WebWhispers Semi-Annual Reports
WebWhispers officers are required by the bylaws to file semi-annual reports to the membership. You will find the history of our growth in these current and past reports.
Semiannual Officers' Report to the Membership
July 1 - December 31, 2007
President's Report: July 1 - December 31, 2007 - Pat W Sanders
We have officially changed the name of our organization to WebWhispers, Inc., after approval from the membership, instead of the original name of incorporation, WebWhispers Nu-Voice Club, Inc. It will take us a while to get current changes made and you will still see the old name in our records.
The latter half of 2007 started with a large number of WebWhispers members heading for Burlington, VT, in July, a beautiful site for the IAL Annual Meeting & Voice Institute. For those who were able to get there in time and were not tied up with meetings, we had set up a sociable luncheon cruise out on Lake Champlain the first day, where we were able to greet many members we had never met, in person, and to see again friends from previous years. It was fun, wet and beautiful. During the convention, all of our officers were busy from dawn till dark, Michael Csapo was at the WW table constantly and was joined by Webmaster Leonard Librizzi and me, although I was off and running on occasion on WW business. Terry was taking care of our delegation, having some meetings for WW, and stopped by the table when needed, as did Libby Fitzgerald who, as always, was handling the extremely delicious and well planned WebWhispers Dinner.
During the IAL Annual Meeting, Dr. Jan Lewin gave a beautiful and thoughtful tribute to our founder, Dutch Helms. At the WW Dinner, my talk about WebWhispers, was mainly telling stories of the fun and excitement of working with Dutch. This culminated in Terry Duga jumping to his feet to toast Dutch and everyone joined him.
We are proud that Frank Batten wrote to accept our Casey-Cooper Award for this year and are honored to have him as a member. Our Certificates of Appreciation to Vendors and Volunteers were a slight thank you for all they had done for us. Our Vendors are always so good to us. We have continued to improve, define, and refine the various volunteer jobs. I cannot imagine how we could exist without these volunteers.
We have new appointments. We are very grateful to have long time friend and Forum Manager Mike Rosenkranz now on our BOD and our new friend, Ed Chapman, accepting the position and responsibilities of the V-P WSI, a very active position. We are delighted that he joined us on the BOD and EC. Both of these guys will be filing their first report in this document. Welcome to you both.
We held elections in November and the incumbents who were running for the two year terms of: President, VP-Member Services and VP-Internet Activities, were re-elected. This is the first election in a long time in which we had someone come up and say...I want to run for office and we appreciate Judy Ramboldt for that. It is a tribute to both Libby Fitzgerald and Judy Ramboldt that they continue to work together for the good of WebWhispers. We had a slightly new format for the elections and it worked well, with Ed Chapman and Len Librizzi doing the work. Ed has filed a report that we will be considering in committee for future elections to simplify this even further. This would include timing of announcements and requirements on the ballot form (such as signing your full name). As the election time moved on this year and we got to the time to vote, I realized I had not even put in a campaign letter to introduce myself.... I figured it was a good thing no one was running against me so maybe no one noticed. Anyway, thanks to those who voted for me to stay a while longer. I'm happy to be here.
WHISPERS ON THE WEB
Whispers on the Web is continuing to grow and gain additional contributors. As Managing Editor, I could not have better people to work with. We have continued to present a variety of reading material with Lisa Proper, VP coordinator, Editor Donna McGary and Webmaster Len Librizzi, all active. Our latest improvement is adding a table of contents to the top of each issue of the newsletter and, we have a new volunteer, Gary Metz, who is doing a great job of getting these prepared for Len. Gary is working his way back through the past issues and, soon, we will be able to find articles we wish to read on almost any subject or by any author through the years. Gary's wife, Vicki (the lary in the family) has just retired and will be joining us as a volunteer in January.
The website is an ongoing delight. It is easy to work with and our Webmaster, Len Librizzi, is willing and able to set up new sections or change the design of old ones. He is our website guru. He keeps our newsletters on time and looking good. I'm his first assistant for really plain stuff that needs posting on the web, but I do have lots of ideas that are more complicated to keep him busy! Sunny Bakken is also a web poster and works with me on the simple postings. We will all be busy as Ed Chapman and his Library Crew get going on new information for the web. John Fortroy still makes himself available for advice and special projects. In all that spare time I have, I have been organizing the information for a Website Map. It is partly usable but still under construction.
