
Increases in costs of producing and distributing membership materials required a
dues increase of $5.00 at each level. STARFLEET Academy added new courses and
the continued improvements and timely distribution of the STARFLEET Communiqué
helped make this increase more palatable.
One dark side of the Maddox Administration that would not become known until after
she had left office was her secret incorporation of the club in the State of North
Carolina. This was done without the knowledge or consent of either the Admiralty Board or
the membership at large. Part of this incorporation involved filing with the IRS, and this
would come to haunt not only the next Administration, but succeeding ones as well. Still,
they left office with 6526 members and generating close to $100,000 a year in income.
Thats quite an accomplishment.
For four FULL years Fleet Admiral Maddox served the organization and was able to hand over
the reigns of what seemed to be a sound STARFLEET...
Chapter Nine: Rob Lerman