Executive Director's Message
Thursday, March 26, 2020
So many times in the past few weeks I’ve looked at the news or what was going on in the office and thought to myself, “Can this really be happening”? So much of what we are all hearing and experiencing these days feels surreal – cancelling the Annual Conference, closing the office, venturing out in a city that is mostly shut down, and, today, hearing the official statewide lockdown announcement. So today, the day I was supposed to be on a plane flying to Providence, I’m writing you all to let you know about what’s next.
What’s next in terms of the Annual Conference? Well, if you were registered and you haven’t yet let us know how you would like us to handle your registration, please take a few minutes to fill out this form. If you were planning to present in Providence and would like to move that presentation to Albuquerque instead, let us know – we’d be glad to move you to the 2021 program! If you were supposed to present in Providence and would like to record your session – let us know. We are planning to put the Awards Ceremony, President’s Speech, and Incoming President’s Speech all online – stay tuned for details as they are available. Additionally, we’ll also be hosting a virtual Business Meeting on April 2nd. Registration for the Business Meeting will be available shortly. Since our very worthy Act of Caring charity, the Rhode Island School of Design Food Pantry, will miss out on our contributions this year, please consider making a contribution to a local charity in your community. Now, more than ever, they need our help! I would like to extend a big thank you to all the volunteers that spent countless hours planning for this year’s Annual Conference – the Education Action Team, the Hospitality Committee, and everyone who planned to help out on site in Providence. Your commitment and dedication to the Association is truly amazing! Finally, the dedicated team at the ACCED-I office – Sandy Brock, Diana Hakenholz, Devin Shelby, and Jennifer Trumper – you are truly my dream team and thank you all for all of your hard work over the last 11 months in making the Annual Conference, and everything else, such a success.
So what’s next in education? We’ve been hosting a series of Zoom calls to focus on areas of concern for members. These calls are recorded and can be heard here. If you have an idea for a new topic, or would like to continue one of the already discussed topics, please let us know. We will continue these calls even when things go back to normal for us all – community is important in the good and difficult times and the ACCED-I community is very strong. For now, the Educational Forums are on hold. We have discussed bringing them to the membership in virtual format, we’ve also discussed holding fewer and having them face to face later in the year. The reality is we don’t know what the next few months will bring and so it’s difficult to make a final decision at this point. We will re-evaluate in a few months and share that information as soon as it is available. One thing is certain, however, and that is that the Association remains committed to bringing quality professional development opportunities to our members and we will find the best way to do this as we move forward in uncertain times.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t take this opportunity to thank the Board of Directors for their support, understanding, and commitment during the last few weeks. We are truly lucky to have a dedicated Board that is both open to ideas and willing to make critical decisions in what can certainly be labeled “crazy days”.
This is YOUR Association – let us know how we can help you and help each other through this so that we all come out stronger on the other side.
With best regards,
Karen L. Nedbal is Executive Director of ACCED-I. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (970) 449-4960.