Hello! My name is Carrie Melita and it’s my privilege to be your 2017 NESO president. For those of you who attended the annual meeting in New York, you know I have a tough act to follow. Dr. Christina Carter, Dr. Jack Kacewicz and their amazing team of NESO volunteers (members just like you) put together a phenomenal educational program and exhibit hall experience. This was a meeting not to be missed. Fortunately for those of you who did miss it, some of the lectures were recorded and are available on the NESO website – one of your member benefits.
As the year ends and a new one begins, our society marks some endings and new beginnings. Last March, the NESO board of directors initiated a request for proposals from association management companies. This process sprung from the recognition that our society (like all associations) is facing a rapidly changing membership demographic with changing needs and desires. The NESO board, which has always been forward-thinking, wants to stay ahead of these changes and provide the benefits that our members most value in a format that fits the ever-increasing demands on our time and resources.
As a result of the RFP process, eighteen proposals were considered and vetted. The top three companies were invited to make a final presentation to the board of directors at the meeting in New York. In the end, the board voted to engage the firm of Fernley and Fernley as our new management company.
We are confident that as we move forward with our new management partners we will develop a strategic plan that will help keep our society strong. The plan will incorporate the feedback we have received from our members. In October, every NESO member received an email with a link to a short survey. My hope is that many of you provided feedback via that survey. If you missed that opportunity, please feel free to email me directly with your thoughts and suggestions.
I would like to take a moment to acknowledge the skill, dedication and professionalism of our Executive Director Anita Craig, our assistant Director Bridget Hollis, our meeting planner, Darrin Crittendon and the many other folks at AAO Services, Inc. who have been our partners for many years. As volunteer leaders we have learned and grown so much under your direction. We cherish the personal relationships we have developed.
In closing, I encourage any member with an interest in getting involved on the state, regional or national level to contact me directly. I’m happy to discuss the opportunities available. I know you will find the experience as richly rewarding as I have for these past twelve years. I look forward to meeting and talking with many of you in the coming year leading up to our next annual meeting in Boston on November 9th- 12th at the Marriott Copley Square.
Dr. Carolyn Melita