ON THE ROAD | MEETING WITH OUR MEMBERS AND OUR MILITARY COMMUNITY
The President's Update
Why did you join the Air Force? Many of today’s Airmen say education. This is also the time of year for graduations and your kids are either off to college or are preparing for their senior year. With Education in mind, please check out our preferred learning partners link at https://www.hqafsa.org/preferred-learning-partners.html I believe you will be amazed at what is being offered for our members and potential members.
Speaking of potential members, many of you ask, “How do we recruit Air National Guard and Family members?” There is no cookie cutter approach; but my question to you is, are you using a “canned benefits” approach when talking with these individuals, or are you delving into what they want and or need? If not, maybe you need to reassess and revamp your recruiting tactics. For example, The Air National Guard (ANG) has a requirement for MSgt eligible for promotion to have a Associates degree. Since ANG personnel are not Tuition Assistance (TA) eligible, the cost of the Associates degree is most likely out of their own pocket and that can be very expensive.
AFSA, in conjunction with our learning partner, the Columbia Southern Education Group, offers ANG members a course of study at a 50% discount. This is an excellent opportunity to help further an individual’s education and grow our membership at the same time. Visit their link at https://www.hqafsa.org/columbia-southern-education-group.html
Today’s family values education and how it can help their entire family. Since AFSA is a total team, your AFSA, in concert with the Columbia Southern Education Group offers a Family Focused scholarship. This is another excellent recruiting tool when talking to a spouse or a group. Check out this link and prepare another approach to recruiting a Family Member. The link is https://www.hqafsa.org/columbia-southern-education-group.html
How many of you have children who are eyeing college in a year or two? We all know that one requirement for admission is having an SAT/ACT. Another AFSA preferred learning partner is eKnowledge and they offer FREE SAT and ACT test prep programs. Take a moment to look at the offering at https://www.eknowledge.com/NewLookAff/Home.html?coupon=292520F63C
In order to view the entire selection of Educational Support offered by your ASFA, go to https://www.hqafsa.org/member-benefits.html and view the entire list of potential opportunities available to you and your family just because you are an AFSA member. Have a great week.
VSO Briefing: There is a copy of my VSO briefing, found on the President's Corner, which I use when speaking to the various other VSOs' in my local area. It is a good way to expand your chapter's outreach program. I encourage you to use this when presenting AFSA to other VSOs' as well as the other base-wide private organizations and the base leadership. Please tailor the information to fit your circumstances. This is an informational briefing and is intended to share with your audience, who we are and what we do. It is not intended as an introduction for a membership recruiting effort. However, the information is important when explaining who we are and what we do for our members. If you have any questions, please email or call. I'm always available.
-- Mike Carton
I received an email last week from the American Legion regarding the history of the G.I. Bill. It was officially named the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944. While Congress made several adjustments, the final version signed contained the original 10 key provisions: college education, vocational training, readjustment pay, home and business loans, discharge review, adequate hospitalization, prompt settlement of disability claims, mustering-out pay, employment services and concentration of all these provisions under the Veterans Administration.
Getting this bill to President Roosevelt’s desk for signature was not without a lot of high drama and anxiety. The deciding vote was cast by Georgia Representative John Gibson. However, Representative Gibson was at home in Georgia due to an illness. He had to be convinced to take a high speed car ride and then a plane ride to Washington so he could cast the deciding vote. His vote ensured the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944 passed and went to the President for his signature. The rest, as they say, is history.
My points from this history lesson are multi-faceted and we face them every day. 1) Everything we hold of value comes at a price. 2) Never give up in what you believe in. 3) There are good people doing good things. 4) Everyone’s opinion matters.
Have a great week.
Mike Carton - AFSA International President
Greetings AFSA members,
We are about to go embark on a new and exciting journey on 15 January 2019. I encourage each of you to identify those energetic and dynamic young Airmen in the grade of E-1/E-5 and help them achieve success with the Reward the Recruiter/Retainer campaigns. Their individual success will also be your chapter’s success, so everyone wins. Also, when they are successful, it will create for AFSA, Unlimited Possibilities (AFSA UP). I thank you in advance for your support and assistance as strive to educate and train our next generation of AFSA Airmen.
