Hello, ATD Valley of the Sun members, friends, and colleagues!
These are certainly different and challenging times for all of us, individually and collectively. There are dark spots in the scenario as we see and hear daily if we try to keep up with the ever-changing information in any and all media avenues. However, there are also bright spots that are breaking through the dark clouds like rays of sun on an inspirational poster: people ARE recovering from the COVID-19 virus; people in all areas of life are coming together to help others in ways we never imagined we’d do or need to do; there are insights coming into view about both the blessings we have and the improvements we need to pursue; many of us are finding joy in little things through this pause from “life as usual” that we’d neglected in our busyness of go, go, go…. I sincerely hope that you can focus more on the bright spots than the clouds and take advantage of this pause to reconnect with the joys and priorities of your life!
Our chapter Board members are all facing the same types of challenges during this time as many of you. Yet, we are endeavoring, in the background, to find new ways to serve the needs of our chapter and community. One of those was to quickly put together a webinar on Learning & COVID-19, which was presented on March 19th, to provide an opportunity to discuss how this global health emergency is affecting and will affect our field of Talent Development. Martyn Whitby, Director of Membership, led the charge to create and facilitate this webinar in just days. During the webinar, he shared resources being offered for free to provide virtual learning & development. Participants of the webinars added to that list and Martyn compiled those in the final slide deck. That deck, along with recordings of the two webinars offered, are posted at the top of our chapter website homepage, atdvos.org, and are available for anyone to download.
Because of the call for social distancing to mitigate the spread of the virus, we postponed our March program and are looking at virtual options for April and months to come. We are so thankful for friends and allies in this work, like Bob Pike, Dr. Tyrone Holmes, OpenSesame, and others who have reached out to offer virtual facilitation. Our Professional Development Director, Lori Bond, and her volunteer are working with them to get programs on our slate, as well as with the April program facilitator to determine ways to present that program virtually. The Mar-Comm and Technology Directors, Brittney Helt and Bre White are working hard to get information and updates posted for you on our various communications channels, as well as schedule virtual coffee breaks for us to network! The rest of our Board also continues to work on supporting these efforts through seeking sponsorships, community relations, volunteer coordination, and managing the chapter finances and projects. We are all in this together!
As you can see, part of the silver lining for our chapter is that we are working toward more learning opportunities being made available for a wider audience. That is our strategy and plan to continue, even after we begin to settle into the “new normal” after this crisis. We invite you to share with us what will be most impactful for you and your organizations during this time. You can do so by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org and by following the chapter on and connecting with us through our social media channels on LinkedIn and Facebook.
Please stay tuned for more announcements as we finalize plans for activities and offerings and, in the meantime, please stay well, stay safe, and stay home as much as possible!
My very best wishes,
Ina Heffner, ATD-VOS President