January 2016 – MRTF President’s Message

Greetings to the “MRTA/MRTF FAMILY.” The Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation Board of Directors would like to wish everyone a HAPPY, HEALTHY, AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR! May 2016 be the very best for you and your families.

I would like to begin by remembering the loss of a Foundation Board member. Jim Orr passed away on December 18, 2015. He represented Region 9 on the Foundation Board of Directors. Jim’s wife, Vicki, is MRTA Region 9 Vice President. Jim was in his third term as Mayor of Monett and was preparing to run for a fourth term. Jim Orr will be missed by the Foundation Board, the city of Monett, and the vocational and technical education areas statewide and nationally. Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with Vicki and the entire Orr family.

The Foundation Board of Directors would like to inform you of a few results of the Annual Meeting last December.

New Foundation Board officers were elected for 2016. These include:
Walt Cochran – President
Karen Miller – Vice President
Jenifer Young – Secretary
Jim Kreider – Treasurer

It is my pleasure to announce two new members to the Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation Board. Mary Jo Tweedie and Jack Poston will represent Region 11. Welcome Mary Jo and Jack!

Much of our December meeting is always concerned with fundraising activities. 2015 was a very good year for the Foundation. The Silent Auction last September was the best ever with a little over $10,000 raised. The Year End Campaign and the Mailing Label Campaign were very successful for 2015. Also, more and more people are designating their PSRS Death Benefit to the Foundation. Finally, we really appreciate MRTA members donating their meeting expenses to the Foundation.

Remember the days of the Jerry Lewis Telethons? Each one was a 24 hour call-in-driven “Giving Day”. The telethons were very successful in raising money. The Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation has been given the opportunity to participate in the 21st Century version of a “Giving Day”. This version is a 24-hour online fundraising competition sponsored by MRTF’s Endowment Fund manager, Community Foundation of the Ozarks. The day is called Give Ozarks. We will spend a 24-hour period on May 3, 2016, working to build MRTF’s Endowment Fund. Remember the Endowment Fund is “permanent” money that can be used to support MRTF’s fundraising goals. Those goals include Classroom Grants, Building Maintenance/Improvements, and the Endowment Fund. Stay tuned for details coming in the future.

Finally, the Foundation Board discussed the number of CLASSROOM GRANTS for 2016. The Foundation Board of Directors is very proud of this program. The number of grants has increased significantly the last several years (2009-5, 2010-7, 2011-14, 2012-14, 2013-44, 2014-44, and 2015-56). Each grant is for the amount of five hundred dollars ($500). Last year each of the 14 MRTA Regions received 4 grants. I am pleased to announce the Board voted to give 5 grants to each of the 14 Regions in 2016. This will be a total of seventy (70) five hundred dollar ($500) grants.

On behalf of the Foundation Board of Directors, THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH FOR YOUR GENEROSITY in supporting the fundraising activities of the Foundation. We look forward to your continued support in the future. The next fundraising activity will be the Mailing Label Campaign in April. Please support us in this effort as we work toward MRTF Classroom Grants, MRTF Building Improvement/Maintenance Fund and the MRTF Endowment Fund.

Walter Cochran
MRTF President

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