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European, N.E. Wisconsin Chapters OK'd.

As part of TEI's new Strategic Plan (discussed elsewhere in this issue), the Institute Board of Directors approved a vision statement that transcends geography. Instead of limiting its scope to North America, TEI seeks to be the preeminent association of business tax professionals in the world. Although it may be some time before the vision becomes reality, TEI took a major step in the right direction on March 20 when the Board approved the establishment of a chapter in Europe.

"The formation of a European chapter is the culmination of months of hard work and dedication," according to TEI President Les Ezrati, "and I am personally delighted that a critical mass of interested members has been established in Europe." The leader of the Institute's European group is Lisa Peschcke-Koedt of Hewlett-Packard, who is currently working in Geneva. "Lisa has shown both enthusiasm and tenacity in making this new chapter happen," said Ezrati. "And all along the way, she has had much help. Indeed, although she and many of our European members are expatriates, the majority are permanently posted in Europe. That means TEI's European Chapter will have the continuity it needs to succeed even after Lisa and other expatriate TEI members return to North America."

The charter of the new group will be presented at a May meeting attended by both Ezrati and Mike Murphy, the Institute's Executive Director. Peschcke-Koedt will serve as the chapter's first president, and will be succeeded in July by Anthony Maggione of RJ Reynolds International.

Europe is not the only place TEI is reaching out to. On March 20, the Board also approved the formation of a new chapter in Northeastern Wisconsin. "To be successful, TEI has to go where the members are, and we have to make it as easy as possible to belong," according to Chuck Shewbridge, TEI's Senior Vice President. "Establishing a new chapter in northeastern Wisconsin may not sound as grandiose as chartering a chapter in Europe, but in reality it promotes the same end: serving tax executives. My hat goes off to the leaders of the new group."

The first president of the Northeastern Wisconsin Chapter is Eileen Frack of Kimberly-Clark, and the chapter's representative to the Institute's Board of Directors is Dave Bernard of the same company. A member of the Institute's Executive Committee, Bernard explained that geography often inhibited members of the Wisconsin Chapter from travelling to Milwaukee for meetings. "Some members may have had a four- or even five-hour round trip to attend a meeting," he explained. "By chartering a new chapter, we are making it easier for more members to get involved."
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Publication:Tax Executive
Geographic Code:1U3WI
Date:Mar 1, 1999
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