I would like to wish each of you a happy New Year and extend a special welcome to our new members. We are looking forward to an exciting year for NAFUSA, and hope that your engagement with NAFUSA this year will strengthen the ties that bind us together. I encourage you to stay involved and to contribute to the common purpose and vitality of our organization. Most importantly, I hope you will share the warm camaraderie of our membership and the rich personal and professional relationships that give us common cause. We have just concluded a very successful year and a terrific annual conference in Atlanta. I would like to thank Rick Deane again for his outstanding leadership this past year. I would also like to express my sincere appreciation to Rich Rossman for his remarkable commitment and service as our Executive Director. Rich really keeps our organization humming. And I am grateful for our engaged and committed Board that provides thoughtful and meaningful guidance on NAFUSA’s policies and programs. It is an honor and privilege for me to have the opportunity to serve as your president in the year ahead.
We have a full year planned for 2013. As the year progresses, I hope you will reflect on your interest in being a more active participant in NAFUSA and consider possible service on a committee next year. We also have some new members on our Board that is very engaged and active and is a key driver of our programs and policies. Service on the Board has been a wonderful opportunity to share in the common experiences and rich heritage that we have as former United States Attorneys and to appreciate the special culture of NAFUSA rooted in our respect for the pursuit of justice and the role of the United States Attorney in our justice system.
We have scheduled a Board meeting in May to review the progress and plans of the organization, and importantly to advance the planning of our annual conference, which will be in Washington, DC, at the end of September. We hope you will be able to join us for the September meeting which promises to be a wonderful opportunity to advance your professional learning and to renew and enrich your personal and professional relationships. In part, we hope at that time to be able to share in understanding some of the issues and changes that lie ahead in the Justice Department community in what should be a dynamic year of a new Administration.
So we begin the year on a sound financial footing as an organization with a vibrant membership and a committed leadership. We will exercise our stewardship to maintain the financial health of the organization while seeking to expand our membership, provide a rich and rewarding professional program, and deepen the important personal and professional relationships that are the foundation of our common purpose. We encourage you to share in our events and the lives and professional activities of our members through our newsletter and website. I note, that in this era of partisan gridlock, it is reassuring that NAFUSA continues to flourish as a non-partisan organization comprised of both R’s and D’s who share a common commitment to support the independence of the U.S. Attorney and the pursuit of justice in our nation. I look forward to serving as your president in the year ahead and to engaging you in developing rich personal and professional relationships with your colleagues and rewarding professional experiences and opportunities through NAFUSA.
Jay B. Stephens