December 2023 President’s letter
As 2023 comes to an end, I reflect on the many accomplishments we’ve had. FHSA has weathered quite a year of change. Some of the “new and improved” changes made in 2023:
- A new website
- Formed five Special Interest Groups (SIGs)
- Eliminated our multiple chapter structure in favor of one general monthly meeting at one location
- Resumed in person meetings along with providing a Zoom connection to those who cannot attend in person
- Introduced a “beginner” genealogy class as a lead into the monthly general meeting
- Moved our annual meeting to the fall
- Streamlined our expenses to keep our membership dues the same
- Starting in January 2024, our monthly general meeting will move to a more central location on a different day of the month.
I would like to hear feedback from our membership about the success or failure of these changes. Frankly, I am disappointed in the attendance of our meetings. I sincerely want to understand what we need to do differently to boost not only our attendance but our membership.
After the first of the year, the Executive board will prepare a survey to get some insight into what you believe would bring more people to attend our meetings and make us a more viable option. We understand many daily activities take up our time. We would like our FHSA meetings to become one of the priorities vying for your participation.
Our 40th anniversary annual meeting was held on October 28th with a military theme of topics discussed to celebrate our family members who served our country in the military. George Wolfmeyer and Bonnie Bossert provided us with valuable educational material about using military records to help tell the story of your ancestors and family members. We had a great lunch provided by Jason’s Deli and an enormous number of prizes given to everyone who attended. For the first time, we held a 50/50 raffle which was well received. All in all, the meeting was a big success receiving many accolades from all who attended. Unfortunately, one of our planned speakers, Peggy Ash, was ill and sadly could not attend. We hope we can convince her to share her presentation with us for a future meeting.
I wish all a safe, healthy, and wonderful holiday season. I hope to SEE you after the new year. And by the way, our next meeting will be a POTLUCK social gathering on 25 January 2024 at the Tempe Family History Center. See our website at www.fhsa.org
for all the details.