2011 Chapter President Jim O'Hern's Reflections on a Great Year!

07 Dec 2011 10:22 AM | Anonymous member

2011 was a great year for ASTD NY! We made a concerted effort to stay true to our purpose: Helping New York Learn to Work Better, and our mission: To serve the New York Professional Training and Development Community with cutting-edge programs, resources, and events; to continually revise the strategic value we deliver to stakeholders; to expand our network of professional associates; and to enhance career opportunities.

Our members reflect the vibrant nature of the great city of New York and come from all types of organizations – multinational corporations, medium and small-sized businesses, nonprofit organizations, government, academia, consulting firms, and product and service suppliers. Within this local Learning & Development Community of Practice 64% have been in L&D for more than a decade, 27% are L&D Managers, 33% are Directors or SVP-level L&D professionals, and 79% are internals.

Our 2011 theme of "Connect with the Cutting Edge,” guided us to provide world-class programming, thought leading presenters, invaluable networking opportunities, and easy access to relevant and timely industry content to keep members ahead of the curve through creative use of technology.  

Our Chapter events this year were highlighted by some thought-leading pillars of the profession: Jack Zenger, Cal Wick, and Hal Christensen.  We had exceptional local consultants share their newest 2011 approaches, and we had learning and assessment strategy presented for immediate application by all. Each of these events was marked with provocative questions and rich dialogue.

Leveraging technology to enrich the member experience, the Chapter connected this year around a dynamic new website that provides event information, a members only Knowledge Center, a chapter blog, event registration and payment capabilities, and an opportunity to showcase all of the wonderful events taking place across the chapter. The Chapter also became more active in our social media channels with over 500 members in our LinkedIn group, and over a 200% growth in our Twitter and Facebook followers.

Our Special Interest Groups were exceptionally engaged this year, as specialists from Training Directors, eLearning, Coaching, and Consulting met to exchange best practices and problem solve. This year, ASTD NY forged a new Educational Alliance with the Masters program at NYU, and it was exciting to have these new members of the field join with their more experienced peers in strategy sessions and planning for the future.

Perhaps most importantly however, 2011 was another year for NY Learning and Development professionals to assist each other as a supportive learning community. Our Transitions Special Interest Group is an excellent support system for members of the community looking for new employment opportunities, and there has been outstanding support across the chapter for our fellow professionals impacted by the downturn in the business environment.

ASTD NY continues to be the preeminent community for L&D professionals to stay connected, in community, to cutting edge ideas and approaches. It is more than a network - it has become a group of friends exploring new breakthroughs in the field, helping each other, and finding new ways to make more valuable contributions to our stakeholders.

It’s a great community, it’s been a great year, and we look forward to another outstanding year ahead in 2012.


  • 08 Dec 2011 11:10 AM | Anonymous member
    Congratulations, Jim, on a truly outstanding year for the Chapter. You've set a great direction for its future growth which the new Board, under Patrick's leadership, will certainly drive forward.
    Now....enjoy being a past-president!
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