June 2019 Print

    President's Message

    Dear Fellow Clerks:
    First, I would like to send my deepest sympathies to the City of Virginia Beach, as they mourn the 12 public servants who lost their lives during the tragic and horrific incident that took place on Friday, May 31. Amanda, you, your staff, and the families of those affected have been in my prayers and at the top of my mind. As I know you are resilient, please remember that if you need anything, we are all here for you, always and especially during times like this. “And
    I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever ~ John 14:16.”

    On a less somber and lighter note, I would like to thank the City of Roanoke, Stephanie Moon-Reynolds, and her staff for their hard in work putting together and hosting a delightful and memorable 42nd Annual Virginia Municipal Clerk’s Association Conference in the Star City, with 25 new or first time attendees and 77 total registrants.

    I, along with 32 Virginia Clerks, including our Institute Director, Jennifer Sisane, attended the 73rd Annual International Institute of Municipal Clerks Conference in Birmingham, Alabama. During the Conference, Region II had the opportunity to meet and have a lively and informative discussion on a proposed Region II Directors Rotation Schedule Agreement, which will be sent to each of you via your VMCA Region Director and hopefully it will be discussed at
    your next Region meeting.

    Thirty-five other Clerks and I from the US participated in the IIMC Study Abroad and Symposium, where we visited the U.K., trekking through London, Windsor, Bath, and Stratford-Upon-Avon. If you have not had the chance to participate in the IIMC Study Abroad program, I highly recommend it. Planning is underway for 2021. It’s an experience you will not forget.

    The 42nd Annual Institute and Academy will be held in Virginia Beach at the Holiday Inn & Suites Oceanfront North, October 8-11, with an Athenian Dialogue on Saturday, October 12. The preliminary agenda for the Institute and Academy will be forthcoming.

    Included in this newsletter will be information on the Institute and Academy Scholarship Application, 2019-2020 Membership Renewal forms, and Conference. Also, please be on the lookout for our new VMCA website. I would be remiss if I didn’t give the most significant praise and thank you to all the 2019-2020 VMCA Officers, Region Directors, and Committee Chairs for agreeing to volunteer and serve the members of the association.

    In closing, things have been hectic, but I would like to thank you all for allowing me the privilege to serve as your 2019 -2020 VMCA President. I vow to represent VMCA with honor, provide steadfast leadership, and, with the help of the Executive Committee, ensure things are little more efficient for future Presidents, Officers, Region Directors, Committee Chairs, and Members. If you need anything of me or have any question, please don’t hesitate to reach out and ask.

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    Message from the 1st Vice President

    Standing in solidarity with our municipal clerks around the Commonwealth of Virginia and beyond, I want to express heartfelt sympathy and unwavering support to Virginia Beach City Clerk Amanda Barnes, MMC, and fellow staff in the wake of the unthinkable tragedy that occurred on May 31st. It is times like these when we most depend on each other to help us stand strong and see a way forward. Please do not hesitate to reach out.

    Virginia Beach has been a special place to clerks not only from Virginia, but to those joining us at the Fall Institutes and Academies from West Virginia, Maryland and Delaware. I hope to see many of you there at 42nd Annual Institute and Academy, October 8-11, and for the Athenian Dialogue on Saturday, October 12. Institute Director, Jennifer Sisane, along with members of the VMCA Education Committee are working hard to put together a fantastic training program.

    The VMCA Executive Committee along with Committee Chairs and Region Directors are ready to get this 2019- 2020 year underway with efforts to improve efficiency, to provide top-notch education and networking opportunities, and to grow VMCA. As often as possible, I ask that you take time to connect and build relationships with clerks in your VMCA region, and reach out to localities in your region whose clerk may not be active in VMCA. Believe it or not, some just don’t know about us.

    Just FYI, I have spent the last four months commuting from Lynchburg to Charlottesville, and I am pleased to say that my family is now getting settled in Albemarle County. What a difference a few hours of not being on the road makes each day!

    Thank you for the honor of serving as your 1st Vice President this year. I look forward to working with and for you.
    See you soon!

    ~Kyna Thomas, CMC

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    Message from the 2nd Vice President

    What a fast few months this has been as we look back at the wonderful Annual Conference held in Roanoke, thanks to Stephany Reynolds and her team from Region IV. It was evident from the activities, as well as the sessions, the wonderful meals and gift bags, much thought time and effort went into the planning of the 42nd Annual Conference.
    Thank you Region IV Clerks!

