President’s Message: Do you find value in your membership?

When I began my term as 2021’s chapter president, my overarching objective was that every member would find value in their membership through our networking, mentoring and educational program opportunities – all while supporting the district and national strategic plans.

We know that one of the best parts of in-person programming is what happens after the program – mixing and mingling and connecting with the speakers in a smaller setting. It is something we have gravely missed throughout the pandemic. To address this, we began a virtual networking opportunity to take place after each Zoom program. We offer 15-minutes of informal networking with program participants and panelists/presenters after each program. Be sure to stay on and network after our next program.

Little touch points build strong relationships over time. In that vein, we have begun a new type of outreach. PRSA Detroit leaders are sending new and renewing members a welcome message on LinkedIn, inviting them to connect. If you haven’t heard from me yet, please connect with me on LinkedIn, and be sure like and interact our PRSA Detroit LinkedIn page.

Speaking of social media, we created an Instagram page this year! Join us on Instagram to see the latest.

In April, we celebrated Nancy Skidmore’s 33+ years of service as PRSA Detroit’s executive secretary. She received a warm send off with wishes that her retirement be filled with good health and happiness. We will honor Nancy at our annual meeting in November. If you didn’t get a chance to share your good wishes with Nancy, you can do so here. Big thanks to the executive board and the board of directors for stepping up as we take on many of Nancy’s duties.

In preparation for this blog post, I scrolled back to past blog posts. I was struck by the quality and quantity of content PRSA Detroit has created for its members over the years. I found a treasure trove of expertise and insights, and the information holds up. Looking at the photos connected to the program recap blogs, I remember that I attended many of the programs, and I now personally know many of the presenters and participants in the photos, as well as most of the bloggers. This walk down memory lane affirms that I have indeed found great value in my professional association membership. But the value has come from showing up and getting more involved over the years. As with most things, I think it comes down to the old saying “you get out of it what you put into it.”

If you know anyone who is looking to learn more about membership opportunities, or even more importantly, looking to get more involved, please contact me. We are also in our annual sponsorship drive. I would love to speak with you about the value of chapter sponsorship.

Thank you for your support and your PRSA Detroit membership!

Sharon Tatom Garcia is The Salvation Army Eastern Michigan Division director of communications and 2021 PRSA Detroit Chapter president.