Holiday Greetings and Happy New Year!
I hope your holidays have been good so far and that you safely enjoy celebrating the New Year.

If you were part of the 93 members and guests (a new record!) that attended our 2021 Holiday Party, then you already know that it was a great success, despite the horrendous windy and rainy weather. The food was excellent and the special cakes from Extraordinary Desserts added a nice touch. Our thanks to Programs VP, Dave Twomey, and the many board members and volunteers that helped make this event a big success.

At the Party, I had the pleasure of awarding the REA Outstanding Contribution Award for 2021 to Mary Ann Stepnowsky. This award is made annually to the individual who has made a significant contribution to the improvement of REA and our members. Mary Ann retired in 2008 and joined REA in 2012. In 2012 she was elected to the Board and also became our Webmaster. For the last ten years, Mary Ann has been instrumental in major improvements to our electronic communications with our membership. She is among the hardest working board members and puts in many long hours. Mary Ann is richly deserving of this award.

Your REA board planned to return to in-person meetings in January. However, the Board held a special meeting on December 17th to further discuss this given rise of the new Omicron COVID variant. Due to potential winter Omicron variant outbreaks, the board decided to continue holding all REA meetings via Zoom until Spring. We will keep you informed via our Newsletters and eBlasts.

-Dick Wilken