The 2008-2009 chapter year for the New England Chapter of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers (NEC-SFPE) that ended May 31st was spent preparing for some significant changes to how the chapter is administrated. The past year was very successful for the chapter with high attendance at the monthly meetings and a record number of 95 attendees at our annual seminar. In October, we will be awarding $7,000 in scholarships to five students and have transferred $5,000 to help replenish the A.L. Brown Scholarship Fund.
LAST YEAR’S ACHIEVEMENTS
This past chapter year we used an on-line shopping cart service to secure your credit card information and facilitate meeting and seminar registrations. While this system made it easier and more flexible for our members to register for events, it did not provide an integrated on-line system that managed the membership and event registrations. By increasing the number of on-line credit card transactions, our cash flow was improved and the time required to perform the financial management of the chapter was reduced.
Last winter we investigated several options to integrate the management of our membership and event registration. The board decided that an on-line service would meet our needs and be the most cost effective solution. Over the course of the past several months, we have reviewed our membership records and collected updated e-mail addresses for most of our members including those that we have lost touch with in the past few years. We hope this initiative will reduce our management costs by 85% and the cost savings will be used to provide additional financial support to the A.L Brown Scholarship Fund.
OUR NEW WEBSITE AND ON-LINE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
Our new website will allow you to change your contact information, pay your dues, and register for an event at any time. We will continue to accept MasterCard, VISA, American Express, and Discover credit card payments and we have added PayPal payments. All payment information is securely transmitted and encrypted for your safety.
We will continue to accept check payments. When renewing your membership or registering for an event, select the manual payment method during the transaction process. Once you confirm your registration, an e-mail will be sent with information on where you should be mailing your payment. You may also pay with an electronic check with a PayPal account that is linked to your checking account.
Please take a few minutes to explore our new website, setup a password, and verify your contact information. Details on how to how to setup a password can be found below. If you have any problems please send an email to email@example.com. Note that you must be logged in to renew your membership and receive member only pricing for events.
How to setup a password to our new website:
1. To setup a password, please visit http://www.sfpe-newengland.org/Common/Password/ForgottenPasswordRequest.aspx, enter your email address, and click submit. You should receive an e-mail with a link where you set your password.
2. Log in to your account by entering your e-mail and password and clicking the Login button.
3. Please take a minute to review the information that we have on file by clicking the 'View profile' link on the left side. If you need to modify the information, click the 'Edit profile' button at the top.
THIS UPCOMING YEAR
As noted in previous correspondence, this coming year all chapter communication will be distributed by e-mail from the email address firstname.lastname@example.org, please add this email address to your safe sender list. In the middle of June, you should be receiving your first reminder that your annual membership dues are due August 1st. Dues will remain steady at $40 for the upcoming chapter year.
On September 11th, we will hold our first annual NEC-SFPE golf tournament at Blackstone National Golf Club in Sutton, MA. Registration information will be distributed this summer. If you are interested in sponsoring a hole or donating a raffle/auction item, you can contact the golf committee (email@example.com).
We will continue to hold our regular dinner meetings on the first Monday of October, November, December, February, March, and May. Our annual seminar will continue to be held in March and in April we will hold a field trip to a location of interest to our members, similar to the tour of the FM Global Research Campus last year.
We will begin the planning process for these upcoming events at our board meeting on June 17th and meeting topic suggestions are always welcome. Please e-mail the First Vice President, Jeff DeMaine (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your ideas.
Updated contact information for specific board members is available online at www.sfpe-newengland.org/ExecBoard.aspx.
Thank you for your continued support of NEC-SFPE and I hope to see you at an upcoming chapter event.