It is a strange and wondrous thing to be stepping down as the Coalition President without our annual meeting at CCCC to mark the occasion. I would like to thank all of you for your support as I moved into position as the President—I certainly had no idea when I agreed to the task that we would be moving through such politically turbulent times.
My initial goal as the President was to move forward with changes that were started before my time. As such, I worked to forward the name changes with various legal/financial organizations, revisit our mission statement, and move the organization forward with fiscal responsibility but with an eye towards growth.
While I had all of those as goals, I unexpectedly got to add a few new skills to my repertoire—primarily, writing in the new genre of the position statement. With help from the advisory board, this past year saw the furious writing of several position statements in response to both national and local events, and the quick work of attempting to respond to the political situation surrounding Cs. And of course, for the first time ever, this year saw us canceling our participation at the annual Cs convention. While this is perhaps one of the saddest moments for me since I look forward to this event every year, it is also one of my proudest moments as your President. To see the Coalition take a stand and say that we would not participate under circumstances that we felt were potentially dangerous for our members was a very proud moment for me indeed. While our conversations were difficult, they were never contentious. While our decisions were difficult, people immediately stepped up to help us to do alternative work for the graduate students in Missouri and the organizations on the ground. For that, I am profoundly grateful.
This is a very long winded way of saying thank you—thank you for helping me with the difficult conversations and for your amazing generosity as members—to serve on our many task forces and awards committees, to offer your input, and to contribute your finances for our initiatives, new and old. I now pass the torch to the capable hands of Tarez Graban. I wish more calm times for her, and a more straightforward path to do the work that we initially set out to do.
All the best—you will see me soon looking for volunteers to assist with the many awards that we now give!
Coalition Immediate Past President