AORE Association News September 2016 - Page 5


The individuals I have been surrounded by this last 2.5+ years on the Board of Directors, be they fellow past or present Board members, committee chairs, national office staff or new members who want to see the AORE succeed, they are an exceptional group of talented, passionate, driven and generous individuals. I think of the thousands of hours this year alone has gone into the governance and productivity of this association, and then my mind spins to think of the volume of time and energy that has been shared to create the AORE that we are today. I am filled with gratitude for every member who has answered a call, filled out a survey, donated, written letters, given of their time volunteering at a conference or supported the AORE in any other way, for without you, we would not be as refined, defined and doing the great work of Advocacy, Relationship Engagement, Education and striving to achieve an every higher standard of both internally Healthy Organization but with every partnership we enter into. (Strategic Pillars as formed by the 2015-2020 Strategic Plan).

Our work is far from clear. The changing times and needs that our environmental and social worlds place on this association are never ending. Our job as volunteers is to stay agile, diligent to the mission and vision, filter well our priorities based on strategic priorities, dig deep into the desire to understand when we are conflicted, and continue to grow and adapt personally to what we are being asked to carry. I am encouraged by open, honest communication whose purpose is to gain clarity, understanding and create a common path moving forward.

On this shoreline with the sun sinking over the peaks, I raise a glass to toast to all those members who have come before and all those who will follow; this association is built by each of us. Tomorrow will be a new day full of possibility, challenges and successes. AORE’s tomorrow and moving into 2017 will be filled with both dialogue and action surrounding advocacy and access, refined and tuned governance to better prepare all volunteers for success, advancing our annual membership drive and develop a culture of philanthropy to only name a few categories.

For those interested in expanding what they currently do within the Association, or have questions about what the Association is doing, wanting to give us positive or constructive feedback, please reach out to me at or even pick up the phone and call the National Office (810.299.2782) and speak to Meghan or Emily to share your thoughts. We are looking forward to seeing you at the Annual Conference in Minneapolis at the University of Minnesota November 9-11, if not hearing from you before.

My best,

Russ Watts