FACT: There's been an 18% increase in contest participation by members in the past year    
FACT: 64% of KCBS members own three or more grills/smokers    
FACT: 70% of our members grill-out/cook BBQ more than 25 times per year    
FACT: 56% of Americans report having a smartphone, 77% of KCBS members do    
FACT: 70% of KCBS members use Facebook    
FACT: 55% of members choose charcoal when cooking for leisure    
FACT: 23% of KCBS members work in the food service industry as a restauranteur or caterer    
FACT: Learning from friends, family and at competitions is the best way to improve cooking skills    
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August Board Meeting Agenda

August 9, 2015

Mike Peters:  Our August board meeting will begin at 4pm on August 11 at the Airport Hilton, 8801 NW 112th Street, Kansas City, MO. Dinner will be served at some point during the evening. I have been contacted by Sandy Fulton who will attend via phone and Wayne Lohman who will be traveling back from overseas.   With this meeting happening half way through our KCBS year and the first time where most members will be together since February, there are items that I believe need to be discussed. I am open to adding to these and would hope to be finished up close to 8pm if possible that evening.

Roll Call: 

Mike Peters, Randy Bigler, Kim Collier, Candy Weaver, Bill Capstack, Dennis Polson, Mike Hays, Mike Richter, Sandy Fulton, Wayne Lohman, Dave Compton, Mark Simmons

KCBS Office:  Carolyn Wells, Karrin Murphy, Emily Dupont

MMA – Mike McCloud

Board pledge:

                Recognizing barbeque as America’s cuisine, the mission of the Kansas City Barbeque Society is to celebrate, teach, preserve and promote barbeque as a culinary technique, sport and art form.

                I accept my duties as a KCBS director to further the KCBS mission so that truth, justice, excellence in barbeque and the American way of life may be strengthened and preserved forever.

Minutes of July Meeting

Candy Weaver:  I move to accept minutes of the July 8th meeting.  

Financial Statements

Kim Collier:   Please accept the attached report for July financials.   

President’s Report

Mike Peters:  KCBS Membership Survey – See attached memo from Mike McCloud, MMA.


Sanctioning Report

Emily Dupont:  Automatic Approval  

REC’D                    DATES                   NAME                                                                                    CITY, STATE

New Contests – In House Approval


5/12/2015              9/13/2016              The Outlets@ Lake Elsinore BBQ

                                                                State Championship                                                           Lake Elsinore, CA

7/16/2015              11/7/2015              Hangout Oyster Cook-off & Craft Beer Weekend

(Competitor's Series)                                                          Gulf Shores, AL

7/29/2015              6/10/2016              Elkmond Lions Club Smokin Railroad Street BBQ

Cookoff (Backyard)                                                             Elkmont, AL



Existing Contests – In House Approval


7/29/2015              9/25/2015              Aksarben Stock Show & Rodeo                                        Omaha, NE

7/30/2015              1/15/2016              W.E.S.T. Winter Extreme South Tyrol 2016       Rein in Taufers Italy

7/20/2015              3/25/2016              Firelake BBQ Cook Off                                                       Shawnee, OK

7/29/2015              4/8/2015                                Florida Heritage BBQ Classic                                           Kissimmee, FL

7/20/2015              4/22/2016              Wabash Ribber Fest                                                           Mt Carmel, IL

8/5/2015                                4/29/2016              Smokin on the Water                                                          Liberty, IN

8/5/2015                                4/30/2016              Smokin on the Water 2                                                       Liberty, IN

8/5/2015                                4/30/2016              Ridgefield Gone Country BBQ Festival                           Ridgefield, CT

7/13/2015              5/6/2016                                George County Firefighters Association

BBQ Challenge                                                                    Lucedale, MS

7/13/2015              5/13/2016              Boss Hog State Championship Cook-off

(GBC Qualifier)                                                                    Waynesboro, GA

7/13/2015              5/13/2016              Fire on the Mountain BBQ Cook-off and

 Spring Festival (Backyard)                                               Arab, AL

7/13/2015              6/24/2016              Smokin on the Pecos                                                         Artesia, NM



Board Approval – Existing Contests


6/25/2015              6/17-6/19               Rock'n Ribfest NH State BBQ Championship                           Merrimack, NH

(This is the 3rdmonth this contest has been pending.) 

                CONFLICT:  Examine based on contests held this weekend, this year.                 


Sanctioning Report:

Mark Simmons: The Sanctioning committee met on Wednesday, July 22. Attending via conference call were Mark Simmons (Chairman), Randy Bigler (Vice-Chair), Carolyn Wells, Mike Peters, Fred Kilgore, Sandy Fulton, and Debbie Yopp.