I asked Buck Martin to write up what he was doing for us as Database Manager and this is the shortest description of the longest job that I have ever seen. "Buck Martin, Lary Class of '07 joined WW as a database volunteer in Sept. Buck has taken on the responsibility of entering new member information into the SalesForce membership database, as well as making changes to existing members records as needed. Buck has also been sending out emails to every member listed in the database in an attempt to update and verify the accuracy of member contact information."
He is doing a great job of trying to be sure everyone is accounted for in our database. This has included comparison charts and volunteers, Michael Csapo, Sunny Bakken, Jeanne Graden and Pat Sanders all working with Buck to figure out who is on what list and why are they not in the database? We ask that the members make a trip to our Roster in the Members Area and let us know with an Update if changes are needed. (The Update form is found under Join or Update...upper right corner of Website Home Page).
Michael Csapo, VP-IA had been training Sunny Bakken for the List Manager's position while she was still working the database. Sunny had to take time off to spend every minute helping with Hospice for her husband, Ron, who had a recurrence. Our love and sympathies were with them during this hard time. While she still has affairs to settle, Sunny is now starting to get back with us and we need her expertise and her marvelous humor.
Pat W Sanders, President
VP - Web Site Information Report: July 1 - December 31, 2007 - Ed Chapman
This being my first semiannual report I want to first thank the Board of Directors for giving me this opportunity and for being patient with the "new kid" on the block , (particularly Pat).
Since October I have been busy familiarizing myself with all aspects of the library and attempting to note what areas need to be updated or need more information. At the same time, I have started to review all 8,089 e-mails in the two years of archives, 8 years and 3 months of Whispers on the Web, and 12 years of Headlines. We have a lot of information available, which, to me, is almost mind boggling. It just needs to be a little more available and user friendly. With the help of volunteers that’s what we are planning to accomplish. It is a daunting and tedious project but with planning and determination, it will be accomplished.
One of the projects we have started is the "Table of Contents" at the heading of the current "Whispers on the Web" newsletter and we are working backwards through the years. The formidable task of setting up each month's contents, has been taken on by Gary Metz. So far Gary has completed all of 2007. We cannot thank him enough for his many hours and effort he is putting into this project.
Leonard Librizzi, our Webmaster, has been very instrumental in this project and created the existing web site format. He has installed the new "Google" search engine which will be useful for searching the entire website to find what you need. Len, as always, continues to improve and update the web site with Sunny Bakken and Pat Sanders assisting in posting.
Leonard also worked with me on the election committee. He produced a form to use that made it easy to tally the votes. He was the producer of the web site ballot and set it up to be automatically disseminated to the proper parties. His talents amaze me and he deserves many accolades for the job he does. While serving on the election committee, I had some ideas for improvements and have drafted suggestions for election policies and procedures . These may help future committees avoid the few problems we met.
We are fortunate enough to have Barbara Stratton volunteer, even with everything else she is doing, to take on a very important and challenging project for a Caregivers section in the Library. Our thanks go out to you Barb for taking on this project! She is asking webbies and their caregivers for assistance and she writes:
"With your help, the CAREGIVERS section of our Website will be taking on a new face. We're inviting all our caregivers to submit two or three of their best hints about helping their lary. We'd also like to hear from larys who rely on someone else to tell us about things they find particularly helpful, or something they wish their caregiver would do for them.
Please email me direct at Momanddadz@comcast.net using CAREGIVERS in the subject line. Thanks for your participation! Barb Stratton"
Vicki Eorio has been willing to take on another project for us (in addition to all the other projects she has going). She had to lay this aside due to having a stroke, which she writes about in Whispers on the Web, but she will be working as she recovers, through her therapy and strong will, from her stroke.
Tammie Wigginton, SLP, and our WW Library Advisor, in addition to her busy schedule, has made herself available and is "Johnny on the spot" answering any of our many technical questions and giving us professional guidance.
We will be asking for more volunteers to cover different areas, as the need arises. If any webbies are interested in a certain area or to just help in general contact Pat Sanders or myself.
Last but not least a special thanks to President Pat Sanders for her patience, guidance and help. In particular her assistance with the "Table of Contents" project, her recommendations for the format and her editing talents.
Once again thanks to all webbies for this opportunity and I am looking forward to the challenges of this position and doing my small part to make this the "go to" place for laryngectomy related information and support.
