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President's Letter

Welcome back to another year and another edition of the Mason Spirit! I am excited and honored to be your next Alumni Association president. I have served on the alumni board for the past three years, and I feel very strongly that now, more than ever, the alumni board is poised to make a significant impact in the way we serve our 70,000-member alumni community. I feel this way because:

* recently approved changes to the association bylaws allow the president to serve a two-year term. The board believes this is an important step toward better serving our alumni because it allows the president more time to make things happen.

* we have completed a strategic planning process to identify priorities for the next two years, using input from focus groups composed of students, alumni, and university staff. One of the major themes that emerged is improving communication and outreach.

* we are launching a new portal on the Internet, (see inside back cover of this issue), to improve communication and outreach with our diverse alumni community.

Now you can see why I am so excited about what the next two years will bring. President Merten has often said that George Mason cannot be a great university without the involvement of its alumni. I agree. For those of you who are involved, thank you. For those who aren't, I urge you to reconnect with the university. Call the Alumni Affairs Office and tell us what's on your mind. Update your contact information so we can keep you informed of what's happening. Send me an e-mail. Attend an event at the Center for the Arts. Come back and take a walk around the campus. Visit today. It's easier than you think to get involved. Let's help George Mason become a great university.

James J. Laychak, B.S. '83

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