The Voice of ARC Retirees

 Happy New Year!

Update February 1, 2023

Dear friends,

Happy New Year to all! We just finished with our first board meeting of 2023 and to say I am feeling energized is truly an understatement. We are in an exciting time for ARCRA and you are an integral part of this journey ahead.  

ARCRA Affiliated Group Leaders from across the country, convened by Matt Meyers, joined the board as we discussed the ways we could work together on future plans for ARCRA, including expanding our group to include Red Cross alumni. The individuals working to engage retirees are helping us provide meaningful activities and programs, and a way to remain in contact with former colleagues.   

We will continue to address different options as we put together our strategic plan. Longtime Red Cross consultant Harry Furukawa is donating his time to help us in this effort. Harry has a deep understanding of the American Red Cross, coupled with a vast knowledge of the external forces impacting us at the current time and moving forward. To that end, the Membership Committee, led by Randy Hutson, interviewed a number of individuals who retired but are not members of ARCRA to find out reasons why they left, and also talked with several individuals to find out what they would like to see in the years ahead.   

The Communication Committee released a survey at the beginning of the year to help inform us about our membership’s opinions. Special thanks to Bob Howard, Cheryl Kravitz and Christie Phillips and other committee members The results are in from this first survey. We are delighted that a whopping 386 members sent it back with many thoughtful responses. A preliminary look at responses show that our members continue to be part of ARCRA for a variety of reasons, including advocacy and providing information  for benefits and  pensions, Red Cross  programs, retiree gatherings and connection to other retirees, and volunteer opportunities.

A second survey is going out in a few days to the individuals who responded to the first one. Becky McCorry and Marlys DeVries will work with Bob, Cheryl, and Christie to develop the second round of questions. Once those results are in additional targeted interviews will be conducted.

The results of our recent election have been tallied. We are very pleased to welcome Sumner Hutcheson III to the Board. Sumner Hutcheson III spent over thirty-five years with the American Red Cross working as an executive in several communities around the United States including Miami, Florida, his hometown, Washington, DC, Central Pennsylvania, and Orlando, Florida. He not only has served as a senior executive and fundraiser for the American Red Cross but also has worked with many other charities including the United Way, The United Negro College Fund (UNCF), United Arts, NCCJ (formerly National Conference of Christians and Jews), The Valencia College Peace and Justice Institute, as well as other local and regional organizations.

Before retiring and starting a fundraising consulting firm, Sumner served as Vice President for University Advancement at Florida Memorial, Bethune-Cookman, and Florida International Universities. As a leader in these organizations, Sumner has worked with staff and volunteers to raise over 400 million dollars.

I am also delighted to report that Joan Pankey has agreed to serve as Board Secretary.

Along with Sumner, Randy Hutson was elected to second term on the board. I will continue to serve as your President. Steve Rieve will continue to serve as Treasurer and Jim Hamilton will remain as a member of the Board and serve as immediate past-president and Chair of the Nominations Committee. 

I haven’t been one to make New Year’s resolutions, but I can resolve to work with you to continue our ARCRA work in a way that is meaningful for you personally. We are all connected by the American Red Cross, and no matter how long our tenure or when we left, those ties to that mission remain in our hearts. 

Best regards,


ARCRA President Harold Brooks

P.S.  As we begin 2023, please consider a financial gift to the Red Cross. American Red Cross disaster relief is free to anyone with disaster-caused needs, thanks to the generosity of the American people. 

      ARCRA Webinars

      February Webinar - Thursday, February 23, 2023
      1:00 to 2:30 PM EST

      Update on the Financial Health of the American Red Cross with Carmel Darcy, Chief Financial Officer, and Brian Rhoa, Chief Investment Officer

      Many of you have worked with both Carmel and Brian.  Both have been leaders and managers of the Red Cross financial team for more than 20 years, working to bring financial security, transparency, and support for the mission of the organization.  They have led the finance team through many transformational years including the consolidation, centralization, and further automation of the Red Cross financial system.  Join Carmel and Brian to learn more about the financial health of the organization and the pension plan results from the latest public reporting.

      Click here to find the link for future webinars or link to the recorded webinar or audio from past webinars.

      Last Webinar: December 13, 2022 

      Disaster Cycle Services (DCS) Mission AdaptationDisaster Cycle Services (DCS) 

      Anne Palmer, Executive Director, Operations Policy & Mission Adaptation shared the focus of the Mission Adaption Program - the 3H's - Hunger, Health, and Housing. Amanda talked about how the Mission Adaptation Program is being launched to provide jurisdiction-wide support in eight counties/parishes across the country selected for social vulnerability and natural hazard risk factors.

      Click here to find the link for future webinars or link to the recorded webinar or audio from past webinars.

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