linda-2.jpg Welcome to a New STC Year!

by Linda King, STC Houston President

It is the privilege of each incoming STC Houston president to designate a theme for his or her service year. The rapid changes in business processes and technology continue to drive significant changes in our profession and our day-to-day activities. To be successful technical communicators and managers today and in the future, we must overcome innate resistance to change and embrace opportunities for growth and responsibility in new directions. That’s why I chose Evolving with the Profession as my 2007-08 theme for STC Houston.

I am excited at the prospect of working with your new Administrative Council to create opportunities for expanding our thinking and growing to meet the changing demands of our profession. For this year’s Council we deliberately recruited not only members with significant past STC leadership experience, but also several folks new enough in their careers and to STC to bring fresh ideas to help us move in some new directions. Everyone on the Council is eager for suggestions on how to enhance the value of STC for members and how to attract and retain members.

Joining me as members of the 2007-08 executive committee are:

  • Alyssa Fox, current EVP, and former VP for Competitions and Arrangements
  • Travis Shoemake, treasurer and a professional accountant
  • Debra Page, secretary
  • Rebecca Taylor, outgoing president and former VP for Communications, newsletter editor, and PR manager

Other members of the new Administrative Council include:

  • Cathy Bettoney, VP of Outreach (community service, students, scholarships, and satellites)
  • Doug Brown, VP of Volunteers and Recognition
  • Jessica Dickerson, VP of Education (programs, seminars, STKs, and SIGs)
  • Crystal Johnson, VP of Member Services (membership, employment, and historian)
  • Meredith Kramer, VP of Hospitality (arrangements for all events)
  • Jowell Lydon, VP of Competitions and former Competitions Manager
  • Rick Sanchez, VP of Communications and Forums Administrator

I’m happy to report that our community is on solid financial ground and that the Council is busy this summer planning activities and the budget for the new STC year. We are also updating the STC Houston website with information for the coming year. We have wonderful volunteers to manage or participate in several of our standing committees. Many volunteer spots are still open, however. We need help from members and companies who can contribute time, goods, or services in any amount.

We’ll be kicking off our program year on September 11 with a dynamic guest speaker, Jack Molisani, who’ll offer tips on how to take control of your income and earn six figures as a technical communicator. An Associate Fellow of STC, Jack has been the documentation manager at a multi-million dollar software company. He is now the president of ProSpring Technical Staffing, a recruiting firm specializing in technical writers, and produces LavaCon: The Conference on Advanced Technical Communication and Project Management.

Our major fundraising initiative, the annual STC Houston Competitions, is well underway. The Call for Entries has been designed, printed, and mailed. Details for the competition are available on the STC Houston website. The deadline for receiving entries is September 12, 2007.

As your incoming president, I have already gained opportunities to represent our community in Society-level activities leading to STC Board decision making. In mid-July, I completed work as a member of an STC Community Funding Task Force. Two or three representatives (presidents or treasurers) from each size category of STC geographic community were invited to participate on the Task Force. I was one of three representatives for communities with 300 to 600 members. The purpose of the Task Force was to consider and make recommendations to the STC Board about required STC membership dues and how dues funds are processed and returned to the communities.

The second opportunity is an invitation to participate in a one-day STC Academic-Industry Leaders Summit being held in Houston in September. The purpose of the Summit is to address the following questions:

  • How would STC benefit from an improved relationship between its academic and industry communities?
  • How does the academic community benefit from participation in STC, and what contributions do they most want to make?
  • How does the industry/government community benefit from academic participation in STC, and what academic contributions do they want and value most?
  • How do educational programs add value to our field?

If you have thoughts about any of these questions, I’d love to hear them and present them at the summit. If you have ideas about any other aspect of STC, please send them my way also.

Be sure to check the STC website frequently for news, and RSVP to join us for an exciting September program meeting.

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