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President’s Perspective -- On to the Future!
COL Steve Bond, USA (Ret)
Best wishes for the New Year!
After writing President’s Perspectives for the past 12 months, this one is my last. At the Installation and Awards Banquet on the January 15th, I’ll turn the “Presidents Gavel” over and give Ken Lowe the “President’s Pin”. Working with Ken for the past few years I know the Chapter will be in good hands. Meanwhile, my Chapter responsibilities will continue and as specified in our Bylaws, I’ll become the “Past President-Senior Advisor to the Board of Directors.” As I said at last year’s Installation Luncheon, years from now my term as President will only be remembered by an entry on the Chapter Past Presidents roster for 2021. But what is important is the course we set and how the Chapter moves forward for the future.
Looking back, 2021 was a remarkable year despite being COVID impacted. The Chapter kept ‘rolling along’ and the simple fact that we continue to receive MOAA honors, including the Five Star Chapter and Harris Communications Awards, year after year, speaks for itself. We continued to adapt with our virtual tools--the website, The Intercom, The Five Things e-Newsletter, and Facebook Page. We ZOOMed many of our meetings--while restarting our in-person events last March. We ended 2021 as MOAA’s second largest chapter and recruited the second highest number of new chapter members in all MOAA. Our Survivor Assistance Program remains unmatched, and we provided countless volunteer hours in the community. Our activities and events are newsworthy and frequently appear in area press and media. Charitable giving from our Good Deeds Foundation amounted to $51,200, and we again gave out $50,000 in Scholarships. We could have declared success on those statistics alone, but there was so much more. Our charitable giving to serve area military, veterans, and family members hit $132,250(!!!) -- a new record for the Chapter! We surpassed our COVID-impacted 2020 giving as a Chapter by about $45K and leaped over the benchmark we set in 2019 by over $30K! The extraordinary efforts were for the community fundraising events for MSG “Ranger” Mike Sonnenschein--the former area ROTC instructor shot in the chest in Haiti-- resulting in $27,300; and, $3,750 to aid area homeless and at-risk veterans and their families through a MOAA Foundation Community Grant--receiving one of only 33 MOAA grants to Chapters in the Country for 2021! We also started a new program--The MOAACC JROTC Medal Grant--to monetarily encourage promising JROTC Cadets to follow in our footsteps and enter Military Service. Those grants will be given at our MOAA Medal Luncheon in April.
This Chapter excels because of dedicated volunteers who epitomize the words--“Never Stop Serving!” At the Installation and Awards Banquet on January 15th, we will be recognizing some of our members who went “above and beyond” the norm with their volunteer spirit. My heartfelt thanks goes to all of you that offered me your support and for those whose hard work makes this Chapter what it is--Great!
It was an honor for me to serve as your President. Best wishes to the incoming group of Chapter leaders as they lead this great Chapter into the future!
Let me know if you have comments or concerns by e-mailing me at President@MOAACC.org.
Never Stop Serving®
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