By Leah Schmidt, SNS SNA President 2014-06-12 18:21:44
An Attitude of Gratitude It is hard for me to believe that it is already June and almost time for another ANC. It has been nearly a year since thousands of my SNA colleagues joined me in my Kansas City hometown, and we participated in the conference of a lifetime—at least it was for me. Having so many family members, friends and coworkers present for my installation as SNA president was so, so special. But time marches on, and in just a few weeks, we will be celebrating with Julia Bauscher, as she is installed as SNA’s 69th president. Her leadership, knowledge and dedication are well evident. It has been my sincere pleasure to serve with Julia, Vice President Jean Ronnei and all of the other members of SNA’s Board of Directors. I can’t thank each of them enough for this past year of volunteer service. There’s another group of dedicated school nutrition professionals that I must credit for their service in 2013-14: my Hickman Mills staff. Their “SNA service” might have been unofficial, but without their support, I simply couldn’t have been able to travel as much as I did on behalf of the Association and keep things running smoothly back home. Robin, Susan, Grennan, Michael, Wendy, all our managers and staff: You are my heroes. Indeed, it’s all of the volunteers both at home and serving in SNA’s leadership, working individually and working together and in partnership with our Headquarters staff, that have made some pretty amazing things happen this year! We launched a new and improved Keys to Excellence benchmarking program, exceeded membership targets, enhanced relationships with existing allies and discovered new partners. Our major strategic realignment project (see page 28) was barely on the radar this time last year— but we knew that SNA must remain nimble, and strike when the iron is hot. The time was right to take a close look at where we need to focus our resources, both financial and staff, toward achieving the outcomes that are best for SNA and all our members. I feel so good about all that we have accomplished this year! There have been many personal high points, too. I have met wonderful people working in all segments of school nutrition, industry, government and allied groups. I have gained new insights and grown as a person. I have had a lot of fun, enjoying experiences I never would have imagined. (Ask me, and I will happily share details.) Thank you—each of you—for this opportunity to represent you; it has been an honor. Please know that I value what each of you do every day, and I am proud to be a part of our profession. Best wishes, always.
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