    It was so encouraging to see old faces and many new faces at the Annual Conference. Out of the 64 Clerks in attendance, 18 were first-time attendees. It is my hope that everyone continue to stay involved and take advantage of the many opportunities offered through the VMCA and the IIMC. As co-chair of the Education Committee, we are now working with VCU for the upcoming Institute and Academy. It is our goal to formulate sessions that meet the needs of news and seasoned clerks.

    I look forward to seeing everyone at the upcoming Institute and Academy in Virginia Beach October 9-11 and encourage everyone to try to make it to the Pre-Conference Workshop and the Athenian Dialogue. Let’s hope for beautiful and sunny weather!

    It is a privilege to serve you as 2nd Vice President this year and I look forward to meeting those of you who are new to
    the VMCA. Welcome!

    “If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.” Martin Luther King Jr.

    ~Pam Wallace, CMC

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    42nd Virginia Municipal Clerks Association Annual Conference in Roanoke, Virginia

    VMCA Region IV Clerks were honored to host the 42nd Virginia Municipal Clerks Association Annual Conference on April 17 – 19, 2019, at the Hotel Roanoke and Conference Center in Roanoke, Virginia. Our theme was “Clerks on the Move: Destination - Connect à Empower à Inspire”. There were 68 Municipal Clerks in
    attendance, which consisted of 20 first time attendees.

    An outdoor evening reception was at the Roanoke City of Roanoke Main Library – “On the Porch Balcony that offered a spectacular a view overlooking the Elmwood Park Amphitheater, with heavy hors-d’oeuvres and wine, and Jazz music under the stars, which opened the 2019 VMCA Annual Conference with a bang!

    Concurrent sessions were offered consisting of Cybersecurity, Navigating the Social Media Waters, Workplace Violence, The Importance of the Municipal Clerk’s Role in Budget Development, Understanding Roles/ Responsibilities in Community Disaster Response, FAQs for Cleks, Just the FAQs, Know Ya FOIA & COIA,
    Creating Your Best Life: Freeing Up Your Energy for What Really Matters, Embracing Pressure When the Pressure is On! and seven exhibitors were on-site to share their products with 68 municipal clerks. Network/Welcome Reception, which was at the Main Library on “The Porch”, overlooking the Elmwood Park Amphitheater

    23 Municipal Clerks participated in an all-day, preconference workshop on Diversity, Customer Service and Communication sponsored by Jennifer Sisane, VMCA Institute Director.

    The Roanoke City Clerk’s Office wishes to express its sincerest appreciation to the following VMCA Region IV localities, vendors and sponsors for their support of the 2019 VMCA Annual Conference:

    Town of Bedford
    Debbie B. Anderson
    Town Clerk

    Town of Blacksburg
    Donna Boone-Caldwell
    Town Clerk

    Botetourt County
    Susan Fain
    County Clerk

    City of Salem
    Judy Hough
    Deputy City Clerk

    Franklin County
    Madeline Sefcik
    County Clerk

    Roanoke County
    Deborah Jacks
    County Deputy Clerk

    Montgomery County
    Vickie Swinney
    Secretary to the County Administrator

    Town of Vinton
    Susan Johnson, Town Clerk
    Julie Tulcei, Planning Coordinator

    Municode
    Garland Properties
    The Law Offices of Daniel L. Crandall
    Lee Hartman & Sons, Inc.
    Virginia Tech Outreach & Affairs
    SPLEA & Associates, LLC
    Hist:Re Partners, LLC
    Finks Jewelers
    General Code
    GovDeals
    BIS
    CivicClerk

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    Save the Date

    This year we are offering our first Athenian Leadership Society Dialogue after the Institutes and Academy. Dr. Jane Long from the International Institute of Municipal Clerks (IIMC) and our very own Libby Hume will lead the dialogue. We're reading "Creating Magic: 10 Common Sense Leadership Strategies from a Life at Disney" by Lee Cockerell. Registration is limited to 30 participants. We anticipate that this Saturday session will sell out, so if you are interested, please register soon.

    We're also offering a fun Pre-Institutes and Academy workshop on Tuesday, October 8. This workshop is titled, "The Power of 'Yes, And' - Improving Communication through Improv Comedy" and is lead by Emmy Award-winning comedian, actor, and director, David Webster.

