2024 Q2 President’s Address

The President’s Address 

Jason Bruno, AFERM President 

Greetings to our AFERM members, sponsors, and everyone else who is reading this because you are interested in Enterprise Risk Management or support AFERM’s mission. My hope is that you are comfortable, safe, and are ready for a post-COVID work and life environment. As we all gear up for the remainder of the year ahead, lets commit to working with each other with compassion, understanding, flexibility, commitment, and wonder.  

I’d like to start by thanking our stellar Board Leaders who are paving the way for AFERM’s future. I want to give a special thanks goes to the Board members who have finished their terms of office. Stepping down are Daniella Datskovska, Doug Webster, Montrice Yakimov, and Nancy Eyl, who have done wonderful work with our organization over these past few years. AFERM is better situated to address its challenges because of the groundwork that they’ve laid. Our new Board members Dr. Karen Hardy, Elena Yearly, Steve Vetter, and Karen Weber have already begun the work as President-Elect, Treasurer, VP-Outreach, and Secretary. Together they bring decades of ERM expertise from both the federal space and the private sector.  

We are now full in the throes of spring, and are excited to begin preparing for and planning the AFERM marquee event – our 17th annual Summit. We are thrilled to announce the theme of the this year’s Summit Training event will be ERM, Where Government Decision-Making and Strategy Meet. I’m excited that this year’s Summit will be coming back to the Ronald Reagan Building, and will take place on November 12 and 13, 2024. Last year’s Summit was a tremendous success, filled with great content, events, and networking, and we are looking to build on the momentum generated. I came away from last year’s event with a renewed sense of purpose and engagement.  

Please be on the lookout for Save the Date and Call for Volunteers announcements for the 2024 Summit. There is still plenty of time to volunteer on a committee to help shape the plenary and breakout sessions, as well as aid in marketing and logistics. And it’s a great way to make connections and get to know your fellow AFERM members.If you’d like to volunteer for the 2024 Summit Planning Committee, please reach out to our Summit Co-Chairs, Bobby-Jo Pankaj and Mel Thomson at summit@aferm.org. We would be thrilled to have you join the planning committee. 

I’m incredibly excited about the future of AFERM. We are making significant investments to continue our mission and serve our members for many years to come. To that end, for the first time in AFERM’s history, we have we have secured a professional association management team. We have engaged with Management HQ (MHQ), an accredited, full-service association management company that will provide infrastructure, support, and sustainability so that we can continue to provide exceptional services to our members and grow our reach.  MHQ will support the AFERM Board of Directors, providing strategic guidance and managing all aspects of our business, including financial management; membership development and retention; board and governance support; marketing communications; technology support; event support; and office administration. 

Additionally, this year has gotten off to a great start with our strategic initiatives. In February, the Board met for a special session to refine our 1-year and 90-day goals based on AFERM’s 2020-2025 Strategic Plan. Coming out of those discussions we have a number of priorities for the year, including: providing members with enriched, relevant, and beneficial content and thought leadership; refreshing and increasing the AFERM volunteer community; re-invigorating our relationship with our corporate sponsors; and revisiting offering programming events throughout the year, including book clubs, lunch-‘n-learns, state and local engagement, social hours, and other networking opportunities. These events will be geared towards supporting AFERM’s strategic goals of advancing the federal government ERM position, sponsoring professional development, and promoting ERM education. We hope that this will build opportunities for all our members to engage, learn, grow, network, give back, and support each other in our ERM journey. 

Whatever your organization’s critical risks and opportunities might be, we are here to make a space for all members to engage, learn, grow, network, give back, and support each other in our ERM journey with practical approaches and original ideas. AFERM members, its Board, and sponsors represent a vast array of the federal agencies and adjacent industries. I hope you get involved with AFERM, ask questions, and let us be your partner in learning from and enriching the ERM community, managing risks, and taking advantage of opportunities.  

Please feel free to reach out directly to me if you’d like talk about ERM, the profession, managing staff, your personal development, or simply want to chat. I am always thrilled to get to know and learn from members of our community. Thank you for being part of this journey with us. All of us together have made this a truly special Association.   

Here’s to a wonderful year.