The Chairman's Corner
By Alan Freese
What a month! Just getting my feet back on the ground from our 100th convention. For those of you that attended, thank you. For those that didn’t, you missed a great time. From the beginning with the Former Chairman’s Dinner to the Chairman’s Ball, it was a remarkable time. Having the setting of being across the street from the State Capitol was incredible. It was pointed out to me how normally we are at a resort setting, but it felt as if it was a resort for sure. I was proud to be able to attend the Former Chairman’s Dinner, although as Jay Casey pointed out, I didn’t belong. (Thanks, Jay.) It was great to hear the stories of old and to share in the laughs and good times.
As always, our convention agenda was jammed packed. Many of the industry’s top brass were on hand to support the CMSA and its members from movers to vendors to van lines−all top-notch. For myself, the convention highlight was the awards luncheon on Saturday where the CMSA handed out $100,000 in scholarships. This put the CMSA’s total scholarship awards in excess of $1 million since its inception. No other trade association is even close to this number. This is largely in part to the hard work of ALL chapters and their fund-raising events. Without our members and vendors’ generosity, this would not be possible. Thank you to all.
Saturday night was a bittersweet time for me. I watched John Lance ride off into the CMSA sunset. John is a great man and served the Chairman’s position with both kindness and dignity. His Chairman’s Choice Charity, Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA), received more than $9,000 for their cause. Congratulations John on an outstanding chairmanship. I will admit not many things in life make me nervous (e.g., IRS, being pulled over by the police, Military Inspectors), but having to follow up after my daughter’s speech Saturday night, I was caught up in the moment. Sometimes, we forget how lucky we are to have family and friends. For me, Saturday night was a pinnacle moment. I had my wife Jennifer, son Jack, daughter Shelby, mother-in-law Anita, brother Carl, stepfather Gary and my mother Helen all there. I also had one of my best friends and former boss, Rick Bruns, and his wife Cindy. Being able to have all of them together (and all get along) was remarkable for me. Just as I know this next year will fly by, I’m learning to savor these moments as they become fewer and farther between.
I’m looking forward to the changes we are facing with DCA and BEARHFTI. I feel very positive and encouraged by the dialogue with both the agency and bureau. They have given us a strong sense of hope and direction moving forward after being relocated from the CPUC. Having true enforcement was music to many ears in the room.
In closing, I would like to say I’m looking forward to visiting all 12 chapters over the course of the next year as well as visiting some of your facilities. Many of the stories shared at the Former Chairman’s Dinner evolved around the chapter visits. I hope the tradition continues. (Jay – yes to the street tacos, but no to the yoga.) Have a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend. Cheers, Alan.
May 2018 - CMSA Communicator