President’s Blog


29
Apr 2009

After the latest polling numbers indicated that he was trailing his arch-conservative primary opponent by 14 points (up from a 10 point spread just two weeks ago), long-time GOP Senator Arlen Specter discovered his “inner-Democrat” and announced that he was switching parties and will run for re-election on the Democratic ticket this November.  (See today's articles from POLITICO, the Wall Street Journal and NY Times for more information.) 

 » Read more about: The Specter Switcheroo…  »...

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24
Apr 2009

Before you get away for the weekend, I would urge all of you who have participated in Section meetings over the past few weeks to not let the momentum established and the connections made at these meetings fade away.  Join the various social network groups NFCA has established on the Web site and keep the conversation going.  Keep lighting those candles by communicating with one another.  Who knows where it may lead?

 » Read more about: Continue Your Section Networking Online  »...

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21
Apr 2009

Last week’s Fraternal & Communications Sections Mid-Year Meeting continued a series of well-attended Section meetings that featured enlightening speakers, engaged audience members, and enthusiastic roundtable discussions that didn’t just recite the long list of problems facing the fraternal system, but generated ideas on how participants – that’s you and me – can work together to stabilize the system in 2009 and expand the fraternal footprint in 2010.  Here are the ten revelations I took away from the meeting:

 » Read more about: 10 Revelations from the Fraternal & Communications Sections Meeting  »...

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14
Apr 2009

Each day we’re bombarded with news and opinion on Congress’s effort to bailout certain industries or stimulate the economy through massive spending programs, the likes of which haven’t been seen since the depths of the Great Depression.  While fraternals – viewed individually or as a group – won’t make anyone’s list of organizations deemed “too big to fail,” societies are likely to feel the impact of congressional action, especially when it comes to issues like life insurer access to federal bailout funds from the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) or the pending......

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09
Apr 2009

The leaders of 41 NFCA member societies gathered in Las Vegas last week for the annual Presidents Section meeting.  While the setting may seem a bit incongruous – executives of fraternal societies, many with religious bonds, meeting in Sin City at the beginning of Holy Week – the combination of location, agenda topics and timing contributed to one of the best attended and most productive Section meetings in recent memory.

 » Read more about: Five Tangible Takeaways from the Presidents Section Meeting  »...

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01
Apr 2009

Board Adopts Tighter Dress Code Standards for Annual Meeting

In a unanimous vote, the NFCA Board of Directors approved a motion to enforce strict dress code standards on attendees of the 2009 Annual Meeting, scheduled for September 17-19 in San Antonio.  The requirements include Stetsons, pearl-snapped shirts, string ties, blue jeans (boot cut, of course), and boots for both men and women.  This is commonly referred to as “a Texas Tuxedo” among the locals. 

 » Read more about: Set Aside Foolish Things  »...

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24
Mar 2009

Next week I'll celebrate my one-year anniversary as president and CEO of NFCA.  Trade association executives have a unique role.  We are here to serve the members – after all, it is YOUR organization – and to lead the organization, sometimes in a direction that members may not want to go.  Balancing the "servant/leader" roles is critical to the success of the executive and the organization.  I welcome your thoughts on how I've done that over the past year.

 » Read more about: 10 things I learned from my visits with you......

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13
Mar 2009

I’ve used this blog several times to talk about the need for fraternals to develop long-term partnerships with well-respected charitable organizations.  Or we need to align ourselves with specific causes in an effort to engage in sustainable and meaningful community service activities that resonate with members and deliver real value to individuals who need the help that only caring and dedicated volunteers can provide.  In fact, I’ve talked about this so much I’m starting to sound a bit “preachy.” 

 » Read more about: Who's Your Partner?  »...

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06
Mar 2009

I know I promised several more postings about the enormously valuable Knights of Columbus “Summit on Volunteerism,” but, at least in the short term, the good news from the Aloha State trumps everything else.

I’m pleased to report that H. 1749, the bill that would have required fraternals to pay premium tax in Hawaii, has been amended to delete all references to fraternal benefit societies. 

 » Read more about: Victory in the Pacific!  »...

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01
Mar 2009

On Friday, Feb. 27, I attended the "Summit on Volunteerism" in NYC hosted by the Knights of Columbus.  And I came away inspired with a greatly expanded view of the role fraternals can play in a nation in need of community service now more than ever.

I write this on the flight home from that event.  This will be the first of several postings about the summit.  You can view the various sessions by clicking here,

 » Read more about: Neighbors Helping Neighbors  »...

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