April 12 to 18 marks National Volunteer Week in Canada. As  business owners, many of us that are WBN members understand the importance of volunteering and sponsorship, especially when the organization affected aligns with our values and businesses. So today I’d like to toot some horns and send some appreciation to the members of all of our committees.

I’ve been a volunteer at WBN pretty much since the day I joined. I’ve always been a part of the Marketing Committee. And I have to say–although admittedly I am biased–I think this is the best committee in the organization!

This year I decided to become a sponsor as well, which led me to the design of the Businesswoman of the Year Gala marketing collateral. This morning I was going through photos from last year’s gala and two things struck me:

  1. my first reaction was, “Holy —-, this organization has AMAZING volunteers!”
  2. and then the realization that a lot of those women in the photos I now call friends.

If you have ever been part of a business organization and a committee, you will appreciate how much work volunteers do. And WBN is no exception. The number of hours and the extent of the dedication these women put in is simply mind-boggling. Without a doubt, volunteers make WBN go ’round. And to all you ladies that have been backstage making this work (for years), all I can say is

THANK YOU.

The WBN that I knew 5 years ago was far different than what it is today. So many things have changed, it’s incredible. What remains constant is the dedicated volunteers, and the committee chairs that make it all happen.

What have these amazing volunteers accomplished?

Well, back in September, the Nominations and Awards Committee worked like crazy to ensure we would have a great nominating process –and candidates– for this year’s Businesswoman of the Year Awards. The BYA Gala committee then took over. They hosted a Finalist Reception that wasn’t just a beautiful evening: it was the highest-attended Finalist Reception on record. The Membership Committee has been hosting Breakfast Mix & Mingle events that have been steadily selling out for nearly 9 months now. And they’re responsible for growing our membership to—211!!! The Golf Committee keeps hosting better, bigger tournaments year after year.

So ladies, next time you feel overwhelmed and overworked by your committee tasks, know that you are appreciated. Know that WBN works and grows because of YOU. I can’t speak for the other committee chairs, but I can say that I know the effort you put in, even though you have businesses to run, and families to look after.

Happy National Volunteer Week.

Loreto Cheyne,
Chair, Marketing & Communications Committee