In January and February of this year, not many people knew of or were concerned about something called the “coronavirus”. Flash forward three months and our lives and our businesses will never be the same again. We all know what “social distancing” is now and that “PPE” does not always mean “property, plant and equipment” (except to us accountants). The world turned upside down so how do we react to it?
It’s been hard for a lot of people and businesses to adapt, but adapt we must. I’ll admit that I prefer not to work from home. To me it’s just easier and more convenient to work in the office except that in the coronavirus world, convenience means little. So I’m adapting to Zoom meetings or phone calls instead of going to a client’s office or talking face-to-face to the people I work with. Our last CFMA meeting in March seems like a year ago but we’ve adapted to having webinars which have been received very well. We really hope that we will be able to have in-person meetings soon but in the interim we have to adapt.
When I became chapter president in April 2018, I was following in a long line of very talented people who preceded me. I’ve tried to learn from all of them which has helped me to adapt. We all have different ways of doing things and I’m grateful to know and learn from them. I’m especially grateful to my immediate predecessor, Joe Buckley, for his advice and guidance and for his help with the Mid-Atlantic Conference that our chapter was the host of last September. Joe and I both have daughters so we consider what we went through planning the conference as a dry run for when it comes time to plan a wedding!
During the last two years the chapter held some very good educational sessions and we had a really great time celebrating the chapter’s 35th anniversary at the Museum of the American Revolution. We continued to meet new people and see folks who have become long-time friends. That’s the best part of the chapter, staying in touch with people who you have come to know and respect over the years. As we go forward in the brave, new world, here’s hoping we will have the opportunity to be together again.
To my successor, Matt McCloskey, I’m sure when he agreed to take over the president’s role he didn’t think the chapter would not be able to hold meetings or go to a Phillies game or maybe not have the golf outing. But I’m confident Matt will adapt and the chapter will adapt. After all, it’s the only thing we can do.
Thank you to my Board, you all are professionals and dedicated to making the chapter better. I also want to say a very big thank you to Andrea Bower, who is the chapter’s association manager. There is a lot of behind the scenes work that is involved in making the chapter operate and Andrea and her staff do a great job.
I sincerely hope to see everyone in person soon. Take care everyone.
Immediate Past President, CFMA Philadelphia