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From the President's Desk: 

 Hello and greetings to all. Over 40 members attended ourJuly dinner where our guest speaker was COL Mike Place. Commander of Madigan Army Medical Center. COL Place shared with us Madigan’s movement to electronic medical records as a step to enhance communication between the hos- pital and local care providers. He also discussed the hospital’s growth, its role as a nationally acclaimed teaching hospital, and the possibility of Madigan eventually being designated a Level 1 Trauma Center. For those using the extension clinics, he talk- ed of expansion in Lacey and the renovations at the Puyallup Center. Overall, he left us with a positive image of Madigan as a patient centric facility that cares about each of us.Along with recognizing the challenges members face as we adjust to an electronic Bugle and having a Facebook and Web presence, I am equally concerned about meeting attendance and the quality of the meals we have recently received. Wehave heard from members about the size of portions, the lack ofChapter President Ro Marcus presents a MOAA mug to Col Michael L. Place, commander of Madigan Army Medical Centerbread plates and flatware, and variations in drink prices. In the past, I think I safely say that most have been satisfied with the quality of meal and the value we had received. Given the numerous staff changes, we seem to be experienc- ing a downturn in quality which we are addressing with management. In the interim, if something isn’t right at our next dinner, let either me or one of the chapter’s officers know so we can get it fixed on the spot; fortunately, when we have pointed out a deficiency, they have attempted to quickly remedy the problem.This brings me to our next topic, revisiting our programs and meeting locations. I know it has been several years since we last took up the issue of our programs and meeting locations and I would like to revisit this at our Novem- ber annual meeting. In preparation for that meeting and the planned officer/board planning retreat, I would like to hear your thoughts and suggestions on ways to improve our programs, meeting times, quality of the meals, et al. As an example of this effort to gather information, we are planning a sensing session with a group of National Guard of- ficers to solicit their ideas on how to get those currently serving to participate. Don’t be surprised if we add quarterly social/ happy hour meetings at a local sports bar to create an opportunity to bond.To further remind our members to respond to Marilynn Wilcox with their meal reservations, we started last month to send out email reminders of the monthly meeting, the speaker and the meal choices. We think this helped withour attendance and we are open to your suggestions for other ways we can ensure all of our members get the word regarding our monthly meetings.Our next board meeting will be at 5:30pm, Tuesday, Aug 8; Quinault Auditorium and our upcoming Aug 16 meet- ing will be a dinner meeting in the seventeen 51 bistro at Panorama City with a social at 5:30 PM and the meeting being called to order at 6:00 PM. Our guest speaker for August is tentatively Congressman Heck. Please be alert to possible time changes as we may need to make slight adjustments to accommodate his schedule. I hope to see you there. Remember each of us is a recruiter- bring a new face to the meeting. 

Ro Marcu,  President