Is there anything more wonderful than enjoying a glass of tan on a hot day in one of the numerous outdoor café’s of Yerevan? Or using a mixture of Armenian, Russian and English to discuss the newest art exhibit at the Cascade? Or enjoying an impromptu hortovatz down by lake Sevan? I’m sure you can identify with my experience that not a day goes by that I don’t have a vivid memory of my time in Armenia. As an RPCV, I choose to serve on the FOA board because it gives me an opportunity to thank the Armenian people by approving small grants for innovative projects that enhance their quality of life. We are the Friends of Armenia, because our time in that far off little country has changed us, and I encourage you to continue to say thank you to the people of Armenia, by submitting innovative mini-grant ideas and by renewing your membership.
2013 promises to be great, as funds were submitted to assist with an Art camp in Gyumri, GLOW camp, and with the generosity of Sean Reynolds (A16), BRO camp. This month we welcome Kevin Crookshank (A18) as our Communications Officer, and Peter Weems (A18) as the Chair of the Grants Committee, which includes Terri Pohl (A16), Patrick Findler (A16), and returning members Lindee Johnson (A15) and Maggie Woznicki (A18).
As always we welcome input as to the direction of the Friends of Armenia and I greatly, thank the board; Wayne Burt (A16), Hedley Bond (A18), David Coe (A17) and now, Kevin Crookshank(A18) for their wisdom and hard work.
Vanessa Bowie Rankin (A16)
Friends of Armenia held its first meeting as a full board on May 6th. Since the election of new officers in March, two prior meetings were used to appoint a new president and a new technology officer as those positions remained unfilled after the election. I'm thankful that my time as interim president was so short lived. Vanessa Bowie Rankin (A16)has accepted the appointment as president, and David Coe A17) will take on the role of technology officer. When I complete the minutes from this meeting and they are approved, you will be able to view them on our website. I can say in general that we approved some funding for our ongoing community support programs and reviewed the success of our first try at an annual membership renewal period. Though there were many that did not renew their membership in April, we can now focus our efforts on obtaining new members. Those whose membership has lapsed may change that status at any time by sending in the $15.00 membership fee. Additionally there is a commitment to keep our website updated and a newsletter is in the works.
I'm excited about the enthusiasm of the new board and look forward to working with them and you during the remainder of the year. Your ideas and comments are always welcome.
Wayne Burt A16
FOA currently (as of May 5) has a total membership of 141 - this includes 8 PCVs (A19 and A20), 10 donors, and 123 regular members (RPCVs, PC response, PC personnel, etc). Of the 123 members, 31 (22%) are currently "active" - that is, they have renewed this year.
Hello friends and RPCVs,
So I’m happy to announce the incoming new board of FOA. Wayne Burt will be our interim president and treasurer-secretary. Hedley Bond will serve as our membership officer. Paige Prince will serve as our communication officer.
We’ve had some after-the-fact interest communicated regarding the President’s position, and Wayne will lead the ongoing search with Hedley and Paige for the right candidate. There will be outside assistance and continued involvement from past officers to help administrate and assist where needed, to be determined by the board.
Wayne, Hedley and Paige have great experience and a passion for the mission of FOA, Peace Corps, US-Armenian relations, and serving the legacies of your individual and respective services. I wish them luck in growing the footprint of the organization over the next year or two (or maybe more, who knows!).
For myself, it’s been great working with FOA over the years. David Barshes brought me in working on the Grants Committee, something I very much enjoyed. I did that twice, evolving into this role I’m now leaving. I think FOA has huge potential, but will need your involvement, interest and participation to to realize that potential. As David had said many times, FOA is only as good as its members want it to be. As I leave, my wish is that you all take an interest, in some part, in FOA moving forward and find a way to get involved. It’s enriching serving others, as you all well know, and I believe in the work that FOA can do, building on the extraordinary service legacies of you many volunteers and friends of Armenia.
With my sincerest regards,
Call for New Board Members at Friends of Armenia: Serving with FOA is a great experience and with a motivated group of colleagues, or even friends, I know personally that you'll have an amazing time bringing assistance to the people of Armenia, continuing our collective legacies of service, as well as serving as a positive force for building community with RPCVs and other vested stakeholders. Submit yourself today for a position to take the organization to the next level. -Robert Dietrich, President FOA
President: lead the organization, providing strategic direction and serving as an ambassador to external/internal groups to fulfill the mandate of FOA. Facilitate the successful execution of all FOA program initiatives and endeavors.
Secretary-Treasurer: Take notes from board meetings, maintain documents in shared document folders, report on the financial situation of FOA at all board meetings, maintaining all financial accounts and agreements with grant recipients.
Technology Officer: maintain all digital and technology properties of FOA, including all areas of email, website, and social media properties.
Membership Officer: work with the active and lapsed membership base to grow our footprint in early and recent groups of RPCV and PCV classes/groups. Lead strategic initiatives that grow our membership base, and inspire a sense of community amongst members.
Communication Officer: administer all strategic and ongoing communication activities, including the FOA newsletter, social media properties, communication with Post and front-end website publishing working in conjunction with the Technology Officer.
Email nominations to firstname.lastname@example.org
Nominations due: February 15th
Announcement of candidates: February 17th
Receiving input on candidates from membership: February 22
Announcement of new board members: March 1st.