Archive for April, 2017

VANtage: April 2017

Written by nlyons29 on . Posted in Home Page

President’s Message

The political and philosophical atmosphere in our country and around the world is becoming increasingly divisive, and as Volunteer Administrators, we might feel stuck in the middle of competing ideas and interests. On one hand, we are seeing threats to our funding sources, changes to the ways in which we collect volunteer data, and clients and volunteers who are questioning whether they are welcome in our nation any longer. On the other, citizen engagement is increasing, people are stepping up to help where they can, and many are becoming more thoughtful about how the words they use are heard by others.
The tension may be high, but I choose to stay positive. I was talking with a gentleman a few weeks ago who believes that cutting back on federal spending is a good thing, but in the same breath he said that it means people who have the means and opportunity to help need to step up. I recruited him as a volunteer on the spot. We won’t agree with every person we interact with, but it won’t help our causes to isolate ourselves in cocoons of sameness. Let involvement and volunteerism be a bridge that holds our communities together.
That doesn’t mean we have to give up our convictions. As VAN President, I will be sending a letter to the Corporation for National and Community Service encouraging them to continue to collect valuable data on the status of volunteer service in the United States, and I encourage all volunteer leaders to do the same. Information on the proposed changes to the Volunteer and Civic Life Assessment is available at If we work together, we can carry out the changes that will make the world better.

Nick Linkenhoker
VAN Central Ohio President



April Meeting:
Is a CVA Right for You?
Thursday, April 20
8:30 – 10:30 a.m.
Alvis, Inc.
2100 Stella Court
Columbus, Ohio 43215

Have you heard of or ever considered obtaining your Certification in Volunteer Administration (CVA)?

Do you want to learn more about:
• The value of the CVA to you as a professional and the organization you work for?
• The requirements to take the test?
• How the application and testing process works?
Join us April 20th at the VAN monthly meeting to learn all these things and more. We will also have fellow CVAs on hand to share how this professional certification has shaped and boosted their career, as well as to answer any questions about the certification.
Sign up here today!

May Meeting:
How Do You Measure Success?
Thursday, May 18
8:30 – 10:30 a.m.
Location TBD
Mark your calendar to join us May 18 where we will be joined by speaker Sheri Chaney Jones. Sheri has over 17 years of experience in improving government agencies and nonprofits through the use of performance management, evaluation, and organizational behavior best practices. Her experience and expertise has transformed measurement cultures and as a result, saved public dollars, improved outcomes, demonstrated effectiveness, and increased revenues.

VAN: Looking for Members to Join Task Forces Aimed at Strengthening Programs
The VAN Board is looking for you to help us gain a better understanding of the programs and services our members want and need and insights into the best way to communicate those services to our members. Please consider joining one of three task forces:

• Marketing Plan led by Nora Lyons ( and Kathryn Wagonrod (
• Professional Development and Networking led by Jackie Haight ( and Liz Garrabrant (
• Benchmark Survey led by Liz Solomon ( and Carla Mello (

Please contact the Task Force leaders or to sign up!


VAN Half Year Membership

VAN Half Year Memberships are now available! If you know anyone who is thinking about joining VAN this is a great time! This $30 membership is a great way to get involved with VAN at a discounted rate. All memberships expire at the end of June.

Click here to join today!