Submitted by Daniel Pennington on Mon, 05/18/2020 - 15:47
My fellow alumni,
We are in very unsettling times as the COVID-19 virus runs across our country as well as others throughout the world. In light of this virus and as the President of the Alumni Association Board of Directors it was incumbent upon me and the board to act in the leadership capacity that you elected us to perform. We as the Board of Directors are tasked with looking out for the association and its members.
I have been in contact with others in our association (past presidents, past board members, our current leadership team, and others who have been part of our association for many years) and got their input on a decision the current board felt it must make for the alumni concerning our October 2020 reunion. In light of the current COVID-19 virus outbreak, the average age of our alumni putting us in the “at risk” group, and the unknown time frame for safely traveling throughout the country and gathering in large groups, the following was proposed as your president:
The reunion for the year 2020 be canceled.
A joint 50 year celebration of both the class of 1970 and 1971 be held during next year’s reunion.
A “Virtual” GMSAA Board meeting to be held in the fall to conduct yearly business.
A memo was sent to each of the GMSAA Board members asking them to vote their conscience regarding the three items above.
I asked that a vote to cancel or not be returned to me no later than May 15, 2020 such that the alumni could be informed of that decision as soon as possible. I further stated that a tally of the votes would go to the board no later than COB on the 17th. That tally was sent the 17th from New Mexico to the board showing the board voted 13 to cancel the reunion this year and 1 abstaining. This needed to be done due to the critical time nature of notifying our alumni, and all of the preparations that must occur to hold our reunion each year.
This was a difficult decision, but it was a leadership decision that had to be made and it fell to the elected board to make that decision for the safety of our entire Alumni Association and their families. As one alum stated “ I would love to see everyone this year but I would hate to see everyone this year and a lot fewer next year”. This does not preclude anyone from going back to the 'Brier and if you do I wish you the best but there shall be no formal GMSAA sponsored reunion this year. Be safe and be well and rest assured the alumni association is alive and well and we hope to see you next year.
Daniel H. Pennington ‘69
GMSAA Board President