President’s Message Jan/Feb 2024

Arthur Lee

By the time you read this, we are all of a sudden into a new year. Wow, how time flies. I hope everyone had a fine holiday season and is looking forward to a prosperous 2024. I have spoken to some of our members and anticipate seeing you at our upcoming wood meetings in Florida and Australia. For those of you who have not had a chance to attend one of our meets, I highly encourage you to do so. It is hard to describe how much fun and informative they are. Chances are good that you will also make some new lifelong friends that share common interests in travel and wood.

As our membership ages, many are dropping out. It is important that we try and maintain or even increase our membership numbers. I am aiming for this to be one of our main focus areas and goals for this coming year. Personally, I have had good success by talking to customers at our local woodshops and Woodcraft and Rockler stores. One way that has been successful for me in recruitment has been to not only engage with the patrons, but to leave extra WoW magazines and a few membership applications out for the customers to pick up. What many of us have also thought of or done, is to do the same at local wood turner clubs. Another strategy may be to do a woodturning presentation or provide a raffle woodcrafted item at venues such as a local Future Farmers of America event hosted by county agriculture service agencies or volunteer to do a wood collection and identification program for the Forestry Merit badge for the local boy scouts chapter. Please share with me and others any ideas that you have to further this goal.

While it is true that most of us are retired and can afford the time to take off for a week long meet, many young professionals do not have this luxury. Having had discussions with several of you, it seems that the perfect target for recruitment may be the recently retired person. They usually have kids that are now out of the home and have some time on their hands and ready for something new or to embark on an adventure – something to be occupied with.

Finally, I’d like to thank Mihaly Czako, our editor and Willem Hurkmans, our Publications Chairman, for having delivered an awesome WoW publication on time this past year. The articles are captivating and look awesome in print. We need to recognize that the WoW is one of, or our most, important means that maintain
and help recruit our membership. Thanks to you and all the associate editors and content contributors for a job well done.

Hope to see some of you soon.