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Where Do We Go From Here?

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When you work with an organization of volunteers, you never know what you'll get. Volunteers work at their own direction and without the lure of a salary. Results can sometimes be disappointing. We're coming to the close of our board's two-year term. Many of us were strangers when we came together two years ago in October in Las Vegas. Along the way, we've lost some members and gained some members.

What the two years really did was bring-forth leaders for the future of our organization. My heart was warmed as I watched the dedication and love develop for Prime Timers. When one (such as myself) has a deep seated love and commitment to the future of Prime Timers, nothing feels better than to see it happen in others.

About six months ago, I wrote-down some notes and filed them under "Dream Board". I spent six years of my life as President of this organization, four years as Vice President, and with the ongoing position of Director Emeritus, another two years. I continue in that position and in my work with the new board.

After creating my "Dream Board" document, I watched those on my list. It was as though I magically added "growth tonic" to them because one by one they started to stand out, create, shine, and step forward with leadership. About a year ago, our present board declared their intentions (if any) for running for the next election. These early declarations often get changed by events and life itself getting in the way. In our case, they simply strengthened and were reinforced.

Earlier this year, we starting the nomination process. One never knows if there will be one or 10 people vying for any one position. By mid-August, the nominations were closed and again, magic happened: we had seven candidates for nine positions which meant an election would not be necessary. The magic is that every single one of them was on my "Dream Board" list. My wishes came true and I can rest knowing our organization will move into the future in the best of hands.

In reflecting back on my last two years on the board, I can say what an extraordinary experience it has been. In the words of Dickens, it's been "the best of times and the worst of times". We've made exponential growth in chapters and members. I watch the diverse activities our chapters continue to plan and only wish there was more of me to go around to participate in more of them. On the heels of my car trip visiting our southeastern chapters last year, we celebrated our first "Carolinas Prime". Next year, its success will be repeated as a regional event.

I ask myself, "Will I miss the daily work I've had as President?" Some days, my work goes from 8:00 a.m. until well past 10:00 p.m. I have a feeling that all the phone calls will continue because I love being in the midst of things and can act as an advisor to the board. So many of us have become close friends because of our work together in the organization. My answer to myself is that I will still always stay busy and involved in the Prime Timers organization.

I sincerely thank all of the board members that have served during these two years. I especially want to single-out those who will be leaving us in October: Terry Kyweriga who has served for many years in several board positions and has always been there when needed, Gary Copeland who, during his two years, has contributed so many great ideas and has been instrumental in helping to pave the future for board work. David Luby who was always there to volunteer when we needed an extra hand. A.J. Ratliff is to be thanked for his contribution and work for the board. He continues to work both in our Cross Timbers and Detroit chapters and works to bring-in new chapters. Sadly, we lost two valuable board members who passed away during these two years: Terry Terrell of our Phoenix Chapter and Bill Curnutt of our Dallas chapter. All of these men contributed to the body of work that is Prime Timers.

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