There are a number of items of interest that have arisen in my short tenure as your new President. We have successfully transited our first registration with the use of both the on line system and the use of credit cards. We still used the standard paper registration forms and managed to get the registration letters mailed with minimum visible disruption. Thanks go to those who worked with the contractor to develop the system, to the staff who had to train on the new system and implement it, and to the volunteer members who spent many hours working with and supporting the staff.
The next and most important item is the Board decision on the contract of the Executive Director. The board, after significant time and effort reviewing the budget for 2008, determined that, for budgetary reasons, we could not extend the contract beyond the current expiration date of December 31, 2007. The options available were to raise member dues significantly or borrow from the Osher Endowment or a combination of the two. The board did not believe any of the options was workable. This does not reflect on the current Executive Director and his performance in any way, but is purely a matter of finances.
Some of you may have seen and others heard of the water main break in the main parking lot at Tallwood. A seepage had been discovered a few days ago and GMU Facilities was notified. As it did not appear to be an emergency, they responded within a couple of days. They arrived Wednesday morning to find a major disintegration of the main water line. The line was repaired on Wednesday, with considerable effort, and at 6:30am on Thursday they checked the lines and verified the repairs complete. Paving will be accomplished on Thursday and Friday so that classes will start on Monday, September 17, 2007 as scheduled. A large thanks to GMU for quick action to save any significant disruption to our class schedule.
An Open House was held at the Loudoun-Sterling campus on Monday, September 10, 2007. The event was very successful thanks to the efforts of Eileen Duggan, Sheila Gold, Jan Dewire and many volunteers. Approximately 10 new members joined the pilot program and a number of others added additional classes to their registration. A number of Board members and other members were there to greet people and discuss the benefits of OLLI. Some of the instructors gave a brief discussion of their classes and Beverly Cosham sang for the audience.
I will report periodically to the membership in an attempt to add to your knowledge of the activities at your OLLI.
President, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at George Mason University