Thank you for your support in my role as Past International President.
Joining the organization in 2004, just two weeks into my career at the Oregon Employment Department as Learning and Development Specialist, it quickly became clear just how special this organization is to our members and our profession.
To take full advantage of this organization I quickly got involved with the Oregon Chapter volunteering as recognition chair. After two years in that role, I ran for Chapter Secretary and then eventually Chapter President. That experience led me to my roles on the International Board first as Conference Program Chair, then Secretary/Treasurer, and now Vice-President.
Serving on the International Board is truly one of the great pleasures in my life. It excites me to think about our amazing history and how we can build upon that to solidify and improve our association for the future. Even more exciting though is the opportunity to work with other visionary leaders to help build and grow our association.
The field of workforce development is changing rapidly. In order to stay relevant, IAWP needs to change just as rapidly. We need to develop a larger and stronger network of chapters across the United States. We need to rethink the way we approach membership, education, recognition, and our annual conference. We need to look at new ways of providing administrative support to our members and chapters. Most importantly though, we need to provide value to our current and potential members. This means looking for new benefits and opportunities to give back to our members and new markets to recruit members.
All of that means change; change to how we operate and how we present ourselves as an association. Change is not always easy. Change is not always fun. Change can even be scary. Right now though, change is necessary. Not tomorrow, today.
Grant A Axtell