Remarks by the Executive DirectorBVA Executive Director Al Avina

by Al Avina

I’m writing to you today to explain how the changes mentioned in the letter we emailed to you in September will affect you, our members.

Changes like these are always difficult. But it is our intention and desire to streamline and update our services so that your needs and the needs of fellow and future BVA members will be efficiently and effectively addressed.

The newly established Public Affairs office includes what was the Government Relations and Communications departments. Melanie Brunson, formerly the Director of Government Relations, now heads up the Public Affairs office as the Director. All the legislative updates will continue as before and The Bulletin will now be produced from within this department. We hope to have a part time communications specialist in place by December and this person will assume responsibility for editing The Bulletin. We look forward to introducing them to you in the January-February issue.

In the Administrative Department, we no longer have a receptionist to answer incoming phone calls. Members will need to either use the phone tree to navigate through the system or dial a three digit extension to speak with the appropriate staff person. We have included a list of these extensions at the end of this letter.

The membership staff have taken on all the merchandise responsibilities and can take your orders over the phone, via email, and within the next couple of months, via the members only section of the website.

We are in the process of recruiting a BVA Convention Coordinator to handle the logistics of that event and expect to have an update on this position in the next issue of The Bulletin as well.

Finally, I wanted to let you know that we have unfortunately had to say an unplanned farewell to Chelsey Dumond. Chelsey resigned her position with BVA just before Thanksgiving to take a position with another nonprofit in the Washington D.C. area. This will be a loss to BVA, but please join me in wishing her all the best in this new endeavor. I want to thank Chelsey publicly for her service to BVA and our members. Thank you, our members, for all you do as well, in support of BVA.

The list of staff extensions follows:
Name Extension
Al Avina 304
Krissi Spence-Gilbert 323
Brigitte Jones 330
Lindsay Ruais 319
Kathy Ruais 317
Yvonne Preston 324
Rushil Rahman 325
Cecilia Montenegro 315
Ed Eckroth 322
Judy Eckroth 318
Susan McFetridge 302
Melanie Brunson 305
Bruce Porter 332
Claudia Belk 336
Resource Center  
Patrick Johnson 333
Assia Khadri 335
Hallie Smith 337
Richard Lane 326

Audio Version Of Remarks by the Executive Director