It is hard to believe that the Fall Conference I envisioned for almost a year with the amazing help of Conference Chairs Shirley Vaden and Carmen Dominguez is only a fond memory now.
Actually, the Conference fills me with many memories—the heartfelt keynote address from Dr. Brenda Combs, Friday’s “D.C.” Day, or the return of the Friday Morning Walk for almost 25 brave souls who embraced the chilly air and beautiful scenery of Sedona. But what I will remember most is that my colleagues who attended the Conference with me were eager to learn, to participate and network, and most of all, to Refresh, Renew, and Rejuvenate!
I want to mention just a few moments that stood out for me as reasons to thank this year’s conference attendees. First, your donations to Dr. Combs’ charity, Finding My Shoes, were a generous show of support to a very worthy cause. I know that all of the items we donated will be put to good use. I know the vendors who exhibited enjoyed visiting with all of you who took the time to meet and talk with them—the energy was great in the vendor area! WASFAA President Kevin Jensen participated as if he had been an AASFAA member forever, and NASFAA Senior Policy Analyst Karen McCarthy traveled cross-country just to conduct a session on how we can better advocate for our students and institutions.
Conference attendees were pretty equally divided among newcomers, us “old AASFAA pros,” and current AASFAA leaders. I was particularly happy that four industrious members were awarded Conference scholarships.
Speaking of current AASFAA leaders, I am SO grateful to the 2014/15 Board of Directors and Committee Chairs. Everything they have done leading up to the Conference contributed to how special the time was for us all, especially me. I announced at the Conference that I will be resigning my AASFAA Presidency and my current employment in January to pursue some other passions, and your enthusiasm for and support of my decision is so appreciated. The remainder of 2014/15 will be led by our President-Elect, Phil LeBlanc, who I know will be an awesome leader for our state!
If you were unable to attend the Fall Conference, we missed sharing time with you, but we hope we will get to see you at the AASFAA Symposium in Spring 2015!