Frequently Asked Questions

What does the SCA USA Chapter do?

Supported by dedicated staff and volunteer leaders, the SCA USA Chapter represents the US-based members of the SCA who constitute close to 40% of the association’s global membership. Chapter staff will work with elected volunteer leaders (learn more about the 2019 elections here) to organize the U.S. Coffee Championships and other educational events that bring the US coffee community together.

The 2019 Chapter Committee will be the first group of elected volunteer leadership of the new SCA USA Chapter. The elected group will have the opportunity to map out the activities of the chapter with support from SCA staff.

Why is the SCA USA Chapter supported by both staff and volunteers?

Most SCA Chapters around the globe are run entirely by volunteers, with a few exceptions, depending on the size of the country’s market and the number of members in the region. As close to 40% of the association’s members are based in the US, the SCA USA Chapter will be supported by both existing SCA staff (many of whom have been support US activities for many years) and volunteer leadership.

Additionally, since the merger of the SCAA and SCAE in 2017, a group of dedicated volunteers in the US coffee community came together to advocate for the creation of a chapter to support existing staff and expand local activities across the country.

The 2019 SCA USA Chapter elections provide an opportunity for US coffee professionals to be the voice of their local coffee communities and support the global mission of the association at a national level. Learn more and get involved here.

How will SCA staff support the elected volunteer leadership?

SCA staff in the US currently support the U.S. Coffee Competitions and other community events, as well as customer services, marketing, communications, and other logistical support. Since the 2017 SCAA/SCAE merger, and thanks to the expanding US coffee market, the number of SCA staff who support US activities has expanded. The elected volunteer leaders of the USA Chapter will serve mainly in advisory roles, supported by our dedicated staff, but will have the option to dedicate as many hours as they’d like to Chapter activities.

Where will the budget for the activities for the US Chapter come from?

The current year's budget from SCA accounted for funds to support the awareness of building a chapter.  Activity like community outreach, info sessions/town hall meetings, the purchase of election software and such were anticipated and budgeted within SCA's annual budget. We will continue to provide this budget support for the SCA USA Chapter within the SCA budget framework. After we have an elected leadership group for the new SCA USA Chapter we can better define the full breadth of annual activities that can be produced within the country.

Will the USA Chapter become a separate organization?

As an official staff-supported chapter of the SCA, a nonprofit organization registered as an IRC 501(c)(6) under the laws of California, the SCA USA Chapter will not be registered as a separate organization. The staff of the SCA USA Chapter will continue reporting to the headquarters of the SCA in the city of Santa Ana, California and SCA members who live in the United States will hold automatic membership in the SCA USA Chapter.

Why is the structure of the SCA USA Chapter different from that of other SCA chapters?

The SCA USA Chapter is one of over 30 SCA Chapters around the world. National Chapters support their local coffee communities and represent the SCA’s vision, mission, and purpose. As the official voice of the US coffee community, the SCA USA Chapter is positioned to serve regional coffee communities with a focus on access, diversity, influence, and a local connection to the global network of coffee professionals. Learn more about SCA National Chapters and the SCA USA Chapter structure.

The United States is a vast country, with vibrant local coffee communities who have their own needs. The proposed volunteer leadership structure of the SCA USA Chapter is designed to provide support to local communities at a regional level. Proposed by staff and volunteers from the US coffee community, this regional volunteer leadership structure to better support the vast region, the diverse membership communities, and allow for a larger volunteer base to get involved/share the workload.

What is each volunteer position responsible for?

The SCA USA Chapter’s volunteer leadership will include:

  • 1 National Coordinator

  • 6 Regional Coordinators (View map)

  • Competitions Coordinator

  • Community Coordinator

Each coordinator will work with SCA staff across departments to support activities in the US. View the roles and responsibilities.

Can chapter coordinators serve on the board of directors of SCA?

Yes, SCA USA Chapter Coordinators may serve on the SCA Board of Directors and any other SCA advisory body they choose to run for.

Do chapter coordinators get paid?

As with all SCA Chapter volunteer positions, SCA USA Chapter Coordinator positions are not paid.

Who is eligible to be nominated for a volunteer leadership position on the SCA USA Chapter?

Anyone can be nominated to run in the 2019 SCA USA Chapter Elections— members may choose to nominate themselves or others. Nominees must be members of the SCA (any membership category or CIM is eligible) and live in the United States. All nominated candidates will be contacted by SCA staff and be given the opportunity to accept their nomination to be part of the election process.

What are the expected time and travel commitments for Chapter Coordinators?

As with other SCA leadership council and coordinator opportunities, the time commitment is estimated at 10 hours per month. This average is calculated based on 1-2 conference calls per month, pre and post work to those calls, as well as engagement through emails and social media. We also estimate 1-2 in person meetings a year for planning and strategy. 

The elected leadership will work together to decide the exact expectations after the National Committee is formed. 

Will there be opportunities to get involved with the chapter outside of the elected positions?

Yes, we will be organizing sub-committees in each region to support the Regional Coordinators. These opportunities will become available after the election process is completed.