Looking Back, Moving Forward
By Lori Trainer, CAM, CAPS
In just a few short weeks, my term as president will come to a close and my successor will be sworn in at the closing celebration dinner of the FAA Annual Conference & Trade Show.
As I look back, I am grateful to so many people for their support and their efforts this year. Whether you worked on the bylaws task force, served on a committee or the board of directors, or simply attended an association event, you made a difference. I am pleased by the progress we have made together this year and could not have done it without you.
At the beginning of my term, I established two main priorities: to make the FAA board of directors more inclusive and change the perception that a leadership position with the FAA is unattainable, and to increase the role our supplier partners play in the FAA and the return they receive on their membership.
From the first board meeting I presided over, I encouraged participation and actively sought out the opinions of board members as well as members in the gallery. I wanted everyone in attendance to feel that time at FAA meetings was time well spent. Additionally, I asked the local affiliates to restructure their reports, creating a standard format. This helped ensure that all our affiliates, regardless of size, could have an opportunity to shine.
My appointments to FAA committees included members serving for the first time and at least one supplier member for each committee. That not only expanded the group of members actively participating, but also supported my second priority of increasing the role of suppliers.
I also wanted to grow the return on investment of all the support suppliers offer to the FAA. We truly could not be the successful organization we are without our wonderful supplier partners. To that end, the Product/ Service Council sponsored our first-ever reception for supplier members to meet and network with FAA leaders. The reception capped off a full day of two educational sessions — double the educational offerings of prior years — and a PSC meeting at the Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach.
As you probably know, one of my passions is expressing my gratitude by actively giving back. When Florida was hit by Hurricane Irma last year, the FAA gave back by making financial donations to the American Red Cross and to Hatching Hope, an Alabama-based charity that provides care packages to residents affected by disasters. This year, we took that support one step further and launched Hatching Hope Florida, and many in the industry have stepped up to help. Thank you to everyone who donated money, time, or space and to all who give back in other ways.
I would also like to thank my employer, Pinnacle, for supporting me during this year. Without the support of companies like Pinnacle and others, volunteer associations would not be successful.
Another goal this year was to touch each local affiliate either personally or via someone on the Executive Committee. I am happy to say that by the end of my term that will have happened. I had the honor to visit and see amazing events, swear in new board members, present an award to a state senator, and most of all meet so many of our awesome members across the state!
Thank you to the Executive Committee; to the board of directors; to everyone who served on a committee or task force; to Josh Gold, FAA executive vice president; and to the entire FAA staff for your hard work and professionalism. I appreciate every single one of you.
It was an honor to have served as your president. Together, we have accomplished a great deal, and I cannot wait to see the progress the FAA continues to make.