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NCCEAPA – Northeast District Association History

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By Betty Dail, NE District President

As of January 1975, the Northeastern District North Carolina Association of Cooperative Extension Secretaries was approximately eighteen months old. The task of organization and adopting a constitution and bylaws was complete. We could now turn our attention to helping the baby grow.

One of our main problems was membership. Our district is wide-spread enough geographically that attending meetings involved a great deal of travel for many. Also, we had been told by the State Administration that no time would be granted for attending meetings. As a result of this, our meetings in the past had been held on Saturdays with very low attendance. In 1975, the Board of Directors voted to hold meetings in the latter part of the afternoon on a weekday. It was also voted that we have a dinner following the meeting and invite the County Extension Chairmen to join us for dinner. This both provided transportation for members and eliminated the Saturday meetings. This has been quite successful in bringing up membership and attendance at meetings. At both meetings held in 1975, we were fortunate enough to have the dinner sponsored, costing our members nothing.

Early in the year, the Board of Directors met and voted to adopt a correspondence letterhead and a news letterhead. It was felt that a distinctive letterhead of our own would serve to create a sense of pride in our organization. After several brainstorming sessions involving Frances Ward – Home Economics Extension Agent in Chowan County, Frances Voliva – Home Economics Extension Agent in Tyrrell County, Al Brothers – In Charge Graphic Design, NC State University, and Betty Dail – NE District NCACES President, the two letterheads were developed, presented and adopted. It was decided that a newsletter be sent out twice a year to serve as a vehicle to keep members informed and to help members become better acquainted.

The position of Hospitality Chairman was expanded to include sending cards to members who were ill, had babies, etc. The Public Relations Committee was expanded also to include the responsibility of the newsletter. Both of these served to create a sense of unity among secretaries.

In April, the Industrial Extension Service at NC State University offered a training session on educational TV. Through the efforts of the Northeastern District, this training was offered to Extension secretaries throughout the state at a reduced price. Our district had 22 participants in this training – the highest number in any district in the state.

Our state meeting was held in Wilmington on September 26. The Northeastern District presented several of the new innovations we had initiated – some were received well, some were not. However, it was obvious that our district had been the most progressive district in the state during 1975. One of the highlights of our meeting was the election of Linda McMullen of Camden County as 1976 State Vice President.

At our last meeting in 1975, we had good attendance, wonderful participation during the meeting, and great fellowship after the meeting. Our members offered many suggestions for improvement on both the district and state level. All members seem very enthusiastic about our association and what we feel it represents and confident that it will be even better in the future.