Thanks to everyone for the strong participation in this year’s SWW election. The “polls” opened on September 13 and closed during our Zoom business meeting on October 3. The total number of members who voted was 120. Voting results: 114 in favor of adopting the Emergency Proviso for the Bylaws, 114 “yes” votes for Rose Marie Kern to continue as President, and 120 for Brenda Cole to begin her tenure as Vice President. Congratulations to all!
The qualifications and platforms of the 2021 Executive Committee appear below. Those elected begin their terms on January 1, 2021.
PRESIDENT and VICE PRESIDENT
Rose Marie Kern, President
Our world has gone haywire. Throughout our lives we learn to cope with disasters…accidents, blizzards, earthquakes. But this is different because for the first time we are told that we have to cope all alone. In most emergencies, whether it is a day-to-day personal problem or a hurricane, we can still reach out and touch another human being. This is what stabilizes our souls, grounds our fears and lets us refocus our lives.
Everyday something ends. No more going to movie theatres, libraries, sporting events. Our favorite little restaurants shut down, and we are discouraged from any form of travel anywhere in the world.
What the members of SouthWest Writers need is stability. We are all individualists who love to write and though it is a solitary occupation we need social interaction with others of our kind to re-energize our creative spirits. The last thing we need is for the core administration of this organization, one of the few cheerfully creative anchors in our world, to dissolve away, yet few are willing to jump into a chariot of Covid-fed fires.
My pledge to you is that if you give me your votes and, more than that, your encouragement and support, I will steer SWW through this pandemic by creating more online opportunities for all of us to succeed in our literary ambitions. I will work towards a day when we can once again gather together and, in the meantime, keep SWW functioning as a vital link in the literary community.
Qualifications: Bachelors Degrees in Arts Administration. 10 years as a Quality Assurance Engineer at Lockheed Martin, 24 years as an FAA Air Traffic Controller. Previously either President or a board member of the following organizations: New Mexico Solar Energy Association, Music Theatre El Paso, American Business Women’s Assn.-El Paso Chapter, Lockheed Martin Leadership Assn., and SouthWest Writers.
Brenda Cole, Vice President
Brenda Cole has been a member of SWW since 2001. This year she has served on the board as the Chair of the Seeing the World in 20/20 writing contest.
Brenda’s first writing endeavor was winning a science fiction short story contest in 6th grade. Since that time she has won numerous awards for short story and poetry, including a First Place in the Self-help category for the 2019 SWW contest. Brenda’s work has been included in SouthWest Writers Sage Anthology, 2019 Winners Anthology, and Kimo Theatre: Fact and Folklore. Brenda’s articles and short stories have appeared in: The Albuquerque Genealogy Society, the Sage, and Parents without Partners. Brenda served as Assistant editor for The Journal of Restoration and Management Notes at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Editor for The Archaeology Research Program at SMU.
Brenda’s career choices have been multifaceted. She is a retired Chiropractor and Assistant Professor of Western Medicine. Over the years she has performed as an actor, singer and artist. She has taught preschool through graduate school, been an editor, executive secretary and in worked in pastoral care. Brenda has also volunteered as a President for the American Association of University Women in Waxahachie, TX, Parents without Partners in Albuquerque and Vice President for the Albuquerque Genealogy Society.
Brenda has a Bachelor’s in Biology, Speech and Theater; a Master’s in Land Resources Management and is a Doctor of Chiropractic.
Her latest published short story will appear in New Mexico Remembers 9/11 later this year.
SECRETARY and TREASURER
The secretary and treasurer positions currently run through the end of 2021 — there was no election for these officers this year. Patricia Walkow and Jennifer Black will remain in their respective roles:
Patricia Walkow, Secretary
Patricia Walkow is an award-winning author. Her work was honored in the 2016 William Faulkner Literary Competition. A full-length biography, The War Within, the Story of Josef, won four firstplace awards in national and international competitions. She writes short stories and essays and has contributed to both online and in-print anthologies, newspapers, and magazines. Her work appears in over a dozen anthologies. The most recent anthology she contributed to and edited, Love, Sweet to Spicy, won a 2019 1st place award from New Mexico Press Women and 2nd place from National Federation of Press Women. Ms. Walkow was a former systems manager in a Fortune 200 company, and editor emeritus of Corrales Main-Street News. She is a member of the Corrales Writing Group, SouthWest Writers, New Mexico Press Women, and The National Federation of Press Women. She lives in Corrales, New Mexico with her husband, cats, and one very spoiled dog.
Jennifer Black, Treasurer
Jennifer Black joined SouthWest Writers in 2017. Answering a 2018 call to volunteer, she offered to help out at the business table, which led to an invitation to join the board in 2019. As a board member, her focus has been on finance while shadowing the current treasurer. Together, they have updated the way SWW uses its credit card service, making it easier to reconcile and track daily sales. In the coming months, we will continue to update SWW’s accounting, syncing software to streamline recordkeeping. From the age of ten, Jennifer was raised in family-run businesses, and has been successfully self-employed since 2002. She currently owns a medical massage practice on Albuquerque’s Westside, and taught business classes for four years as a registered massage therapy instructor. She is running for Treasurer because she wants to lead the organization into the digital age of efficient bookkeeping. She says the first step starts with gratitude for the current process and Treasurer, as well as appreciation for all past Treasurers; it would be her honor to serve the organization in this capacity.