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|MISA Prairies - President's Message|
It’s been my pleasure to serve you this past year as the President of MISA Prairies Chapter. We’ve taken a couple of risks this year by moving our conference to Kananaskis when Banff was not available to us but the result has been well worth it.
We also decided not to have our fall technical workshop and instead focus on a leadership workshop to front-end this conference. We recognize that what we do as IT leaders goes beyond the technology and the technical aspects. We often focus our training dollars on keeping current with the latest in technology trends but don’t necessarily feed our leadership skills. We need to be strong leaders when #ITHAPPENS.
Those that attended the Hugh Culver session found it valuable and insightful. The keynotes gave us things to ponder as we hone our leadership skills and build high-performance teams. We as an Executive have committed to keeping a leadership track in all our conferences. We are more than technical people, we are leaders.
Our Chapter is growing up. We are no longer the startup, fledgling chapter. We are financially stable. Our membership fees are set cover our operating costs which remain quite reasonable. We have a bank balance that allows us to put on networking conferences like this without relying on the host municipality to front the costs.
We have had our challenges this year with the state of the economy in our region. Our total delegate count is lower as well as our sponsorships and tradeshow vendors. But with the diligence and perseverance of our conference volunteers, we will be profitable. We are committed to putting on a quality conference with the goals of networking, learning and fun.
As your president, I’m also on the MISA Canada Board. At the MISA Atlantic Conference in Halifax, MISA Canada launched a new strategic plan. The key tenants of this plan are to deliver value to the members (Chapters); to develop trust, confidence, cooperation of our members; to enhance the effectiveness of Municipal IT between municipalities, chapters, and nationally; and, to ensure the value and sustainability of MISA-ASIM Canada. Some of the changes you will see over the next year are improvements to our national website to improve the collaboration capability making it easier to find RFPs, technology articles and webinar opportunities. MISA Canada is also working with New Zealand through the Linked Organizations of Local Authorities (LOLA) to develop a catalog of municipal software inventory. Thanks to those that participated in filing out the survey that was sent out on behalf of MISA Ontario.
Our purpose as an Executive is to foster collaboration between municipalities in regards to technology; to promote networking and sharing information; to make it easy to contact people from other municipalities; to learn and work together on topics of common interest; to promote what’s happening in our chapters across Canada; and, to provide opportunities for individuals to build their leadership skills without necessarily being in a role of functional leadership in their municipality. Collaboration at events like this are one of the best ways to achieve these. We all face similar challenges and that we can share our experiences and learn together.
I am looking forward to serving as you over the next year as President fulfilling our purpose as stated above and being a voice of the prairies chapter nationally.
I look forward to hearing from you, and seeing ALL of you at MISA Prairies in March 2017 back in Kananaski Country!
Steve Jeffery, MISA Prairies President