2019 WSSRA Annual Convention
The 72nd WSSRA Convention was held at the Yakima Convention Center June 3 -5, 2019. It was an amazing opportunity to learn from those who have created exceptional programs in their local communities.
The convention began on Monday afternoon with breakout sessions focusing on community service, website development, communications/social media, and programs designed to attract and maintain the memberships of plan 2 and 3 retirees. Attendees could choose two of the four sessions to attend.
On Tuesday, the convention began with the Delegate Assembly. This was the time that members reviewed WSSRA operations and policies and made major governance changes. National Teacher of the Year Mandy Manning, from Spokane, spoke to the audience about current K-12 topics and concerns. Mandy has traveled extensively since September sharing her message and her experiences with audiences from across the nation. It was fascinating to hear what she learned.
Wednesday morning was dedicated to leadership training sessions featuring presentations from statewide committees like membership, health services, and retirement planning. Also, next year’s unit presidents, treasurers, and secretaries were given information on local leadership tips, fiscal monitoring, and event recording.
There was a silent auction room and displays in various locations. A room was assigned as a “hobby room” where those attending the convention could bring their hobbies to share.
Many opportunities to socialize with local unit teams and attendees from across the state were provided. The food was great and the locals made the experience entertaining and worthwhile.
Fran Person: I have attended WSSRA annual conventions many times since 1993! I still enjoy them for the fellowship in the rides to the locations, for the roommates, for the workshops, for the meals, for the Memorial service remembering friends and colleagues, for the business of the convention, and the session on Wednesday. And, not least, for the reimbursement for the expenses from our local unit.
I attended the Health Leadership meeting on Wednesday. The main speaker emphasized Fall-Risk emphasizing exercise, safety, and medication factors. We also discussed many other health activities.
Linda Bannon: I attended the retirement seminar breakout session and received a retirement planning resource guide, which will be very helpful. Other units do seminars quite different from ours, but all have been successful.
This year I was asked to help Despo review applications for scholarships, and we recommended two for consideration. Because of my involvement in this activity, the announcement of the scholarship winners had a special meaning for me. I was impressed that the two candidates that Despo and I had picked received a scholarship.
I always enjoy the road trip with fellow participants. By the end of the convention, we had developed a special bond .
If you have never attended the convention, I would highly recommend it. Each year I meet new people from other units. I believe the convention gives one a total picture of why we belong to SWWSRA and a deeper appreciation for what is done on our behalf.
The 2021 Convention will be held at the Great Wolfe Lodge in Grand Mound (Rochester). Come join the fun!