It is an honour to be serving you as Trillium Council Chair this upcoming year. Ten years ago, my boss and “big bird” (more about that later) – Bob Ramsay – encouraged me become involved with CSAE. He did not say “join,” he said “become involved.” As I “became involved” I became ever more impressed with the quality programs, breadth of resources and knowledgeable and friendly volunteers and staff. I was able to share ideas and seek advice from my CSAE colleagues, and we were able to collectively roll up our sleeves and get ‘er done. This combined effort allowed me to contribute to the development of CSAE Trillium, development in my own organization and in my own personal development.
During our annual awards dinner, we recognized six selected individuals who, not because of a surplus of time, a line on a résumé or a check in a box, “become involved” in the achievements of CSAE Trillium – to a level and effectiveness reflective of a Trillium volunteer. As my favourite philosopher – Dr. Seuss – asks, “Why fit in when you were born to stand out?”
As CSAE Trillium works with National in the implementation of the new business model – the framework for the new model will be revealed later this month at the national Conference – we will continue to encourage the high calibre and valued service provision which members have come to expect – which makes CSAE stand out. These services will also be more accessible across the country to smaller Councils and to individuals not belonging to a Council. I have only the highest expectations of this collaboration – no one rises to low expectations.
In closing, I would also like to thank the numerous bigger birds who during the past decade, have taken me under their wings, guided me, pushed me towards stretch goals which I thought would require chiropractic treatment, and believed in me. They volunteered their attention to helping me grow. As volunteers, we should never underestimate our impact, even though we may not always be aware of it. I look forward surpassing your expectations. Allow me one last quote from my favourite philosopher –“you’ve got brains in your head, and feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.” Off we go.
Oksana Buhel, CAE
Chair, CSAE Trillium