As we enter the month of May, I can see the end of my year’s term. It has been a challenging time but nonetheless the opportunity of a lifetime. First let me start by welcoming back Executive Director Doris Barnes on her return from many months of recuperation and therapy. To her credit, she has taken her time and listened to her surgeons. Her willingness and eagerness to return is without compare but sometimes you just have to call a time out and give your body and the healing process just acknowledgement.
We can certainly take a lesson from her: Listen to your body. We find ourselves working long hours, weekends and holidays. When planning your calendar mark off time for vacations, gym workouts and maybe even a mental health day or two. You will find yourself refreshed and ready to tackle what comes your way.
This has been a year of austerity, to say the least. We found ourselves very much in the red as a result of a downswing in the economy and less sponsorship income then we budgeted. Moving The Advocate on-line provided significant savings. This now 52-page legal news outlet was costing us an inordinate amount of money in printing and posting. Nary has a complaint been heard. We realize that we haven’t exactly perfected the product but its roll out has met with much more success than other programs. Tim Bojanowski of Zest Solutions and our Executive Council has been working hand and hand to make the product better. Stay tuned as you should be seeing marked improvement before I leave office.
A special shout out to our able bodied employees, Rachel Ruocco and Maxine Morrow, who not only were outstanding in Doris’ stead but have learned many new skills and will become more and more involved in various aspects of our operation. Stop by and chat them up. Get to know them and by all means note the changes in our office. Fresh paint, a few new items and a rearrangement of the furniture has produced a better working environment and a place where our members can feel comfortable. Rachel is our LRIS Director. Make an appointment with her and find out how you can become a contributing member of LRIS as well as obtain new clients.
I cannot tell you how proud I am to serve with our current Executive Council. They are bright, challenging and have a creative vision for the future. I am equally proud to tell you that we as a group have managed to not only balance the budget but have actually put us in the black. T. Wray McCurdy, Judge Vicki Ballou-Watts and Rob Thompson, officers all, and every member of our EC Committee deserve an acknowledgement of a job well done. We are truly a sum of our parts. I feel confident that we are leaving office with the knowledge that Mr. McCurdy will have an excellent opportunity in the year ahead. Wray gets a special thanks. From day one, Wray and I have worked together to bring the association all ahead full steam.