The committee discussed the sign up for judges for the sanctioned events. The committee requests that some kind of tutorial or e-blast be sent out to the organizers so that our KCBS event organizers are aware of this value added service and will take advantage of it for their upcoming contests. If that requires a motion, then I so move ...

From our strategic planning session in February of this year, our report would look like this:

Grow Backyard -- The expansion of backyard contests has consumed a great deal of our year's discussion. We would like to report that the backyard division has expanded and we expect it to continue to grow.

Call organizers ... This was discussed in one of our earliest meetings and it was felt by the committee that there were other ways to communicate with the organizers and that since they were called previously, ... other avenues should be initiated ... e-blasts, etc. (see above)

Research re: BOD approved contests ... I don't remember what this involved so we probably haven't done anything on this. If anyone has a better memory that I, we would welcome your input or direction.

Modify Forms ... Randy and Carol have spent a great deal of time on this process including manuals and forms. We appreciate all of their labor of love to improve the efficiencies of KCBS as it relates to the organizers.

I do want to take a mid year moment and thank our committee and all of our members for their participation and input. Attendance has probably been around 90% by our committee members attending by conference call our meetings.

Randy Bigler:   Report on Lynchburg Town Hall Meeting July 18th.  See end of agenda for full text.


MMA Marketing Report

August 2015




●              Total July Sales: $2,960 (US)

●              Total July Sales: $675 (Canada)

●              7 - Birthday redemption

●              2 - Cookbooks

●              New proposal from Zone West attached




•               Total Page Views for July: 462,086

•               Total Unique Users for July: 54,194

•               Advertising sold for July: $675

•               Cambro Giveaway up and running

•               Ongoing update of CBJ’s test page and prohibition of printable content

•               “Save the Date” link for banquet added to website

o              notifications going to Raye and registrant

•               Adding 2016 banquet registration page when content is provided and approved

•               Multiple International page updates



250KCBS Meals Mission

•               Current Total – 18,173

•               Current Number of Events that have signed up: 40

•               Continual PR/Social Media Updates

•               Eblast to be released week of 8/10/15 to promote



Sam's Tour:

•               23 local events complete to-date, 3 in July

•               2 regional events complete

•               Continual PR/Social Media Updates

•               On-going coordination and logistics for 2015 Sam’s Tour

•               Sam’s Tour monthly eblast



Great American Cookout Tour

•               12 KCBS events complete to-date, 3 in July

•               22 Retail Stops complete, 5 in July

•               On-going coordination and logistics for 2015 GAC Tour




•               Social Media, using KCBS, and GAC Facebook and Twitter pages to promote KCBS-related events/promotion

o              GAC: Twitter Followers (9,239) / FB Likes (24,490)

o              GAC: Twitter posts (2-3) each week / FB posts (2-3) each week

o              GAC: July FB & TW impressions — 73,083

o              KCBS: Twitter Followers (9,239) / FB Likes (37,057)

o              KCBS: (5-7) tweets / (5-7) FB posts each week

             Includes posts about sanctioned events

             Sam’s Club National BBQ Tour

             GAC stops

             Articles that mention KCBS, etc.

o              KCBS: July FB & TW impressions — 249,626

o              KCBS Office to collaborate with MMA on social posts

o              Updated news section of KCBS website as needed.




•               Need Board decision on McCormick's Seal of Approval products

•               Second BBQ test class is occurring at Sam's in Wisconsin

•               Zone West recommended for merchandise fulfillment




Marketing Report:

Mike Hays:  The Marketing committee met Aug. 5th via teleconference.  Members present on the call were David Qualls, Ralph Williams, and Larry Voth.  Mike Peters was also on the call.

We discussed old business items including modifications to the Membership Application.  The Membership Committee is working on the layout of the new form and we will need to provide some stock photos at their direction.  The new rules and judging information for ancillary categories should be available on the KCBS website by 8/15. Placement will be behind the Organizers log-in screen. Once the information is in place, we will send out an e-blast to organizers informing them of availability, and where to find the information.  We should also include the information as part of the organizers packet.

New business items discussed centered around Member benefits from a marketing perspective.  The feeling is that increasing our offering of Member benefits will not only help attract new members but will help increase the retention rate of existing Members.  Possible benefits discussed included credit card processing, association insurance rates, and limited edition, branded merchandise available to members only.  More work will be done here in the coming months.

