Filling roles, accepting responsibility, always driving VOCA forward

Gwen Hanna

Gwen Hanna

Last month, with our annual meeting behind us and the election of Joe Jansen, Jim Kautz, and Earl Svenningsen, the next step for the board was to schedule an organization meeting. This was held on April 24, and officers were appointed as follows: I was nominated and accepted the role of president; Jim Kautz, treasurer; Mary Ann Waldron, secretary; and Joe Jansen, Rob Schaefer, Jeff Singsaas and Earl Svenningsen as vice presidents.

As part of this annual process, the board members must also select the VOCA committees to which they serve as board representatives. The committees and the respective board representatives for this year are: Architectural Review & Restrictions, Jeff Singsaas (Committee Chair); Finance, Jim Kautz (Treasurer) and Earl Svenningsen (Board Representative); Golf & Greens, Joe Jansen and Earl Svenningsen (Board Reps); House & Grounds, Mary Ann Waldron (Board Rep); Tennis, Gwen Hanna (Board Rep); Policy, Rob Schaefer and Mary Ann Waldron (Board Reps); and By-laws, Rob Schaefer and Mary Ann Waldron (Board Reps).

The Finance, Golf & Greens and House & Grounds committees meet once per month, and Architectural Review & Restrictions meets twice. The Tennis, Policy, and By- laws committees convene only as required.

Besides our internal committees, the board members serve or attend community meetings. VOCA is a member of the Big Park Regional Coordinating Council. Rob Schaefer will attend their monthly meetings as our representative. I will be first alternate and Jeff Singsaas the second to substitute in Rob's absence.

All additional board members will also stand in as alternates, based on our respective absences.

As a general rule, the president of VOCA serves as the liaison for other community engagements where VOCA representation is required. As such, I will be the board representative to such entities as Yavapai County and the Big Park Wastewater Improvement District.

In terms of committee participation, it is a vital and integral part of VOCA, and we are always in need of volunteers to serve. I would like to call upon interested members of our VOCA community to consider giving some of your precious time to be a part of one of our committees, as we have a few that are short on members.

Regrettably, due to lack of membership, one of our ad hoc committees, the Activities Committee, although active for many years, has been disbanded. This committee was chartered with coordinating events such as our 4th of July and Labor Day celebrations at the VOCA Kiwanis Park, as well as the New Year's Eve party in the VOCA Community Ballroom. For any members interested in continuing these traditions, contact us at the VOCA administration office to volunteer your services. Without our volunteers, we will unfortunately not be able to continue these events.

This leads to some final thoughts for you regarding volunteerism and community service. According to researchers at the London School of Economics, there is a direct correlation between volunteerism and happiness. A study of American adults indicated that compared to people who have never volunteered, happiness increased by 7 percent among those who volunteered monthly and by several percentage points again, based on the frequency of volunteerism. This must be factual, since I read about the research online, and as they say in the television commercial, "everything on the Internet must be true." So, let us all volunteer and be happy. Humor aside, I can at least guarantee one thing about happiness: your volunteerism on behalf of VOCA will make us very happy and forever grateful!

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