We just ended the longest government shut down in US history and no matter what side of the political spectrum you claim, nothing compares to the deployment into a combat zone where people are dying and creature comforts like the ability to come home at night and hug your kids or your wife just aren’t available. Just remember the saying, the grass is always greener somewhere else until you get there and find out that the only thing greener was the hope that you had.
I recently heard from a few members out there that at some point in the past they were disappointed in NCOA. I would imagine that many of us have experienced disappointment in our lives, whether it is with family, a job, our government or even an organization like NCOA. Life is full of choices and some chose to be bitter and those people struggle to find happiness and success. Failure is part of life, but what separates success from bitterness is whether you chose to let that struggle to rule over you and keep you down, or you chose to get back up and prove those who try to hold you down were wrong. Ask a woman if it hurts to give birth and they will tell you it hurts like hell, but once they hold that precious child in their arms, the pain is no longer important. I tell you this information not to discourage you or point fingers, but to illustrate that life is hard and running an organization like NCOA is hard. NCOA is struggling like almost every membership based organization in existence, but with the struggle, there will be opportunities to pick oneself up off of the ground and move forward.
The leadership of NCOA today is committed to bring life, opportunity and hope back for all of our members including those who are angry with us. We are different people at a different time with different tools and opportunities with which to work. NCOA is your NCOA and I and the current leadership have accepted the mantle of responsibility to make you proud again. There are plenty of things in this world that can disappoint you, but in the end, I pray that NCOA will not be one of them.
There are a lot of wonderful things going on around NCOA, but we have done a poor job of sharing them with the rest of our membership and the world around us. We are working on a plan to hopefully bring a publication back as a means of sharing with our members and the world the wonderful things that go on across this country because of what NCOA members are doing. If you like to write, whether you are affiliated with a chapter or not, let us know. If you can take pictures of activities that support our military and our communities, let us know. If you have skills as an editor and can take information and turn it into a story, let us know. If you have connections with businesses that are friendly to our troops, both at home and abroad and may be willing to sponsor projects in exchange for publicity, let us know. If you have ideas that warm your heart and may be something that others can duplicate, let us know. Together we will pick ourselves back up off of the ground and become the leaders that we are capable of being.
If you have any ideas or suggestions, either contact headquarters or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can assure you that your leadership will take note.
Strength in Unity & Leadership By Example,
MCPO (SCW) Terry M. Haines
Chairman, International Board of Directors