The President's Letter

[Tom Payne pix here]

Tom Payne

[Program Cover pix here]

.... Greetings to all!

Time flies and now the things that have happened since our last issue already seem like old news. But all who attended our August Convention agree that it was a special time, with very productive meetings, a very special Sembrich performance by a young Canadian at the lovely Polish Consulate, and a warmly charming hotel for our accommodations. It was also a great Board meeting in Savannah -- the city has a great charm, we effectively reviewed our financial and organizational processes, and it was exciting to relive the early morning Battle of Savannah in which our great patriot General Casimir Pulaski valiantly gave his life for our freedom. One final note to file: Ed Krolikowski from the Savannah Committee cuts a dashing Pulaski figure.

In my last letter to membership in Polish Heritage, I put out a call for our affiliates to support ACPC by hosting either a Board Meeting or a Convention. I am happy to report that a positive response was received! Rochester has offered to host our Spring 2018 Board Meeting at a date to be determined in April. Minnesota has also agreed to host our Summer Convention at a date to be determined. Thanks to David Bryniarski of Polish Heritage Society of Rochester and Ed Rajtar of Polish American Cultural Institute of Minnesota for their leadership in proposing to their respective Boards and providing the information necessary to decide in the affirmative. We look forward to meeting with local members in those locations and exercising social and informational interchange. The spirit of service to Polish culture lives on in our ACPC affiliates!

We are also welcoming back our Minnesota organization to full-fledged affiliate status. This is a win-win for all of us and makes next year's convention much more special, as Polish Minnesotans have always been noteworthy for their rich cultural achievements and support.

Let's remember that when we focus on serving the greater good, we will reap commensurate rewards directly and indirectly. Transition from supporting organization to affiliate higher may result in slightly higher membership dues, but your organization stands to receive national support and you may be assured by reviewing our activities that dues are used to benefit our Polish culture in the United States. We treat all funds received very judiciously and we carefully strive to optimize the application of our resources.

Many of us have observed that it is crucial for our organizations to bring in new blood as our leaders get on in years. At the same time, new blood may have different perspectives that can conflict with the "way things have always been done." While some conflict can be healthy and lead to positive results, if it is not bounded by reason and unselfishness, it can be destructive. This is not happening at ACPC, but we must be prepared to accept newer members with possibly different perspectives and willing to implement change. Therefore, we want to make it clear that we are very open to newer members from younger generations. All that we ask is that newer members acquaint themselves by the constitution which has successfully guided us for 69 years so that limits are understood.

I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Wesolych Swiat!

Tom Payne
ACPC President

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