Presidents Message

Joan Dianna Smith - CGPA president

In April, 2017, I moved back into this position when our then president, Kasra Khorasani shared with us that he needed to step back in order to attend to some medical and self-care issues. While this came as a surprise and was cause for heartfelt concern for a well admired friend and colleague, Kas was gracious throughout the process and had some recommendations for us carrying forward, with an emphasis on quick action. As a result, I am glad to have been able to step in a for an interim period to guide the transition as the board regrouped.

And I am very pleased to report that the board has pulled together– as a healthy group does. A couple of former board members, Maureen Coleman and Terry Simonik, stepped in as extra consultants. Before long, we enlisted the help of our marketing advisor, board member Ed Voltan, who helped crystallize what we needed to say in an open letter to the membership, asking for help.

What happened from there was very exciting: a half dozen people responded, and as you’ll see, a process evolved which led to our welcoming three new board members in August of this same year.
We are now at the full complement of 12 directors. With such a change comes an infusion of new energy, and we are on the cusp of new developments as well as filling vacancies, and picking up on initiatives from last year.

Meanwhile the Conference Steering Committee has been hard at work with setting down the details for our Halifax Conference, October 19-21.
The Education and Training Committee continues to evolve and offer more programs. And the May Experiential Training Group Day across the country was able to proceed successfully. The Sunday night seminars will soon regroup with an upcoming roster this fall.

I’d like to extend my thanks to all who have contributed to this process. This kind of transition only happens will good will, commitment to our values and process, and active energy in collaboration. Bravo all round.

I look forward to the next stage of our development together.
Best Wishes,
Joan-Dianne Smith, MSW, RSW, FCGPA
Interim President
Winnipeg

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