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Jun 01 2019
Get Involved - Get in the Arena
Stephanie Johnson, CCE, Gritton & Associates, Inc.

It is probably not news to you that ICEL is member operated and run. We have a great staff of credit gurus at NACM Intermountain|Arizona to help members accomplish their tasks, but really the rest is up to us, the members! Volunteering is not a topic that is new for these articles or discussions at our meetings. Volunteering is an altruistic way of giving back or paying forward our involvement in NACM, ICEL, and CFDD. It is a quick way to get certification points for accreditation. Ultimately, it is the biggest way that you have a say in what happens within the organization.

One of my favorite things to do as the Chair of ICEL is to read the feedback after each event. Some of our programs are instant successes with the members; others fall short of their expectations in one way or another (oy, with the chicken at the hotel.) The ICEL Committee does their best to hear the feedback and address it. And believe me, our members are not shy to give us feedback. I love it!

I had a recent conversation with a member who suggested some changes for ICEL. I listened, asked some clarification questions, and listened some more. In the end I issued an invitation to be on the committee that they were giving feedback on. The only way to truly effect change is to take initiative and act up.

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." -  President Theodore Roosevelt

Dare greatly with us. Volunteer to be in the arena of NACM, ICEL, and CFDD. Our combined efforts may be a success, or it may have errors and shortcomings. So, we will try something else, something new, something different until we get it right. There is plenty of work to do and the old adage of "many hands makes light work" (John Heywood) is apropos for what we can do ...  together.