Thursday, July 27, 2006

Ending of an Era at Team ISEA

On Wednesday, July 26, 2006 Team ISEA hosted a retirement reception for outgoing Assistant Executive Director Lowell Dauenbaugh. Lowell is pictured here with his wife Joyce, his life partner of 41 years, as they greet family and friends that came to honor and add their congratulations to Lowell.

Thirty-four years ago Lowell left his classroom behind to join Team ISEA as UniServ Director in Waterloo, Iowa. Pictured here with Lowell are colleagues from Waterloo that have been his life-long friends.

Lowell went on to serve the association at the ISEA Headquarters as a Research Specialist, then joined the lobbying team before moving into the position as Assistant Executive Director.

Offering remarks to honor Lowell (besides myself) were Executive Director Jan Reinicke and UniServ Director Pat Shipley. All praised Lowell for his commitment to the organization, his passion for our issues, as well to honoring his character and integrity. Lowell exemplifies the best of who we are as staff and leaders. Lowell will be missed!

Over 150 individuals attended the reception honoring Lowell.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Team ISEA at the NEA Representative Assembly

Davenport EA President John Kealey enjoys conversation over dinner at the Iowa event--the Luau. John and I challenged the Iowa delegation to meet the goal of contributing at the $150 level (average per delegate) that we would wear New York Yankee gear at Summer Conference. Team ISEA exceeded the goal, so John and I (as Boston Red Sox fans) will make the ultimate sacrifice and don Yankee gear August 1-2-3!

First year delegate Julia Dyche from Shenandoah enjoys conversation with members of the Iowa delegation in the lobby of our hotel in Orlando.

Veteran delegate Anne Cowley of Sioux City served as a mentor for new delegate Julia Dyche. The two made a great team in learning about the procedures of the NEA Representative Assembly as well as finding restaurants in the evening to try new dining experiences!

Addressing the Iowa Caucus one early morning are NEA Resolutions Committee members Michael Hall (Iowa Western Community College HE--SWUU) and Kathy Williams (Davenport EA--Great River UU).

Two champions of Team ISEA's NEA Fund for Children and Public Education Committee at the RA are Donna Walsh (Sioux City EA President-Siouxland UU) and Wanda Synhorst (retired/Council Bluffs EA--SWUU). The fundraising committee worked tirelessly each morning and throughout the day at the RA to assist Iowa delegates in exceeding the goal set by NEA. Thanks, Donna and Wanda and your committee!

A huge thanks go out to Team ISEA delegates that contributed at the highest level--well beyond our wildest imagination! Our highest contributors to the NEA Fund for Children and Public Education from Iowa are (from left to right) Michael Hall, Iowa Western HE--SWUU; Anne Cowley, Sioux City EA--Siouxland UU; and Maria Haberer, Washington EA--Geode UU. Thanks for your generosity!

2006 NEA Representative Assembly in Orlando, Florida

Before our work began on the floor of the Representative Assembly, Iowa delegates gathered for our traditional "Iowa event" for a luau at our hotel, the Royal Pacific at Universal Studio in Orlando on Friday, June 30th. Pictured here is part of our Team ISEA Leadership Team. Pictured (from left to right--not including the hula dancers!) Vice President Chris Bern; NEA Director Gayle Jeffers; me; and NEA Director Jim Young.

Once the Representative Assembly began, we were all business! Pictured here in the front row of the Iowa delegation (from left to right) are Vice President Chris Bern; Executive Director Jan Reinicke; and me.

The Leadership team gathered around the Iowa banner for one last photo on the last day of the NEA Representative Assembly in Orlando.

On the last day of the RA, all Iowa delegates that contributed (at least) at the $150 level were given a "free" t-shirt, then wore their "Educators for Culver" t-shirts for a Team ISEA photo. Secretary of State Chet Culver (D) is our recommended candidate for Governor in the November 2006 election. Thanks, Team ISEA for your generous contributions to the NEA Fund for Children and Pubic Education!

The Ducks of the Peabody Hotel in Orlando, Florida

On Wednesday, June 28th, I attended the NEA-PAC Council meeting (made up of state presidents) at the Peabody Hotel in Orlando. Our meeting finished by 10:30, so many of us gathered in the hotel lobby to see the red carpet roll out awaiting the arrival of the "Peabody Ducks". Every morning at 11:00 a.m. the ducks ride down the hotel elevator, walk across the red carpet to the fountain in the center of the hotel's lobby. At 5:00 p.m. the ducks are then escorted back down the red carpet, up the elevator to their "home". What follows was taken from the Peabody Hotel website:

The Legend of the DucksSM The decades-old tradition of the ducks in the Peabody fountain started back in the 1930s. Frank Schutt, general manager of The Peabody® Memphis, and his friend, Chip Barwick, returned from a week-end hunting trip to Arkansas. The men had had a little too much Tennessee sippin' whiskey and thought it would be fun to place their live decoy ducks (it was within the law then for hunters to use live decoys) in the beautiful Travertine marble fountain in the lobby of The Peabody. Three small English Call ducks were placed in the fountain and the reaction was nothing short of enthusiasm. Thus began a Peabody tradition that has endured and is now firmly established as an American icon around the globe. After 80 years, the marble fountain in the hotel lobby is still graced by North American Mallards and their ceremonial March of The Peabody Ducks still takes place daily at 11am and 5pm. The Tradition Continues... As the renown of The Peabody Ducks grew, PHG began to spread its wings, first to Orlando and then to Little Rock. Today, The Peabody® Orlando and The Peabody® Little Rock also proudly perform the March of The Peabody Ducks.