March 21, 2018
Memo To: Executive Officers, Board Members, Chapter & Division Presidents & Others
From: Frank Coppel, President
Positive Note 1649
Greetings Fellow Federationists:
I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who attended the 2018 Leadership Seminar sponsored by the NFB of SC this past Saturday. Approximately eighty people were in attendance at the seminar representing the entire state from Greenville to Charleston. During the morning session, the audience heard from David Houck who presented an over view of the history of the NFB and the NFB of SC. The morning session concluded with a very frank and informative discussion led by Ed Bible regarding the South Carolina Commission for the Blind and the rights and responsibilities of consumers. Again, a very special thanks goes to the Federation Center of the Blind who covered the expense of the lunch. The afternoon session consisted of an excellent presentation made by Sabrina Sanders, Benefits Specialist from the Sc Commission for the Blind, who gave a detailed description of SSI and SSDI benefits and work incentive features in the Social Security program. The remainder of the afternoon dealt with the upcoming national and state conventions and chapter issues. How to conduct an effective chapter meeting was presented and many good suggestions by the audience were discussed as to how chapters could raise funds and attract new members. At the conclusion of the seminar, the 2018 Orlando National convention bus ticket drawing was conducted. Congratulations to the Columbia chapter for selling the most tickets (875) and winning the first place prize of $300. Second place goes to the Sumter Chapter with a total of 309 and third place goes to the Upper Dorchester County chapter who sold 165 tickets. Overall, 2,310 tickets were sold state wide. The buyer of the winning ticket was Carter Monteith of Rock Hill who received $300 and the seller was Jim Carter from Rock Hill who received $100. We will need to work much harder next year if we are going to charter a bus to the 2019 national convention.
The Spring meetings of the Rocky Bottom Retreat and Conference Center of the Blind Board of Directors and the NFB of SC Board of Directors will be held at the Federation Center of the Blind on Saturday, April 21, 2018. The RBRCCB Board of Directors meeting will begin promptly at 10:00 a.m. and will adjourn at 12:00 noon. The NFB of SC Board of Directors meeting will begin promptly 1:00 p.m. and adjourn at 4:00 p.m. I look forward to having all board members in attendance and I strongly encourage any Federation member to come and to actively participate in the meeting.
We have an announcement from Jamie Allison, President of our Cherokee County chapter. “It is with a heavy heart that I inform you that our long-time Cherokee chapter member, Mr. Allen Davis, went to be with the Lord during the early morning hours of March 17th. Mr. Davis was an alumnus of the SC School for the Deaf and the Blind and his wife, Carrie, has also been an associate member of our chapter for many years. Visitation will be at the Pacloet Road Baptist Church at 2:00 pm with the funeral services immediately following at 3:00 pm. An online obituary and guest book can be viewed and signed by following this link: http://www.blakelyfuneralhome.com/obituary/allen-davis. We know that most people across the state will not be able to attend the services, but we covet your prayers for the Davis family and our chapter during this most difficult time.”
The National Federation of the Blind knows that blindness is not the characteristic that defines you or your future. Every day, we raise the expectations of blind people because low expectations create obstacles between blind people and our dreams. You can live the life you want: blindness is not what holds you back. Joining me for comments in this Positive Note is the President Emeritus of the NFB of SC. Here is Dr. Capps.
My son Craig and I have just returned from a most impressive memorial service in memory of Wanda Sheck who passed away on Friday, March 9. There was a good turnout for the service including several blind persons. The NFB of SC was well represented by President Frank Coppel and state Secretary Dorothy Barksdale.
Beginning this week we will be busy working to sell as many barbecue tickets as possible which will be held on Thursday, April 26. It hardly seems possible that this year’s barbecue celebrates its 65th anniversary which began in 1954. The only member who is still living that I can think of at the moment other than myself who participated in the first barbecue was Lois Boltin Tucker. So many successes have taken place in this long period of time. Each barbecue plate in 1954 cost us $1.00 and we sold it for $1.50. In 1954 the chapter sold about 200 plates, earning $100 and at that time we thought this was great. Really it was as the chapter had never sponsored any fundraiser before and this was a good beginning. Some members who originally objected had their minds changed when the results of the first barbecue was history. On a personal note, I was young and in my 20’s in 1954 whereas with the coming of the 30th of August, it will be my 90th birthday. During the past 65 years literally thousands of barbecue plates have been sold and this resulted in funding for the chapter for many thousands of dollars. We have also made a lot of friends during that project and our members have gained confidence in participating. Our three canvas nights will bring in several thousands of dollars. Also, the neighbors in our neighborhood which surrounds the Federation Center for the most part know about the annual event and we are received quite well by many of those who participate. Our members do an excellent job in serving the plates and no doubt we will have good participation again. In the mid 1950’s the barbecue was held in the Township Auditorium sponsored by the late Senator Walter Bristow. Following that we met at the Jefferson Hotel located in downtown Columbia before the Federation Center was ready for occupancy in 1962. Others who picked this fundraising event came to realize how valuable this barbecue fundraiser really is. While the Columbia Chapter owns the Center, meetings statewide are also held there. For example, I understand last Saturday’s Leadership Seminar was very successful with nearly 100 in attendance. The Center Board of Directors will be meeting this Friday at the Center to cover its quarterly meeting.
Final Thought: “With longevity comes your legacy.”