Connections has unveiled its new board of directors after online voting closed on May 11.
Formerly known as the Women's Group, Connections introduced electronic voting after the annual general meeting was canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus situation.
The following slate of directors received a 95 percent vote of approval and will serve a one-year term from June 1:
- Vice President: Olivia Smith
- Director of Finance: Debra Wetherell
- Director of Charities: Ryungson (Grace) Lee
- Director of Communications: Donna Beeman
- Director of Community Events: Jennifer Warren
- Director of Social Programs: Gabriele Kirschner
- Director of Programs for Tours: Rohini Verma
- Director of Programs for Enrichment Programs: Mizarai Greene
- Director of Programs for Fundraising (International Bazaar & Décor): Kristina Wright
- Director of Membership: Lori Arnet
- Director at Large: Vanessa Thomas
- Director of Administration: Rusty Yuson
Heidi Regent will serve the remaining year of her two-year term as Connections president.
Meanwhile, board members Kazuko Morio, Tomomi Fujita and Amber Morse will step down.
"I would like to thank all three for their dedication and service to Connections and the wider Club community," Regent says.
The Club is now offering papers straws at all of its dining outlets.
The durable paper straws are part of a strategy to reduce plastic waste at the Club.
Nathan Baggs, the Club’s beverage director, says "lobbying" by many younger Members led to the move.
“This is a very important move as we are always trying to reduce our environmental footprint,” Baggs says. “Currently, I am searching for proper paper products to replace all plastics used for our takeout items throughout the Club.”
Members can offer their feedback or suggestions on any area of the Club through the Tell TAC system of comment cards.
As the number of cases of novel coronavirus, known also as the Covid-19 virus, in China and beyond continues to rise, the Club has introduced measures to safeguard the health of both Members and staff.
In an e-mail to Members on February 14, Michael Alfant, the Club's representative governor, explained that a response team had been set up to oversee Club communications and actions.
Among the measures introduced are the distribution of additional alcohol-based hand sanitizers around the facility and the regular sanitizing of well-used spaces.
In addition, Alfant asked that Members who had recently returned from China or who had been in contact with somebody who had just returned refrain from visiting the Club for 14 days.
Members are encouraged to visit the Keeping Your Club Safe page for regular updates and useful information
The Club has been named in the top 100 Platinum City Clubs of the World list for a second consecutive time.
The accolade from the Club Leaders Forum, a private club consultancy, is awarded to the top 1 percent of clubs worldwide.
The Club was recognized for its excellent amenities, facilities, service, governance, management and adaptability.
Iconic status is bestowed on clubs with "good standing" that were founded at least 75 years ago.
Former Club governor Deborah Wenig passed away last week in Dayton, Ohio at the age of 61.
Joining the Club with her husband, Joseph, in 2008, she served on the Board of Governors from 2009 to 2013, a period that included the Club's opening of its current Azabudai home in 2011.
Born in Catskill, New York, Deb, as she was known to family and friends, graduated from Fairleigh Dickinson University before teaching political science at several colleges in the United States.
In the October 2012 issue of INTOUCH magazine, she discussed the importance of voting in the Club's annual election (she was a passionate supporter of the League of Women Voters).
Deb is survived by her husband, two children, six grandchildren and mother.