On Friday, I started a one-year term as President of NAPO-St. Louis, our local chapter of the National Association of Professional Organizers. I’ve been an active member of the chapter since its inception in 2006. In fact, I served six years on its board of directors, first as Membership Director, then President, then Immediate Past President. I retired from the board in May of 2012, but agreed to return for a term as President this year when there wasn’t someone else available to step forward.
It’s an interesting feeling. I love my NAPO chapter and have enjoyed attending every meeting. (I have probably missed five chapter meetings in the last nine years.) I loved being a board member. And I loved being a non-board member, watching from the sidelines. I was happy to step into the presidency again (though I agreed to serve only one single-year term) because I want to help the chapter, which has given me so much.
I kind of feel like a different person than I was in 2008—less than three years into my business—when I first became NAPO-St. Louis President. I’ve matured, gained confidence, developed an intolerance for needless effort, and developed some serious leadership skills through leading my organizing teams on a regular basis. I’m also a lot more busy with paying work than I was back then, which leaves less time for volunteer work.
NAPO-St. Louis, in turn, has matured a great deal. Under the leadership of Denise Lee, CPO® of Clear Spaces LLC, who served as President for the past three years, the chapter has flourished and grown.
My goal for the coming year is to apply my philosophy of Let it be easy to every aspect of the board’s activities. I want us to work together effortlessly toward common goals, even if the goals aren’t particularly lofty. We’re going to catch our breath this year and build ease into the process of board service whenever possible.
If you’re a professional organizer (or an aspiring one) who lives in the St. Louis area and you aren’t a member (or haven’t visited) NAPO-St. Louis, I encourage you to join us at a meeting. Also, if you own or represent company that provides products or services that help the organizing process, please consider joining us as an associate member. I think you’ll find it an amazingly warm and supportive group with a whole lot to offer.