-- Mike Carton
(Learn more here: http://www.hqafsa.org/reward.html)
-1/4/19: Happy New Year to you and your membership
I am pleased and excited to announce two new membership campaigns for 2019. They are “Reward the Recruiter” and “Reward the Retainer.” Both campaigns will start on 15 January 2019 and run to the end of 2019. These campaigns have a threefold purpose: to educate and train the AFSAs next generation of recruiters and retainers; to grow the membership, and reward individual membership excellence.
Every AFSA member, including Family Members, is eligible to participate. However, uniformed member participation is limited to those in the grades of E-1/E-5. Your reward for reaching the recruiting and/or retention goal is either a 1-year extension of your current membership or, if you are a Life Member or Member for Life, a 1-year membership gift to pass to a colleague, family member, or friend.
To help Divisions and Chapters promote this new Campaign, the Ground Rules, Application Forms and additional details will be posted on this website on Monday, January 7, 2019
Your overall success will depend on four key personnel. First, Airmen and NCOs (E-1 through E-5) and Family Members who want to actively participate. Next, a seasoned membership mentor willing to guide and support the young recruiter/retainer. The third is you the Chapter President and the fourth is your Membership Chairperson. You both play a vital role in the recruiter/retainer’s level of success as you mentor, track and certify the recruiter/retainers results with AFSA Headquarters Member and Field Services.
The AFSA Headquarters Member and Field Services will manage these campaigns. They will provide both paper and electronic special recruiter and retainer forms, which will be available on 15 January 2019. Direct your questions to Member and Field, Ms. Hill at 301-899-3500 or 800-638-0594, extension 228 or to a member of her staff at either extension 289 or extension 230.
Thank you in advance for your participation, support, and assistance in taking this first step in reinvigorating our recruiting and retaining efforts. Please note, if you have a new Chapter President, please pass this to them immediately.
Michael R. Carton
AFSA International President
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
- VISIT THE CAMPAIGN PAGE
- Log on to the Member Site and look under the President’s Corner Tab
- Contact AFSAHQ - 1-800-638-0594 x 288
12/16: Happy Holidays to you and your family
As we enter into the last vestiges of 2018, please take a moment to reflect on your great fortunes. At the same time, please remember those who have been devastated by a variety of different personal and professional challenges. Regardless of your chapter affiliation or if you are working on our staff, I continue to see the results of your individual and collective efforts to help your fellow Airmen and your community at large. Each of you continually demonstrated the core values of integrity, excellence in all we do, and above all service. Being a “Sergeant” means that we are of service to others. Being a Airman also means we are in the service of others as well. I am very proud of your efforts.
Your individual and collective efforts throughout 2018 demonstrate your unbridled spirit of giving. So consider an AFSA membership gift. This is a gift that continue to give back over the long run to each member. Consider your long term membership possibilities to include access education scholarships, enhanced community service, and your personal commitment to something which is larger than any one individual.
On behalf of Rosemary and myself, we want to wish each of you a very joyous and Merry Christmas and prosperous 2019 New Year.
Michael R. Carton
AFSA International President
10/19/18: Hurricane Relief for Tyndall AFB and Surrounding Communities
I have received inquiries regarding Hurricane Relief efforts for the Tyndall AFB and surrounding communities. If you choose, you can provide either financial or materials support that will directly help those currently in greater Panama City, Tyndall AFB, and surrounding communities. You have an opportunity to work directly with our Mission Partner, The Air Force Enlisted Village, and other military installations in providing support to this effort. The AFEV is serving as the focal point for the collection and daily distribution of supplies, which are being delivered to the Panama City area to help those in need of assistance.
There are a couple of different ways you can provide support for this initiative. You can go to the AFEV home page at www.afev.us and click on the HURRICANE MICHAEL EMERGENCY RELIEF button in the upper right hand corner of the home page.
Follow the instructions on this page to determine your next step. If you want to donate non-perishable items, check the AFEV Facebook page for updated on what they are collecting.
If you want to make a cash donation it will also help and be a bit quicker. There is a link for a PayPal payment if you so choose. There is also a link for making a monetary donation as well. Click on the link and it will provide instructions on how to make a monetary donation.
Please share this with your chapters so they can also participate if they wish. I know AFSA members have a big heart and besides, it is the right thing to do for our Air Force family who are in need of our help. You can also go to the ACC home page at www.ACC.af.mil to receive the latest updates.
Thank you in advance for your support, generosity, and kindness toward our family members who are hurting at the moment.
