December LUNCHEON. The December luncheon was great, and I believe everyone who attended experienced some good food and good fellowship. We recognized two great men as Honorary members: Mr. Warren Motts and Mr. Rick Isbell. We presented them each with Honorary membership Certificates of Recognition. These are two individuals who contribute daily to helping Veterans and citizens at large. I felt honored to present the certificates.
ELECTIONS! The time is finally here. I urge you to come out on January 10, 2020 to our business meeting/luncheon if you have never attended a Chapter election. You can enjoy a good meal (price has now gone from $12 to $14 after a decade of no increases) and participate in the voting. The slate of officers to fill elected positions for 2020 is elsewhere in this newsletter and identifies the same officers who are currently serving except for your President. We have one new candidate, LTC (ret) Bill Radcliff, who has agreed to serve, if elected. Nominations may also be taken from the floor at that time for any of these positions. It would be wonderful to see a full turnout.
CLOSEOUT. This is my last President’s Corner as your President. I have been truly honored to have served this Chapter. We have a terrific Chapter and some of the most exceptional people I have ever worked with. It has been a very fast two years for me.
Two years ago, I noted three challenges in my first President’s Corner. These were: (1) increasing chapter membership (2) maintaining a sound financial position (which we have now) while we increase support to Veterans and (3) determining how we can be more effective and efficient in accomplishing our mission. How did we do?
We cleaned up the books on members and actually have dues-paying members now, we went to a real-time “Committee Module” run by MOAA National which tracks membership more effectively, and we have increased new membership by an average of almost two people per month. Our shortfall is in retaining membership. We have a net decline in membership due to illnesses, deaths, members moving out of the area, and simply no desire to continue membership. Our VP of Membership works diligently on this, and I believe if we continue gaining new members at the current rate, we’ll be just fine.
- Finances are in good shape. With the establishment of the Chapter Foundation as the fundraising arm of the Chapter, we are now able to provide financial support to our programs and just allow dues to be used to cover Chapter expenses. We are new at the fundraising business, but it has been going for about four months, and we have almost enough funds to cover our program commitments for the entire year. This is a true success story.
- I was unable to manage the third challenge of determining how to be more effective and efficient at accomplishing our mission. My initial thoughts were to determine/devise metrics to measure the effectiveness of our programs and where our support really made a difference. I think that’s still a good goal, but I was not able to achieve that goal.
I believe we have done well over the past two years. We continued supporting our programs, Veterans, deployed personnel and the local community. I am proud of all our accomplishments, but I will specifically mention two. The first is establishment of the Foundation. This will pay dividends far into the future. The second accomplishment is the survey we conducted around this time last year. The response rate was superb, and the comments/suggestions were excellent. We have been able to implement a few of the suggestions, but all are still being tracked and remain valid. There are some we’ll never address to everyone’s satisfaction, but this is a great effort on the part of the entire membership.
I wish to end my President’s Corner by saying the Board of Directors has been great at pulling together as a team. They have offered excellent advice and assistance and stepped up where there was a void. I thank each member for his/her service. The Chapter membership in general is remarkable. We’ve had members provide technical advice on a variety of subjects when asked, members providing informative and interesting talks at luncheons, and members truly supporting the MOAA legislative actions. Thank you. I believe you will be impressed when we publish the “2019 Accomplishments” shortly, and I expect to receive another 5-star rating with our Level of Excellence (LOE) and our Marvin J. Harris Communications Award submissions this year.
You took a chance two years ago by electing someone who had been on the Board less than a year, and someone who had lived in Washington, D.C. for the last 15 years. I thank you for your confidence in me and the support you provided. I thank you for the honor of being President. Together, we made some amazing things happen. Best wishes to all for 2020!
Luncheon: January 10, 2020, Berwick Restaurant, 1130 – 1300.
This luncheon/meeting is for the purpose of electing Chapter Officers
Ohio Council of Chapters: January 25, NVMM, Franklin Room, 1000-1200
Board of Directors: February 5, 2020, Bldg 11, Section 9, Room 906 at the Defense Supply Center – Columbus (DSCC).
What’s on Your Mind: This statement is still valid and sincere. I would like to know what is on your mind. Please get in touch with me if you have concerns about our Chapter or suggestions to improve what we do. I will make certain we consider your suggestions and try to correct any problems. Call me at 571-217-8897 or email me at SharTom123@AOL.com