MISSION STATEMENT: The mission of the Indiana Retired Teachers Association is to promote the welfare of Indiana’s retired educators, to encourage and perpetuate education in the state of Indiana and to provide community leadership, service and guidance.
A Message From the President
Indiana members are blessed with experiencing the four seasons – spring, summer, fall and
winter. Fall brought the array of beautiful colored leaves which awed us all. Then January came when
Mr. Winter “introduced” us to the Polar Vortex – snow accompanied by strong winds, ice, sleet,
temperatures journeying well below zero closing schools, colleges, city offices and businesses.
The Legislative Brunch was scheduled for Tuesday, February 4, accompanied by the forecast of
sleet and ice for our southern members and snow along with strong winds for our northern members.
IRTA members acknowledged the Polar Vortex's challenge but weren't daunted by the challenge facing
them. Many journeyed to the State House in Indianapolis to welcome, thank and discuss upcoming
bills with legislators. Since the weather prohibited some members from coming, we were able to meet
and talk to legislators from other areas of the state which emphasized to them that all Indiana retired
teachers were concerned about the COLA bill and other bills affecting retired teachers. Members not
able to come had or were planning to go to Cracker Barrel, Town Hall, or Third House meetings to talk
to their legislators. Lemons were made into lemonade as members talked to Senators who left the
Senate session to meet with them one on one. Thankfully, Mr. Winter realized the importance of our
Legislative Brunch and held off the bad weather until members were safely home.
Thank you goes out to all IRTA members who wrote, called and talked to their legislator. When
you received the “rallying cry” to write and call your legislator, you responded as an IRTA TEAM
member to make your legislator aware of our concerns.
Our legislative lobbyist, Steve Beebe, and our Executive Director, Nancy Tolson, have done a
yeoman's job talking to legislators and keeping us abreast of what is happening in the legislature and
how the IRTA TEAM can assist in getting the message across. Thank you, Steve and Nancy.
Nancy, Dwight and I left the frigid cold of Indiana to meet with our IRTA members in Florida.
No one is a stranger when talking to retired teachers which we experienced in all three meetings. We
were warmly welcomed and often discovered that we knew someone from the Florida member's school
system. One highlight was meeting my 65 year old brother's fifth grade teacher!! We are not only
IRTA TEAM members, but also IRTA Family members!
Since retired teachers have very full calendars, I would ask you to save the following dates:
June 18, 2014 – Representative Assembly. We will be having an IRTA chorus!! Information is
on page 6. Come and sing with us! We also will be electing Area Directors for Areas 2, 4, 6, 8, and 10.
July 1, 2014 – We move from eight to ten areas. This will bring change for some locals but
with change comes meeting new people and making our IRTA TEAM stronger.
Leadership Workshops – Leadership Workshops will be in July. Your Area Director will be
contacting you as to the date and place.
Fall Workshops are in September. Please check the dates in this newsletter for your area
Spring is coming – a season when nature seems to “come alive”! As we experience nature's
“coming alive,” may we, too, realize anew that our IRTA TEAM is alive and well, and working for all
Indiana retired teachers!
NEWS FROM YOUR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
As I write this, it is cold, miserable, with a strong wind and snow
making travel dangerous for even a few miles. Yet we know that in a few
weeks we will see green appear on the trees, daffodils poking out of
the ground, and the earth will continue her changing patterns. Change
is hard, but we often celebrate it. Change is inevitable, but we often
rail against it. It is challenging, but we rise above it.
There have been many changes in your association over the years, and
none more than in the past few. As an association, your board felt that
it had to make some hard decisions, not the least of which is to add
two new areas to the eight state areas that already exist. There was a
need to do this, but the change to ten has not always been easy. We
need new area directors for these newly formed districts. We need more
members to fill committees. And we will need a redesigned budget to pay
for the additional numbers. The board saw that this change was
necessary because the area directors were doing more, and they needed
smaller areas to serve so they could be effective.
In an association such as ours, it is often a very small group that does
much of the work. We always need people to step into leadership
positions so that we can continue to be a vibrant active association.
Three of our areas still do not have any nominations for area director.
We have worked hard on this problem, but too many people feel they
can’t find the time, don’t want to take responsibility, or don’t think
they can fill the position. My friends, if we can do it, you could too.
Someone in these three areas is reading this right now and saying, “I
could do this, but I hate to put myself forward.” Please don’t say
that. Instead, pick up the phone and call one of the numbers below. A
friendly voice in the office will direct you to one of the members of
the nominating committee, who will happily help you with the nomination
process—an easy one!
Your board has said that we must become a grass roots organization—one
that is governed by those at the local level. If you agree with this
concept, there are many jobs waiting for you to fill—area directors,
committee members, local presidents, the one who goes out and get new
members, or the one who regularly sends notes to your legislators.
Please don’t sit by and “Let Jim do it.” We need you, and we are waiting for your call.
Toll-free: 1-888-454-9333 Local: 317-637-9671
For details of 2013 and 2012 legislative actions, click here
Instructions for Renewing your 8% Verizon Discount
Many of you have received either an email or a letter from Verizon asking you to validate your employment with IRTA (in your case, your membership with IRTA) in order to renew the discount you are receiving on your monthly bill. A member has provided us with the following instructions to assist you in renewing the member discount of 8% on qualifying monthly charges. Please let us know if you have any trouble renewing your discount this way.
Access and print the Verizon End User Form by clicking here
Complete the form, and write the words "Discount Renewal" at the top of the form and "ECPD Profile ID: 1695517" in large letters at the bottom of the form.
Make a photocopy of your current membership card.
Mail your completed form with a copy of your membership card to:
- Verizon Wireless Employment Validation
- Program Code: 50-001
- PO Box 540002
- El Paso, TX 88554-9901
- For questions, please call Verizon Customer Service at: 1-800-922-0204.
NEW RETIREES: No Waiting Period for Dental & Vision Coverage
The Indiana Retired Teachers Association has negotiated an industry first for its members! For the first time ever, all 2013 retirees can join the group dental and vision plans with no waiting periods - regardless of prior coverage. If members join within 60 days of their retirement date, they can receive immediate coverage. Click here to download details and an application.
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