Special Message from the GNA Chairman
In case you missed the email, here's VDD-GNA Chairman Mike Seckar's most recent update to GNA Membership.
Feb 14, 2021
Dear GNA membership,
I am so happy that 2020 is behind us. It was not a good year, in so many ways. 2021 arrives with much hope for improvement. But the wheels are moving slowly, and we are not out of the woods yet. COVID is still in control.
Meetings in Germany postponed
The JGHV and VDD e. V. annual meetings in Germany (Fulda) scheduled for March 2021 have been postponed to August 20-22 and moved to Verden. It is an election year for VDD e. V. I will keep you informed about the candidates and motions when I hear more. There will be a special meeting of the VDD e. V. board of directors on July 10, 2021 in Kleinlüder to discuss candidates and motions in preparation for the August meeting. I plan to attend both meetings if I can travel to Germany.
GNA Annual Meeting Postponed
The 2021 GNA Annual Meeting/Fiftieth Anniversary Jubilee celebration has been postponed due to COVID-related issues. It was tentatively scheduled for May 21-22 near Pooleville, Texas. The decision to postpone was made with the agreement with the Big Rivers Chapter which was organizing and hosting the event. The chapter chairpersons affirmed the postponement. There was simply too much uncertainty to make firm financial commitments--considering health and safety concerns, reluctance of some to travel and gather, and governmental restrictions on gatherings. This decision puts GNA on the same track as VDD e.V. with the postponement of its meeting. We will celebrate the Fiftieth Anniversary Jubilee at the 2021 Armbruster and fit in an annual membership meeting. The business normally conducted in the Friday BoD meeting would be handled during one or more video conferences during the summer. Your comments and ideas are welcome. I will give you an update when plans are firmed up.
Armbruster planning still ongoing
The Armbruster is scheduled for September 22-25, 2021 in Fort Morgan, Colorado. We are confident that the Armbruster will take place as scheduled. We predict the COVID situation will be much improved by then. Armbruster planning continues and commitments are being made. A very special fiftieth anniversary shotgun will be raffled off during the Armbruster banquet. Tickets will go on sale soon.
Chapter Annual Meetings
We do not intend to prohibit chapter annual meetings this spring. Chapter meetings can be planned with much more flexibility and far less expense than the GNA Annual Meeting. However, we require chapters to act responsibly and follow state and local rules and guidelines applicable to gatherings. The rules are different for each state. Therefore, the members involved in organizing the meetings must implement appropriate safeguards to protect our members and guests, and their families and friends that they may expose when they go home.
The chapters have the option of postponing the chapter meetings until summer if they want. If the meetings are not postponed, social distancing must be practiced, the size of the gathering must be limited, and masks must be worn. Perhaps the traditional banquet should be reconsidered. No one with flu-like symptoms should be allowed to attend. We ask everyone to be responsible and diligent to assure that our gatherings are not implicated in an outbreak. Anyone who is believes they are at high risk of complications should not attend the meetings.
Motions to be considered by GNA Board of Directors
Motions to be considered by the GNA board of directors may be sent to your chapter chairperson a reasonable time before the chapter meeting. That is the preferred method so the chapter can decide whether to support the motion. However, individual members can also send personal motions directly to GNA by emailing them to the GNA business manager. The deadline for GNA motions is extended to June 23, 2021. The GNA motions will be discussed (and resolved if possible) by the GNA Board of Directors during virtual meetings in the summer.
We will proceed with our normal VJPs unless JGHV or VDD e.V. tell us otherwise. GNA’s official test schedule is in the members’ section of the GNA website. We will continue to have a policy trusting the Test Directors to comply with legal restrictions and implement COVID safeguards appropriate for the place where the tests are held. Last Fall’s testing was successful and safe despite the presence of the virus. I am not aware of any COVID incidents related to our Fall tests. That gives me confidence that we can have a safe Spring testing season. Cancelling, postponing, or moving the location of a test are options that the individual Chapter Test Directors may consider.
Thank you to the test directors, test coordinators, and test site hosts for organizing all these tests. Thank you to the judges who are willing to volunteer their valuable time to judge these tests.
