Most columns in the Explorer from the division presidents focus on what is going on within their division and upcoming events.
However, this has truly been a challenging year. AAPG Members in Houston and towns along the Gulf Coast have suffered over the past few weeks from the devastating effects of Hurricane Harvey. With more than18 percent of the membership based in and around Houston, if we haven’t been directly impacted by the storms ourselves, many of us have friends and colleagues who have been. Our thoughts and prayers are with them as they continue to deal with these devastating events.
Houston is “Texas Strong” and the process of recovery is already underway. I encourage you to reach out to help and support the recovery processes however you can. Sometimes just an expression of support and concern brings comfort to those affected.
As a division president, it is important to develop a focus for the year and do what is needed to put plans into action. Within the Division of Professional Affairs, the focus for this year is our new member status for Young Professionals (YPs), “Provisional Member.” This was discussed in my last article, but it bears repeating.
This level of membership is focused at those active AAPG members that currently meet the requirements for DPA membership, except for the eight years of experience needed for certification. Although this is neither a certified nor a voting classification, the “Provisional” class does provide the same level of discounts and free access to events, website content, publications, Playmaker and Discovery Thinking forums as full certified member status. It also attempts to provide an increased level of career planning by providing access to DPA mentors to help guide personal development paths and career advice. Provisional members will have access to the membership directory, can serve on committees and attend meetings at the discretion of the DPA president, where their contributions will be welcomed. I will be attending as many of the YP meet and greet events as possible to help spread the word.
I encourage our members to look at the YPs you know and talk with those who now qualify to become members of the DPA. This is our chance to tell them about this new membership opportunity and become familiar with all that the DPA offers its members.
I hope you will encourage them to join the DPA and to participate on our committees. Dues for the new level are only $25 per year. Discounts to various DPA events alone will more that make up the cost of membership. The application for membership can be found on the DPA website at aapg.org/divisions/dpa.
The year ahead is bright with the upcoming Annual Convention and Exhibition (ACE) in Salt Lake City, the International Conference and Exhibition (ICE) in London and section meetings in Morgantown, Oklahoma City and San Antonio. I am planning on attending all these meetings and I look forward to meeting each of you and learning more about each section.
With the changes in Washington D.C. we may have a much friendlier environment to our industry. The Washington office has been closed. However a Special Interest Group headed by Pete MacKenzie has been put in place to continue our educational efforts in Congress. Participation in the DPA-sponsored Congressional Visit Days is an important event through which we can keep our lawmakers informed about energy issues and the impact of regulation. For the first time in a decade, there is a new direction possible in Congress, but we need to help direct our lawmakers to make the right choices for the country. I hope you will join us on these visits. You can get involved and make a difference.
Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any of your thoughts and ideas; the DPA is a living organization with our members being its lifeblood.