Updates from the Executive Director

Aaron Ensminger, CAE

June 5, 2020

In turbulent times, we often look to our places of belonging. For lots of us, Sertoma is that place, and we’re honored to be just that for so many of you.

With that in mind, I’ve been trying to let other people talk in this space, but if you’ve met me, you know how difficult it is for me to stay quiet for very long. There’s so much to talk about!

First off, so many of you are using Zoom and other virtual means to meet… I love seeing your gallery screenshots! Keep posting them and sending them in! If your club hasn’t made the leap yet… do it!! Here’s an article from Janice on how to get a meeting set up through us!

And speaking of meetings, as you start your budget meetings, remember that member dues will now be billed at the rate voted by the members in April. The new billed amount will be $26.25 quarterly ($105) annual beginning with the July billing.

….and speaking of members, you’ve probably seen people talking about the new National Membership level. I’ve been talking about it for a while now, and it’s a reality. Under the Sertoma Bylaws, the Board can create new classes of membership, and they voted to do so in creating this membership class. Now anyone can join Sertoma and become a National Member… they’ll receive our mailings (both electronic and paper) and have access to the website including training modules, as well as access to the Members Corner on Facebook. This new class of membership has dues equal to the Member dues rate ($105 as of July 1) and will be billed directly from HQ.

Why create a new class? There are a few reasons: first, one of our jobs here at your HQ office as we see it is to help with recruiting. With this membership class, we have the ability to sign people up as members instantly. We then have people who are already members who are a much better prospect for new and also existing clubs! Second, it’s a fact of life that clubs disband. In a metro area, a club may disband and new ones form within a few years. When a club disbands, its members historically have no longer been members of Sertoma… their status as a member was tied to their club. Now, when a club disbands, those members will be afforded the opportunity to continue their Sertoma membership to stay “plugged in’ to Sertoma and to new clubs that form in their areas.

I also want to encourage you to learn more about our National Service Project. This is a yearlong project in which we’re encouraging clubs to partner with us to purchase portable looping systems for a health care provider office in your area… we’ll all present them during Better Speech & Hearing Month 2021 to make a national splash and show the world what we can do!

And finally, I’d like to encourage you to join us in August for our first ever virtual convention! The world won’t let us meet in person right now, but we’ve got a lot of fun and a lot of great stuff planned for this year’s convention! Be sure to register here!

Whew!! There’s a lot happening, and sometimes I don’t even realize how much! If you’ve managed to make it to the end of this, I want to tell you how much we appreciate you. You’re the ones who make all of what we do as Sertomans work, and speaking for all of us in your Headquarters office, we appreciate you all. Thank you for all you do for Sertoma and for your communities!


5 Comments

  • Tim Self says:

    This is a fantastic accomplishment. Our organization needs to be cause focused and managed nationally and not geographically. Hopefully one of the next decisions will be to elect the best possible candidates for the board no matter where they live!

  • Bud Osborn says:

    I’m excited to see the new “National Membership” program come to fruition. To many time a club disbands and leave no place to go for those members and still be part of Sertoma.

  • Dave Reidel says:

    Aaron, a very positive message! Question: will a national member be eligible to vote on national candidates and issues? Thanks for your leadership.

    • Aaron Ensminger says:

      Hey Dave!! Sorry to take so long to reply. You’ve asked a very important question. The bylaws currently stipulate that only a member who belongs to a club can vote in national elections. (this includes regional directors)

      It would take a bylaws change to allow National Members (including National Life Members) to vote.

  • Harvey Rhinehart says:

    Aaron, I like the new member class. It should help slow down member decline due to disbanded clubs. But could be used to reach out in areas and states where there’s no Sertoma clubs in entire states. Many if not all New England states have no Sertoma clubs in entire states. There’s also areas like Southeast Florida with no Sertoma clubs. Miami, Ft Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, etc. Perhaps social media could be used to recruit in these areas.

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