We also discussed the creation of a welcome gift for new Members and what that might include, as well as maybe doing something for Members when they renew their membership.  Preliminary discussions involved maybe having these things done by a fulfillment company instead of placing the burden on the KCBS office.  More to come on this.

Our next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 2nd.

Please accept this report.


Wayne Lohman:  Our last trip to Italy ended with the Prime Uve contest at the renowned distillery Maschio.  This distillery was founded in 1905 and the Maschio products are known to be the best in the field of Grappa.  The area of Gaiarine is known as the region for wine lovers as over 300 wine labels are produced locally.  I can truly say that good wine pairs well with BBQ cooked "low and slow".

Prime Uve was definitely an "Invitational Contest" as teams and judges had nothing to want or ask for from the organizer.  The invitation to attend the event also included 200 food connoisseurs, critics and writers who came to witness an exclusive  bbq competition that included 15 top point teams from 8 countries who were judged by 18 KCBS CBJ's.  Quite an accomplishment in the reps opinion.

The Grand Championship of the first International Invitational contest in Europe was won by team BR.BQ.  John Clement, the Pitmaster, is a retired U.S. Army soldier who has only cooked for the last two years.  John placed in the top 5 in three of the four categories to take home the Grand Championship title and a beautiful glass trophy that stood 3 feet high, in the shape of a Prime Uve glass.

The KCBS Board of Managers BOM) would like to report to the Board that we have discussions for new contests in the following countries for 2016.  These events are in addition to the existing events this year which total 36:

Cost Rica               Japan

Serbia                     Australia

Mexico                    Guam

France                    Germany

Estonia                   Norway

Finland                   England

South Africa           Cuba



The BOM estimates that KCBS could sanction 42-47 contests and conduct 7-10 CBJ classes for 2016.

Respectfully submitted,

Wayne Lohman

KCBS International Board of Managers


CBJ Committee Report:

Randy Bigler:  The updated questions for the KCBS Master Judges Test and the new Continuing Education question have been submitted to MMA to be put on  the website. As of last Friday this was still being worked on by MMA.

I would like to make a motion  that the reasonly passed Kale rule be changed from green Kale to curly green Kale.

I would like to make a motion that the KCBS BOD appoint Wayne Lohman as the International Board Manager for the period of 5 years. Beginning immediately and ending 31 Dec 2020.

I would like to make a motion that the International Board of Managers appoint an International Board Co-Manager for 6 years. Beginning at their next regularly scheduled meeting and end on 31 Dec 2021.

I would also like to inform you that I finally been able to get the KCBS CBJ instructors scheduled for a face to face meeting the last weekend of October 2015. This is the meeting that was BOD approved at our meeting in February. We will be holding the meeting at the same KC Hilton Airport we will be meeting in next week. That is if it is available.

Rep Committee

Kim Collier:  Discuss topic for the Rep Meeting that will be held in January.

KCBS Score Committee/Technology Committee

Dennis Polson:  The Technology Committee met August 4th, members present were Dennis Polson Chair, Candy Weaver, Kim Collier, Scott Grinstead, Steve Grinstead, Stephen Smith, Steve Amos, Carolyn Wells, Mike Peters.

Scott and Steve discussed the correction now in process on Score with Team order number in website results.  There is no problem in the contest Team order just in the sending to the website.  Sometimes there is a problem with ties being entered incorrectly.

Kim discussed getting the office staff (Karin) to have access to update certain items in KCBS website.  This item is in the works with MMA.

A long discussion on what is needed in the KCBS website to make it more efficient for the office.

Scott, Steve, and Stephen will be making a list of suggestion.  We will be getting input from office staff as to their needs and wish list.

Kim and Karin gave us a update on Judges signup for contest.  As of now there are only 2 contest signed up for this service.  The word needs to be spread to Organizers of this service.

I move to accept this report.

Mike Peters:  Relational Database – tie the KCBS office programs together.

Banquet Committee:

Sandy Fulton:  Meeting July 28, 2015.  Attendees:  Sandy Fulton, Barbara Driscoll, Carolyn Wells, Mike Peters, Chris Peters and  Raye Keyes

1.  Banquet Sponsor

•           Mike McCloud reports that sponsorships are still at the $10,000 level but he has numerous conversations in play.

2.  Recognition for Former Champions:

•           Karrin is working on the slide show presentation for the former champions.

3.  80’s Party/Lifetime Member Reception 

•           Basing event on 300 guests.

•           Cash Bar will be provided with two drink tickets provided for Lifetime Members

•           Special Goody Bags will be presented to Members with Commemorative Wine Glasses.  These will need to be ordered by KCBS Office.  Price and number of glasses will be incorporated into total cost estimate for this party.  Raye has been asked to get a price.

