A history of service
A major decision coming out of this meeting was the setting up of a steering committee with specific terms of reference. Its main task was to draft a constitution and spearhead the formation of the CBFFAJ. It is important to highlight the fact that the CBFFAJ was not formed by the customs brokers for profit, but to guarantee effective representation of themselves as professionals. They also saw the need to have effective regulatory mechanisms governing their operations. More directly, they felt duty-bound to ensure, by maintaining a high standard of professional customs brokerage service, that the interest of their clients, the government, and their members were well served.
With the occasion having arisen for customs brokers to speak with one voice, the initial work was consolidated. A draft constitution was presented and adopted by a representative group of customs brokers on December 9, 1966. At this meeting the first officers were elected with Louis A. Williams as the first president.
Between 1966 and 1972, the CBFFAJ continued the struggle for national recognition. In 1972, the first draft regulation set to govern the operations of customs brokers was penned by government. The founding members objected to several provisions of the draft, and resolved to work day and night to prepare and submit a more reasonable alternative. This work was completed in July 1973 and the draft document was submitted to the Collector General, the head of Customs at the time.