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Western Region Training Seminar Was a Success
By Marilyn Walton
Western Region Vice President
The 2021 Western Region Training Seminar (WRTS), held in early November in Reno, NV, is over, but the great information will continue to be disseminated as our seminar attendees return home and share the knowledge gleaned from our outstanding presenters. This was our first opportunity since 2019 to host the Western Region NAPS family in person.
The opening ceremony was called to order by Lynn Holmes, Reno Branch 249 secretary/treasurer. Presentation of the Colors was led by Master Sgt. Javier Contreas, a Branch 249 officer and member of the Nevada Air Guard, and his fellow service members Senior Master Sgt. David Hill, Master Sgt. Patrick Faenza and Technical Sgt. James Reeser.
The Western Region was honored to have NAPS President Ivan D. Butts, Executive Vice President Chuck Mulidore, Secretary/Treasurer Jimmy Warden and Immediate Past President Brian Wagner attend.
USPS WestPAC Area leadership sent Reno Postmaster Jerry DaPaoli, Nevada/Utah District Manager Kevin Romero and Pacific Northwest Division Processing Director John DiPeri. Their messages were positive and well-received. Attendees asked questions and the postal guests responded.
The overall feedback was engagement should filter down to middle-management; there still are managers who manage with a stick instead of a carrot. There needs to be a culture change throughout the Postal Service. We agreed that communication and conversations can improve our workplace culture.
Presentations included an OIG review and information on USPS Stamp Stock Compliance, a 650/101 and representative training skit, how to update your unit’s SWCs using USPS electronic reports, Zoom training, NAPS membership strategies, DDF provider case prep, OWCP information, officer duties and responsibilities, legislative updates and communicating with Congress. Lastly, we had a great overview from President Ivan D. Butts: “Where Do We Go from Here?” The seminar ended with a NAPS Q&A and updates from the resident officers.
The Western Region consists of 13 Western states; all were represented. These include the Rocky Mountain Area, led by Area Vice President Myrna Pashinski; the Pacific Area, led by Area Vice President Chuck Lum; and the Northwest Area, led by Area Vice President John Valuet.
The National Auxiliary met and conducted training and meetings. They welcomed President Laurie D. Butts and Immediate Past President and Western Region Vice President Patricia Jackson-Kelley. Auxiliary training included a history of the Auxiliary, legislative and Zoom meetings, personal health tips and an update from NAPS President Ivan D. Butts.
The Auxiliary conducted two days of 50-50 raffles and raised $1,690, which was instrumental in helping NAPS exceed its Western Area SPAC challenge. The raffle and in-kind donated items and gift cards boosted the final total to $7,390, exceeding our goal of $5,000 for this event. A special thanks to all the branches that contributed.
With the NAPS resident officers, we ended the seminar with a joint installation of officers for Cheyenne, WY, Branch 300, Honolulu Branch 214, Idaho State Branch 915 and Colorado/Wyoming Bi-State Branch 907.
I want to thank Al Lum, NAPS DDF provider, for traveling to Reno and providing an informative presentation for attendees. Thanks also to Denver Attorney Tom Muther, OIG Acting Special Agent-in-Charge Glen San Jose, Past Rocky Mountain Area Vice President John Aceves, USPS Accounting Analyst Lyly Gellers, California State President Marilyn Jones, the resident officers and the immediate past president for providing such outstanding training.
Also, a very special thank-you to a long list of volunteers who made our seminar so successful.