Magazine article The RMA Journal

The Chapter Advantage

Magazine article The RMA Journal

The Chapter Advantage

Article excerpt

A short drive from my office is a little village you may have heard of--Pinehurst, North Carolina. I was there not too long ago. No, not June 2005 for the U.S. Open; actually, it was April 1976, a short 30 years ago. The occasion was the Carolinas-Virginias RMA Chapter meeting. I was invited to attend as the winner of the chapter's annual paper writing contest. This was my first association with RMA. I came away impressed by the enthusiasm of the Associates, their willingness to share their knowledge with each other, and the leadership of the officers, committee chairs, and program participants. Since that introduction to RMA, I have been fortunate to be involved in many chapter meetings and events. My involvement with RMA chapters over the years has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my career.

The chapter network is the very foundation of RMA. It is what sets us apart from many other professional associations. We now have 121 chapters, including six in Canada as well as others in London, Australia, Hong Kong, and Singapore. More than likely, you are in an area served by one of our RMA chapters. The primary purpose of the chapter organization is to facilitate learning. During the course of this year, our chapters will hold over 400 educational events.

Mary Ann Yurkonis at the RMA national office recently sent me a report on chapter activities. The event names included popular topics for many chapters, such as 2006 Economic Update, Chief Credit Officers Round Table, Current Trends in Real Estate, and CEO Panel Discussion. What really intrigued me was the creativity in topics of a number of programs. Wouldn't you like to have heard the discussion at the following sessions?

* The Scariest Loan Ever (Kansas City)

* The Art of Sustainable Financing (Montreal)

* People Repay Loans, Not Companies: Know Your Customer to Cover Your Assets (New England)

* Wine, Cheese, and Loan Documentation (Triad)

* Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time (San Antonio)

* Elevating Your Elevator Speech Seminar (South Central Pennsylvania)

Our chapters offer two significant opportunities: 1) to learn and 2) to lead. …

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