New procedure for dues notices
Faith is no longer mailing postcards with dues notices. The reasons are to save postage and reduce volunteer time. The dues notices have been published in the GNA newsletters, on the Facebook page, and in email blasts to the entire membership. On a broader scale, email will continue to be our primary form of communicating timely information to our members. Please check the website membership roster to confirm that your email address is correct.
Faith has arranged for GNA to print the breed books locally. It has always been difficult, time consuming, and expensive to have the books shipped to us from Germany. Books were regularly lost in the mail or arrived damaged. We believe printing the books locally will allow us to get them into members’ hands sooner and at a lower price. We hope to have the print file for the 2021 Zuchtbuch by mid-March, and then printed books available to ship by mid-April. As soon as we know the final cost of printing, we will set a price. We will post it for pre-order on the GNA website, and we will send an email to notify everyone. Thank you for your patience. We realize that some of you were disappointed that you were unable to order the Zuchtbuch in conjunction with membership renewal, but we hope that the prospect of getting the book sooner and at a lower price point makes up for that.
New procedures for Chapter Breedwardens
Mike Schell has implemented a new procedure where the Chapter Breedwardens work closely with him and the breeders in processing litters. The new procedure has been distributed to the chapter Chairpersons and Breedwardens. It will soon be sent to all GNA breeders, and will be available on the GNA website.
50th Anniversary book
Ed Carney has been hard at work on producing a book to celebrate GNA’s Fiftieth Anniversary. It will contain many articles documenting VDD and GNA history. It is expected to go on sale in the spring. It will be sold on the GNA webstore and by the chapters.
I apologize for the Fall newsletter being delayed. I know my campaign promise was to get the Newsletter back on schedule. The delay was the result of the perfect storm of technical and logistical problems, as well as the US Postal Service delay in delivering the Newsletters to some parts of the country. We will continue to work toward a reliable and timely newsletter. We will also try to make an electronic version available to alleviate the effects of the mailing delay.
Please help with the newsletter content by submitting photos, articles, and stories for publication.
Call for Volunteers
The Executive Committee would like to compile a list of members who would be willing to volunteer some time to help on various short and long-term projects that come up in the future. I don’t know what the projects are yet. But when things come up, we will call people on the list. Anyone willing to help should send me an email. Let me know if you have special skills to offer.
VDD-Group Canada dissolved last year. However, a Deutsch-Drahthaar Weltverband breeding club has now established in Canada. Weltverband clubs are sanctioned by VDD e.V. for breeding, testing, and furthering the interests of Deutsch-Drahthaars in countries outside of Germany that do not have a VDD group. Weltverband clubs test and breed their dogs under a system that closely parallels that which applies to VDD groups--with minor differences. You can read more about the Weltverband by following this link: https://drahthaar.de/pages/weltverband.php
Rainer Zeilinger is the Chairman of DD-WV Canada. Rainer wants Deutsch-Drahthaars in Canada to remain in the DD system. He wants them to be tested in the usual breed tests—VJP, HZP, and VGP. He wants them to breed within the framework of the Deutsch-Drahthaar system. He hopes to increase membership in DD-WV Canada in order to have a sufficient number of members to develop new judges, breeders, and volunteers to sustain an organization for the benefit of Deusch-Drahthaars in Canada. I believe Rainer’s goals are meritorious.
Rainer has asked me if GNA breeders who export puppies to Canada would be willing to notify him of the name and contact information of the new owner so he can contact them about joining DD-WV Canada. If you sell a DD to a Canadian resident, please tell them about DD-WV Canada and the DD testing system. Please notify Rainer Zeilinger whenever you export a DD to Canada. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org. His phone number is 1-250-566-8407.
Warning about Fraudulent Emails
Beware of fraudulent emails. Over the last several months members have received fraudulent emails purporting to be from the GNA Executive Committee or from me. The emails mirror our email addresses or use similar email addresses in order to appear genuine. We will never use email blasts to solicit money for a sick child or to help me return home from Germany after losing my credit card. Do not open or reply to any questionable emails even if the email address appears to be valid. Instead, call, text, or email me directly to verify any questionable email.
If any of you have suggestions for improving the club, please tell your Chapter Chairperson or contact me directly.
Happy hunting for the remainder of the season! Good luck to those handling a puppy in the VJPs.