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Celebrate ARMA! (From The President).

In New Orleans this fall our conference theme will be "Celebrate the Profession." However, my theme for this coming year is going to be "Celebrate ARMA" because ARMA is so much more than simply the profession.

Over the past few years there has been an ongoing debate as to just what "the profession" is. Our tag line says we are the "Association for Information Management Professionals," but we know that all of us wear many hats and have such diverse titles and responsibilities that we can't pigeonhole what we do into any one specific professional area. Does a librarian who handles company records have to give up that title for another? Does an IT professional who handles e-mail and electronic records qualify as a records manager? Should a records manager who handles records in their electronic format be categorized as an IT manager instead? When historical records become a full-blown archive, does the job title of the person handling them change? Our continuing challenge is to put together the many puzzle pieces that make up the diverse field of information management into one association without slighting any of them.

As business and technology changes, our jobs evolve. It is ARMA's responsibility as a professional association to be on the cutting edge of what is happening in the management of information. Does that mean we forget where we came from, what got us where we are today? Of course not!

I have been in this profession since 1980, and many of my friends and mentors can claim even longer tenure. We are proud of our roots and the many contributions ARMA has made to records and information management. Is our field the same as it was 10, 20, 40, or even almost 50 years ago when ARMA came into being? No. Will it be the same 10, 20, or 50 years from now? No again.

Change happens! I, for one, am thankful for ARMA, its leaders' forward thinking, and its educational opportunities, which have enabled me to grow and learn. Above all, I value the wonderful, giving ARMA members who have been willing to mentor, advise, and guide me throughout my career. So, let's Celebrate ARMA and all the good things it represents while we work together to continue to move into the information management future.
Juanita M. Skillman, CRM, FAI
COPYRIGHT 2002 Association of Records Managers & Administrators (ARMA)
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Author:Skillman, Juanita M.
Publication:Information Management Journal
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Jul 1, 2002
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