Nov 2017 AMVETS EXECUTIVE Report
Analysis of our dataset.
Theoretically at the beginning of each member year the number of our annual members drops to zero because we are just beginning the renewal process. On 1 Sept 2017 (the beginning of our membership year) members that expire in 2017 are no longer counted as active members. Once they pay their annual dues for the new member year (1 Sept 2017 to 31 Aug 2018) they pick up an expiration date of 8/31/2018 and they are counted as active members. There are exceptions because a member can join and pay for 2, 3 years and an annual member can have an expiration date of 2019 or 2020.
At the end of October, the first 2 month of this year our renewal rate is 60%. A little over half of our members have renewed. We have a way to go to get the other 40% to renew. You can look at page 9 and see where your state stands. If your state isred develop procedures to reach out and communicate with your members. Engagement = Retention.
Here is a quick analysis of our 1043 new joins in October and some direction we can draw from the numbers.
The average age of these new member is 58. With our overall median of 65 we do see a trend toward younger vets. These 58-year-old vets are post-Vietnam era, some are considered cold warriors responsible for the dissolution of Soviet Russia (1991) and the Berlin Wall coming down (1989). There were 700,000 vets deployed in Desert Shield and Desert Storm (1991). Knowing these 58-year-old vets are looking at AMVETS and Joining AMVETS we should target recruiting efforts towards this demographic. What did they experience? Toxic exposure, stopping aggression, working with the coalition, real-time coverage of the war and showing America could trounce a third word dictator in record time!
We are still only capturing emails for 50% of our members. Make a Post goal to achieve 75% emails this year. When a post reaches 100% emails for all its members let me know!
Annual members comprise 877 of these October joins. Life members are 141 of the new joins and there were 25 conversions from annual to life (average age 59) . Of the 1043 October joins only 104 are women veterans with a median age of 48. AMVETS membership is only 5% women veterans. Women comprise 10-15% of the military and AMVETS is behind the power curve.
Gender 5% female in AMVETS vs 15% serving!
CA- 77 was chartered in 2015 by women veterans! Congratulations. They have 107 members on their rosters! http://www.womenshealth.va.gov/WOMENSHEALTH/latestinformation/facts.asp
What is this thing? Do you have one in your canteen? Could you use it if all of a sudden my jack was spilled on the bar and I was on the floor looking at the ceiling? I might have had too many drinks, can you tell the difference. Would you place this under my head or feet?
When you buy one make sure you get the training package with it. Invite your members to attend the training and mandate all employees have the training and know how to use it. The life you save could be yours.
Win a Pin
- Which state has the most veterans (2 million) FL, CA or TX?
- What state has the most AMVETS members PA, OH or FL?
- What is the most important thing your post does to help veterans?
- What year did Roy Rogers get the Silver Helmet?
- How many AMVETS Posts and Depts. are DOD commemorative partners?http://www.vietnamwar50th.com/
Answer all 5, include your mailing address, and you will receive a lapel pin.
- Does National offer training for new First Vice Post Commanders on how to navigate the membership system at National Headquarters? We have a leadership technology Training Manual #3 under resources and forms on our web site. http://amvets.org/resources-forms/
- If a District requests membership training, will the National Membership Director attend and provide training? Yes
- If a post is suspended for failure to revalidate, when will the post charter be revoked? After 6 months.
- What is a green Hat Submission form? Is this a membership contest? The green hat submission form was created to give credit for exceptional recruiting. It is used for the Recruit 5-member Drive Contest.
- When does National send out E-mail reminders to unpaid annual members to remind them to pay their dues? We will send an email out after Christmas. Departments and Posts should also contact members and ask them why they haven’t renewed. Contacting members via email is efficient but it lacks the personal contact of a phone call. Fold your list and get your active members involved in calling. Share the reasons for non-renewal. When I ask I get “The only time I hear from AMVETS is when you want dues or a donation”. We can do better. Make a Christmas Call list.
The Recruit 5 members drive in full swing. Make sure your members are in the game. Use thegreen hat form #22 http://amvets.org/resources-forms/
Put you in this picture plus with every 5 members you get an AMVETS Challenge Coin.
Coins and recruiting packages are now available when you login check out my shopping Cart.
Past National Commander S. John Sisler passed.
PNC Sisler honorably served in the U.S. Army, a veteran of the Vietnam War, before joining Illinois AMVETS Post #169 in North Pekin in 1968. He became a Life Member in 1970 and held virtually every elected office in his post, Department and nationally. PNC Sisler was Commander of the Department of Illinois in 1991. He went on to hold the officers of National Executive Committeeman, Fourth National District Commander, National Second Vice Commander and National First Vice Commander. John became National Commander in 2003. He later served multiple terms on the National Service Foundation Board of Directors.
Appreciate all you do for veterans!
