This ca. 1985 list of North American Association Relations Committee members (LEFT) includes members of ARLIS/NA as well as members of what was then the newly created VRA.
Because of such strong overlapping interests, it was surely inevitable that ARLIS/NA and VRA would formalize their working relationship. This (BELOW) is the actual document proposing the formal affiliation of ARLIS/NA with VRA, ca. 1989.
Not surprisingly, the proposal was accepted. This 1990 letter from Lynette Korenic (BELOW), then president of ARLIS/NA, to Carla Freeman, then president of VRA, refers to the official connection between the two organizations.