Name: Jeanne Ensign
LMSC: Pacific Northwest
Nominated for: BOD member from Northwest Zone
The swimming community has been a big part of my life for many years. Early on I figured out that if I volunteer time in an administrative and visionary capacity, which I love to do, the benefits I receive in exchange are huge. If I can contribute to more opportunities for swimmers to get in the water and enhance their lives by providing more pool time, a coached workout or a first class meet, I get something back that is very rewarding and difficult to define. I get to swim. I can always find a buddy for an early morning lake swim. I make new friends. I consider it time well spent.
Sometimes it’s hard to see results locally, but the work we do at the national level is vital to the health of our entire masters swimming community. The BOD provides vision and planning, and monitors the progress and effectiveness of our organization. As a lifelong resident of my zone and an active member of USMS for over 20 years, I believe that I will continue to make a positive contribution as director from the Northwest Zone.
Response to Questions
Why are you interested in this position and why do you believe you would be a good candidate?
This continues to be a very exciting time for USMS. Having been a member of the BOD for the last three years has given me the opportunity to participate in many compelling projects and discussions. Online registration and adapting to more employees, including an ED, are among the many projects, present increasingly more complex opportunities to help shape USMS going forward. I find taking an organizational vision and putting a plan into action exciting and want to continue to be a part of it.
I bring good communication, leadership and organizational skills developed in my professional life, along with my USMS experience, including four years on the Executive Committee. I can get things done, know how to delegate responsibilities, can identify and think well about issues, and can take care of work in a timely fashion. I have been active in my zone, and in both a large and a small LMSC. I understand our ultimate goal – to provide for individual swimmers. I have the intellect and the skills necessary to be a good board member and, last but not least, the desire to do so.
What do you consider to be the major issues facing USMS now and in the future? As a person holding an elected position within USMS, how would you address these issues?
We continue to experience growth and the tough decisions related to it. Through it all we must continue to keep our membership foremost in our mission, goals and objectives. USMS has gained respect from others for the professional manner in which we provide for and service our membership, and we strive to create fitness opportunities for all swimmers, all ages no matter their swimming goals.
We need to continue to communicate among ourselves and with our volunteers, employees and most of all with our swimmer/members. How do we relay information to individuals and make it understandable in a way that is meaningful to them? We need to focus on our teams and swimmers through the website and the magazine, and to work with the communications an individual member experiences.
Our website is a major communications tool, and demands on it are likely to continue to increase. We need to continually define our communications strategy and the dissemination of information, and to financially support communications within the organization and with our current and potential members.
We must continue to focus on and provide resources to individuals, teams and clubs, which is where the action is. How can we help provide pool time, coaching and clinics? We must create programs to we can offer support for swimmers at the local level. We must learn how to assess our progress and accomplishments.
And last, while doing what it is we do, we must provide a framework within which our national staff and volunteers (including the BOD) can accomplish the most with the least amount of effort. We need to learn to work with our Executive Director. We need to clearly and simply define our goals and expectations for each position, task forces and committees. It is the responsibility of the BOD to provide oversight to this process.
Please list USMS committees on which you have served. Include the dates you were on the committees and the names of the committee chairs under whom you served:
- Executive Committee, Treasurer 1997 – 2001, Nancy Ridout, President
- Endowment Fund Board of Governors, 1997 – 2001, Doug Church
- Finance Committee, 1994 – 1997 and 2002 – present, Chair (96-97) and under chairs Dave Zander, Doug Church, Jeff Moxie, Ralph Davis
- Internal Audit Committee, 1993 – 1995, 2006 – 2007 Chair
- Registration Committee, 1992 – 1993, Joanne Leilich
Please list any other experience that relates to your qualifications for the position.
USMS member since 1985, delegate to convention since 1992, active at the Zone, LMSC (immediate past president PNA), and team level, organizing committee member and treasurer for three national championship pool meets, devoted swimmer