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President's Letter- July 2003



July and August are the traditional times for AMSAT-NA members to take 
family vacations and I wish you all the very best for a safe  vacation  
with your families, This period is also the time when AMSAT holds it's 
annual elections and I will (if you permit) pass a few comments on this 
subject.
As I have said elsewhere in more detail, it is with great pleasure that 
we have a record number of candidates running  this time and as a result 
there has been a great increase in the activity on AMSAT-BB as members 
(and non-members) have been expressing their thoughts on what AMSAT-NA 
should  (or should not) do.
One of the positive aspects of the AMSAT-BB activity is the new 
Membership drive/competition, announced by the Corporate Secretary 
(Martha).  The winner will be presented with a tri-band Handheld unit at 
the AMSAT Annual Meeting in Toronto, October 18 2003.
We must thank the anonymous donor who has offered to match the first 100 
members  membership fees - wow! and thanks.
Another positive aspect is the  listing of AMSAT-NA Tax returns on our 
web page. If you would like to look at them then go to our web Page 
(www.amsat.org)  click on "Information about AMSAT"  then scroll down to 
"Finances"  click on the year of your choice.
Note: that at my last check the Tax return for 2002 has not yet been posted.
Some times things go well and sometimes they don't - we have all had bad 
days, and poor Martha just had a bad one when she found out that the 
printer had sent last years  ballot write ups to the mailer who had sent 
them out to you.  Well the situation has been corrected, please destroy 
last year's ballot and information - the one in Black ink and on white 
paper. - If that is sent in it will not be counted.  Use only the 
colorful new ballot and write-ups that should be mailed later this week.
The re-print and mailing will be done at the expense of the printer. I 
don't think he will make that mistake again.
On the BB in the last few days we have had an excessive amount of  
E-mails, many of them have had the phrase  "AMSAT  should ........"  and 
quite rightly there are many things that AMSAT should do if  AMSAT had 
the resources to do them.  These resources fall into two types , People 
and Dollars.  Yes we need people as much as we need the dollars, 
especially people who are prepared to carry out  administrative 
functions and Business Development. Since I became President of AMSAT, I 
have asked many times for  Admin people and so far I have really only 
got one person.  Please go to volunteer@amsat.org and request a copy of 
our volunteer survey - and offer your assistance, then you can have the 
satisfaction of  putting your thoughts into practice.
It is obvious to those of us on the BoD that many people who like to say 
"AMSAT should ...." are  people who have not read the BoD minutes, the 
Journal, ANS, or these President's Monthly letters. As this mater that 
they want AMSAT to do has usually been discussed at the BoD and rejected 
for sound reason (often resources) or is currently assigned to an AMSAT 
officer.
Now it is also quite apparent that there are those who do read the AMSAT 
communications, and are the people that I take seriously when they make 
comments, you know who you are so I will not comment further.  Meanwhile 
I would ask the "Candidates for Election" to make sure that the things 
that they promise "If elected"  are items which are not already underway 
or which have been rejected by the BoD "for good reason" - see previous 
minutes in the AMSAT Journal(s).
As you read this I  will be preparing to attend the AMSAT-UK Colloquium  
where I will present RicK Hambly's paper on ECHO and meet with the 
Presidents of several other AMSATs to discuss international joint 
assistance. I will be away until the start of August, and unable to 
communicate on a regular basis, so once more may I wish you a happy and 
safe vacation.
During my absence Rick Hambly, Executive Vice-President will act in my 
place.
73
Robin Haighton VE3FRH
President AMSAT-NA

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Sent via amsat-bb@amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
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