VP - WSI
VP Member Services Report: July 1 – December 31, 2007 – Libby Fitzgerald
Between July 1st and December 31st, 218 new members joined WebWhispers. This total comprised laryngectomees, caregivers, medical practitioners and vendors coming from throughout the US plus Canada, Turkey, New Zealand, Australia, Iran, UK, India, Wales, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.We are truly worldwide and welcome all our new members.
We are so grateful for donations by our members as well as donations from outside sources. This support has enabled us to cover the costs of maintaining our web site, our web hosting fees, listserv hosting fees, computers, software and other related operating expenses. It also covers the costs for mailing out our color brochures and loan closet equipment, plus the Casey-Cooper and other awards.
I am still in the process of sending out donation letters for 2007 income tax purposes, so donors should be on the lookout for their letters. We currently have 301 sustaining members, an increase of 52 members since June 30th. Although we appreciate this increase in member support, it is still a small fraction of our over 2,000 total membership. We have no dues requirement, but any donation of at least $5.00 per year entitles you to vote on all issues of importance to our organization.
To make a donation, go to this link: http://webwhispers.org/donations/donations.asp
or mail a check to our VP of Finance & Administration:
6115 North Park Avenue,
Indianapolis, IN 46220.
We continue to send out thousands of our free color brochures to members and local laryngectomee clubs, speech pathologists, doctors’ offices, university hospital medical centers, plus many vendors of medical supplies. Due to its ongoing popularity, we have almost depleted our current supply and will be looking to finance a reprint in the near future. If you are unfamiliar with the WebWhispers brochure, it can be found at the following link: http://webwhispers.org/services/free-brochures.asp . If any of you would like to order them, contact me directly at Lijofitz@aol.com.
There are still WW pins and patches available. The pins are $5.00 each or 6 for $25.00. Patches are $1.50 each, 4 for $5.00 and 9 for $10.00. We usually sell these at a lower price at the WebWhispers table at the IAL because there is no mailing cost.
Bruce Medical Supply continues to generously provide free Neckbreather pins mailed at no cost to us for all members who donate a minimum of $15.00 in US funds or $50.00 from overseas. To view pins, patches and the Neckbreather pin, go to: http://webwhispers/org/services/ww-pins-patches.asp.
Judy and Bill Ramboldt continue to house most of our Loan Closet inventory and faithfully send out equipment as needed by our members. Thank you, Bill and Judy. The following items are available on a temporary basis for members only, including SLPs who may need them for some of their patients. Electrolarynx brands in the L.C.: Nu Vois, Tru-Tone, Servox Digital, Servox Inton, Optivox, Romet, Cooper-Rand and Solatone. Some units come with chargers and batteries and some come with oral adapters and straws. We also have a Chattervox amplification unit with charger, 3 head phones, instructional manuals, videos and some stoma covers. A small, auxiliary loan closet is housed with me should Bill and Judy not be available to send out those items. For further information, contact me at Lijofitz@aol.com.
Our annual WebWhispers dinner held on July 13th in Burlington, VT was another fun-filled, well-attended and successful gathering. There were 150 people who thoroughly enjoyed a truly delicious buffet and each other’s company, along with the presentation of awards and the always touching remembrance of members we lost during the past year including a special toast to our beloved founder, David “Dutch” Helms. Many thanks again to Bruce Medical Supply for their sponsorship of our pre-dinner reception and InHealth Technologies and Bruce Medical Supply for their continued support in paying a portion of the dinner cost to keep it affordable for our members.
The members who passed away between July 1st and December 30th are listed with others who passed away earlier in the year, on the Memorium Page on our web site, http://webwhispers.org/about/inmemoriam.asp. We honor them and keep all of their memories alive in our hearts and minds. Each year, when we meet at the annual WebWhispers dinner, these names will be called and a haunting memorial bell will be rung for each name, as is tradition for all the members whom we have lost in the previous year. It's a beautiful way for us to remember them.
If you know of any others, not listed on our Memorial Page, please let us know.
I wish to thank the voting members for re-electing me to this office. I deeply appreciate your confidence and approval and will continue to serve you to the best of my ability.