    Virginia Commonwealth University is working closely with your leadership at the VMCA and with the VMCA education committee to develop an informative and engaging education program. We'll have updated agendas on the OCPE website in the weeks ahead. The full event will be held at the Holiday Inn & Suites North Beach in Virginia Beach.

    Registration is NOW OPEN for the 2019 Institute and Academy! This year we are pleased to add and Athenian Dialogue on Saturday. Please go to https://ocpe.vcu.edu/vmca/ for complete information on all sessions for the Institute and Academy. Hope to see you there!

    Please note the hotel location: Holiday Inn & Suites North Beach, Virginia Beach

    VMCA Pre-Institutes and Academy Workshop (Optional)
    Tuesday, October 8, 2019
    Early Bird Registration: $175 (through August 15, 2019)
    Regular Registration: $225

    VMCA Annual Institute and Academy
    Wednesday-Friday, October 9-11, 2019
    Early Bird Registration: $589 (through August 15, 2019)
    Regular Registration: $639

    Athenian Leadership Society Dialogue (Optional)
    Saturday, October 12, 2019
    Early Bird Registration: $175 (through August 15, 2019)
    Regular Registration: $225

    If you have any questions, please reach out to Jennifer Sisane, IIMC Institute Director - Virginia at [email protected]. The VMCA Annual Institutes and Academy website is ocpe.vcu.edu/vmca.

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    Region News

    Region IV News

    Donna Boone-Caldwell recognized for almost 39 years as a member of VMCA and dedicated service as the Blacksburg Town Clerk, a former IIMC Region II Director and former VMCA President.
    Congratulations again, Donna!

    On other high note, Region IV extends congratulations to Susie McCoy, Roanoke City Deputy City Clerk, on the arrival of twin grandsons born on Friday, May 31. We welcome Susie to the “Grandma Club”, the best club ever!! The boys’ names are Myles Carter (five pounds) and Micah Julian (two and a half pounds). Keep the boys in your prayers, they are still in the hospital, growing every day; unfortunately, mom had to leave the hospital without them. We anticipate all to be together real soon. Grandma is out of the office for about 30 days taking advantage of her new role.

    Region V News

    Region V would like to welcome the new City Clerk to Lynchburg, Robin Craig. Robin was formerly a Planning Technician for Lynchburg and is now Clerk for the Council. Robin has joined IIMC
    and is already working on her CMC.

    Region VI News

    Region VI met on March 29 in Scottsville at the Tavern on the James. We did a team building exercise where we talked about our first jobs and/or worst jobs and what we learned from them. We held
    a round table discussion on Boards and Commissions. It was interesting to note that each locality truly has a distinct process. Some localities debate appointments in open meeting, whereas others prefer to hold the debate in closed session and make appointments after certifying the closed session. Some localities interview their applicants and others ask applicants to come to a meeting to introduce themselves to the Board.

    Congratulations to Kelly Belanger Harris!! She is being promoted to the position of Fluvanna Assistant County Administrator and Caitlyn Solis will be the new Executive Assistant to the County Administrator & Clerk to the Board of Supervisors. Welcome Caitlyn!
    For those of you who knew Sharon Taylor, Albemarle County Planning Commission Clerk, she has retired after 42 years of service to the County. Post retirement, she attended the VMCA conference in Roanoke and said she had the most wonderful time!

    And last but not least, a warm welcome to Carolyn Shaffer, the new Albemarle
    County Clerk to the Planning Commission. She comes to the County
    from Linkhorne Middle School, Lynchburg, where she was an Office Manager/ Bookkeeper. She moved to Charlottesville in 2018 and is enjoying
    working closer to home. She has 2 grown children and two grandsons. In her
    spare time, she enjoys working in her yard and walking her 4 dogs. She has been quick to adapt to her new role and has already joined the IIMC and VMCA.

    Congratulations to Thomas Unsworth, Town Clerk of Scottsville, and his wife on the birth of their beautiful baby girl, Harriet Unsworth (aka Thomas’s new boss).

    Region VII News

    Region VII reports that they are in full conference planning mode for the 2020 VMCA Annual Conference. They cannot wait for everyone to come visit their region!

    Region IX News

    Pam & Joe Wallace (City of Colonial Heights) are proud to announce the acceptance of their daughter Laurel, into Virginia Military Institute. Laurel will be pursuing a B.S. degree in History and will commission in the United States Marine Corps.

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