The end of the calendar year is a time of acknowledgement, reflection, and planning. We'd like to take this time to highlight some of our accomplishments and express our gratitude. First and foremost, NAGW is thankful for the continued support of our members, sponsors, staff and volunteers. Thank you for your commitment to NAGW over the years!
In the area of membership, NAGW officially launched small agency memberships (purchasing three memberships at a time) and large agency members (purchasing five memberships at a time) on Jan 1. The new options created the most membership growth in 2016. We also expanded our membership opportunities to include full memberships to state agencies and associate memberships to federal agencies as approved by a membership vote in 2015.
Our member benefits committee hosted another year of webinars and our book club on Goodreads is in its second year. While we know many of you are busy we hope you will take some time to attend webinars and read the book recommendations. As an organization one of our primary goals is to encourage learning and to help government employees succeed and thrive as technology evolves.
This year was our first full year working with our association management company, Celtic Chicago, Inc. Celtic is the friendly "voice" of NAGW when you call or email member services. They also provide membership outreach, monthly financial reporting and assist with conference planning and management. Thank you to our staff at Celtic and for all that you do for the organization!
NAGW is still not as well-known as we would like it to be. In 2016 NAGW partnered with several agencies and conferences to continue to get our name out there by offering discounts to events for our members and by sending literature for distribution. We worked with our members and seven other agencies to file a combined response to the Department of Justice on proposed rules regarding accessibility. If you are attending events in your area, ask event organizers if it would be possible to distribute literature to attendees. Remember that your referrals are important and they help the organization grow!
The board will be heading to San Diego in May for the annual board retreat to work on strategic and conference planning. We hope you can join us at #NAGW2017 happening in San Diego, CA from Sept 20-22 at the Hyatt Regeny La Jolla. This hotel is a beautiful venue and this will be our first time having a conference on the west coast. Mark your calendars now and use the executive summary to convince your boss. We can't wait to see you!
Finally I want to say that I am ecstatic to serve as NAGW's President for another year! Thank you board of directors for trusting me with this honor and responsibility.
President, Director At Large