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Minnesota Community Living 2013-07-08 Getting to Know the CAVL
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Getting to Know the CAVL

by Lynn Boergerhoff, Woodstock Townhome Association

Homeowners are CAI’s largest member group, currently about 40% of our 32,000 members nationwide. Some homeowners choose to lead their associations by serving on the board, a committee or a special project. There’s a lot to learn to become an informed and effective volunteer leader.

The Foundation for Community Association Research estimates that 1.65 million board members and 582,000 association committee members provide a combined total of over 75 million hours of service each year in over 323,000 community associations throughout the US. 1 "Community associations” in this report refer to planned communities including homeowners associations, condominium communities and housing cooperatives.
CAI created the Community Association Volunteer Leaders (CAVL), a specialized member group, to provide information and support to CAI members who are association leaders and homeowners. Board officers, directors, and other association leaders will benefit from the practical, common-sense tools and resources CAVL offers. CAVL will help you better understand the nature of association living and learn to lead more effectively.

These benefits are available to you through the CAI Center for Community Association Volunteers website:

  • Board Member Tool Kit – a user-friendly reference to the roles and responsibilities of board membership and practical guidelines to help manage your association.
  • Minutes – a bi-monthly newsletter with information relevant to association leadership.
  • Free online homeowner education course.
  • Copyright-free articles you can download for your own reference library.
  • Sample letters, notices, resolutions, standardized forms and document templates you can adapt to your association’s needs.
  • Members-only area of CAI’s website with answers to commonly asked questions and a Service Directory to help you find suppliers and contractors in your area.
  • Common Ground, CAI’s national magazine, always includes articles and information useful to volunteer leaders.

Our local CAI-MN chapter’s Community Association Volunteer Leaders Committee facilitates and promotes CAI-sanctioned educational programs and other learning opportunities on issues geared to current and future volunteer leaders. The CAVL Committee oversees development of educational coursework, coordinates speaker presentations and plans an annual calendar of educational events. The CAVL Committee held the Essentials Course on Saturday, March 23, 2013, the first time it has been held in 2 years with 15 people participating.

The Committee consists of a Chair and members who have experience as professional managers, association volunteer leaders and/or industry service providers. The current CAVL Committee Chair is Beth Gassen of Gassen Companies.

For more information, please visit the CAI Center for Community Association Volunteer Leaders at 

1. Statistical Review 2012 For U.S. Homeowners Associations, Condominium Communities and Housing Cooperatives, National and State Data. Foundation for Community Association Research, Falls Church, Virginia.

Published by Community Associations Institute — Minnesota Chapter, copyright 2013. All articles and paid advertising represent the opinions of authors and advertisers and not necessarily the opinion of either Minnesota Community Living or CAI–Minnesota Chapter. The information contained within should not be construed as a recommendation for any course of action regarding financial, legal, accounting, or other professional services by the CAI–Minnesota Chapter, or by Minnesota Community Living, or its authors. Articles, letters to the editor, and advertising may be sent to Chapter Staff Editor Joanne Penn at, or at CAI–Minnesota Chapter, 1000 Westgate Dr., Suite 252, St. Paul, MN 55114.

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