•           Lifetime Member Reception will be incorporated into 80’s Party

•           DJ $500.

•           Photographer $500-$700* (Final pricing will be determined based on time and if used Fri and Sat evenings.  Once times are set, Raye will get contact from Photographer with final pricing)

•           Decorations - $1,000 (Raye going to work on getting this cost reduced)

•           Barbara has asked hotel for cost of sheet cakes celebrating the 30th Anniversary of KCBS which we will substitute for finger food, keeping the price down.  This reception will be after dinner therefore the committee does not feel the need for finger food or the expense of it.

•           No Charge to Reception for Lifetime Members

•           No charge for anyone who is registered for Banquet

•           If not attending banquet there will be a nominal charge (to be decided when we have a final cost)

•           Are we going to call this event the “80’s Party” or are we going to re-name to something like KCBS 30th Birthday Party, or KCBS 30th Anniversary Party?   The final name needs to be determined.  Discuss name at next meeting.


•           Chris Peters’ continues to secure items from vendors for the Silent Auction and Door Prizes a for the goody bags for the attendees.  Some of the cooks have said they would donate a spot in one of their classes but they would like the proceeds to go to a charity. 

•           This recommendation was discussed at the July board of Directors meeting and the Board agreed that the revenue generated from the cook classes would be routed through the Foundation to Operation BBQ Relief and Cookers Care.


•           Carolyn has received a mock up for the trophies and shared this with Candy.  Revisions have been suggested, and Carolyn has not received the final mock up.  Candy is working with Kathryn on the final trophy design.


•           The BBQ Crawl is scheduled for Friday from 10-2 and Saturday from 11-3.


•           Barbara is working with the new contact, Chris, at the hotel and will have a preliminary program ready for September.  The Annual Meeting/Board of Directors Meeting has been added to the schedule to take place on Friday at 4 PM.

•           Barbara received revised space from Chris which does include the additional room for the Thursday evening showing of the John Macros film, and the Anniversary/Birthday Party space.   Raye and Barbara will work with Chris to ensure that the space being held is listed correctly, and that we have adequate space for everything that we need.

•           Barbara will layer in sessions for Friday and Saturday, based on last year’s programs and present to the committee so that at that next meeting we can begin to discuss the placement/time of each session.   Space for the sessions will be assigned based on anticipated attendance and interest and timing.  Committee will work together to determine the final program for publication.


•           MMA will only handle the Corporate Sponsorship Vendors (if they want to participate in the Trade Show.  i.e. McCormick, Yeti, Cambro) and will not be handling securing any other exhibitors as we were first informed.  Sandy asked Raye to secure the exhibitors with the understanding that any sponsor who wants to be an exhibitor will not be charged.  Carolyn will get information on what the “going rates” are to exhibit in a trade show.  Committee will decide rates at next meeting..  After we know how many sponsors wish to set up as an exhibitor Raye will secure exhibitors for remaining space, confirming exhibitor rates with all other potential exhibitors.  Barbara will work on logistics for set up/space requirements/tear down with exhibitors.


•           Further discussion on pre-conference registration, signups for tours, crawl, 80’s party etc. will take place in the fall.  Per Raye, registration will be very streamlined, and attendees will be able to sign up for what they want to participate in on the website along with the dinner.


•           The following Committee Chairs have requested this time for their work sessions:  Barbara will set up times and locations.  The meetings will be held on Friday and Saturday.  Barbara has asked for last year’s attendance at these meetings.  Rooms will be set up with round tables, podium and chairs in back of room.

•           Marketing Boot Camp                            1 hour

•           BBQ 101 Ambassadors                         1 hour-Rename? (Business of BBQ?)

•           Table Captain Class                               2 hours

•           Legacy/Philanthropy                              1 ½ hours

•           Rep Meeting                                         2 hours

•           Red Cross Class                                               tbd

•           Life Safety Simulator                             tbd

•           Butcher Class/Mike McGonigle               1 hr.

•           Rules Committee                                               2 hrs.

•           The Bullsheet (Communications)             1 hr.

•           Organizers Roundtable                          90 minutes

•           Annual Meeting/Board of Directors         ???

11.  Guest Speaker

•           Carolyn is working on this and hopes to have a speaker scheduled within the next couple of months. 

