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No. 02/2009 SUMMER 2009
General Manager's Report
Chapter Web Site
The season of meetings and events is firmly upon us so let me first outline what was discussed at the last Executive Committee and Board of Directors’ meetings held in Virginia Beach earlier this month. The world-wide recession is beginning to make its mark upon AFCEA’s events and Headquarters in Fairfax is now finding the same challenges that we have already been facing in Europe, i.e. the difficulties of attracting both exhibitors and sponsorship to events, notwithstanding the stellar quality of the speakers. I am sure that individual Chapters are also experiencing this dilemma and would ask that Directors, RVPs and Chapter Presidents work diligently to sustain the interest of the membership as we work through the difficulties. There has been a slight downturn in membership dues but I believe this is as much seasonal as deliberate; nevertheless I would ask you all to be aware of it and seek to reverse any such trend. We remain a first class Association with much to offer and are well-placed to weather the financial turmoil.
Against that background I would like to emphasise the CEO’s top 4 priorities. Firstly, ‘small businesses’, an essential element of AFCEA’s make-up: it is vital to sustain the relevance and focus of our activities to encourage small businesses not just to join but also to ensure their retention; second, the ‘international’ component of AFCEA as we seek to emphasise our links with NATO, in particular. We are especially looking at carefully selected partners who can bring an added dimension to our events. Next up, a review is planned of AFCEA’s committees to ensure that they remain relevant and attractive not just to US members but also to the international community at large. To that end I would earnestly request that those of you in Europe who can support the work of committees volunteer to join them as teleconference participants – only that way can we ensure that our concerns are both raised and acted upon. Finally the world of Web 2.0, with its emphasis on social networking, offers much that epitomizes all that AFCEA stands for so do keep an eye out for the opportunities to apply those technologies within your Chapter activities to show that we can appeal to a broad audience rather than, perhaps, just re-cycle network centric topics.
Meanwhile my own team is as busy as ever, especially with two events next month – TechNet Europe in Madrid on 5 June on the topic of personal identity management and our annual SHAPE event (this time in conjunction with the NIAG) on the subject of Unmanned Aerial Systems on 25 June. We are also working our way towards TechNet International which will be held here in Brussels on 29 – 30 October along with another student conference. I am still looking for a couple of speakers especially for Session I ‘International Threats: Regional Solutions’ so if any of you know a contributor to this particular debate I would welcome a lead. Full details are on our website at www.afceaeurope.org and now seems as good a time as any to note that our new website has been operational for over 3 weeks and nobody has commented so I am taking silence as approval!
I am also very keen for Chapters to take more advantage of the products of AFCEA’s Educational Foundation. Turkey has recently conducted a very successful course on MILSATCOM, specially adapted for the country. If any other Chapter is interested in any of the training packages then please let both the Foundation (firstname.lastname@example.org) and me know so that we can approach adjacent Chapters to see if there is an option to gain greater value from an instructor coming over from the US by increasing the opportunities to run the course. I would also mention that my office collaborated with a company called ‘SecEUR’ to put on a course about EU security issues and I plan to re-run the event in November this year. As I noted earlier, ‘co-partnering’ remains a positive way ahead for our activities.
And finally, there was much discussion at the RVP meeting about the portal and what goes on within it. So just in case you remain uncertain as to how to enter let me give you a simple sailor’s guide:
a. Go to the AFCEA International web site at www.afcea.org.
b. From the menu, select 'Membership', then click on 'Member Portal'.
c. To Log on you will be asked to enter your Member ID (on your membership card) and your password (your last name by default).
You will then have access to your membership record where you can make changes to your personal information or access the many services offered to members. As a Chapter Officer or RVP you will also have access to membership rosters, statistical information, etc. See - it could not be simpler, so do take advantage of what the Portal offers.
Commodore, Royal Navy (rtd.)
For information on AFCEA's European membership, events, chapters, etc., consult the AFCEA Web site: http://www.afcea.org then click on to the AFCEA Europe button.
No. 01/2009 SPRING 09
No. 04/2008 WINTER 08
No. 03/2008 AUTUMN 08
No. 02/2008 SUMMER 08
No. 01/2008 SPRING 08