VP Member Services
VP - Finance & Administration Report: July 1 - December 31, 2007 - Terry Duga
WebWhispers, Inc. remains solvent thanks to the generosity of our contributors. We finished the year with $27,423.44 in the bank. In addition, in savings, $10,500 represents the proceeds of a life insurance policy, plus interest, that WW carried on Dutch to be used as an emergency fund in case we need to hire people to maintain the site. Thanks to our great volunteers, that fund remains intact.
In July, 2007, we officially filed amendments to our articles of incorporation shortening our name from WebWhispers Nu Voice Club, Inc. to WebWhispers, Inc. We remain a tax exempt not for profit Indiana corporation.
We had the following expenditures from July 1 through December 31, 2007:
We awarded sixteen $100 grants to members attending the Voice Institute, for a total expenditure of $1,600. Payment of these grants came out of the Edmund Lauder Support Fund which is primarily funded by donations from Lauder Enterprises, Inc.
This was the inaugural year for the Dutch Helms Travel Grant. The grant is funded by InHealth for the specific purpose of allowing someone who has given great service to WebWhispers the opportunity to attend an IAL convention. The amount of this year’s grant was $1,808.75. Michael Csapo, who has tirelessly worked to perform many of the duties that Dutch performed for WebWhispers, was the deserving recipient of the grant.
WebWhispers also paid per diem expenses to Pat Sanders and Michael Csapo for manning the WebWhispers table during the convention. The per diem amount of $250 each is calculated at a rate of $50 per day for the 5 days that they worked, totaling $500.
This year, the annual Awards banquet cost $6,000.38. The cost negotiated by Libby was significantly less than the costs of dinners in the recent previous years. Again, Bruce Medical and InHealth generously underwrote the banquet to keep the cost for individual members to $30.00 per person and Bruce Medical hosted a wonderful reception given for the dinner attendees. The only additional cost for the banquet was $70.91 for centerpieces for the tables.
We paid a total of $189.48 in fees for taking payments and donations by credit card.
We expended $127.98 in office supplies.
We expended $1.02 for copying.
We paid dues to the IAL in the amount of $150.00
We paid a $30.00 filing fee with the Indiana Secretary of State for our amendment to our articles of incorporation.
We expended $99.00 for management of the forum.
We expended $20.00 for hosting plan renewal.
Maintaining the mail list cost $569.85.
The Pico search engine cost $249.00.
We spent $155.39 for postage primarily for the loan closet and mailing of brochures.
We had telephone expenses of $5.00.
We spent $530.00 for Internet access. This access includes a $20 per month payment to Pat Sanders, Michael Csapo and Sunny Bakken to offset the costs they pay for internet access. The three spend significant time on the internet keeping WebWhispers running. The cost also included the $50 the hotel charged us to access the internet during the IAL annual meeting.
Carla Lynch continues to perform back up duties for me, and I thank her for her work.
VP Finance & Administration
VP - Internet Activities: July 1 - December 31, 2007 - Michael Csapo
One of the most significant changes which has occurred over the past six months in this department has come about as a result of ISP's imposing tighter restrictions on email lists due to the ever increasing amount of SPAM which circulates on the Internet these days. Those out there with sharp eyes have likely already taken notice to the "Unsubscribe" link at the bottom of every email which reads as follows:
To unsubscribe, click on the following web page.
Those who click on one of these links will automatically be removed from the mail list and will no longer receive email messages. Occasionally, some of our overly eager "quicker clickers" accidentally click on these links which results in their removal from the distribution list. When this occurs, a message is automatically sent to them with instructions to these individuals advising them how to get back "ON" the distribution list, in the event that this removal occurred accidentally. Please take note that removal from the email list does not automatically remove one from the membership. To be removed from the membership in it's entirety, one needs to email listmgr@WebWhispers.org with a specific request to be removed from the membership.
At present, we have 1643 subscribers on our email lists with 214 of these on vacation. In the past six months we have removed approximately 75 email addresses from the list only because their email addresses were no longer valid. Many of these are reflected in the rosters with the word "bad" listed as a prefix to their email addresses. We wait in hope that they will return to us and update us with new or valid email addresses and information.
I would also like to offer my sincerest thanks and appreciation to all of the members who took their time and effort to vote in the most recent election. Your support has inspired me to continue to do my best in the interests of WebWhispers and all of its members. It will be an honor to represent you and to serve another term with all on the current EC and BOD. A warm welcome should be extended to our newest VP-Website Information, Ed Chapman and newest BOD member Mike Rosenkranz.
