By Danni Altman-Newell, Marketing & Membership Manager
Happy Holidays! Another year is rushing to a close and it seems like everyone around me is marveling at how fast the year went! 2018 proved to be another year packed with changes and transitions. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Change provides an opportunity to stay relevant and avoid becoming stagnant. Change is also hard, and not always pleasant. Alan Watts, well-known for helping introduce and popularize Zen and Buddhist teachings in Western society, is quoted as saying, “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” We’ve taken the plunge, now it’s time to see if we can move with it.
The NSN staff has changed significantly in the last year. Two NSN employees, Debbie Cole and Robert Barrientos, have moved on to new adventures. I’m still plugging away as NSN’s Marketing & Membership Manager and Jack-of-all-trades for many additional duties and miscellaneous tasks that are required in a non-profit office setting. I’m enjoying the opportunity to stretch my problem-solving skills during the continued transition and I’m excited at the potential I see ahead for NSN. However, I’m most excited about the addition of our newest staff member! Some of you had the chance to meet her at the 2018 Summit in Kansas City and others have had the opportunity to speak with her over the phone. If you haven’t gotten the chance to get to know Kathy Greenamyre yet, don’t worry, you will! Kathy has graciously agreed to move from being a part-time temporary contract worker to being a full-time employee of NSN. Her experience as a digital storyteller and her ability to connect with the public made her a perfect fit for the NSN office. Kathy will retain her Office Assistant duties and will be adding the duties of a Fund Development Specialist. The Fund Development Specialist position is a new addition to the NSN staff and we hope that it will open up some new opportunities for NSN.
Among the changes will be a new location for the National Storytelling Summit. The Summit will be held in Fremont, California in 2019 and, though we love Kansas City, we’re excited about visiting Fremont! The Call for Proposals went very well and the Program Committee will be evaluating and choosing the Summit workshops very soon. We’ve already opened some reservation opportunities for space in the Summit Resource Room/Marketplace and for anyone interested in being a Summit sponsor, vendor, or advertiser. We’ve also opened up a pledge form for the Silent Auction. We are currently accepting Silent Auction donations, but this year we’re also accepting pledges from those who would like to donate but may not know what they’d like to donate at this time. The new reservation and pledge opportunities will also allow the staff to have an idea of how much space will be needed at the Summit for each of these areas.
There will be more changes to come. Our focus right now is getting NSN financially stable and sustainable for the future but we’re looking beyond that as well to what options we could have once NSN is once again on firm financial footing. Contributions of any kind – time, talent, and money – are always welcome. Please consider making a donation to the Fall Fund Drive or becoming a sustaining donor, purchasing a gift membership for a friend or loved one, or recruiting one or more new members. All of these efforts will contribute toward NSN sustainability.
We want to thank all of NSN’s supporters. We’ve come through a year that was filled with both challenges and victories. The NSN staff would like to extend our personal and genuine appreciation to each and every one you for your valuable contributions to NSN. Each contribution made to NSN is valuable. A new future is waiting for NSN…come on, jump in, and join the dance! We offer our best wishes and happiness to you and your families as we all look forward to a successful 2019!
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