As my term serving as your President winds down, I look back over the year and can't believe how quickly it has gone. I started off at last year's symposium by asking if you were committed? Were you a chicken or a pig? Over the last 12 months I was able to meet and listen to so many of you while visiting every chapter around the state. I met a lot of chickens! One of my goals as President was try to open up the lines of communications between Chapters. We can all learn so much just by sharing information and not being isolated. Sometimes chapters struggle and fall into a rut. Whether it's finding new leaders or new programs, you can simply look to other chapters for fresh ideas or even renewed energy.
Let me take this opportunity to share some names of people who can help and what they do so well. Call on them if you need help. If you have hit rock bottom and just need the drive to get started again, call Jorge Baste in Miami. I would call Jorge the Phoenix of FAHU, helping the Miami-Dade chapter rise from the ashes. Or if you just need help finding the courage to jump in when no one else will, ask Steve Blackford in Jacksonville because that's what he did. If you want organization and leadership, call Michele Malooley in Palm Beach. You won't find a more dedicated and passionate leader. If you feel your chapter lacks energy and fresh ideas, call Tonda Lawson in Ft. Myers. She has more energy and imagination than a room full of 1st graders! Just a 10 minute phone call with Tonda is like therapy with Zig Ziglar! Need programs to take your chapter from selling off cocktail napkins and into this century so you can attract younger members? Bobby Leesman in Tampa is your man. Do you need to set up a Legislative Committee? Neal Murray in Ft. Lauderdale keeps his chapter informed year after year and is on every Legislative call. He can help you get organized. How about a plan to recruit new members? Call Randy Bartlein in Sarasota. He has a proven system for consistently recruiting new members. Every chapter needs to communicate with its members regarding events, programs, awards, etc. Call Peggy Gainey in Tallahassee. Peggy will tell you that we all like pictures of what we are doing. Anyone who has ever sold anything on eBay knows there is an "everything else" category on eBay. For FAHU, that is Dave Sherrill in Orlando. Whether it's how to run a chapter, bylaws, money, events, training, awards, membership, or wait for it…."everything else." Just call Dave, he knows it all!
These are just a handful of amazing people we have in FAHU. All are committed and all are willing to step up and help. You just need to ask. I would like to take this opportunity to not only thank them but also thank the rest of my Board for working so hard this past year. Legislative Chair Matthew Dinkel and Lobbyist Rhett O'Doski had a most challenging year! Bill Hepscher and Don Marx helped get money to the candidates we supported. Michael Teller kept the FAHU School in compliance with OIR. Marilyn Stenger helped plan a new Symposium, Debbie Hediger was always there when called upon, Paul Deininger made my transition easy and hopefully I can do the same for Steve Israel. I'm running out of room but I can't go without thanking Artie Hoffman, Colby Jackson, Cory Lilburn, Keith Giles, Lisa Otero, Miriam Watkins, Steve Israel, Wayne Sakamoto and all the Chapter Presidents. Remember it's your (our) Association!
Thank you for allowing me to lead for the past year.