To the future — and beyond

When the movie Toy Story was released, my children immediately loved it. They especially liked Buzz and Woody. When it was released on video, they watched it on repeat and would recite their favorite lines. “To infinity and beyond!” was frequently heard echoing around our house. They had no clue exactly what infinity was, but they sure liked the sound of it!

As NAPT and the foundation move into 2023, my rallying cry is “to the future and beyond!” A new year gives everyone a blank slate, a chance to plan, dream, take on new projects, and have new adventures. For many factors of our association, business as usual remains true, however, the new year gives us a chance to pause and reflect on where we’re going and why.

2023 also begins my first full year as the NAPT CEO and Executive Director. Your professional staff, member leaders, and I have been reviewing all our programs, plans, and operational practices to see where we can increase our efficiency and effectiveness; making sure that we are serving you, our members, to the fullest. We’ve taken time to review our strategic plan and are creating schedules, calendars, events, updates, and upgrades that align with the plan. Our goal is to continuously improve our services, expand our offerings, and enhance our brand!

NAPT has long been a recognized and respected national organization. During the COVID-19 pandemic, your leaders and professional staff were challenged to create new professional development opportunities in a virtual world. During this time, they also continued their work to provide you with up-to-date information on trends and changes in our industry, ensuring that NAPT remained visible and valuable to state and national decision-makers. Like most of the world, the pandemic was an unexpected plot twist for our plans! The good news is that we were able to continue our work and find new avenues to address the challenges that faced our members.

2023 brings us into a different world. We have survived a pandemic, created a more flexible and evolving association, and welcomed a change in leadership. My personal goal is to honor our traditions and the work that has gone before me, but also to chart a new course and direction for our association. I foresee a future of transparency, impeccable service, an openness to new ideas, and ensuring that we are an organization that values our veteran and new members alike. To chart this course, I will lean on my 2023 rallying cry “to the future and beyond!” but also hold tight to a personal mantra of mine, “how we do business is as important as the business we do.” 

We’re a membership organization that builds student transportation leaders. Our members are a diverse group of professionals who represent their own geographic areas and make up a wide range of ages, educational backgrounds, expertise, and lifestyles. We’re connected by our desire to promote and support student transportation and while we may not always agree on everything, my ask to all of you is that we agree to support the mission of our association. In 2023, let’s come together as volunteer leaders and professional staff to drive the NAPT mission of empowering and supporting the pupil transportation profession by providing communication, leadership, education, advocacy, and resources, like never before.

In this upcoming year, I cannot wait to meet more of our members and work together with NAPT leadership and our professional staff to turn our strategic plan into a reality! Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to serve.

To the future and beyond,