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|From the Chair|
Greetings Fellow OBS Members:
One of the most enjoyable activities I engaged in this past summer was white water rafting at the Ocoee River, the site of the 1996 Olympics White water Canoe/Kayak Event. Our Ocoee Adventure Center guide introduced himself and immediately started communicating with us. He asked us several questions and then demonstrated the basics of white water rafting, which included paddle forward, paddle backward, hit deck, etc. After his explanation of the safety guidelines, we ventured into what seemed to us uncharted waters. He continued communicating with us through the exciting 5 miles downstream. He told us when we were approaching "Big Bertha" and "Washing Machine" rapids so that we could "hit deck" and we literally "hit deck" (a.k.a. seat on the bottom of the raft) And then we were surfing which was even more thrilling. Our white water rafting trip was a "success" because our Ocoee Adventure Center guide communicated!
Communication is essential for an organization to thrive! The first strategic direction of OBS Strategic Plan is that OBS communicates. How well is OBS communicating with its members? As you know OBS unveiled and distributed its Strategic Plan for 2001-2004 at the OBS General Business Meeting in Minneapolis. I hope you had a chance to read it. It has been mounted on the OBS website (We have publicized the plan in the AALL Spectrum).
One of the best ways to communicate with each other is having all 300 plus OBS members present at the meeting. We are able to accomplish this task by participating in "absentia" through the annual membership survey. Mary Jane Kelsey, Vice Chair/Chair Elect will conduct the annual membership survey via the OBS website this fall. It is imperative that we hear from you through the survey. This is your golden opportunity to communicate and share with OBS your concerns, comments, suggestions and insights.
The OBS listserv will be repopulated this fall. We use this medium to share news and current awareness information. We want to maintain an atmosphere in which interaction can flourish. You will see the "Website of the Month" posted soon, among many things. We will also keep you informed as the website is updated. Members are encouraged to post news items or questions. Please do not un-subscribe! The listserv aim is to serve as our monthly staff meeting.
OBS has taken the initiative to submit news briefs to be published in the Spectrum. This is a great way to keep members informed and make an impact in the Association, but also to attract and recruit new members to OBS. This is our public relations medium. You may have heard the statement "Communication is an art" and it is. That's why the OBS Executive Board is always available to listen to your complaints and also your suggestions, insights and ideas.
And we communicate from this column, "From the Chair" in TSLL, which provides a general overview of OBS activities and its accomplishments. It also records OBS's great history. Our goal is to keep the channels of communication open but you must recognize that it is in your power to avoid communication breakdown. Help us to communicate in a clear, precise and concise way.
Last, but not least, here are the program proposals accepted for Orlando 2002.
And remember: OBS communicates!