A Tribute to Erna Ohlsson

Erna Ohlsson
Erna Ohlsson

For many of us, the major part of our life has us going to work, interacting with our co-workers and customers for 8 hours and then returning home to our family, friends and loved ones. If you are lucky, some of these people become your friends making the work experience that much more enjoyable.

For Erna Ohlsson, her 50 years of Industry Group Management has taken her far beyond this level of acquaintances. Her customers or “group members” have become her family and loved ones. She has not only opened her home to her groups but has forged lifetime friendships that have seen her included in their family gatherings. For many, the first call made after a job promotion, job change or family news is to Erna.

But don’t let that “Swedish Charm” fool you: This is one tough lady that entered a male dominated fraternity and not only earned their respect but became a trusted confident to many who help grow LA’s business community. All this while running a department responsible for administrating over 150 credit groups per month before fax machines and the internet, relying on the United States Postal system to insure that all group members received their reports.

Sometime in Mid-December, she will secretary her final meeting, pass out the 3 statements she has heard read thousands of times, distribute reports and carefully monitor the proceedings . Being that it is the holiday season, she has most likely organized some type of gift exchange and I am willing to wager that a bottle of Champagne, her beverage of choice, will make an appearance. At the conclusion of the meeting, she will pack up her group book for the final time.

In January, new group secretaries will be assigned to administrate her groups. Like Jay Leno taking over for Johnny Carson, they will have one tough act to follow. We ask for your patience during this transition. We are aware of the task ahead of us replacing someone who conducted her meetings much like her own life, with class, dignity and professionalism.

To Erna Ohlsson, thank you for a job well done. Enjoy retirement!

Author: Larry Convoy, Supervisor-Industry Credit Groups

15 Replies to “A Tribute to Erna Ohlsson”

  1. I don’t believe Erna will retire, she’ll probably just stop showing up routinely….

    Erna I hope your free time will be spent doing other things that bring delight to your heart. CMA’s staff will miss you, the members of your “groups” will miss you, far beyond that are the many members whose lives you’ve touched briefly in distant places who will also miss you ! Hugs

  2. I have known Erna for many, many years as she has championed our Building Materials Manufacturers Credit Group. She has put up with many of our antics, our highs and our lows, through ebbs and flows – so it is with mixed emotion that we will not be seeing her on a monthly basis beginning in 2014. She has earned her “down time” and I have certainly appreciated her continued support, professionalism, and wicked sense of humor..! I will ask that our new admin be patient as we “break” them in to our very close knit group that has developed over the years…! Thank you Erna for putting up with us and keeping us on task…!

    1. Dear Jodi,

      I am keeping your E-mail on file, I would love to hear from you from time to time. You are not kidding that it has been a lifetime. Remember,
      you did not have kids when I first met you and your daughter is in college.

      I feel a little sentimental of leaving my groups – I won’t let them talk about it,
      I am afraid I will start crying. I told my friend “Ron” that he has to help
      filling the gap, otherwise I won’t get out of bed until noon everyday.

      Love you Jodi,


  3. I had the pleasure of meeting Erna in 1989, while working for Cal Switch. Our CMA group number was 6338, which I believe was Erna’s favorite =). Erna was present at every meeting, opening each with a charming smile and a joke. I also had the pleasure of attending a function she hosted at her beautiful home. Erna definitley left a long lasting, amazing impression. I wish her all the best! She will so be missed.

  4. Erna, I remember being a new kid in the printing industry a long time ago, your cheerful smile and warm open arms welcomed me in. I have fond memories of me trips to California. Thank you for being you! You are not replacable, enjoy your new journey in your life!

    1. Dear Cindy,
      How nice to hear from you – I want you to know that Anna Vega also
      retired. It was fun, we all showed up “early” at the meetings so we
      would have time to visit. I wish you the very best in your career
      and home life.


  5. Dear Erna,
    I will always remember how so many years ago when I joined the printing group, you welcomed me with your wonderful charm. I felt “at ease” with your group. I realized that it was not only because the members were nice, but also because you were able to create such a friendly atmosphere. I always enjoyed your jokes and I will miss all the laughs! I wish you all the best in your retirement. I know whatever you do, you will continue to stay busy. Lots of hugs and THANK YOU for everything!!
    We will stay in touch ….

    1. Armine,

      We have known each other many years and we have had great
      meetings and outings. I understand that we will have one grand
      party at our Chairman’s House in January. I hope I will see you


  6. Erna you will be missed. Our group has changed over the years, but you have alway been our constant. I wish you all the best and many, many years to enjoy your retirement.
    Guess we’ll need one less salt shaker at the table in January.
    Take care and all my best to you, Barbara

    1. Barbara,

      It is funny that you should bring up the “saltshaker”. I will never
      forget the year the whole group brought me some kind of “salt”
      sea salt, flavored salt etc., and the best one a large piece of
      “saltlick” which I donated to a friend who lived in the mountains. She
      was putting it out for the wild animals.
      We have had fun, especially at our outings to Club 33, I will miss you
      and the group – Erna

  7. Erna,
    I remember my first meeting years ago with the printer’s industry group and meeting you. You welcomed me and helped me get to know the group and feel comfortable with everyone. This made me not only want to come for the networking and valuable information I was gaining but also to see you and the group every month. You have a wonderful sense of humor and a caring attitude. Thank you for everything over the years! I wish you the best in retirement and know that we will keep in touch! We will all get together in the new year and toast this new journey for you. Thank you for everything. A great big hug to you my friend! Judy

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