Midterm Thoughts from Roy Stout, CMA Board Chairman

Well, here we are in the 4th quarter of 2006.  How and the heck did that happen?  It seems like yesterday I was examining the results for 2005 and dreaming of great successes for 2006.  Am I going to accomplish what I thought I would?  I believe my answer is, well, sort of.  How about you?

I started my rush towards the finish line-fiscal close December 31st-by Getting on Track at the Western Region Credit Conference, did you?  This is an annual event that I always anticipate attending with a great deal of excitement.  Although I renewed acquaintances with friends from as far away as Florida, there always seems to be a feel of regional hominess to this particular conference. 

I believe a great deal of the credit goes to our Las Vegas Team who went out of their way to greet everyone with bigger than usual smiles and hellos.  They were also very helpful in getting you where you belonged.  I would like to thank Kim Lamberty and all her terrific volunteers who contributed their time in the days leading up to as well as during the actual conference.  You guys made us feel as though Las Vegas was our second home and contributed greatly to such a well run conference.

Jodi Owens and her committee of volunteers did a great job of planning the conference:  by setting the curriculum; establishing the time and venue (which I believe worked out rather well); securing the speakers and vendors; and above all the successful marketing of a very good credit conference.  Thank you very much, Jodi, you and your crew deserve a big round of applause.

We truly appreciate all the vendors, for without their sponsorship this caliber of credit conference would be impossible.  I hope everyone had the chance to visit with them and sample the fine products and services that they offered.  These products and services definitely make our jobs as credit professionals so much easier.

Let’s not forget the presenters who took their time to prepare and present their materials.  This is no easy task, but it is quite rewarding.  I know that there were people in every session who took home some new thought, idea or even a best practice that they will use in this coming year.  Thanks to all of you for presenting a fine curriculum of varied topics.

Did I mention we are already working on next year’s conference?  We are and we would love your input.  If you attended this year’s conference, tell us what you liked that we should keep; what you didn’t like that we can improve or replace; and what you did not see that you would like to see.  If you were unable to attend this year’s conference, tell us what we can do to get you there next year.  Remember this conference is designed with you in mind, so please let us know what you think.  Next year’s conference will be our 20th year anniversary and we want to have an extra special event for you.  It will be in Las Vegas sometime between September 15th and October 15th.  The exact dates and venue will be determined soon and we will let you know as soon as we know.

As I begin the second half of my term as your chairman, I would just like to say that I am having a blast.  I have been working on a wide range of projects to continue to make CMA Business Credit Services, the largest Affiliate of the National Association of Credit Management, the very best it can be.  It has been a real pleasure for me to work with the group of dedicated professionals serving as your Board of Directors, to interact with our enthusiastic hard working staffs in Burbank, San Leandro and Las Vegas and to be engaged with the fine group of Officers that manage the whole process.

We all believe we have made some significant although subtle changes which will provide for our association’s success for the foreseeable future.  We hope you agree.  And whether you do or don’t agree, please let us know because it is all about you.  I, for one, love to hear  from you.

Until our paths cross again, don’t let the ghouls of bad debt get you and have a spirited Halloween.

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