A special thanks to all of the volunteers in this organization who spend time most every day to keep our community going. A special thanks to Barb Stratton and Randy Lemster who have been doing a terrific job of moderating our mail list this past year. A very special and heartfelt thanks to Sunny Bakken, who despite the loss of her beloved husband Ron late last year has decided to stay on board with us as a volunteer. In addition to working with our database, Sunny has also trained and is now capable of performing most all the functions of list manager. I feel so fortunate and blessed to be working with such dedicated volunteers such as these......they are all great people.
Last and certainly not least, I would like to give a special thanks to all who contribute to the continued growth of our organization. This past year, I have come to realize what a wonderful and awesome community exists with our vendors and suppliers. This summer I was bestowed the honor and awarded the first ever "Dutch Helms Travel Grant" funded by Inhealth Technologies. This grant enabled my caregiver and myself to attend the IAL in Vermont this past July. While there, I was able to meet in person and speak for the first time with many of the WW Officers, BOD, WW Members, attendees of the VI and AM, and the many wonderful suppliers and vendors which we rely on so much to help get us through our everyday lives. In October I was once again afforded the opportunity to represent WebWhispers at the Orange County Lost Chord Conference aboard the Queen Mary in Long Beach, California on a sponsorship from Griffin Laboratories. Once again I experienced the amazing consideration and respect which the vendors displayed towards one another, never hesitating to refer a prospective client to a competitor if they would be better served there. I would have thought these guys would be out to cut each others throats in competition of sales but it is truly not so. Great people....all of them.
~Michael Csapo - VP - Internet Activities
Board of Directors - July 1 - December 31, 2007 - Mike Rosenkranz
As a new member of the Board of Directors, my responsibility is to partake in discussions and decisions about policy and problems, but the WW Forum has been my responsibility for some years. In the fall of 2006, Logan Grayson joined me as backup to my Forum duties, and in November 2006 became the WW Forum co-manager.
Your Forum managers, Mike Rosenkranz and Logan Grayson, are pleased to report that Forum activity continues to grow. Total Forum posts this past year were more than double those of the previous year, and Forum membership has grown to 442 members, almost 25% of the total Web Whispers membership.
The Forum is where we socialize with each other. Think of the Forum as your den or living room, where you can kick off your shoes, lean back, relax and chat with your friends... Every topic is welcome, and this frees up the list which is devoted to helping people who need answers to their questions.
From July 1st through December 31st, there were 1244 new posts in the Forum, 225 new discussions started, with almost 60,000 page views. These posts were made by only 70 of our Forum members, which reinforces what we have known for some time. Most Forum members log in on a regular basis to follow the various discussions, but do not participate in the discussions themselves. This is an open invitation to all to participate in our Forum activity. Once you submit your first post, the second and third will roll right off your keyboard.
To join the Forum, click on http://webwhispers.org/members/forumboards.asp and follow the instructions. When you write to ask for the Forum code, please sign your full name. Address any questions to email@example.com
We cannot complete this report without acknowledging our heartfelt appreciation to Logan for the many months he carried on by himself during my recuperation.
Board of Directors - July 1 - December 31, 2007 - Carla DeLassus Gress, ScD, CCC-SLP
We continue to re-develop the WW HealthHelp mail list for medical professionals, including speech-language pathologists (SLPs), otolaryngologists, and other health care providers who specialize in head & neck cancer treatment, particularly larynx cancer. Our membership is 275, with new members slowly being added. Traffic on the email list has been somewhat slow, but now that the address lists have been further updated from the old lists, we hope to focus on encouraging more dialogue among the members. Many thanks to all of the wonderful volunteers who are charged with the tedious nuts and bolts of the project.
In July at the International Association of Laryngectomees Annual Meeting and Voice Institute in Burlington, VT, I had the opportunity to meet many of the WW members who were in attendance. As Director of the Voice Institute, I had been approached by an anonymous donor who wished to provide support for a memorial lecture to honor David (Dutch) Helms. This was in recognition of his foresight and wisdom in founding WebWhispers, and also to acknowledge his many years of dedicated assistance to laryngectomees in several other capacities, including his service as IAL webmaster. In discussion with the donor, as well as the Annual Meeting Committee, the topic of Healthy Living after Laryngectomy was chosen, and Jan Lewin, PhD, Director of Speech Pathology at the MD Anderson Cancer Center and a personal friend of Dutch, was selected to lead this inspirational and informative session.
