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President’s Column – 10/2021


Greetings once again.

We have some activities and opportunities on the near horizon that I want to make you aware of. First and immediately upcoming is a request from Kirk Toth at the Department of Homeland Security. He has asked for our chapter's help in conducting training for security personnel for next summer's World Games, which will take place in Birmingham. He needs about 10 volunteers to do role-play on Thursday, October 7th– to pretend to be doing surveillance: photographing, filming, note-taking, and/or generally snooping about – at the Riverchase Galleria from 10 in the morning until about 3-3:30 in the afternoon. There are no great physical demands, no risks; and you will be told what to do and how to go about it. So...want to be a spy for a day? Write me and I'll give you full details: phfranklin36@gmail.com. Thanks!

Another upcoming good thing: we'll have another general membership gathering at the Fish Market restaurant at the Med Center in Birmingham at 6:00 pm Thursday, October 21st. If you came to the last one, you'll remember these are very informal, order-off-the-menu-if-you-choose-to evenings. We plan to have a speaker, but these are fist and foremost opportunities to get together, network, and socialize. Please come. It's just no fun if you're not there. Bring your significant other, or even an insignificant other if you have one of those and want to. And Huntsville members – we 'll try and have a similar gathering there in November. Stay tuned.

I had the occasion to conduct a workshop at our (very) recent National Leadership Conference, and by way of introducing myself to the assembled multitude, I mentioned that I was serving the third year of a two-year term as President of our chapter. What a ride it's been! On the one hand, it seems like it's been a long time, yet it also seems like just yesterday when we began this journey together. One thing for certain – it has not been a dull three years. We've done so much and accomplished so much as a group. There have been new faces, new initiatives, new partnerships...and Covid. So let's just say it has been...eventful. But now the end of my term approaches and we are beginning to focus on the coming year and the coming of new officers and board members, a new Memorandum of Agreement with the FBI's Birmingham Field Office, and it's new goals and objectives. We'll be convening a nominating committee forthwith, and we'll negotiate an MOA with the FBI, too. All will be revealed at our Annual Meeting, which we expect will take place in early December. You'll get a notice about that as soon as the particulars are finalized.

One more thing. We lost a giant this past month. Dr. Joe Popinski -- a long-time member, a multiple-term board member, a member of the National board of directors, long a trusted advisor and confidante to all our board members and officers, a thoughtful and reflective gentleman who was always on the right side of every discussion, one who never said; “no” when asked to assist in any project or to undertake any task...all this and so much more – Dr. Joe passed away in September from the effects of Covid-19. His loss is incalculable. Our heartfelt sympathies go out to Mrs. Popinski. Dr. Joe meant so much – did so much – for so many. All who knew Dr. Joe will miss him terribly. May we all try to live up to the example he set.

Please be well and take care.

Paul H. Franklin, President

FBI Birmingham CAAA

 


            The FBI Birmingham Citizens Academy Alumni Association (FBIBCAAA) is a nonprofit organization separate and apart from the FBI.


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