College Columns Dec 2014 Issue - Page 4

Foundation Year-End Campaign in Full Swing

Mark D. Bloom,

ACB Foundation Chair

President's Column

continued from page 2

to reflect the move to Stanardsville.

Electronic Publication of College Columns. The fact that you are reading this edition of College Columns in electronic format reflects another initiative to better communicate with Fellows, while reducing the cost of those communications. Once again, our Executive Director, Shari Bedker, took the lead in identifying an appropriate provider, negotiating contract terms and developing the template for this first electronic addition. We hope you will find the new format easy to access. Its use will save us approximately $5,000 in postage annually.

Refreshing the Website. Another project that should produce immediate benefit to our Fellows is the updating and improvement of the College's website. The update will improve the user interface, as well as providing a "Fellows Only" area secured by password protection. This private area will enable Fellows to edit their bios, post papers, initiate internal chat inquiries to ask about experience in a given area or conduct Committee chat discussions. We hope to have these improvements in place by the time of our next annual meeting in March of 2015.

Amazon Smile. At the suggestion of our immediate Past Chairman, Jan Baker, Shari Bedker and her staff have been working to qualify the College Foundation as a recipient under

the Amazon Smile Program. This program enables charitable organizations to be designated to receive .1% of an individual's purchases at a special Amazon site. We are working to make sure that the IRS has us identified in a manner that will permit us to qualify under this program. We hope to be able to advise you in the near future to designate the College Foundation as a beneficiary for your Amazon purchases.

As you can see, the college staff, the Board, and college leadership are engaged in a variety of efforts to continue to improve this marvelous organization. We welcome your input on suggestions for additional improvements. Our goal is to make the College a better and more meaningful place for all.

I will close with an invitation to all Fellows to let us know how you would like to get more involved with the activities of the College. We recognize that we have needed to do a better job of channeling expressions of interest into concrete responses. To that end, we have established a Membership Participation Committee, chaired by Debra Grassgreen. Please feel free to contact Debra, or any member of College leadership, to let us know of your interest. We will do our best to promptly respond to your requests.

By now each of you should have received any number of solicitations from your Circuit Campaign

Committees to make your annual 2014 donations to the American College of Bankruptcy Foundation. For those of you who have already given, our sincere thanks – but keep on reading anyway! For those who’ve not gotten around to it just yet, the calendar is winding down and we need your support.

The good news is that the numbers change every day. As of November 24, just before the Thanksgiving holiday, more than one-third of our Fellows – 278 of 825 – had made their donations to the Foundation.

The bad news is that despite this level of participation to date – and despite the inclusion of over $50,000 in extraordinary gifts from various creditor trusts as previously reported – we remain well short of our 2014 goal of $222,750.

It’s a fact of life that charitable organizations solicit heavily in the last weeks of each year, and the Foundation is no different. Next year we propose to make life a little easier by

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