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Monday, March 23, 2020

Letter from, Lori Sickelbaugh, CRCE, AAHAM National President:

Dear Members: 

These past few weeks has brought challenges for all of us, yet, as I learn more than I ever imagined about COVID-19 and terms like social distancing, I have never been prouder to be part of AAHAM and this supportive community. Over the next few months, our organization, much like many other nonprofits, will be faced with tough decisions. But, with unique problems, we also have the opportunity to create unique approaches. 

First things first, you continue to be our focus as we manage these uncertain times. Events and communities are the very fabric of our country and we know how important your role to society is in times like these. As we continue to navigate the challenges we are experiencing and anticipate in the coming months; I want to reassure you that AAHAM will be guided by a purpose and a plan.

We are here to support you. We understand that communities in particular, feel the effects of not being able to gather and engage as you normally would. We also know that you depend on your AAHAM team; National, Chapters and staff, especially during difficult times. You should, and you can now, more than ever. 

•    The National Office is eager and ready to assist however they can. Don’t hesitate to reach out as you normally would by email or phone.

•    We’ll continue to share and provide resources that address common and evolving concerns due to COVID-19, without inundating you.

•    We’re committed to staying connected while social distancing. We’re taking the CDC recommendations of social distancing very seriously to do our part to flatten the curve and hopefully get back to gathering as soon as possible.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t still network and learn remotely.

•    The CDC COVID site is expanding and receiving regular updates.  If you have internal summaries of CDC information, please verify them regularly against the current information.

•    Recommendations and directives of states are still diverse, in addition to details about how testing and treatment is accessed. Please follow the situations in your states.

•    Committee phone meetings will proceed as scheduled unless told otherwise.  Our hope is that these meetings will help provide at least a little sense of normalcy and consistency, connection with your peers, and maybe even a welcome distraction.
At times like these, it's the smallest actions that can have the greatest impact to those we hold closest to us and to our communities.  We thank you for doing your part to help keep yourself and those around you safe, and for holding each other up during these trying times.  During periods of turmoil, people are looking for balance, leadership, redefinition and positive direction. Let’s collectively show others how we innovate, collaborate and lead through the coming weeks and months.

As we venture into the future, there are many unknowns, but we are prepared to take on whatever the future holds and will be there for the industry, for our community, and most importantly, for you, our members.

Best regards,

Lori M. Sickelbaugh, CRCE

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