Author: Sarah Osentowski, 2021 Guild President
It’s odd to come out of a very confusing and unprecedented year like 2020 excited about what lies ahead in 2021, but I have to admit that is what I’m feeling. In the face of the chaos of the pandemic, our guild’s 2020 leadership team really stepped up and took on an incredible challenge. We continued to meet virtually to host not only our monthly meetings but a virtual retreat and a new series of digital Thursday evening events that have added so much valuable content and points of engagement for our group over the past year.
As I take on my second, non-consecutive, year as a President of the guild I am in the unique position to have already led, watched and cheered on others as they took on that leadership role, and to then take on the role of leading again. I’m unsure that kind of experience happens often but it’s given me a lot of perspective on how I wanted to shape the upcoming year.
My vision for the guild in 2021 will focus on supporting our growing membership, celebrating how far we’ve come, and continuing to highlight modern quilting.
More Members, More Support
Over the last year we watched our guild grow faster and larger than it’s ever been. With the guild blooming to over 100 members, it was time to act fast and start thinking about how to restructure our internal leadership teams to support that growth.
We responded quickly, putting out a call in September to gather members interested in taking on new leadership roles for the coming year. The response was great and we were able to create a new, larger and more robust internal Leadership Team structure.
We’re excited to have new leaders help take on the workload to support our growing guild. Additionally, having more voices in conversations around planning has already been rewarding, resulting in new program offerings, revamping our digital Passport, and a (coming soon) member forum. I’m excited to see where this group takes us over the course of this next year.
Celebrate Our Successes
In the past few years we’ve spent a lot of our time focused on establishing ourselves as a guild, developing amazing programs, and cultivating member engagement. All of that legwork has served, and will continue to serve, as a blueprint for how we function as a guild but now it’s time to shine a light on our members. Our members are what makes us a guild and without them we wouldn’t have the ideas, the content, or the support to lead our programs and run a successful group.
This year we’re hoping to feature more of our members on our social media. We’d like to post more blogs to show off their work and hear their perspectives. We’re building out more time in meetings to hear more individual voices. Additionally, we’re going to encourage our members to showcase their modern quilts in quilt shows for others to see and appreciate.
Highlight Modern Quilting
It’s important to remember what makes this guild different from so many others in our area in that we are a part of The Modern Quilt Guild. I think we go into every year with the goal of making sure we’re aligning with what it means to be “modern“ but this year we’re going to make sure we sprinkle it into everything we do.
We will continue to explore what it means to be modern as defined by our members and showcase more modern quilts in meetings. Our Programs team is going to ensure that the content we’re sharing ties more closely to modern techniques and concepts.
I’m sure it will continue to be a challenge to navigate this uncertain time and all that this next year brings, but I’m excited to take it on. If you’re a member, I hope you join us in our one or more of our many new programs and meetings we’re offering this year. If you’re visiting and excited about what we have in store, I encourage you to join us or follow along with us on our Instagram and Facebook pages.