|Vietnam Veterans of America|
|Treasurer’s Report, July/August 2021|
A Pivotal Convention
BY JACK McMANUS
The National Convention in early November in Greensboro, North Carolina, will be a landmark event in VVA’s history because it will likely set the course for the organization’s journey to its eventual end. The Convention Planning Committee, chaired by Dan Stenvold, has been creating what may be VVA’s largest biennial governing event. It will be here that you can help determine VVA’s place in history.
Will we go out with the same passionate advocacy we’ve had for these many years? How much longer will VVA be a relevant participant in our local communities and a national veterans service organization? If we are unable to decide on a date for when we finally do go away, what directions will be available to the chapters and to our members?
Many members believe that regardless of what the delegates at the 2021 Convention decide about where VVA will go as a national VSO, that it’s possible that chapters can continue in existence until their members decide their unique fates.
What is becoming clearer by the day is that we can’t delay these critical decisions much past the Greensboro Convention.
I recently attended the North Carolina State Council meeting in which Region 3 Director Rossie Nance, newly elected State President Liz Cannon, and all the fine host chapter delegates committed to fully support this landmark Convention.
RECALLING PAST STAFF MEMBERS
Between last year’s COVID-necessitated RIFs and some recent personal health issues, we have retired a group of long-term national staff members. With COVID restrictions being relaxed and our staff returning from remote working schedules to the in-person work environment at the national office, we are missing the faces of seasoned professionals such as Bernie Edelman and Rick Weidman in the Government Affairs Department, Tracie Houston in Membership, and Deborah Williams, Eileen Mitchell, and Joe Sternburg in Finance. Some of those folks will be joining us in Greensboro for the Convention. Please be there to wish them a safe and healthy retirement.
THE COST HAS GONE DOWN
The Convention Planning Committee and Meetings Director Wes Guidry managed to find a way to cut the registration cost in half to make it more affordable. And even though accommodation rates have risen sharply for conventions in the new post-COVID environment, the Greensboro Sheraton Four Seasons folks have not raised their pre-pandemic agreed-upon room rates.
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