Chapter Chair Column: Get involved!

Friday, February 22, 2013
Carole Mintzer

Whether you are a new or longstanding member of the Angeles Chapter, as the new Chapter Chair, I want to welcome you. 

I have been a Sierra Club member since the mid-'80s and have made the transition from dues-paying magazine reader to making the Sierra Club my home for volunteer action. It wasn’t always an easy transition; it took some perseverance, but the rewards have been plentiful. I want to encourage all of you to consider making the Sierra Club your source of leadership and followership activity outside of your day-to-day life. Perhaps you would like to be a leader, but your workplace doesn’t provide opportunities for you to develop your leadership skills. Maybe you are looking for experience that can strengthen your resume. Or maybe you’ve just retired and are wondering how to fill your days.

The Angeles Chapter has so many opportunities for its members to become engaged, it’s really just a matter of finding the right fit for you. This is where a little perseverance may be called for. The best way to start is to think about what it is you like to do. Do you like to get outdoors? Do you like to hike? Are you a good organizer? Do you prefer to work behind the scenes?  Do you like to answer phones or make phone calls? Do you like to write or edit? Do you enjoy working on databases or websites? Are you knowledgeable about environmental issues? Do you care about the environment, even if you aren’t an expert? Do you love politics? 

Once you’ve thought about what you like to do, start talking to fellow members – you’ll find them on hikes, at meetings, or at the Chapter office. Ask them about opportunities to do the things you like to do. If the first person doesn’t know where you would best fit it, ask others. Go to a few meetings or on a few hikes – and keep asking questions. Don’t be discouraged if it takes a little time and a few tries to connect your talents with the right position. Your efforts will be rewarded when you find just the right fit for you! And you will be helping to protect, preserve and enjoy the environment in which we all live!

Photo: Carole Minter is chair of the Angeles Chapter Executive Committee.

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