12.  Special Edition Pin for 30th Anniversary

•           Tabled until September

13. Menu Selection/Food Tasting

•           The final menu selection will be held during The Royal.  Mike Richter, Barbara and Raye and possibly Bill Capstack (Carolyn will ask Bill) will do the taste testing.   Barbara will try to schedule the tasting with the hotel for Thursday, October 1st at 1:30 PM.  Barbara will confirm and advise the committee and those attending

14.  Program Publication

•           Tabled until September when all information is finalized

15.  Sessions

•           All sessions will need a brief written description

•           All Committee Chairs have been informed

•           Carolyn has secured a room for showing John Marcos film he produced with Pitmasters oversees for Thursday evening.

•           Carolyn will do a presentation on the Legacy of KCBS like she did last year, and will include Paul and Artie.

16.  Pre-Registration to help with planning

•           Committee will determine if there will be any charge for any events once final pricing is determined.  Registration will be streamlined and include the ability for attendees to sign up for various events (80’s Party, BBQ Crawl, Film Showing etc.)  as well as register for the conference on the website

17.  Banquet announcement in Bullsheet

•           Karrin will place ad in Bullsheet in August for Banquet as ‘Date to Remember’.

•           Sessions will be listed (but not the dates/times) in the September issue of the Bull Sheet.

18.  New addition to Program

•           Candy Weaver and her committee is now taking over the tentative titled program ‘Smoked Chicken Soup for the BBQ Soul.

 19.  2017 & 2018 Banquet

•           Mike Peters suggested that we begin working on RFP’s for 2017 & 2018 Banquet/Conference- Tabled to next meeting

Next Committee meeting will take place Tuesday August 25 at 10AM CST.

Membership Report:

Mike Richter:    The membership Committee met Wednesday July 15th.


Several topics were discussed including: 


Coupon books for members

Database mining

How do we retain members

Surveying non renewals

Membership booths at contests

Requiring competitors to be KCBS members

Creating another TOY series

Welcome kit for new and renewing members


The next meeting is Wednesday, August 19th at 8 p.m. Eastern


Below are the Membership numbers for July:


Number of Total Members = 20,288

Number of New Members = 580

Number of Renewed Members = 1009

Number of Non-renewals = 678

Number of members who signed up via the website = 253 (35 were families)

Number of New Members from Judging classes = 261

Number of Lifetime Members = 772

Number of International Members = 832

Number of Countries represented by KCBS Members = 29




Rules Committee

Mike Richter:  The Rules Committee met July 13th.  Motions from the previous BOD meeting were discussed. 


The committee discussed the challenges of establishing a listing of approved turn in containers and will continue to research. 


The committee would like the Sanctioning Committee to require organizers to advise teams in advance (contest application) if they will not be able to leave after awards.  Just like if the turn in times are different than the standard KCBS times.


Next meeting is Monday, August 10th at 8 p.m. Eastern


Nominating Committee

Sandy Fulton: No July meeting.

Communications Committee

Candy Weaver:  There was no meeting of the committee in July.  Review and minor corrections of Bullsheet copy happened before it went to press.  Karrin Murphy set up as user to online edition of the Bullsheet.  She successfully loaded the file and managed the conversion process.  Link to the new issue was posted at KCBS News and the links were sent to MMA for the membership e-blast.


Strategic Planning Committee

Bill Capstack:  Our committee members are Bill Capstack (Chairman), Paul Kirk, Mark Simmons, Dennis Polson, Bruce Bubacz, Joe Otto, Mike Peters (President) and  Carolyn Wells (Executive Director)


Our Committee met on July 20th and August 3rd. 


1.         Permanent Home for KCBS:

The board members will be in Kansas City for this meeting and will tour the proposed location, along with a detailed briefing by DTZ and Clockwork.


2.         Finalize the job requirements and transition agreement for the Executive Director:  A preliminary draft of the transition agreement is being prepared and we intend on having a complete agreement ready for board approval not later than the November board meeting.


3.         Explore additional ways to expand participation at events:

The first Competitor’s Series event is on track for October 2, 2015 at UMKC.


4.         KCBS History: 

Data is being collected on a continuing basis.


5.         Mid-Year Report on Goals for 2015:

a.         Review Prior Board Decisions:  Each board member was provided with the converted (Excel to Word) document listing every board action from 2/18/1987 through 12/31/2014 along with instructions on how to extract the data.  This document has proven useful in discovering the history of any particular issues, such as TOY, banquets, CBJ’s, etc.  Our desire is that going forward that all future actions by the board since 2014 will be added to this document.

b.         Permanent Home (Maybe Temporary):  The search for a permanent building and approval by the board is nearing its completion stages (Paragraph 1 above).  Design and build-out to follow. 

c.         Job Requirements Executive Director:  A comprehensive work flow analysis has been completed.  An updated job description is being developed with the cooperation of Axcet HR.  The transition agreement status is shown in paragraph 2 above.

d.         Finalize Ancillary Category Standards:  The KCBS ancillary guidelines for oysters, hamburgers, steak, sausage, desserts and vegetables have been approved. 

e.         Increase Participation at KCBS Events:  The first collegiate-level Competitors Series will be held in October.  Tailgating standards have been approved and the first tailgating competition will be held at the American Royal in October.



