West’s Business Administrators Gather
Watson Urges ‘Mission Over Machinery’
by Robert Docter –
With participation from international and national Army leaders, 140 staff members and officers from the territory’s business related functions convened in San Diego for Vision 2000–a period of inspiration, information and communication designed to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of Army business administration in executing its mission.
This “first-ever” kindred session of the Christian Management Institute involved divisional secretaries, community relations and development personnel and those assigned finance and accounting responsibilities.
“So much is happening so quickly in this field with required changes in accounting practices, shifts in government support procedures, internal modifications in fund raising strategies and dramatic innovative changes in communication that we believed it absolutely essential to assemble Army personnel and examine the requirements and opportunities which are uniquely ours in this time of exciting transition,” stated Colonel George Church, territorial business administrator.
National Commander Commissioner Robert Watson explored the Army’s unique position on the national scene as the nation moves from federal entitlement programs to block grants to states. “There has never been a time in our nation’s history when both the opportunity and the risk has been greater than today,” he said.
In a presentation at which the Western delegates were joined by representatives to the Christian Management Institute from the other American territories and Canada, Watson noted the size of the delegation and contrasted it to the numbers attending such functions as the Association of Christian Evangelicals and the Christian Holiness Association. He wondered aloud about the degree to which the Army is “machinery driven as opposed to mission driven.”
“We must not forget that the machinery is to support the mission,” Watson said. “We must find ways to continue to link system and service–development and discipleship. Our bottom-line must ever be changed lives.” People who give to us are “our trustees,” he emphasized. “They give because they trust us–because of our good name earned over the years of devotion to the cause of Christ, and we must always be worthy of that trust as we execute strict accountability of our stewardship. We must never wait for others to impose on us standards of accountability. We commit ourselves anew to essential principles of integrity in relation to both corporate and individual matters.”
Other principal guests of the conference included the territorial commander, Commissioner Peter Chang; Commis-sioner Grace Chang, territorial president of women’s organizations; Lt. Colonel Peter Dalziel, international secretary for communications; Lt. Colonel Sylvia Dalziel, director for schools and colleges information service for the UK Territory; Major Tom Jones, national community relations and development secretary; and Captain Norman S. Marshall, St. Paul, Minn., area coordinator.
Invited speakers included Dwight “Butch” Maltby, a vice president at Killian McCabe, who spoke on the development of a “Strategic Public Relations Plan;” Mark Kellner, editor in chief of PC Laptop magazine and author of God on the INTERNET who explored the internet potential for the Army; Kirk Calhoun of Ernst and Young; and Conrad Teitel who worked with the Army’s Planned Giving teams. Territorial contributors included Major Don McDougald, territorial financial secretary; Major Walter Fuge, assistant to the secretary for business administration; Robert Bearchell, territorial community relations and development secretary; Major Robert Pontsler, audit secretary; Kathleen Durazo, legal administrator; Carolyn Gordon, insurance coordinator; and Miki Webb, director of human resources.
A number of delegates offered evaluations. Judy Lee, director of public relations for the Hawaiian and Pacific Islands Division, said: “The conferences have improved each year in content and speakers. I was especially encouraged and impressed by Captain Marshall’s presentations and accomplishments. The opportunity to network with my counterparts and discuss our challenges and successes is extremely valuable.”
Mike Schmickrath of Alaska stated: “One of the best experiences of my four years with the Army. We had top quality topics and speakers, such as Captain Marshall and Butch Maltby. I only hope that we implement all the wonderful ideas shared.”
Lynn James of the Golden State Division said: “This conference was an excellent opportunity to share with several departments. Spending time thinking about the big picture of what the Army is about and why we do this work is always helpful and motivational.”