At the Voice Institute, and other professional meetings that I attend, such as the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) convention, I devote efforts toward making SLPs aware of WebWhispers and the services available to them and their patients. I continue to participate in the WebWhispers mail list, serving as a professional resource to answer questions when needed, as well as the Forum when time permits. Feel free to contact me at Carla_Gress@hotmail.com if you have questions or comments.
Semiannual Officers' Report to the Membership
(1 January - 30 June 2007)
President's Report: January 1 - June 30, 2007 - Pat W Sanders
We had many major changes in the previous report covering the last half of 2006. I am happy to say that with the establishing of the departments, sharing of responsibility, new volunteers added, the website online, new software and methods, we had a magnificent start for 2007.
The improvements are increased information on the web site, new uses for the database, and while we still do not have automated entry into the system, we have gradually improved our methods to avoid the excessive cost of automation.
Leonard Librizzi has been named our Webmaster and is doing a tremendous job for us in that position and is also designing and printing items we need. John Fortroy is our backup and will be available for special projects or to advise.
Sunny Bakken has been taking good care of the database with handling all the posting. In addition she has been learning list manager duties, added to her responsibilities of posting on the website. Jeanne Graden is database backup and advisor. She keeps us improving the abilities to draw information in forms we can use.
Our member and friend of long standing, Tammy Wigginton, MS, CCC/SLP, has become an Advisor to our WebWhispers Library. She started with a terrific and much needed Glossary. Vicki Eorio, now on the Library Staff, worked on several sections using her knowledge and expertise of Medicare. Vicki is recovering from a recent illness but will be back working with us on the Library as well as returning to Whispers on the Web.
Our Forum has had a rebirth and is running well under the guidance of Mike Rosenkrantz and Logan Grayson. We needed a place where we could actively socialize and it is now accepted as such. This has freed up the list for aiding people who have questions to be answered and for official notices.
We are in the middle of preparation for our participation in the IAL Annual Meeting and Voice Institute in Burlington, VT. We will have a WebWhispers table in the vendors area where members may meet other members and check in with those of us who will be there, We always look forward to our WebWhispers Dinner and the awards led by our 7th Casey-Cooper award winner (To be announced in the July 1st Whispers on the Web). The dinner is again well planned by our VP Member Services, Libby Fitzgerald.
As of now, we have 17 members signed up for our VIP/LT scholarship of $100 to each WW member student who attends the classes. The scholarships are covered by the "Edmund Lauder Support Fund". Checks from WW will be presented at the WebWhispers Dinner, July 13, 2007.
We are in the middle of sustaining member voting to officially change the name of our organization to WebWhispers, Inc. instead of the original name of incorporation, WebWhispers Nu-Voice Club, Inc.
The 2007 Cruise was fun. Forty-three of us went to St. Kitts, St. Lucas and St. Maartins. We already have more than that signed up for our 2008 Cruise, an 8 night "up the West Coast" repositioning cruise on the Star Princess. It leaves Acapulco, Mexico on April 26th and with various stops, arrives in Seattle, WA, May 4th. We are planning several shipboard meetings on our "at sea" days with some of our professionals.
We are all working hard and still aiming at the goals of getting more staffing for all departments, having backup for everyone and even splitting up jobs as we grow rapidly. We have registered 1895 total members, 2/3rds of those are patients, Our caregivers equal 335, professional members over 260, and vendors 50.
Pat W Sanders
VP -Finance & Administration Report: January 1 - June 30, 2007 - Terry Duga
Thanks to the generosity of our members, WebWhispers remains solvent.
$10,500.00 (approx) is in a Money Market Account, from the insurance policy WW kept up on Dutch. The purpose of the policy was to provide emergency funds for the site and as such it is being treated as a designated fund.
$30,848.37 is in our Checking account as of June 30, 2007, Of that amount, we have the following expected payments, which total $7,738.75:
- $4,230.00 for the annual banquet for paid seating. The additional cost of the banquet this year is, again, underwritten by Bruce Medical and InHealth Technologies, so that the cost to members is only $30.00 each;
- $1,808.75 is reserved for the Dutch Helms Travel Grant, a new grant instituted by InHealth Technologies in memory of our founder;
- $1700.00 is reserved for the VIP/LT Project: 17 members attending the Voice Institute who will each receive $100 from our Edmund Lauder Support Fund which is supported by the generosity of Jim Lauder and Lauder Enterprises.
