After several years of planning, Doris Wood, founder, launched (with help from 3 other people) the Multi-Level Marketing International Association (MLMIA). At that time, Doris had been in this profession for 26 years, from Distributor to Chairman of the Board of several companies. This Association was so totally different from any other organization anywhere like it in the world. It welcomed everyone in our industry — Independent Contractors (termed Distributor), Supplier/Vendors (termed Support) that were manufacturers of products, attorneys, speakers, consultants, trainers and software dealers and any others that sold to the Distributors and/or Companies (termed Corporate). MLMIA gave all three (Corporate, Support & Distributor) a voice and vote on and for our Board of Directors, to wake people up to what we were really like. Must have worked, we have had a minimum of four people that served on our board that have started their own direct selling organizations, that copied almost exactly what we had. As President, Doris, went to many foreign countries, were we have sister organizations like ours around the world. Didn’t happen until there was an MLMIA. But that was for the past 34 years.
For the past five or six years, we have looked for someone that has the love of this industry (including Direct Sales, People to People Marketing, Network Marketing and Multi-Level Marketing), that understands that MLM means Making Life Meaningful, that understands dedication and what it can and needs to stand for again. And we looked, looked and looked again. We interviewed quite a number of people but they couldn’t live up to what the Board felt we needed. And the Board never gave up. Then… Doris went to a company’s new opening presentation and met the keynote speaker, a person that she felt embodied all of the dreams that we had hoped for and some even a little more. You all know, you get that feeling. Then… we took several months (6) of probing, testing, questioning and making sure that this was the person we wanted and needed. (He lived on the East Coast but spent weeks in California and a week in Florida with some of the board to make sure he was the ONE.) He never gave up, no matter what, and neither did we.
He more than passed the many tests (read his bio on this site).
During that period of time, understanding that we are living in a new area, the Board of Directors (made up of Distributors, Support & Corporate) decided that it was time to reflect on all the newness. A lot happened because of Jim Lupkin. The decision was made to change the name of MLMIA to something that shows a great promise for the coming years for the total Direct Sales/Network Marketing/Multi- Level Marketing to Social Network Association (SNA) … Because that is what we are…Social people that Network, making friends and capture some along the way for our great, fantastic, super industry/profession.