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fromthepresident 10 for 10 W


When I meet people and have a chance to talk with them, I always ask whether they are familiar with MOAA; too often they reply, “No” or “Only vaguely.” After a brief discussion highlighting MOAA’s suc- cesses and member services, I ask if they’d consider joining. Thus far, I’m 10 for 10. That success rate is the result of MOAA’s


story — our story. What we all do is impor- tant and compelling. Blend that in with a relationship-building encounter, and I be- lieve others would have the same successful experience with prospective members. These relationship-building events are essential to MOAA’s long-term viability. Many of you joined MOAA through en- counters just like this. When you meet fel- low offi cers, listen to them in earnest and engage them with your thoughts on impor- tant issues. Share our story with pride, and invite them to join. MOAA is the largest and most infl uential military service organiza- tion in the nation. Our inclination might be to let our successes speak for themselves as we remain humble and dutiful about our calling to continue service. But the current fi scal environment demands a more out- ward and engaging approach. Our story has a recent update: MOAA headquarters has realigned to be more agile and responsive, with six distinct business units instead of the legacy 12 departments. Our team continues to do remarkable


work. MOAA’s 10 lobbyists have success- fully brought about substantive changes to policies and laws. One example: Congress


MOAA members must seek out and take advantage of opportunities to talk about how your association positively aff ects the lives of uniformed servicemembers and their families.


passed a law in 2014 that would have dra- matically cut military retired pay COLAs for all current and future retirees — a life- time loss of $120,000 for a retired O-5. But military members never had to take that hit because MOAA got that law repealed. Here are other notes worth sharing:


 MOAA’s scholarship fund has helped pay education expenses for 14,000 children of military families, both offi cer and enlisted.  MOAA’s state councils and over 400 local chapters work to improve conditions for re- tirees, veterans, survivors, and families. MOAA members can access products and services, including premium insurance pro- grams with competitive rates. Many aren’t aware of these accomplish-


ments, so we’re creating communication tools to encourage engagement and spur ac- tion and developing ways to assist chapter eff orts to attract potential members. Our staff recently produced a video* an-


swering in some detail the question “Why join MOAA?” It highlights the range of MOAA’s accomplishments and how we are guided by the principles of offi cership: Lead from the front and stand up for our troops. I want to thank you for your offi cership, for leading from the front, and for being a member of our team. Please join me and share MOAA’s story with friends and family, particularly those eligible for membership.


— Lt. Gen. Dana T. Atkins, USAF (Ret)


*online: View and share MOAA’s new video at www.moaa.org/whyjoinmoaa 8 MILITARY OFFICER OCTOBER 2016


PHOTO: ROB CANNON


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