We had the following expenses for the first half of 2007:
Annual Fee, Indiana Secretary of State $ 7.14
Awards Materials 99.33
Bank Card Fee 173.56
Casey-Cooper Award 185.00
Domain Name 65.00
IAL Dues 150.00
Internet Access 290.00
Office supplies 266.22
A Router 49.99
Web Hosting 1,704.61
We thank our supporters for their generosity.
VP - Finance & Administration
VP -Member Services Report: January 1 - June 30, 2007 - Libby Fitzgerald
From January 1 - June 30th, 210 new members joined WebWhispers as laryngectomees, caregivers, medical practitioners and vendors. These members came from throughout the US plus Canada, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Australia, Colombia, Scotland, England, Malaysia, Wales and Serbia. Our global reach continues.
Our membership database record-keeping has evolved and the transition has been made possible by the ongoing efforts of our "resident elves", Sunny Bakken and Jeanne Graden who are now able to send out an Excel chart of member addresses for Member Services to use. Sunny and Jeanne, we are extremely grateful for all you have done and continue to do for us.
The generous donations by many of our members have continued and we currently have 249 sustaining members. Their support has enabled us to cover the costs of maintaining our website, our web hosting fees, listserv hosting fees, our computers, software and other operating expenses. It also covers the mailing expenses for our color brochure and the mailing of our Loan Closet equipment, the Casey - Cooper and other awards. There is no dues requirement for joining WebWhispers, but donations of a minimum of $5.00 per year entitles you to vote on all issues of importance to our organization. To make a donation, you can go to this link online:
or send a check to our VP of Finance,
6115 North Park Avenue,
Indianapolis, IN 46220.
We continue to get numerous requests for our free brochure from members and member clubs, medical professionals in doctor offices, hospitals and university medical centers plus our many supportive vendors of laryngectomy supplies. We mail out thousands of brochures and are delighted to be able to do so. For those of you unfamiliar with the WebWhispers brochure, you can view it by clicking onto the following link:
To order them, contact me at my e-mail address, Lijofitz@aol.com
We are still distributing WW pins and patches while the supply lasts. They can be viewed at
http://webwhispers.org/services/ww-pins-patches.asp. Pins are $5.00 each and 6 for $25.00.
Patches are $1.50 each, 4 for $5.00 and 9 for $10.00. We will also offer them for sale at the IAL Convention.
Bruce Medical Supply has generously agreed to continue to provide free Neckbreather pins mailed at no cost to us for all who donate a minimum of $15.00 in US funds or $50 from overseas.
Bill and Judy Ramboldt, our ever faithful Loan Closet Custodians, continue to house our Loan Closet inventory which includes the following electrolarynges: Servox Digital and Intons, Cooper Rands, Nu Vois, Tru Tone, Bivona, Romets and some old AT&T units. Some come with chargers and batteries and some don't. We also have a Chattervox w/ accessories and 1 hand microphone, plus a few stoma and shower covers. Judy informed us that we do not have 9 volt or AA batteries, but those could easily be purchased. These items are availble on a temporary basis to members only including member SLPs who may need them for their patients. For further information, please contact me at Lijofitz@aol.com.
Our annual WebWhispers dinner will be held on Friday, July 13th, in Burlington, VT and promises to be another fun-filled, successful gathering with a delicious buffet menu. We are still putting the seating chart together, but the number of attendees keeps climbing. We again thank Bruce Medical Supply for their sponsorship of the pre dinner reception and InHealth Technologies and Bruce Medical Supply for continuing to pay a portion of the dinner cost to help keep it affordable for our members.
The following members passed away between January 1st and June 30th that we know of and have been added to the Memorium Page on our website. They will also be honored at our dinner in Burlington, along with those we lost since our last dinner gathering in Schaumburg, IL. Of special recognition will be our beloved late founder, David "Dutch" Helms. We will honor him and all of them and keep their memories alive in our hearts and minds. If you know of any others we have lost during this time, please let us know. .
