Hamlin Reaches Out To Staff Today

New NRA CEO and EVP Doug Hamlin sent out an email this morning to all NRA staff. It was part thank you, part what we need to do, part how he intends to manage, and part recognition that finances are tough.

There were some interesting points in what he said to staff that need to be emphasized. First and foremost, he said that he and all the NRA staff work for the members. That was nice to hear given the perception that many including Wayne only saw the members as sheep to be fleeced. Second, Hamlin emphasized that the NRA is not leaving Fairfax anytime soon. He encouraged employees in the Metro DC region to return to work in the headquarters building. Third, he said there would be new digital marketing initiatives to increase memberships and challenged employees to tell their friends to join. Finally, he said his objective was to restore trust in the NRA. He didn’t sugarcoat the fact that finances are tight.

The one thing I did disagree with him on is the assertion that the NRA is “the most significant conservative organization left on the battlefield.” I think we need to get away from the perception that the NRA is only for conservatives. While I am most certainly a conservative with libertarian leanings, I recognize that support for the Second Amendment and our civil rights is not limited to conservatives nor should it be. Regardless of where you are on the political spectrum, if you support the Second Amendment then you are my friend.

You can read the whole email for yourself as I’ve posted it below:

From: Hamlin, Douglas
Sent: Thursday, May 23, 2024 9:28 AM
To: #All NRA Employees <#AllNRAEmployees@nrahq.org>
Subject: Full Speed Ahead!

To All:

I’m humbled and honored to be sending you this e-mail as your new EVP/CEO. It has been a tumultuous 5 years as we have battled for the survival of our beloved National Rifle Association (NRA). Every one of us has been in the trenches as we have fought the good fight and kept the faith. We have stood strong shoulder to shoulder working together on behalf of our members. I want to emphasize – WE WORK FOR OUR MEMBERS!

THANK YOU for not wavering as we have withstood extreme pressure and disinformation from the media, left leaning political forces, and the State of New York.

I’ve been a proud NRA Staffer for over 10 years. I do not assume my new position for any other reason than I love my country and will not stand idly by as we see our freedoms diminished. The NRA is the most significant conservative organization left on the battlefield. We are targeted because we win…and we are right in our cause!

As we move forward my primary objective is to restore the trust of our members, our industry, our donors, and our staff. We are in a tough spot financially but are going to make it. I will be spending a significant amount of time fundraising to keep our 153 years + operation on track. Once our members see we are making progress with the changes resulting from the efforts of our Board of Directors, they will come back in significant numbers. I ask you to go out and recruit new members. Tell your friends to join!

There has been a lot of talk about moving our operations away from Fairfax, Virginia. We will not be moving at this time. I hope those of you in the DC, Maryland, Virginia region will come to our office as much as possible. 

My leadership style is one of consensus building. I do not like to be micro-managed and that’s how I will interact with the leadership team. Having said that I’m not afraid to make tough decisions and get involved when and where needed.

We will be moving quickly on some digital marketing initiatives to stir up some positive public relations that will hopefully stimulate new memberships. Stay tuned for more information on our plans as we develop them.

In closing thank you for your dedication to our cause. Our mission to protect the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens is more important now than ever before. Hold your heads high as we continue to do the important work of the NRA…together.

Doug Hamlin

Executive Vice President/CEO

National Rifle Association

7 thoughts on “Hamlin Reaches Out To Staff Today”

  1. As a libertarian I also agree that the NRA should not be a conservative organization. The current liberal vs. conservative culture war should be left at the door. NRA is for all people who support the Second Amendment regardless of their other policy choices.

  2. A few of my takeaways:

    * agreed mostly on the right / left thing, that NRA needs to not overtly bind gun rights to other conservative issues, and stay focused on growing the coalition for 2A advocacy, shooting sports, training, and gun culture. That said, if an organization isn’t explicitly opposed to leftist politics they seem to get consumed by it, so there needs to be some level of principled internal identity which is fundamentally libertarian and right-leaning in ethos. I still think it’s possible to reach across groups – find strange bedfellows as it were – if the focus of advocacy stays on 2A. Nobody needs the NRA weighing in on foreign policy unless it’s about import/export. Or energy policy, etc.

    * sup with Brewer? To get (more) money from people like me, I need to have some confidence that the money-go-round has been shut down and competent counsel has been retained. Fantastic that Frazer has been knocked down a peg, but.. waiting for the other shoe to drop. I think a lot will become clear at the next court date. Looking to see a fundamental shift in strategy and messaging by the NRA there. They are very late in adopting the position that the org is a victim of LaPierre, Frazer, etc., and some of these wolves are still in the henhouse. Put the org first! Don’t be cagey about the fact that these crooks ripped off the membership. Truth and reconciliation!

    * digital marketing must be cheaper than print. Glad he didn’t say they’re dreaming up a bunch of new mailers. They could shut down the publications while getting back on feet for all I care (though that ad money must be great). But again, my donation will come (and it will come) when I see Brewer gone and evidence of a turnaround at next court date.

    * I’m excited to see what’s coming and very hopeful.

  3. I’m reserving judgement at this time. I wasn’t fond of this statement:

    “we have withstood extreme pressure and disinformation from the media, left leaning political forces, and the State of New York.”

    Sounds like a cop out to me. Refusing to admit the blatant corruption and misdeeds that have gotten them into this condition isn’t going to convince people that things have truly changed…basically, don’t piss on my leg and tell me it’s raining.

    “sup with Brewer? To get (more) money from people like me, I need to have some confidence that the money-go-round has been shut down and competent counsel has been retained.”

    Absolutely. Continuing to feed money into the maw of that corrupt and incompetent beast is not the way to win my support. Money I give to 2A organizations needs to be spent on supporting the 2nd Amendment, not to buy a shyster lawyer another boat.

    These are the very first hints that positive change may be occurring. There’s a long way to go and a lot of cleanup left to do before I can be confident they’ve righted the ship and are again worthy of my support.

  4. It would have been better to say that firearms issues are the only ones where the conservative side has achieved some victories and the NRA has been a major part of this. (I exclude abortion because that was a federalism victory, not a conservative one and a number of states have reverted to abortion on demand.) An armed citizenry is inherently a conservative issue but that doesn’t make NRA a conservative organization. We should stay away from other issues in the conservative constellation as an organization. Individuals should do what they want.

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