Have you ever thought about serving on the Apra Board of Directors but weren’t quite sure about the path from member to director? Everyone’s journey to board director is different. But there are a few common factors: active engagement and passion.
My first involvement with Apra was all because of a tweet. That’s right: Social media was the door opener. I had tweeted to Lori Hood Lawson about social media and prospect research back when the concept of using social media for prospect development was an emerging trend that no one quite understood. The Ethics Committee had decided to draft a social media policy and were looking for a Canadian perspective to provide a diverse voice to the conversation. Lori was a member of the committee. My social media interaction with her was the catalyst for recruiting me to the committee.
My second volunteer role was serving on the 2013 Conference Executive Committee. Lauren Dixson was the Conference Chair. Lauren used her research skills and searched the Apra directory for people who indicated an interest in working on a conference. At some point in time I had checked the box on my profile to virtually put my hand up for such a volunteer opportunity.
Both of these volunteer opportunities were amazing. The Ethics Committee was a group of thoughtful, dedicated people who were passionate about ethics. The Conference Executive Committee was hard work, but it was fun to see behind the curtain at how the keynote was determined and to help shape the direction of conference presentations.
In both of these examples, it wasn’t who I knew, but how I engaged in various spaces and with various people within and outside the Apra community.
Serving on the board requires leadership, strategic thinking and commitment. It also requires passion and a sense of adventure. As a former board member noted: “It’s super hard work. And it sometimes feels like a part time job on top of your full time career. But it’s also great fun and incredibly rewarding.”
Apra has had some wonderful successes: We launched a refreshed brand; hosted our first ever virtual event, Plug-In to Prospect Research; seriously upgraded the Body of Knowledge with assessment quizzes; and continued to grow and refined the number of networking and education offerings.
What the future holds is shaped by the work of the board of directors with guidance from our committees and general membership.
And here’s the thing: The board is stronger, more vibrant and a lot more fun when the group is a diverse mix. We want representation from all types of members with different volunteer experiences.
Nominations to join the Apra Board are now open through March 1. More information can be found here on the Apra homepage. The board is only as diverse as the nominations pool. I hope you will consider putting your name forward.