Faulkner County Retired Teachers Association

The Faulkner County Retired Teachers Association met May 15 at 1:00 in the Conway First Baptist Church activity center with thirty-one members in attendance. Co-president Janet Burks called the meeting to order with the Pledge of Allegiance.

The end-of-year potluck luncheon was hosted by the officers, and Denver Prince showed a slide show of photographs of meetings through the past years while members enjoyed the food and fellowship.

Officers for the 2018-2019 year were installed as follows after the meal: Co-Presidents Becky Singleton and Sandra Bradberry; President-Elect Lorene Dyer; First Vice-President Ann Owens; Second Vice-President Brenda Bray; Secretary Florene Phipps; Treasurer Jay Fortner; Parliamentarian Janet Burks; Reporter Judy Corcoran, and Historian Charlotte Bell.

Carol Powers reported on the April 30 Area Six Arkansas Retired Teachers Association meeting. Attending were Sandra Bradberry, Becky Singleton, Brenda Bray, Carol Powers, Florene Phipps, Janet Burks and Hervey Galloway. Area VI and VII positions for the coming year were filled by Sandra Bradberry, Sharon Mitchell and Glen Coston, directors; Brenda Bray, association director and secretary; Carol Powers, treasurer, and Donnie Watts, board member. She said the 2019 Area VI meeting will be held in Faulkner County. Carol reported that the Arkansas Teacher Retirement System is ranked among the best pension plans in the country. The ARTA remains vigilant with the Arkansas legislative issues regarding the retirement system, and the membership in ATRA must continue to grow to maintain the strength of the system.

Becky Singleton presented a press release which recognizes the FCRTA as the winner of a Unit Achievement Award from the ARTA for meeting criteria that demonstrated their effectiveness both as an organization and as a community resource. The FCRTA was also recognized with the Outstanding Community Award and Local Membership Increase Award for its 6% membership increase. The Arkansas Retired Teachers Association was formed in 1939 and 1940 with fifteen members. It has more than12,500 members and 62 local units around the state who work together to protect and improve the professional, personal, social and economic welfare of retired school employees. The Faulkner County Retired Teachers Association meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 1:30 in the Conway First Baptist Church activity center with informational and entertaining programs at each meeting.

Carol Powers also reported on the Toad Suck Daze scholarships recently awarded. To date the Toad Suck festival since the beginning in 1985 have generated $1.7 million in college scholarships. She said that the scholarship committee needs five members from the FCRTA, and she encouraged members to be involved in the process. The scholarships can be evaluated on line, and members can let Carol know if they are interested in serving on the committee.

Membership chair Judy McKnight reported that she sends letters to members who have not paid for the coming year, and she usually gets many responses and renewals of memberships. Discussion was held on how to get in touch with teachers who are currently retiring to urge them to become members of FCRTA. How to conduct a membership drive was discussed as well as how to inform newly retired teachers about the benefits of membership in the Arkansas Retired Teachers Association and the Faulkner County Retired Teachers Association. Several suggestions were offered.

Members were asked by Ann Owens for their suggestions for programs for the meetings for next year.

Members voted to contribute to the ARTA scholarship fund in honor of deceased members Bill Pate, Ed Bradberry, Nancy Congleton and Geneva Stephens.

May birthday recognition was given to Lorene Dyer. Door prizes were won by Judy McKnight, Becky Singleton, Ruth Slayton and Annette Greenland.

After a summer break the next meeting will be held September 18.

Kappa Kappa Iota

The Alpha Iota chapter of Kappa Kappa Iota held a dinner meeting at McAlister's Monday, May 21. This was their last meeting of the 2017-18 year.

President Elizabeth Humphrey reported that she had submitted all of the end-of-year reports to National KKI, which included 910 volunteer hours from the group.  Sara Andrews, treasurer, collected membership dues for the 2018-19 year. The group also made plans for the next year. The first meeting will be at 5 p.m. on September 17, 2018 at Stoby's.

Mrs. Humphrey presented members with a "Thank you assort-mint," featuring a thank you card with a mint taped to it with sayings such as "commit-mint," "encourage-mint," "enjoy-mint," "invest-mint," and more.

At the conclusion of the meeting, President Humphrey read the "Cherokee Prayer Blessing." National president Janice Luce is part Cherokee from Oklahoma, thus the prayer.