Friday, April 30, 2010

Skywatch Friday = VA Beach, VA = NARFE Conf. = Part II

Skywatch Firday = VA Beach, VA = NARFE Conf. = Part IIVirginia Beach Resort Hotel & Conference Center

2800 Shore Drive

Virginia Beach, Virginia

This is where the NARFE conference was held from Sunday to Wednesday of this week. Jack and I stayed on the top floor and from our balcony had a great view of all the ships cruising the bay near Fort Storey. Click on the above photo to see workmen on the scaffolding repairing the stucco and paint on the building. All of Virginia Beach, VA is sprucing up for the coming summer beach season.

This side of the Conference Center faces the bay head on. Monday night Jack and I attended a cocktail reception with heavy appetizers on the ground floor near the blue and white awning. When the evening rain shower blew in with some lightening and wind it was fun to watch the action on the bay

These very young and handsome marines were the Marine Color Guard that kicked off the NARFE conference. They were led by Sergeant Daniel Flippo and they were Detachment D from the Norfolk Naval Station.

This is a little out of focus but I still want to share this pic with all of you. Did you know that many states like Maryland have a specialty or vanity license plate that is for NARFE? The Virginia Federation of Chapters would like to follow the state of Maryland in this endeavor that would be a great marketing tool for NARFE. We will need 350 drivers to sign up to accomplish this.

The lady in red is Margaret Baptiste, who has been the National President of NARFE for the last four years. She is the widow of a federal employee. Spouses of federal employees can belong to NARFE and can run for any office in NARFE since they are entitled recipients of spousal earnings. Margaret has been a great role model for women in this regard and has also revitalized NARFE at the national headquaters in Washington D.C. Also more has been accomplished in the last four years than in the previous 17 years due to Margaret Baptiste's leadership. Good job, Margaret Baptiste! But since the national president can only serve two consecutive terms there will be a new national president chosen later this year at the National NARFE Conferenceto be held in late August in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

This is Bill Martin the outgoing VFC President who chaired the conference. On Wednesday morning Bill turned the gavel over to the incoming VFC President. Now that Bill is "retired from duty" I think that Bill should become a standup comedian. He is so very funny. For example, Bill loves to introduce himself as the southern country boy who hails from Bumpass, Virginia.

(Watch how you pronounce that town's name!) And where is Bumpass? Bill says that it is just down the road from Cuckoo, Virginia and that you can get to Bumpass by going down Pottiesville Road. You think I am making this all up? No, I am not. There really is a Bumpass, Virginia on Pottiesville Road that is not far from Cuckoo, Virginia.

I had a hard time getting a photo of Ann Collins who is a past VFC president and past president and current member of the Springfield, Virginia chapter of NARFE but here is a profile shot of her. She is a very dynamic woman in NARFE for the state of Virginia. Her federal years were spent in government finance and accounting

These two Kentucky ladies came to the Virginia conference to explain how Kentucky and Ohio are creating NARFE chapters in federal buildings to encourage active federal employees to join NARFE. They are Marlene Button and Noreen Morgan and they have created "Lunch and Learn" workshops. Want to learn more? Go here:

All but one of the candidates for national office with NARFE used their own funds to travel to the state of Virginia to campaign for office. The one candidate who didn't come was Joseph Beaudoin who is from Virginia and who was attending the state of Maine's conference that was also being held this past week.

The lady at the podium in the above photo is Martha Leiker, one of the candidates for National Vice President of NARFE. I don't think you could find another woman in all of the United States with a more unusual work history. For seventeen years she was a Roman Catholic nun that was in an order that required silence. She then left the convent and began working for the Central Intelligence Agency. She spent over 20 years working for the CIA of which six were in Africa. So Martha Leiker went from great silence to great secrecy. Now guess what. She has written her memoir and it is about to be published. The title of her soon to be published memoir is FROM SILENCE TO SECRECY. I can't wait till this book gets published because I surely do plan to find a copy and read it.

Later today I will do my third and final NARFE conference blog and introduce you to our new and very dynamic new VFC president.

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