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|President's Message - Christopher O'Sullivan, March 2018|
Boston Chapter ALA
Dear Boston Chapter ALA Members, Business Partners and Friends:
Webster's Dictionary defines volunteer as "a person who voluntarily undertakes a service or duty". Our Chapter is blessed with an abundance of great volunteers. It is what gives our Chapter the "backbone" to accomplish all of the goals we have set and makes us one of the premier Chapters in the Association. As Chapter President, I have had the privilege of volunteering with many members (both long-standing and new) from many different backgrounds and experiences who have come together to bring the Boston Chapter to where it is today. Throughout this time, I have also made lifelong friends.
In my first Board meeting as Chapter President, I challenged each Board Member to make the Chapter 5% better by year-end than where we began; your 2017-2018 Board of Directors exceeded that goal. Over this past year, our volunteers provided us with fantastic educational programs, grew our membership in size as well as engagement, and continued to provide a second-to-none Business Partner program. We have donated both time and money to area charities, making a difference in our community. This year, the Chapter really got the Diversity & Inclusion committee up and running, helping our Member Firms focus on diversity through action and education. We improved on the ways we communicate with the membership through various mediums such as our website, “The Boston Chapter Chatter” newsletter, and the “Boston Buzz”. We dramatically increased ease of use of our website by making it mobile friendly and moved our Membership Directory to an electronic format with online search capability that is updated quarterly instead of annually. You, the members, have also educated those of us serving on committees by providing valuable feedback that has helped us recalibrate and offer the best, most compelling programming to all.
We have an exciting year coming up in 2018-2019. Along with outstanding monthly programing and the CLM study group, we have the following things to look forward to:
There are many additional membership benefits that add value to you and your firm, including the salary survey that the Chapter subsidizes, making it affordable to every firm who participates by March 16th. Click here to participate. Please visit our website and join us on Twitter and Facebook (@alaboston) or on LinkedIn for all the latest on Boston Chapter news, benefits and events.
There are many accomplishments over this past year that we should all be proud of: watching the Chapter continue to improve in so many ways; helping members within our ALA community and beyond with the Hurricane Harvey Challenge we posed to support victims of this natural disaster, raising over $40,000 for the Red Cross; and continuing to support the program our Chapter was instrumental in creating through the Boys & Girls Clubs of Medford and Somerville to fund the teens program. Our Chapter was recently notified that we are being awarded the “Medford Community Partner of the Year” in April for all of the help we have given the Boys & Girls Clubs. This is truly a great honor.
We also revived our “Lifetime Member” status for those Chapter Members the Board of Directors feel have added extraordinary contributions to the Chapter. I am happy to announce our newest Lifetime Member - Sheila Connors LeDuc. Sheila has served the Chapter in a great many ways, including as President in 1996-1997, overseeing the HR Roundtables for many years, and serving on several committees. Her friendship, knowledge and sense of humor are gifts to us all. We also created an In Memoriam for those Chapter Members who made extraordinary contributions to the Chapter who have passed on but are not forgotten.
Finally, if you get the call to volunteer on a committee, please take this as a great honor and give it serious consideration. If you do not want to wait for a call and want to serve on a committee, please pick up the phone or send an email to any Board Member or Committee Chair and tell them you are interested. There is still a lot to accomplish and we need your help!
A big THANK YOU to all the current volunteer members of the 2017-2018 Board of Directors and all members that served on various committees throughout the year. Without you we could not have accomplished so much. Congratulations to Amy Egan Cook, our next Chapter President, and to all the recently elected volunteers who have accepted nominations to serve on the 2018-2019 Board of Directors. I look forward to seeing you bring the Boston Chapter to the next level.
A final thank you to all of our members, business partners, and board and committee members for making my term as Chapter President very special.
Sincerely and with great pride,