AWO Strategic Plan

Charting the Future
AWO Strategic Plan 2017-2022
Vision
The American Waterways Operators is the national advocate for the U.S. tugboat, towboat and barge industry, which serves the nation as the safest, most environmentally friendly, and most economical mode of freight transportation.
 
Mission
AWO represents the people who own or operate tugboats, towboats and barges serving the rivers, coasts, Great Lakes and harbors of the United States. As the leading voice on domestic maritime issues, AWO promotes the industry’s value to the nation as a driver of the U.S. economy that provides family-wage jobs and moves the nation’s freight safely while reducing air and water pollution, relieving traffic congestion, and protecting homeland security.
 
Values
AWO members:
  • Operate our companies and vessels in an ethical manner.
  • Care for our employees and the public by continuously improving the safety of our operations and the professionalism of our people.
  • Are stewards of the environment, working to protect and improve the quality of our nation’s air and water.
  • Supply efficient and economical solutions to the transportation needs of our customers and the nation.
  • Work together for the betterment of the industry and encourage the engagement of companies of all sizes, from all regions and operational sectors, in the work of the association.
  • Work collaboratively with government and other stakeholders to promote safety, environmental protection, security and transportation efficiency.
 
Goals
 
1.  Lead and support AWO members in continuously improving safety, security and environmental stewardship.
 
2.  Promote the tugboat, towboat and barge industry with the U.S. Congress and advocate for sound legislation and public policy.
 
3.  Promote the tugboat, towboat and barge industry with the Administration and federal agencies and advocate for sound regulatory policies.
 
4.  Influence priority regional, state and local initiatives that broadly affect industry interests.
 
5.  Promote positive awareness of the tugboat, towboat and barge industry.
 
6.  Increase AWO member connectivity and engagement with the association to solve problems and support industry priorities.
 
7.  Govern and manage the association effectively, efficiently and sustainably.
 
Objectives
 
Goal 1: Lead and support AWO members in continuously improving safety, security and environmental stewardship.
 
1.1.  Lead the marine transportation industry in safety, security and environmental stewardship.
1.2.  Continuously improve the value of the Responsible Carrier Program.
1.3.  Facilitate industry transition to towing vessel inspection.
1.4.  Achieve 100 percent carrier member participation in the safety statistics reporting program.
 
Goal 2: Promote the tugboat, towboat and barge industry with the U.S. Congress and advocate for sound legislation and public policy.
 
2.1.   Implement an integrated strategy to achieve legislative objectives.
2.2.   Build and maintain relationships with lawmakers.
2.3.   Effectively integrate members into AWO’s legislative advocacy and relationship building.
2.4.   Grow and sustain the AWO PAC and political support program and ensure that it is effectively integrated into AWO’s legislative strategy.
 
Goal 3: Promote the tugboat, towboat and barge industry with the Administration and federal agencies and advocate for sound regulatory policies.
 
3.1.   Implement an integrated strategy to achieve regulatory objectives.
3.2.   Build and maintain relationships with Administration and agency officials, including the Coast Guard, EPA, and other agencies whose work affects AWO priorities.
3.3.   Effectively integrate members into AWO’s regulatory advocacy and relationship building.
3.4.   Maintain awareness of the work of industry standard-setting bodies whose activity affects AWO members and develop effective mechanisms to protect AWO members’ interests.
 
Goal 4: Influence priority regional, state and local initiatives that broadly affect industry interests.
 
4.1.   Monitor regional, state and local initiatives with the potential to broadly affect industry interests.
4.2.   Build and maintain relationships with targeted regional, state and local policymakers.
4.3.   Effectively engage members in AWO’s regional and state advocacy and relationship building.
4.4.   Develop and implement effective advocacy strategies to influence priority regional, state and local initiatives.
 
Goal 5: Promote positive awareness of the tugboat, towboat and barge industry.
 
5.1.   Educate the media and targeted public audiences on the value of the tugboat, towboat and barge industry to the nation.
5.2.   Engage members in promoting positive awareness of the tugboat, towboat and barge industry.
5.3.   Continuously improve effectiveness in using the media, especially social media, to promote positive awareness of the industry. 
 
Goal 6: Increase AWO member connectivity and engagement with the association to solve problems and support industry priorities.
 
6.1.   Distill relevant public policy information and communicate it to members in a concise and timely way that facilitates engagement in advocacy and other AWO work.
6.2.   Ensure all members receive regular personal contact from the AWO staff.
6.3.   Continuously improve AWO meetings and encourage attendance and participation.
6.4.   Engage members in outreach to other members.
 
Goal 7: Govern and manage the association effectively, efficiently and sustainably.
 
7.1.  Maintain a financially strong organization with appropriate reserves.
7.2.  Recruit, develop and retain a high-performing staff to execute AWO’s mission and ensure organizational sustainability and succession planning.
7.3.  Ensure high ethical standards and compliance with applicable law and regulation.
7.4.  Establish organizational performance metrics and assess progress routinely.
7.5.  Maintain a governance structure and processes that balance effective oversight, efficient decision making, and diverse member perspectives.
7.6.  Continuously improve internal efficiency and effective use of technology.
7.7.  Collaborate effectively with other organizations in support of AWO goals.