Welcome to the Texas Environmental Health Association!
Message from the 2012-13 TEHA President Janet Tucker
Greetings Texas Environmental Health Association Members…
I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. In North Texas we even had a white Christmas. What a treat! Well, if you don't like the weather in Texas just wait a few minutes and it will change.....definitely describes this winter. It sure made it hard to dress in the mornings. Of course my office is always freezing so I stay prepared and carry a jacket! I know those of us that do vector were hoping for a hard winter to kill some of the mosquitoes. Unfortunately that didn't happen, but hopefully we won't have another season like this last one for a LONG time.
Governing Council is currently working on a lot of new items. Foremost on our agenda is legislation. Since this a legislatvie year, there are numerous bills that could affect TEHA members. Monty McGuffin, Legislative Chair, and his committee have been following all of these bills and they are posted on the website http://www.myteha.org/Legislation. Steve Killen, Cindy Corely, Geoff Heinicke, and Kelly Kirpatrick-Stockburger have been helping with legislation as well. This year TALHO offered TEHA a great opportunity to work with them to strengthen our position on the bills. TALHO's lobbyist has been working hard at getting our positions heard. TALHO has regular legislative meetings that include the lobbyist and Monty, Cindy, Jodie, and myself have listened in on several of the conference calls. TEHA was also invited to a meeting with the staff of Representative Eddie Rodriguez, on HB 970 on February 13th. I attended this meeting to represent TEHA. TALHO's Chief Public Health Officer and their lobbyist, Harris County, Texas Retailers Group, and others attended as well. The last few years TEHA has been working hard and is taking a more active role in these issues. Please check our website and track the current bills that will influence our industry. While the Governing Council is doing what we can, we encourage all our members to become individually involved in attend the meetings or hearings. If you have any suggestion on other ways we can get involved, please let us know.
Mark your calendars and don't miss the 58th Annual Education Conference in Austin, October 8-11, 2013. Joanna Meyer and her committee are hard at work to make this an amazing AEC. Dr. Jay Neal will be our Keynote Speaker. To read more about him, visit our website http://www.myteha.org/Annual_Education_Conference. This year we will have a Pre-Conference workshop on Blackflow Prevention, presented by Byron Hardin. If you have speaker suggestions, contacts, or specific topics you would like to hear, please contact Joanna http://www.myteha.org/Committees.
I had the pleasure of attending the South Texas Chapter Conference in South Padre in December. This was my first time and I was totally blown away at the outstanding job they did. I know a lot of hard work went into the conference and it showed. They had a theme of "Don't go to Mexico, Let us Bring it to you" and they did! Authenitc foods, beverages, desserts, and goods were provided. They even had sombreros and a fake parrot. The sessions that I attended had interesting topics and great speakers. Even had an impromptu performance by the South Padre guys, Victor Baldovinos, Josh Garza, Lee Kelley, and David Travis. They are already preparing for their 10th anniversary this year, so make plans to attend December 4-6th, 2013. I hear so many great things about what each chapter is doing, but rarely get out of the North Texas area. I hope to make it to at least one meeting of each chapter during the year.
Last summer Steve Berry resigned as the Executive Director to be effective at the end of the year. Steve wanted to make sure that we had plenty of time to find a replacement and train them on the position prior to him leaving. Steve has been an active member of TEHA for years and served the orgaization well. Steve brought TEHA to a new level and we appreciate all that he and Kandy did while serving in the position We are all saddened to see him leave, but wish him well in his new endeavors.
I would like to welcome Jodie Heilman-Halter who as of January 1st, 2013 became the new Executive Director of TEHA. Jodie has also been an active TEHA member and has served on both local and state governing council. Jodie is very passionate about TEHA and I know she will do an oustanding job. She has been working hard at updating membership forms, membership renewals, updating the new website, and much more. If you haven't seen the new website, check it out. It looks great and has more information than before!
Please consider serving on your local or state governing council. We are always looking for new, fresh, and innovative ideas to keep moving TEHA forward.
I wish everyone a Happy Spring without mosquitoes.....Hey, one can WISH!