Message from the President March 2004

Your Association Needs You!

By Brian Pitman, March 2004

Most people don’t realize this, but I make my living working as the Director of Marketing and Communications for many large international not-for-profit associations. My duties cover a broad spectrum, from marketing an association to the general public and potential members, writing and creating large newsletters for each association on a frequent basis, designing and maintaining association websites, putting together large conventions and presentations to literally hundreds and thousands of people around the world, as well as running and hosting many of those events in large cities across the United States. Sure, that may look exciting or important on paper, but let me be the first to tell you that my efforts are worth didly squat without the tremendous work and enthusiasm of the members of each association.

In other words, all of those associations are just like our beloved International Carnival Glass Association. It has a Board of Directors, Officers and a President who all work very hard to do a great many things. Just like with job, all of the things are worth very little without an enthusiastic membership that is rearing to go, willing to contribute, and demanding of the best for the association. In short, your association needs you!

The membership of an association will most assuredly dwindle and die without the word-of-mouth help of its individual members. Positive attitudes and a true love of the very thing that brings us commonality (in our case, carnival glass) spur action and the desire to contribute. Action begets action, and before you know it, you have an association of active people, working to make a difference, and think of the difference we can make.

I have written here before about the need to become involved, and of the positive things that we can do with ICGA. In the carnival glass world lately, most talk of clubs is how their memberships are dwindling, how everyone is going to eBay to buy and sell, how books are replacing clubs, and how email is replacing the desire to actually sit in a hotel room with complete strangers and work towards making them your friends (ones you can teach and learn from, ones that you can sell and buy from, and even ones that you can outbid on occasion). That future belongs to others, but it doesn’t belong to ICGA.

ICGA was formed by a group of people who liked each other, and they liked the pretty glass. The is the very basis of our foundation, and it is this attitude we take with us into the future. Don’t let me speak for you, though. Make this your motto, your mantra. Be that person for this club.

Your association needs you! We have our convention coming up on July 14-17 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in St. Louis. We have Reg Dunham and Janet Knechtel as our main speakers. We have Show & Tell Breakfasts with a select few who will share some of their best glass with you every morning of the convention. We have a fabulous Jim Seeck auction with great color and iridescence. We have the wonderful new souvenirs that Gale Eichorst was able to get from Fenton. We have a banquet dinner and entertainment that is a throwback to the “Good Old Days.”

But we have nothing if you don’t come. Call the Bridgeton Crowne Plaza at 1-800-227-6963 and make your reservations today using ICG as your group code. We need you there to make this a successful and fun convention.

Our association is storied with a great history. It will carry on longer than all of us if we wish it. Make the effort to make this happen.

Brian Pitman