President's Column

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May 15, 2017

Another successful region conference has come and gone. My thanks to Ross Mori and the Madison Chapter for a great job. Everything went smoothly. And I brought back many great memories. Starting a day before the regular conference was the President-elect Training, co-chaired by Andrea Zawodny and Mike Coan. They did a fabulous job covering a wide variety of issues in what looked like an open discussion, but kept close track to hit all their agenda items. The 15 attendees were well engaged in the conversation, bringing up examples and stories from the own chapters as the learning points. I trust the energy and enthusiasm expressed in the room that day will carry them through the next program year. The day wrapped up with the evening mixer at the Madison Children’s Museum for both PET attendees and those just arriving for the regular conference sessions starting the next morning. There was also an Early Bird tour of the recently completed Wisconsin Capitol Restoration right across the street, which I didn’t attend but understand was excellent.

Friday started the regular conference sessions. There was a chapter leadership track, a track of a variety of continuing education classes, and a special track on Project Management taught by Heath Suddleson which was excellent. There were 5 different leadership presentations. The first was on Certification presented by Janet Diercks of the Madison Chapter and a member of CSI’s Certification Management Group. Janet has taught CDT classes for years, and with her additional background on Institute’s CMG, she had a wealth of knowledge that was broad and deep. And a dynamic speaker to boot. 

Troy Steege, the NCR Student Liaison Chair talked about not only how to get students and schools involved with CSI, but challenged the audience with the question “why?”. He covered a great many resources available to help chapters establish student affiliates. There was some great discussion following Troy’s presentation on how to keep students active after graduation and making the next step to regular membership and chapter involvement.

David Neuner, Jr, NCR Region Awards Chair, walked through the different region awards, how to submit, and other tips. This year, the Region received 26 award submissions from 7 chapters, of which 19 awards were presented to 5 chapters. If your chapter was one of the 12 chapters that did not submit an award, why not? One suggestion from the attendees was to send a letter of recognition to the recipient’s employer. This not only raises the visibility of the recipient’s achievements, but lets the employer know that it is valued.

A new leader topic this year was a Chapter Archives and Document Retention Roundtable presented by our very own Region Treasurer Jarrod Mann and Beth Winkler, the Executive Director of the Chicago Chapter. They highlighted a wide range of issues like financial documents, award submission and recipient lists, chapter publications, and photos. Is the best system to pass on a box or ten from chapter president to chapter president?

Saturday morning we actually had 3 leadership sessions to choose from. Lynn Javoroski, Region Membership Chair, led the session on membership. Steven Gantner, Region Education/Programs Chair, led the session on education and chapter programs. Both of these were aimed at chapter leaders managing those programs for their own chapters. The third session (which I attended) was on future region conference planning led by Laura Jean Derrick, Region Planning Chair. This session was an open discussion of members who had either helped organize recent region conferences or were planning the next two region conferences. Talk included issues like which month, how many days, session format, whether to include a Product Expo/exhibiters, pricing, tours, etc. 

Handouts from each of these leadership sessions will be posted on the website. Look for an announcement in the newsletter. There will also be articles from other attendees on their experience at the region conference later in this and subsequent issues of the newsletter.

The region conference is the main event for the North Central Region for two reasons. First is the training it offers to the chapter leaders. The second is to recognize the volunteer efforts and achievements of the members in the Region. Awards fall into 3 general categories: service awards for those leaving the NCR board or NCR committee chairs, discretionary certificates of appreciation from the Region President and Institute Director, and the nominated awards that are submitted from the chapters. The highlight being the Gary Betts Memorial Award, presented to a North Central Region member in good standing who has been a member for a minimum of 10 years, who has consistently demonstrated advocacy of CSI, and rendered distinguished service and leadership to the North Central Region by following CSI principles and practices and furthering the goals of the Region and the Institute. Or, as it has often been described, the North Central Region’s version Fellowship. It is my extreme pleasure to announce that this year’s recipient of the Gary Betts Memorial Award was presented John Rickert, FCSI of the Nebraska Chapter. A list of the other award recipients is included later in this newsletter.

And finally, during the Annual Meeting we had our election for NCR officers. Laura Jean Derrick was elected for NCR President-Elect and Jarrod Mann was elected for a second term as NCR Treasurer. Both will continue to admirably serve the members of the North Central Region.

Region President Jon Rao Papke, FCSI, CCS, AIA
      Minneapolis-St. Paul Chapter
      Target Corporation
      (612) 761-1594,

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