The Internet Commerce Association shared its list of nominees for the 2024 Lonnie Borck Memorial Award. I was nominated (by Francois), and I appreciate him for thinking of me. I also nominated someone for the award, and I thought I would share who I nominated and why.
Many years ago, I shared the story about how I met Lonnie Borck. In short, I met Lonnie as we were both exiting the restroom at the 2007 TRAFFIC conference in New York City. Since that chance meeting, my friendship with Lonnie grew. From that point on and for many years, we spoke on the phone and exchanged emails many times a week, and we occasionally got together until his untimely passing in 2016. That still hurts.
Throughout the years, I have been fortunate to meet other domain investors from around the world. Many of these meetings were at TRAFFIC conferences organized by Rick Schwartz and Howard Neu. I attended TRAFFIC conferences in New York, Las Vegas, Amsterdam, Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, and probably several other locations I can’t immediately recall. For years, these TRAFFIC conferences were the only places to meet and connect with other domain investors and industry companies.
Prior to attending my first TRAFFIC conference in 2007, I became a member of a private domain investing discussion forum, Targeted Traffic Forum. This was the first time I was able to get acquainted with some of the most well-known domain investors at that time. “Rick’s Board,” as it was known, was a place to discuss various domain investing topics with others who were serious about domain investing.
Several years after Rick and Howard stopped hosting their TRAFFIC conferences, Rick announced a less formal domain investor meetup in the mountains of North Carolina. DNJournal reported that 80 domain investors made the trip to Asheville for the event. I bet Rick could announce another event for the Winter in south Florida, and he would have a big turnout.
Lonnie Borck had a great deal of respect and admiration for Rick Schwartz. In particular, I recall a TRAFFIC conference cocktail party when Rick checked in on Lonnie, who had not yet received a Kosher meal that was ordered for him. Rick went off to speak with someone, and ten minutes later a wrapped Kosher meal was given to Lonnie.
I couldn’t say how Lonnie would feel about an award named in his memory, but I think Lonnie would agree that Rick has made an “exceptional contribution to fostering a sense of community within the domain name industry.” For as long as I have known Rick Schwartz, he has always been working to bring people together. That’s why I nominated him to receive the 2024 Lonnie Borck Memorial Award, named in memory of our mutual friend.
That’s very nice. Lonnie was like a brother to me. Thank you!
I am happy that I am in such great company with the other nominees that Lonnie would be proud of.
Nobody deserves to leave us in his 40s.
Great article, Elliot! I think Lonnie would agree completely with what you’ve said here about Rick, as do I. He’s a great candidate for this very special award.
Rick Schwartz has done a lot to foster the development of the domain industry and bring together the domain investor community.
But should Rick accept an award from the Internet Commerce Association? He has spoken out against the ICA and, through his words, has undercut its efforts to protect the rights of the domain investor community.
So, maybe right guy, wrong award?
I think the ICA would benefit from having an industry voice like Rick in its ranks, but no, I do not think this award should come with a requirement of ICA support.
I am not sure how his words have undercut the ICA’s efforts, but I don’t think that is a discussion for this article.
I know Lonnie greatly respected and admired Rick, and if Rick prevails in the voting, it would be a great tribute to both of them.
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I think the ICA would benefit from having an industry voice like Rick in its ranks, but no, I do…
Rick Schwartz has done a lot to foster the development of the domain industry and bring together the domain investor…
I agree with you regarding rules and regulations, Elliot. I was only being slightly doubtful 🙂 It’s just that I…
Great article, Elliot! I think Lonnie would agree completely with what you’ve said here about Rick, as do I. He’s…
That’s very nice. Lonnie was like a brother to me. Thank you! I am happy that I am in such…
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