By: Tia Politi, ORHA President
This month begins our short legislative session. After two solid years of constantly changing rules, we’re anticipating a bit of a breather this year which means we can focus on some very exciting races coming up in November that will impact how the 2023 long legislative session goes. We’ll be focusing on those crucial races after this short session, so stay tuned.
We are very excited to announce that Vice President Ben Seamans has agreed to take on a big chunk of the work that it takes to run our now-virtual office. Ben, Technology Chair Cloud Miller, Violet Wilson, Kathleen Ashley and I (but mostly Cloud) had been taking on a lot of tasks that used to be performed by an employee when we had an office, and Ben agreed to step in and provide us the stability we need in this position. Having a younger, tech-savvy person involved has been a great blessing. Ben is working as an independent contractor in accordance with our Reimbursement Policy and we are very impressed at his professionalism and ability to take us into the future. Cloud has been training him diligently and it’s just great to have a central person coordinating our efforts, including creating our newsletter, sending out eblasts, responding to emails, directing correspondence to the correct person, tracking membership reports, and so much more.
About membership reporting, check out our new procedures. Treasurer Jill Maricich, Ben and the rest of the Executive Committee have weighed in and created a new streamlined reporting, invoicing and payment system that should make life easier for everyone. Ben’s office update in this month’s publication includes a run-down of the new procedures.
I am also pleased to let you know that we have hired a bookkeeper, Lori Black Consulting, in Cottage Grove, who has taken over many of the accounting activities of ORHA. With the loss of an employee to handle accounts payable and receivable, reconciliation, and record-keeping, it was too much for a volunteer and made sense to have a third set of eyes on everything we do to ensure accuracy and transparency. So far, so good. Under the direction of the Finance Committee (Jill Maricich and Dennis Chappa), Lori is diving right in and has been a great addition to the work we do.
The Bylaws Committee met regularly for more than a year updating our bylaws and policies which were approved by the board at our January meeting. Thanks to Ben Seamans for his dedicated leadership on that project, and Cloud Miller for making the bylaws pretty. Among Cloud’s many talents, he is an excellent designer. Local chapters can expect a copy soon.
ORHA has experienced some seismic transitions over the past seven months, but we’ve overcome every hurdle - what a great feeling. It is incredibly rewarding to work with an active group of high-caliber volunteers. Keep up the good work, everyone. What you do matters!