--Michael R. Carton, AFSA International President
10/17/18: AFSA Membership Application Process
Please share with your membership team and your general membership. As a Veteran Service Organization (VSO), and a Military Service Organization (MSO), a National Military Association (NMA), there is information that we required in order to complete the application process. The following provides you with more detail:
For a new member, our application process is a two-step process. There is a verification process to determine if you are already a member. If you do not have a membership record, you will be asked to click on the tab titled “We were unable to verify a record - Please click HERE.” While much of the information is self-explanatory; there are a few items that require further explanation.
War Veteran and War Period: The IRS granted AFSA a tax-exempt status as a 501©19, Veterans Service Organization. As a VSO, we are required to document our member’s status to ensure we are in compliance with the current IRS guidelines. These two pieces of information tell the IRS that our Uniformed members have worn the uniform in service to their country.
AFSA provides members with an accidental death policy at no cost to the member. Your date of birth and number of dependents are important pieces of data required by the insurance company. Your date of birth is also used to distinguish between members with the same name.
Billing information is necessary to ensure AFSA charges the correct credit card so we may receive the payment.
Finally, your email and phone number are important because that is two of the methods we utilize to stay in touch with you and to provide you with weekly updates. It is important that you list a civilian email address such as Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, etc. Any military email address presents AFSA a huge challenge, because AFSA cannot get past the base firewall in many instances and you miss out on important and critical information.
Your cell phone number is important because it is another method of keeping you informed.
Membership type and term tells us the membership category you qualify for and the term determines the amount you will be paying.
I hope this helps our recruiters and new members to better understand why this information is so important up front.
-- Mike Carton, International President
10/5/18: Amazing visit with AFSAHQ Team
Greetings from your International President. First, I want to thank Mr. Keith Reed and the entire AFSA Headquarters team for a most informative, productive, and enlightening week. It is a pleasure to meet and work with such great professionals who are caring for our members.
I spent this past week observing, listening, and talking with our Executive Director, the Headquarters Directors and Managers, and the entire staff. I am amazed and awe struck at the amount of work being accomplished by this dedicated group of professionals. They are a small staff charged with executing the operational aspects of our association. I say a small staff because we have downsized.
It was not that long ago that we had a much larger staff doing the same amount of work. These hard working individuals share in the accomplishments across the entire operational spectrum. So, someone from Member and Field may be assisting in the Business Center or with a Military and Government projects.
The dedication and professionalism of your AFSA staff is beyond description and they deserve our collective thanks and appreciation. They are here to help each member and to ensure their customer receives the best possible service in a timely manner. If you have the opportunity, call one of them and just say thank you for your hard work and support to our association.
-- Michael R. Carton, AFSA International President
9/28/18: Share Your AFSA Success
I look at the multitude of social media postings by AFSA chapters and individual members, each highlighting their accomplishments from around the world. I am truly amazed and proud of each of you. I ask you to continue to share your success through your own social media pages, and to take an extra minute to pass your photos and videos via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Sharing your information will help us update our member, chapters and division activities on the AFSA web site and HQ Facebook and Instragram accounts.
What better way to share AFSA's accomplishments with a perspective members than by showing them AFSA in action, from around the world. There are two additional benefits for the rest of the AFSA membership. First, everyone else will get to see what other members and chapters are doing around the world. Second, your post and photos may spark an idea or project which interests another chapter. Think of the Unlimited Possibilities you can generate by sharing your successes. Thanks for all you do for our Air Force and for AFSA. -- Michael R. Carton, AFSA International President
9/19/18: Hurricane Florence Assistance
For our North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia veterans impacted by Hurricane Florence, please check with your respective states Dept. of Military and Veterans Affairs to determine if there are any state veteran programs available to you during this time of uncertainty. Within North Carolina the program is called NC Serves, 1-866-249-6656. The state department may be able to assist our veterans who need some assistance. As always, "AFSA - Unlimited Possibilities. -- Michael R. Carton, AFSA International President
9/7/18: "Get After It"
CSM Troxell asked a question during his presentation at the 2018 PAC, "Who did PT today,? and then responded "Get after it!" So consider this - Who has spoken with an Airman or NCO or Family member about AFSA today? Get after it! AFSA UP --Mike Carton
8/31/18: I Look Forward to Working Together with You
AFSA Members. Good morning to each of you and your families and thank you for all you do for the greatest and most lethal Air Force in the world. I'm honored to be your president and look forward to working with you. Our dynamic PAC demonstrated to me our future is in great hands and I am excited for what the future holds. Have a great weekend and holiday. -- Mike Carton