If you have time it’s a true story
It’s hard to see the wings.
We consider the veteran rare in American society. Less than one in ten Americans serve in the military. There is a smaller set, a more exclusive group than the 1 in 10, it is the women in the military. Today, women in the military have grown to 15% of the active duty force. From WWII on, women have continued to gain ground in the military. Their numbers are growing in service as is their stature and the respect they have earned.
This past Veterans Day we staked out our usual spot near the Vietnam Memorial. The AMVETS tent was manned throughout the day by many our leaders. I noticed more women veterans stopping by than usual. The ones I talked with were nurses in Vietnam. Later in the morning after paying respect to names on the wall I walked towards their memorial. I was handed a rose which I dutifully placed on the statue. I wasn’t fully aware of what the rose represented other than respect. The next rose I place will be heavier. Since that day I have come to understand and think about a few things that will be embodied in the next rose.
Sometime in our life we all contemplate our last breath. We wonder, if it will be painful, will I be alone, will I be remembered. Some, few, rare American’s have stood at the door and remember the last breath of many. It has changed them in ways I cannot know. This veteran’s day a women veteran stood at the podium glancing at the black granite wall behind her and she reminded us of who held the hands and comforted the 58,286 sons and daughters of America as they passed to the other side. To do it for a loved one or family member creates a memory for life. To hold the hands of a scared, wounded young man or women, dying for an ideal in a foreign land is unforgettable. Trauma nurses, on the front lines of conflict, whose primary duty is to keep our sons and daughter alive hold the hands of many and sometimes watch death arrive. This compassion is heroic the 1, 2nd and 3rd …………….and every time. It’s past time us to think and talk about the impressions these few among us are holding. Some combat trauma nurses return stateside and continue in the military. There are some that have seen too much. They are proud of what they did; they served in the most brutal arena but understandably have said once is enough. I met one and admire her for taking on the hardest job, and witnessing and living through the worst of war.
I was lucky in our chance conversation in her driveway. It was a sunny afternoon she was just over 5 ft. tall with close cropped dark hair as she walked down the driveway from behind her split-level home in a typical middle-class community. She was in her 30s I would guess. It was around noon and her husband had not yet arrived for lunch. I mentioned I worked nearby for AMVETS, American Veterans. I was surprised when she said she had also been in the military. She went on to say she was a nurse but had to leave the service. Naturally curious about this lady’s service I listened as her story unfolded. She was stationed in Texas as a nurse and received orders for a six-month rotation to a trauma center during the Iraq War. She was in a forward operating facility, essentially a tent. There was no running water to thoroughly wash the fine Iraq dust off each day. Every day was the same; helicopters delivered wounded Americans from the front lines. Gunshot wounds, mangled arms and legs from IEDs, the burns and devastation that are the horrors of war were brought to her door step every day. She would assist the doctors in their frenzied but deliberate tasks at hand. Her mind’s eye saw and she recalled the events; remove this leg and arm, they can’t be saved or he will bleed out. Clean and cover the burnt skin, the eye can be saved, they can reconstruct his face. He is ashen from blood loss; the IV isn’t helping move on, he is expected to die. At the same time the living were stabilized, the bleeding was stopped, the pain was numbed but there were some that couldn’t be saved. Their hands were held and they were comforted as the unknowable arrived. At the end of the day she gathered the unrecognizable limbs in a black bag, dragged it to the burn pit. She shuddered when she remembered the bones sticking through the flesh and the bag. She then returned to clean and mop up the blood. This was not an exceptional day for this young woman. This was a routine day in the work of this trauma nurse. She said it was supposed to be a six-month assignment but the needs of the military turned it into eight. She was drained at the end of each day of diligence, a rest, then a return to the same carnage. Not many of us can endure that type of hell. She did it for eight months before she was finally rotated back home. She rested, she recuperated and she remembered. Then word of orders came, she would be sent back. She looked at me squarely and said “I couldn’t do it again. I had to leave the service. I could not do it again. “
When I first saw her she was the wife, the lady next door. She said she can’t understand how people complain about the petty inconvenience of traffic, the workplace and life in general. After her experience, she knows there is so much to be thankful for in America. She is wiser than many; her wisdom comes at a steep price, the price of innocence. She saw the door to death swing open and she continually slammed it shut. She pulled our sons and daughter to this side and watched as some went through the door, holding their hands as they drew their last breath. Once is enough for most. Six or eight months of pulling kids back from deaths door is more than anyone should endure. She was a military trauma nurse, she has wings, the wings of an Angel, I didn’t notice them when she came walking down her driveway. I will remember her when I place the next rose. She should be able to get a restful night knowing the souls she saved and the others she comforted will stand guard out of gratitude.
AMVETS National Membership Director
US Army Infantry
Post expires at 6:24pm on Sunday December 31st, 2017