Paraphrasing a famous quote of the Greek philosopher Heraclitus,

There is only one predictable element in nature, and in life, and that is change!

Bruce-BeckerWe see change all around us…people, customs, traditions, norms, products, technology, systems, politics, religion, education, business, industry, organizations, and institutions…all poised and positioned for change and sometimes, radical change.  Expecting things to stay the same or remain as they can be an exercise in futility.  By accepting and embracing the reality of change, one is able to enter a state of fully accepting the notion that “you can’t step into the same river twice.”

As an organization, ACDA-MN has experienced and witnessed much change within its distinguished 53-year history. One of the biggest components of change within the last decade has been how technology impacts each and every second of how this organization operates.  Like you, your family, your students, and your colleagues, ACDA-MN depends upon technology to communicate, market, and distribute our products to a diverse membership base. Keeping up with and mastering the latest technological trends and services is a constant challenge, but we must keep pace and forge ahead in new areas to remain on the cutting edge of providing relevant and vibrant leadership to choral directors in Minnesota.

During the next 16 months, ACDA-MN will be embarking on a journey to upgrade our website presence.  It doesn’t seem long ago that we as an organization did just that!  In 2012, we launched a new website during our 50th anniversary year that subsequently received two national awards for excellence.  Just short of four years later, we now find that a new generation of website development offers new ideas for ease of navigation and design/layout that looks and feels much different from our 2012 version.  In addition, the global issue of computer and on-line hacking, forces us to keep our website current, utilizing the latest security features.

Therefore, our State Board of Directors at their January meeting, approved and appropriated funds to engage our Web Editor, Dariush Akhavan, to develop and migrate a newly designed website to a new and secure operating platform.  The task will be enormous, one that will take many hours and months to complete.  You will be hearing more about this process in the weeks and months ahead.  This process is in the best of hands, as we will fully utilize Dariush’s skill set in expertly accomplishing this task.

Along with the website changes, we are looking at the best way to regularly communicate with our membership.  Not too many years ago, the only method available to us was occasional special mailings or receiving the print version of Star of the North three to four times per academic year.   Currently our Star of the is available to access online 24/7, and since August of 2012, over 800 Daily Beats have been authored and distributed each day.  In addition, we have launched an active Facebook presence within the past two years.

Shortly before the holidays, we sent out survey regarding the use of The Daily Beat.  We learned that this well received communication product has been very successful in disseminating timely and useful information to a diverse membership.  Survey results also suggested that we perhaps consider a “less intrusive” presence, so in tandem with the new website development, we will design and build a once-per-week issue entitled The Weekly Pulse that will be sent out each Tuesday.  Our hope is through one weekly update, members will receive relevant and pertinent information as needed.  Paid announcements for concerts, events, auditions, and special notices will now be collated and brought together in one weekly issue.  Other time sensitive announcements that can’t wait for the regular Tuesday issue will be sent out in The Weekly Pulse EXTRA, normally reserved for Fridays.  We look forward to implementing this change and will seek your response as we continue to discover and discern the best methods to regularly communicate with you.

Change continues to be all around us.  We urge you to fully embrace everything it has in store!

That is all for now…