Planning for the Cincinnati Chapter’s 2020 Year Kicked off on 4 January…

Members of the chapter’s leadership met at the President’s House on Saturday 4 January to reflect on the year just completed and to focus on themes for the coming year.  Attendance for the meeting was as follows:

  • Lee Wilkerson President
  • Don McGraw   Past President—Ohio Society & Cincinnati Chapter
  • Jack Bredenfoerder     Past President—Cincinnati Chapter
  • Greg Ballman   First Vice President
  • George Stewart Second Vice President
  • Clay Crandall   Secretary
  • Mike Blum       Treasurer
  • Ed Bonniwell   Chaplain
  • Jim Houston    BOM; Audit Committee Chair
  • Dan Schmitz    BOM
  • Bob Bowers     BOM; Youth Awards Chair
  • Ken Burck       Awards Committee Chair
  • Mark Holland  Veteran’s Committee Chair

Rather than tie ourselves to an agenda for this meeting, we treated it more as a ‘Time-To-Think’ with lots of back and forth and idea mongering.  Suggested areas of discussion for the session were:

  • Role expansion for selected officers
  • Succession Planning
  • Special events for the coming year
  • Key chapter goals and objectives for the coming year
  • Budget Review
  • Naming members of the Ertle Fund Committee
  • Open Discussion – New Ideas…..
  • Audit Committee

Committee Objectives drove quite a bit of talk witht the following ideas surfacing:

Veteran’s Committee voiced the need for being able to support some of the homeless veterans in our community.  The Chaplain offered the benefits of a ministry that he is presently offering to homelss of the inner city.  Include providing a small backpak filled with Personal Hygiene Items.

The issue was raised about our desire to more effectively engaged with SAR in our events.  The past year has not been bad but it can always improve.  George Stewart volunteered to add DAR Liaison to his CAR Liaison portfolio—a good match.

The JROTC/ROTC Committee, while not reperesentated at the meeting, had expressed the desire to pursue the advanced JROTC Recognition and Scholarship Program of selected High Schools—The committee agreed that this was a worthwhile endeavour and agreed to support an initial program of two schools for the advance program in addition to the 14 exisiting High School and College Level programs already undertaken.

As we  reviewed the success of the Youth Education Committee we raised the possibility of expanding our program to include Adult Education on a similar set of topics.  Bob Bower has agreed to evaluate the feasibility of this within the Youth Education program.

As we discussed project that would allow us better Community Engagement and visibility we agreed that working jointly with an organization like City Gospel Mission might offer opportunities to serve in a slightly different manner than normal.  The chaplain has agree to coordinte with Gerry Knight (Community & Patriotic Outreach Committee Chair) and George Stewart (Program Committee Chair) to evaluate and pursue.

A future Youth History Festival, long envisioned by our Chaplain, has been placed on the docket for a feasibility study this coming year with the prospect of a 2021 launch.

Lastly the budget was discussed and all agreed on the realism of escalation in the cost of programs undertaken by our chapter and the need for our spending forcasts to better reflect that realism.  To that end, we will stand-up an AD HOC Fundraising Committtee to be chaired by Chaplain Bonniwell, with an eye towards finding funding to support our most critical programs.

And lastly, the subject of funding selected projects is always a tough nut to crack.  Hopefully, the Fundraising Committee will be able to provide some relief to these funding requirements within our proposed 2020 operating budget.

I would like to promise you that I did not leave anything out of this report—but that would be too much of a challenge for most of you, and I would wind up with my hat in my hand and only a smiling mea culpa to offer in response.

Let me end this report by thanking all of you for stepping up to the plate this past year—we played well.  We will play even better this year!

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