Philanthropy Committee Report

Dave Compton:  Our committee is still evaluating the criteria for the Grants in Aid and the Charitable Grants programs.  We are looking at what other charities are requiring and how that relates to our program.  We intend to bring these changes to the Board next month for approval.


We are also looking to see what we can do to drive donations to the KCBS Foundation by one-time, scheduled or bequest payments.  I believe that the checks went out to the Grant in Aid recipients last week from the Foundation's account, that should start to make people aware of it.


I ask that the Board accept this report.


Old Business


New Business

Polson:  8-6-2015 Recognizing Reps Motion

We give recognition to Cooks with 180 and 700 pins, and at the banquet with TOY awards.  The Judges move from CBJ to MCBJ, and 100 plus pins.  We have set up an award for Contests having 25 or more contests.

The glue between KCBS, Cooks, Judges, Organizers, and the general public are the Reps.

During the Rep meeting at the 2016 Conference the 5 and 10 year awards will be passed out.

During the Banquet all plaques will be awarded on stage.

In the future the Rep Chair will keep a record of all Reps, the year they started and the year left the Rep Core.

I move the Rep recognition Award be divided into 2 parts.

First part will be for past Reps that are no longer a Rep but gave their time to serve KCBS.

Past Reps may or may not be current KCBS members.

Past Reps were in good standing during and upon retiring from the Rep Core.

Recognition will be based on years 5 and 10 with a certificate with the KCBS logo for a background.

Words on the award -- Recognition for service as a KCBS Rep for ______ years.

A plaque for the 15, 20, 25, and 30 years.

Second part will be for current Reps giving their time to serve KCBS.

Current Reps must be in good standing as a KCBS Member and KCBS Rep.

Recognition will be based on years 5 and 10 with a certificate with the KCBS logo for the background.

Words on the award – Recognition for service as a KCBS Rep for ______ years.

A plaque for the 15, 20, 25, and 30 years.

Weaver:  I move that any KCBS contest cooking the four KCBS meats as described in Rule 10, the results of the event count for team of the year points.


Closed Session Agenda:

Carolyn Wells:  Review of proposed Seal of Approval

Bill Capstack:  Permanent home for KCBS.  Continued discussion regarding the proposed location along with motions(s).

Mike Peters:  MMA time and projects, utilizing CBJ data, scoring system discussion

KCBS Town Hall-Lynchburg, TN


Carol Bigler


A KCBS town hall was held in Lynchburg, Tennessee on Saturday, July 18, 2015. It was hosted by Randy and Carol Bigler. There were thirty-two (32) people in attendance including two (2) board members, Randy Bigler and Dennis Polson, and Carolyn Wells, executive director of KCBS. Every aspect of competition cooking was represented; cooks, judges, organizers, contest reps, and CBJ instructors. They came from; Tennessee, Alabama, North Carolina, Kansas, Missouri, and Florida.


Randy Bigler opened the meeting by welcoming all that took the time to attend and introduced Carolyn, Dennis and himself. He also explained that this was a forum in which all were encouraged to ask questions, voice opinions, or express new ideas. This was a time to start to bridge this gap between cooks and judges. Randy acted as moderator to keep the discussions on topic. Dennis, Carolyn and Randy were seated at the front of the area to field questions concerning board issues, but were not limited to just those types of questions. Here are some of the topics/questions that were discussed.


Emergency Reps- This is a program that the Rep committee is trying to get established. It would consist of Reps submitting names of master judges to be used in place of a rep due to an emergency by a contest rep. The names submitted would only help the other rep(s) in cases where another rep could not possibly get to the contest on time for the event. They would have no say as to disqualifications and or rule violations. The program is designed in case of extreme emergencies (accident at contest of contest rep, illness that takes rep from the contest site, etc.). The procedures for emergency reps are still in place at this time and this program is not intended to undermine that procedure in any way.


Table Captains Sampling of product- The question was asked if a table captain eat a sample at the judging table or wait until he/she goes to the leftover table. After much discussion it was decided that this issue should be brought to the CBJ committee and a policy should be established and followed by everyone.


