Dear SCMA Colleagues:
I can’t believe it’s March already! It seems like yesterday we were all wishing one another “Happy Holidays” and toasting the New Year. As much as I lament how quickly the year is passing, I welcome the excitement and energy that the month of March brings: springtime, the California poppies, the migration of the painted lady butterflies, St. Patrick’s Day and Mardi Gras celebrations, followed by a recommitment to our New Year’s goals and resolutions. Of course, March is framed by the celebration of women with International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month. Here’s to the women of SCMA!
Among the many things that excite me about the month of March are the many great events happening with SCMA. Like Oprah says, here are a few of my favorite things:
- SCMA Inaugural “How I Made It” Webinar Series – On Wednesday, March 27, 2019 from 12:00 -1:00 p.m., we will kick-off our inaugural “How I Made it Series.” Our first guest is Mediator Deborah Vey Voda-Hamilton who has established a successful practice mediating animal disputes. SCMA Board Member Susan Guthrie will host this webinar. We only have 100 registration slots available. Register Now!
- Annual Employment Mediation Institute – Our Annual Employment Mediation Institute is shaping up nicely. This event will take place on Saturday, May 18, 2019 at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law beginning at 9:00 a.m. The theme for the event is “Echoes of the Roar: How #MeToo Continues to Impact Employment Mediators.” Our keynote speakers will be David White, National Executive President of the Screen Actors Guild of America, and SCMA Past President Jan Schau, followed by several dynamic panelists. Thank you SCMA Member Samantha Blake and SCMA Board Member Mark Lemke for your leadership in planning this event. Be on the lookout for the Early Bird registration announcement. Learn More Here!
- Annual Family Mediation Institute – The planning for our 2nd Annual Family Mediation Institute is off to a roaring start. This event will take place on Friday, June 6 and Saturday, June 7, 2019 at the Doubletree Hotel by Hilton, Santa Ana-Orange County Airport location. The theme for the event is “Empowering Mediators Into the 2020’s and Beyond.” Many thanks to SCMA Board Members Terri Breer and Susan Guthrie for their leadership in planning this event. Be on the lookout for he Early Bird registration announcement. Learn More Here!
- Professional Development Groups (PDGs) – Our Professional Development Groups continue to be a leading member benefit. We are excited to kick-off the Camarillo/Ventura PDG on March 27, 2018, from 6:30 – 8:00 p.m., at the Old New York Deli & Bakery Co. in Camarillo, CA. Many thanks to SCMA Member Marcie Kraft and SCMA Board Member Kelly Morford for their leadership in starting this PDG. Kudos to each of our PDG leaders for all you do to make our PDGs a success. Learn More Here!
- SCMA Membership Survey – Our membership survey drive was a success! Many thanks to everyone who responded to the survey. We look forward to reviewing your feedback and using it to ensure we are building the organization in a way that provides value to our members. Congratulations to the winners of the survey raffle –Carole Aragon, Al Jerome, Sayer Macneil and Olga Sanchez.
- 31st Annual Mediation Conference – Led by SCMA President-Elect Andy Shelby, the planning of our Annual Conference is well underway. The Annual Conference will take place November 1-2, 2019 at the LA Grand Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. Our Cloke-Millen award honoree and keynote speaker is Leonard L. Riskin, the creator of the “Riskin Grid” which has shaped each of our mediation practices. Many thanks to SCMA Board Member Richard Erhard and SCMA Past President Jack Goetz for facilitating this opportunity. Learn More Here!
- Mentorship Program – Our mentorship program enrolled nine participants this spring. Many thanks to SCMA Board Member Mitch Tarighati and SCMA Past Board Member David Levaton for their commitment and leadership to the mentorship program. We are also grateful to Lucie Barron, Founder & President of ADR Services, Inc., for hosting our mentee group at the ADR Services office this year. Learn More Here!
- Partnerships – We continue to build on our partnerships with our sister organizations Kids Managing Conflict and MC3. We also are excited about our partnership with the American Arbitration Association (AAA) and the American Bar Association (ABA) Dispute Resolution Section.
- The ABA has extended an invitation to SCMA Members to attend its Dispute Resolution Spring Conference, which will take place from April 10 – 13, 2019 at the Hyatt Regency in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Learn More Here! To register for the conference, click here. The SCMA discount code is DRSPRING20. Many thanks to SCMA Board Member Ana Sambold for helping make this connection on behalf of SCMA.
- SCMA Administration – Administratively, SCMA is tracking well budget-wise, and we are working diligently to enhance our backend administrative operations to ensure we provide the best support to our members.
There are many other programs and networking events we have in store for our members for the rest of the year. I hope you will join us in these and the many other great things happening with SCMA.
If you would like to get more involved, please let us know – there are plenty of opportunities to serve on a committee, as well as in other ways. We are always looking for “a few good people” to join in making our organization and profession better.
In closing and in the spirit of Saint Patrick’s Day, I leave you with an Irish well-wish:
May love and laughter light your days,
and warm your heart and home.
May good and faithful friends be yours,
wherever you may roam.
May peace and plenty bless your world
with joy that long endures.
May all life’s passing seasons
bring the best to you and yours!
Have a great March and beginning of Spring and thank you for the opportunity to serve as your SCMA President.
Yours in service,
SCMA President 2019
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