Jeffrey Battaglia - Montague, NJ - April 2007
Dave Best - East Hartford, CT - May 2007
Lafayette L. Bingham - Cambridge, MA - April 2007
Jane Brown - Sykesville, MD - March 2007
Joy Ewalt - Bentonville, AR - March 2007
Charles Finkenbinder - Beaver Falls,PA - June 2007
Betty Hildebrant - Sand Springs, OK - May 2007
Joe Hunter - Dumfries, VA - June 2007
Ken Lawlis - Lubbock, TX - March 2007
Norman Kenneth Leveille - Raleigh, NC - March 2007
Cody McDonald - Canyon Country, CA - March 2007
Cathy Meining - South Lyon, MI - March 2007
Richard Mycoskie - Fort Meyers, FL - May 2007
Don D. Pacey - Eagar, AZ - March 2007
Alexander Poulos - Marlton, NJ - February 2007
Richard Roozen - Yucaipa,CA - April 2007
Nina Taylor - Tulsa, OK - February 2007
Jane Varner - Little Rock, AR - April 2007
Libby Fitzgerald, VP Member Services
VP -Internet Activities Report: January 1 - June 30, 2007 - Michael Csapo
Once again it's time to write up a semi-annual report so that all know that I am alive and well and it's not just my computer running on auto-pilot. As we all likely know, the IAL in Vermont is now merely days away and I need to prepare for that so I will use this as my reasoning for keeping my report short.
In the past months since my previous report, the staff at WebWhispers has been working diligently to keep things running smoothly. At the time of my last report, list membership totals were 1,511 members and at the present time, our list membership totals reflect 1,640 members! It's good to know that those who need it are finding a home with us.
Our volunteer staff has also been busy learning new skills and methods to insure that WebWhispers will continue to function should something come about which would prohibit me or other key volunteers from performing their routine WebWhispers tasks. I have had the distinct pleasure of working directly with Sunny Bakken from Database in recent weeks and she has taken over some of the list-manager tasks which I had been previously performing. For those of you who do not know Sunny, well her name spells it all out. She is a bright person whose personality just "radiates" through her emails and she possesses a great attitude and a sense of humor too! Working alongside all of the wonderful volunteers at WebWhispers has certainly enriched my life in more ways than one.
In spite of health and other personal problems, I am all too often amazed at how our volunteers still devote themselves unselfishly to keep things at WebWhispers operating smoothly. If anyone reads this far in my report, please take a moment to commend them for their efforts. By "clicking" on their names on the "Contacts" page of our website, you can email them all directly and individually.
In recent months, our Chief Moderator Barb Stratton has been and still is waging her own battles with cancer. She is presently undergoing Chemo and yet is still actively moderating the mail-list. How is that for devotion and dedication? During one segment of her treatment, Barb needed some time off to recuperate and regain her strength and Randy Lemster stepped right up to the plate and filled in as moderator. Randy performed excellently in moderating the mail list and he continues to stand by to fill in whenever he may be needed. Thank you Randy!
My report would not be complete without at least acknowledging the work of all others which I occasionally interact with. Rather than listing them all individually I will just offer my commendations to all who are listed on the "Contact" page of our website. As Pat would likely say, each of you is a spoke in the Wheel which is WebWhispers and without you we would not be where we are today.
Best wishes to all and have a great summer!
Michael Csapo - VP - Internet Activities
Board of Directors Member Report: January 1 - June 30, 2007
Dr. Carla DeLassus Gress, ScD, CCC-SLP
Our project to re-develop the WW HealthHelp list for medical professionals has been completed, thanks to the efforts of the many volunteers who work behind the scenes to make things happen. We now have a mail list for the speech-language pathologists (SLPs), otolaryngologists, and other health care providers who specialize in head & neck cancer treatment, particularly larynx cancer. Currently we have over 200 members, and we are still seeing new members joining as word of the project spreads. The list is important because it can provide a mechanism for easy communication among the specialists, to discuss treatment methods, insurance and clinic operations issues, announce professional conferences, etc. The first order of business was to update the address lists, purging the incorrect ones, and adding new ones, and for this I must recognize the efficient work of Michael Csapo. While traffic on the site has been somewhat slow so far, I am hopeful that the next few months will see an increased use of the mail list as professionals recognize its potential.
I continue to participate in the WebWhispers mail list, interjecting information and serving as a professional resource when needed. Feel free to contact me at Carla_Gress@hotmail.com if you have questions or comments - I may not always be able to answer promptly, but I will do my best!