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O Canada!

January 16, 2012
It's official. As of January 1, 2012, the Canadian Fraternal Association (CFA) has been consolidated under the Alliance's umbrella. Please join me in welcoming our newest members from the north! The consolidation has been in the works for over a year. The CFA will continue to exist as a legal entity in Canada and advocate on behalf of fraternals doing business there with provincial and federal public policymakers. But the day-to-day administration of the organization will be handled by the Alliance. In essence, the former members of the CFA will operate much like one of the Alliance's Sections or shared interest groups.

The consolidation makes sense on a number of levels. It gives former CFA members access to virtually all the membership benefits (with the exception of our U.S. political advocacy efforts) that other Alliance members enjoy. And it gives Alliance members a fantastic new pool of colleagues to network and share ideas with. The most compelling reasons for the consolidation were spelled out by Karen Bjerland, President and CEO of FaithLife Financial, when she addressed us as President of the CFA at the 2011 Alliance Annual Meeting: We have so much in common with you, our American cousin – our roots, our values, our problems, and our passion to increase the relevance and outreach of fraternalism. And, we’re so delighted that we’ve been able to work together so that as of January 1, 2012, the Canadian Fraternal Association will be a member of the American Fraternal Alliance. And by coming together, and increasing our strength in numbers, our fraternal goals in Canada are to create and sustain the social impact value of our organizations, to be mission-driven, yet profitable, accountable to our members and society. We want to drive scalable change and, you know as fraternals, we have the unique opportunity to grow not just organically, but through partnerships as well. Not very many business enterprises have that. And, of course we want to operate on a sustainable basis. We have made promises to our members that reach 50, 75, 100 years into the future. And, it’s essential that we keep those promises. We'll be conducting a "Welcome Webinar" for our Canadian members later this month. We'll also be setting up a social network on the Alliance Web site for the group. And we hope to see many representatives from these societies at the 2012 Section Mid-Year Meetings and Annual Meeting. Please join me in a warm welcome for these new members. Let the cross-pollinization begin!!!