Kale- It was announced that green Kale has been approved by the board and starting in 2016 it will be considered a legal garnish. It was pointed out that green kale has many varieties some of which are not green. Many at the meeting thought more specific wording should be added to the description of kale before allowing it to be used. It was also pointed out that the packaging of kale is not always accurate and that the cooks will really need to take care in choosing bagged kale.


Turn-in boxes- The rules committee is working on trying to get all the organizers to use a more uniform box at the contests. They are looking into options of organizers across the country and trying to choose five (5) or six (6) different options for them to use. State mandates must be considered when making these options. For example, in California Styrofoam has been banned, therefore, organizers would need a more environmental option.


Comment Cards- It was suggested that some of the examples on the comment card be changed or eliminated. There was much discussion on judges judging down on the different sizes of meat put into an entry, and the shape of that meat. There is no place in the rules that states the meat must be of a certain size or that it must be identical in shape. Judges are marking down if there are slight imperfections in the meat that is of no fault of the cook. An example given was that there was a small curvature in a brisket and when cut it showed. The cook was marked down because the meat had an “odd shape”.  The cooks asked that this be addressed by the CBJ committee and maybe change some of the wording to not put preconceived ideas in a judge’s mind.


Judging one entry at a time- A judge shared his experience at another sanctioning body contest on how they judge the entries. As entries were turned in, they were taken one by one to a table and the judges at that table judged it for appearance, taste and tenderness. When they were finished, they were brought another entry to judge. Some agreed that although this might help in not comparing entries, it may not be for KCBS sanctioned contest because of the time factor. Randy did say he would bring it before the CBJ committee for discussion.


Judge’s recertification- Randy and Dennis explained that the CBJ committee, after several months of discussion, decided not to make it mandatory for judges to be recertified.  It will be widely publicized to judges that continuing education programs are available on line and that all CBJs are welcome to sit in on another CBJ class at any time as long as the organizer of that class has room for them.


Judge selection- The different ways that judges are selected for contests were discussed. Some organizers use a lottery system, some on a first come first seated basis, and others by longevity (a judge is invited back if they judged the contest the previous year). Dennis explained that there is a new service for organizers available now. Organizers call Karen Murphy at KCBS and ask that she place a tab on their site for judges to sign up. All the information goes to the organizer and they may pick and choose the judges they want to judge their contest. It was stressed that this was a service and not a requirement for the organizers.


Organizer yahoo group- Dennis announced that the organizer yahoo group was up and running. Organizers may log in to share ideas, ask questions, talk about problems they may have and seek solutions by other organizers. This is just for organizers.


Table Captain Class- There was some talk of not allowing students to take a CBJ class and the Table Captain class on the same day. There were some good points expressed for both pro and con arguments. The main point being that they (the students) should be required to take a CBJ class. What if the person wanting to become a TC was a vegetarian or had an issue with eating certain meats, would KCBS be allowed to tell them they could not be a TC? It was suggested that they could be required to take the CBJ class as a prerequisite to the Table captain class and not take part in the sampling portion of the class. They would sit through the discussion of the samples to see why judge’s gave the scores they gave. Upon completion of the class they would be given a certificate of attendance rather than a CBJ badge. This would allow them to get a table captain badge. The badge could read “Certified Table Captain Only” to distinguish them for actual CBJ/TCs. This matter will be taken to the CBJ committee.


Master Judge program- Cooks would like to see judges working on their master program cook a contest before they have judged 26-30 contest.  They would like to see them judge about 6-10 contests and then cook with a team.  They also want more interaction between cooks and judges either on Friday nights or after judging is completed on Saturdays. Everyone attending seemed to agree that this was a good idea. Randy said he was finding it hard to find teams to allow judges to cook with them after they do it once at a contest. Cooks responded by saying they don’t know the judges anymore because they do not want to talk to them. This brought on the next topic.


Fraternizing with teams- This topic followed the one about the Master Judge program. The cooks wanted the judges to talk to them. It was explained by several reps what the true meaning of fraternizing with a team meant. Judges are free to talk to cooks or have lunch or any other meal with them on the day before the contest. They may say hi to them the morning of the event and wish them well if they want, but judges are not allowed to enter the cook site of any cook on the day of the event until all the judging has been completed. One rep shared what happens at one of his events. Teams are asked at the team meeting to participate in a hospitality program between them and the judges. Some preconceive number of cooks is given two(2) “goodie” bags, one (1)  for them and one(1) for the judge that comes to see them. After the judging is completed names are picked for the number of cooks participating and the judge is told he will receive a “goodie” bag from a certain cook.  If he/she will go to that cook and spend 15-30 minutes talking to the cook he/she may claim the bag. Most like this idea.


