By Leah Schmidt, SNS, SNA President 2013-10-04 13:29:41
Take a New View I hope all of you have had a successful start to school and that things are rolling along smoothly. I have had an amazing beginning—it’s a new year, and I have new district administrators, including the superintendent and my supervisor. Letting go of the familiar and facing the new can be daunting, but I’ve found this particular set of changes to be a great learning experience. After all, nothing stays static, and we must be ready with the right mindset to deal with changes at work, at home—and at SNA, too. One recent SNA Headquarters change is the restructuring of our Member Services department. Now under the leadership of Staff Vice President for Marketing and Membership Jennifer Lewi, the reorganized team includes some new faces, new procedures and a fresh energy. One state membership chair made a point to share with me the terrific customer service she recently received in sorting out a problem. I’m often impressed by our hard-working national staff, and I love hearing similarly positive feedback from others. Staff in our Meetings and Education departments are working with SNA leaders to present a “new” old favorite. Our longstanding January conference gets a new name, the School Nutrition Industry Conference (SNIC), a terrific 2014 winter-escape destination (Miami!) and a new format. The general sessions will follow the style of the Executive Management Program presented at Georgetown University prior to SNA’s Legislative Action Conference in recent years. (In fact, one of those professors will be a SNIC facilitator—a perfect example of a positive partnership!) Co-chairs Paula Kullman, SNS, and Sean Leer are designing an SNIC that will be inspirational, enlightening and, dare I say, transformational. It may be early in our Association year, but we have many projects and initiatives on our plates! For example, we already are laying the foundation for the next reauthorization process, while preparing formal comments on the Smart Snacks interim final rule. We know that professional standards regulations are imminent. But while juggling various deadlines and programs, staff and leaders always keep SNA members as the focus of our day-to-day work. We know that you, our individual members, are the ones on the front lines, serving our students and preparing them for the future. With that in mind, I ask that you take a few minutes to do your part and vote in the election for the SNA Board of Directors (see pages 44-45). Encourage others in your school and district to do the same. Thanks to the Nominating Committee and its chair, Helen Philips, SNS, we have an incredible slate of candidates, but we need you to identify those who will represent your needs and concerns in the years ahead. Make time to vote before November 15, 2013!
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