From the Directors - January 2012

From the President’s desk

Happy New Year! (Or, enter the Dragon!) On behalf of the JALT Board of Directors, I would like to wish you a most productive and fulfilling Year of the Dragon. For JALT, 2012 promises to be an exciting year. In addition to our 38th annual international conference, which will be held October 12-15 in Hamamatsu, there are going to be huge numbers of chapter events, loads of SIG publications, and many conferences to attend. What do all these products of JALT volunteer activity have in common? They are all dedicated to your professional development, and give you a chance to help your colleagues in the language teaching community become better teachers and learners. That's what JALT is all about, isn't it? To be sure, we have a lot of ideas, hopes, and ambitions for 2012, but if you have any suggestions for JALT they will be received most happily. Just send a message to us at <feedback@jalt.org>. Thank you for your membership, and, again, very best wishes for 2012!

Kevin Cleary

President, NPO JALT

JALT meetings at JALT2011

Each year at the conference, two important JALT meetings are held. One is a meeting (the EBM) of the Executive Board, which is the chief legislative body of JALT. The other is a meeting for all JALT members, the Ordinary General Meeting (OGM).

The EBM was held on November 20, and was attended by the Board of Directors, Chapter and SIG representatives, and other interested JALT members. At this meeting, officers were appointed for 2012 and changes were made to the reports required each year of all chapter presidents and SIG coordinators. The deadline was changed to December 31 and the period to be covered in the report was changed to the time between JALT conferences. We hope these changes will make submitting the reports easier for chapters and SIGs.

The OGM was also held on November 20. Huge thanks to all JALT members who sent in their proxy votes. Your proxy vote helps JALT continue as an NPO. At the meeting, financial, business, audit, and budget reports were made and approved. These reports can be found on <jalt.org>. Members were also appointed to the Internal Audit Committee. The committee will help the Auditor, Caroline Lloyd, perform her duties. The members are Shirley Leane (Okayama Chapter), John Racine (Ibaraki Chapter), and Michele Steele (Gunma Chapter). Finally, the Chair Designate of the Nominations and Elections Committee (NEC) was elected. Mark Neufeld, the current Chair, will continue.

Aleda Krause, Director of Records

 

Treasury training workshop at February EBM

Following the very successful Membership Chair Training Workshop held at the June 2011 Executive Board Meeting (EBM), which was attended by over 30 chapter and SIG membership chairs, we are going to hold a Treasury Training Workshop at the February EBM in Kyoto. This workshop is open mainly to chapter and SIG (ChapSIG) treasurers, but any ChapSIG representative interested in the financial or bookkeeping aspects of JALT is welcome to attend.

 

Scheduling details:

Date: February 11, 2012

Time: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Venue: Campus Plaza Kyoto (Dai 4 Kougishitsu 第4講義室; very close to Kyoto station)

JALT will cover the following expenses:

  • Friday night’s hotel for each treasurer who will attend the workshop
  • Saturday night’s hotel for 1 ChapSIG representative at the EBM (this representative could be the treasurer)
  • Transportation expenses for 1 ChapSIG representative for the entire weekend

In case the treasurer and a ChapSIG representative attend, ChapSIGs could cover the additional expenses, namely:

  • Saturday night’s hotel for 1 attendee
  • Transportation expenses for 1 attendee

 

The treasury workshop will include:

1. Introduction and overview of the new treasury manuals

Currently the JALT Finance Committee (the Chapter Treasurer Liaison, Richard Hodson; the SIG Treasurer Liaison, Scott Petersen; and the Director of Treasury, Oana Cusen), with help from the former Director of Treasury, Kevin Cleary, and the Director of Records, Aleda Krause, is working on updating the JALT treasury manuals. The new manuals will not only be easier to navigate and use, but they will also include instructions on certain treasury duties that were not covered in previous manuals.

The new manuals will be available in the Officers Resource section on <jalt.org> in mid-January. Treasurers are encouraged to download and peruse these manuals at their leisure before the workshop, which may well start with a quiz.

2. Discussion session: What does a treasurer contribute to a ChapSIG?

A treasurer should contribute much more than simply reimbursing expenses and taking care of paperwork, although these tasks are critical for the smooth functioning of a ChapSIG. For example, treasurers are in the unique position of advising ChapSIG officers on all decisions with financial implications. During the workshop, we will discuss issues such as the use of the annual budget to help ChapSIGs plan ahead for their year, smoothly coordinating shared events sponsored by two or more groups within JALT, and other financial collaborations between groups. Another goal of this discussion session is to generate ideas to create an improved cash flow within JALT.

3. A practice run for the 2012 examination

In order to comply with NPO status regulations, JALT is required to carry out an annual internal examination of the financial records of all ChapSIGs. To put it simply, the records of any ChapSIG have to be checked by an examiner who is a JALT member (usually a current or former treasurer) in good standing. After determining that all financial records are in order, the examiner issues an examination pass. Finally, the records are sent to the JALT Central Office, where they are inspected by an external auditor (a Japanese CPA).

This internal examination process, which usually begins in March of each year, is one of the most time consuming duties of JALT treasurers, and we hope that by doing a practice run during the workshop, many difficulties can be smoothed away.

We sincerely hope to see as many of ChapSIG treasurers as possible in February in Kyoto, and thus have a productive and worthwhile workshop. Emails with further scheduling details will be sent to various mailing lists in due time. For more information, please contact <treasury@jalt.org>.

Sincerely, Oana Cusen, JALT Director of Treasury

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