Hello Fellow NABA Members:
This is my first column as your newly elected NABA president. It is truly an honor for me to lead this great organization and follow in the footsteps of past presidents and valued friends, John Ferguson, George Baley, Larry Moter, and the late Norm Jay.
It also is an honor to serve with the terrific group of people we have on our NABA Board and Membership Committee. Check out their names on the list of the first page of this magazine. One look at that list and you will see some of the absolute best people in the world of breweriana. They all are really nice people and great hobbyists who are volunteering their time and talents and working hard for NABA and you.
This first column as president is the only time that I will talk about me. Even though I am lucky enough to know hundreds of you, I don’t know you all, and appreciate the opportunity to briefly introduce myself.
I joined NABA at the age of 20 and have been a member for decades. I started collecting as a teenager in the 1970s. A modest beer can collection grew into a fascination with breweriana. This might sound a lot like your story.
I grew up in northern New Jersey, just outside of New York City and lived in Manhattan for many years. I’ve always been fascinated with “The Big Apple.” That’s why I collect New York City breweriana.
When my wife and I became empty nesters after our three children went off to college, I had more time to devote to “the hobby.” I always enjoyed NABA and its magazine, so I felt like I needed to give back. I like to write and I did a lot of it in my career. I have a background in journalism and am an ex-advertising exec. for 20 years, I have had my own marketing research and communications consulting business.
My business career seemed to be a good fit with things I might do for NABA. First, I got involved writing for this magazine. Then I became a Board member. This led to becoming vice president and when Lee Chichester retired, I also assumed the role of editorial director of the magazine. Now I’m president. And this all happened in the span of 7 years.
I tell you this story because you can have a similar story, or you can write your own chapter with NABA. We encourage member participation and welcome your help. I may be president, but it takes dozens of people to run NABA, this magazine, our projects, and our conventions.
The volunteerism in our organization is tremendous, but we still need you. As you’ll read in these pages, we have a dynamic organization with many ground breaking projects and partnerships in the works. My dad always said, “Many hands make light work,” and that has become a credo of mine.
There were many hands—more than 100 pair, actually—that contributed to the creation of this issue of the magazine. Many hands are the reason that NABA has grown its membership by +77% in the past five years. Many hands are why NABA has been able to increase the size of this magazine from 48 to 64 pages during recent years and for the past five issues, even produced “bonus-sized” 80-page issues. Many hands are what made our 50th convention in Milwaukee this summer a spectacular event, attended by more people—by far—than any previous NABA convention.
The more I have gotten involved with NABA, the more rewarding it has been for me. That sounds like a cliché, but it is true. The rich friendships and quality mentoring that have come through my involvement with NABA never ceases to amaze me.
Thank you for being a member of NABA. I hope that you will think about becoming one of the “many hands” that help guide NABA into the future.
If you have a story idea for this magazine, we make producing it easy. If you have an interest in helping NABA in any capacity, please contact me at email@example.com. I know you will be glad you did.