Message from the President: September 2016

Contributed by Dennis Chamot, CSW President

The Chemical Society of Washington (CSW) is a very large ACS section, with almost 4,000 members. While a relatively small group of very active members organize and carry through a wide variety of terrific programs and activities, what else could we be doing?  What more do we want CSW to be in coming years?  To explore these questions, a sub-group of the section’s board of managers met this summer with trained facilitators in a day and a half strategic planning retreat in Washington.

The general process was developed by ACS members and staff over a number of years and fine-tuned in many forums—national committees, local sections, and the ACS Board of Directors, itself.  I had participated in these exercises two or three times in the past, and was impressed with both the process and the results. The experience at the CSW retreat was, as expected, quite interesting, and I believe ultimately extremely useful.  A draft plan was produced, which will be discussed at the September meeting of the CSW Board of Managers.

One very useful part of the process is the designation of strategic plan “champions” after goals and strategies have been developed and prioritized.  Their role is to make sure that the proper activities are undertaken to move towards the goals.  In my case, I have chosen to champion one of the strategies under the general goal of increasing CSW member participation, through development of a broad membership survey.  You will hear more about this and other activities in the months ahead, but for now, if you have thoughts about specific areas to explore in the survey, please send them to me at [email protected].

CSW is a great local section.  Together we can make it even more valuable to our members, to the chemical profession, and to the region in which we live.