Receiving turn-in boxes- Discussion was held on how turn-in boxes are placed on trays to be taken to judging tables. One suggestion was in the Chicken category to alternate between 2 trays so that cooks do not need to wait to turn in their boxes. After the chicken category the table captain slips take care of duplicate entries going to the same table.  Cooks really do not care how it is done, they just do not want on the same table more than once, but they do understand that sometimes it is unavoidable when it is a small contest.


100,000 meals program- Carolyn announced that this program will be continuing in 2016 and that the count has been raised to 250,000 meals.


Backyard contests- Backyard cooks would like to see backyard events noted in the Bullsheet as backyard events. Discussion was that maybe an asterisk (*) could denote which of the contests were holding a backyard event along with a professional contest. They did like the idea of the Stand Alone Backyard events being listed as such.


Backyard points- Randy told everyone Karen had told him she would have the backyard points posted by August 31, 2015. This got a big round of applause.


Ancillary categories- It was explained that KCBS is branching out and sanctioning other types of foods-seafood, hamburgers, steak etc. The guidelines were made to help those contests have a fairly judged contest. There was some confusion as to if the guidelines would apply to all KCBS sanctioned events. The answer was no. The guidelines are there if an organizer would like to use them, but if the ancillary category is in conjunction with another KCBS sanctioned event the organizer may set his/her own guidelines. This is merely a service to organizers not a requirement.




TO:                  KCBS Board Members



FROM:            Mike McCloud



RE:                  Follow Up to Annual Membership Survey



DATE:            July 10, 2015



A couple of weeks ago our team forwarded copies of the raw data of the annual membership survey to each of you for your review.


Since that time, I have had an opportunity to digest the information and review it thoroughly. We have learned a LOT from this survey and wanted to share some things that caught my eye – especially as we plan for 2016 banquet, where we typically share with teams and organizers/promoters significant stats.


First, it is important to know that the KCBS membership responded to the survey instrument in remarkable numbers. About 21% of the membership took part in the survey. While most of us are not statistics pros, it is important that we understand that this survey rate of return allows us to speak for the membership with a 95% confidence level with a margin of error at +/- 3%. There are very few surveys of any kind that achieve that level of response (4,000+ responses).


As we use and release parts of this data, through PR, web or presentations, we can feel very comfortable that it accurately reflects the KCBS membership as a whole and will help everyone in our industry.


The information that probably comes as no surprise to Board Members, but is confirmed by the survey, is the baseline demographic information:


85% of the members are married

70.5% reporting incomes above $75k

40% report being employed in management positions

85.7% are male

76.8% are between 35-64 years of age

59.2% have completed Baccalaureate or higher degrees


What might be more surprising has to do with how seriously the competitors prepare for competitions during the competition season:



52.4% spend 4-9 hours practicing each week

62% invest $201-$600 each week to purchase supplies to practice with

52.8% of those surveyed prefer shopping for supplies at Sam’s

48.1% shop monthly in the freezer section

51.9% wish they could get their items in smaller quantities


In Leisure these BBQ enthusiasts report:


61.5% own 3 or more grills

60.1% are considering buying another grill in the next 12 months

61.8% report grilling more than 25 times a year

54.2% tailgate 1-3 times a year



For competition:


44% prefer old fashion charcoal

34% prefer wood

63.2% shop for supplies at Sam’s and 48.1% shop or also shop at local outlets

65% compete 1-5 times a year and 34% enter 6-24 competitions a year

41.2% regularly travel more than 1000 miles to compete

37% travel with a car filled with 3 or more passengers and nearly half have one passenger

77.5% spend $201-$600 on supplies when they compete

78.6% are traveling in their personal vehicle


For KCBS planning:


74.9 of all the respondents report that they have become certified judges

Of the 980 who are not judges 74% would like to be.

Their favorite seasonings are rubs (93.8%), but they all utilize marinades, sauces, injections and brines.


The bottom line, which is no surprise at all, is that the KCBS membership is serious about perfecting the art of BBQ. They are investing money for equipment and supplies for their personal lives and practice. Their competitive activity is a family affair. They are investing money in competition and travel, and this is something that should help us continue seeing investment by cities/tourism to support bbq contests (and promoters in the process).


I hope that this provides a useful context for reviewing the raw data. Please let me know if you have questions about the data.


In the meantime, I’m going to work with my team and Carolyn on ways to distribute some of these findings in helpful and newsworthy ways.


All the best!



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