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May 11

President’s Message - May 2016

Posted on May 11, 2016 at 12:58 PM by Denice Cox

Dear Colleagues,

It is my pleasure to introduce IIMC Region VII as this month’s Digest feature. Under the thoughtful leadership of Region Directors Denise Chisum (MO) and Brian “Petie” Ruch (IL), the states of Illinois, Kansas, and Missouri have so much of which to be proud. Denise and “Petie” bring forward a wealth of experience and leader- ship, and their collective and individual contributions have greatly benefitted Region VII and IIMC. Denise and Petie, together with each of our Region VII colleagues, have truly set a standard. Region VII continues to enjoy an outstanding partnership with their IIMC colleagues across the globe. Did you know the popular IIMC Athenian Dialogues were first introduced during the 2009 Annual Conference in Chicago? The contributions have been significant indeed, and we are looking forward to joining our Region VII colleagues in 2020. After receiving notice that 2020 IIMC Annual Conference will be held in St. Louis, Missouri, there is no doubt the wheels are turning in Region VII!

Congratulations, Region VII and St. Louis, and thank you for your continued inspiration and dedication to the profession.

Region VII
IIMC Region VII consists of the states Missouri, Illinois and Kansas. All three states have active members in their associations and once a year, a Region meeting is held in alternate states. This year, Missouri will host the other two associations in September. The meeting will be held in St. Louis. Missouri Clerks are planning some interesting learning sessions, as well as a few exciting extra-curricular activities.

Region VII is proud to have 851 IIMC members, with Illinois at 331, Kansas with 308 and Missouri with 212.

Speaking of St. Louis, Region VII was excited to hear that the 2020 IIMC Annual Conference would be in St. Louis! Plans have already begun and we know everyone will have a wonderful time as they get into the Spirit of St. Louis.

City Clerks & Municipal Finance Officers Association of Kansas (CCMFOA)
Kansas Clerks recently gathered for the City Clerks & Municipal Finance Officers Association of Kansas (CCMFOA) Spring Conference in Wichita, which included training on a wide variety of topics and opportunities to network with other Kansas clerks.

During the conference, the association’s new Executive Committee and Board of Directors took office. They include: President Martha Sumrall, MMC (Mission), Vice President Debbie Price, MMC (Marysville), Secretary Amy Burton (Ellis), Treasurer Stephen Powell, MMC (Shawnee), Immediate Past President Stacey Crum, CMC (Concordia), and Board of Directors Members Karen Sublett, MMC (Wichita), Danielle Young, CMC (Cheney), Christy Pyatt, CMC (Greensburg), Amy Zortz, CMC (Weir), David Bryant, MMC (Lenexa) and Tammy Seely (McPherson).

One of the highlights of our recent conference was the awarding of the Mildred Vance City Clerk/Finance Officer of the Year Award. This year’s recipient is Bobby Busch, Neodesha. CCMFOA is also proud to announce that at the 2015 IIMC Conference in Hartford, Jerry Lovett-Sperling, Lindsborg, received the prestigious Quill Award. We congratulate both of these Kansas Clerks on their accomplishments, and commend them for their commitment to CCMFOA, IIMC and their service to their communities.

Currently, there are nearly 430 members of CCMFOA, including 96 who have attained their CMC certification and 37 MMCs. Planning is underway for our annual Kansas/IIMC Certification Institute and Academy scheduled for November 2016 in Wichita. In 2015 our Year 1 Institute class had a record 41 participants.

CCMFOA is also excited to announce that 58 Kansas Clerks will be attending this year’s IIMC Annual Conference in Omaha, Nebraska.

Municipal Clerks of Illinois (MCI)
Janet Gray, MMC, is the current President of MCI, which just celebrated their 50th anniversary in 2015. The organization was initially founded to pursue state legislation that would upgrade the professional education opportunities for the municipal clerks. MCI is still active in working with the legislator but has expanded its commitment of education to include three quarterly seminars and the annual Institute and Academy program in the fall. In addition MCI works closely with the Illinois Municipal League to provide training at their annual conference in Chicago and participates in the annual Legislation Day in Springfield. MCI encourages its members to pursue certification through IIMC and established a state designation of Registered Municipal Clerk.

The organization is made up of nine districts that rotate hosting the seminars. Illinois is a diverse state with Chicago and the Cook county communities that have large populations and municipalities in the rural areas that have very small populations. Holding the seminars in different areas allows the clerks to work together on common responsibilities and concerns and understand the unique challenges of other communities. Some clerks are also the Treasurer or Financial Officer of their community.

MCI was the birthplace of the Athenian Dialogue. In 2009 MCI hosted the annual IIMC conference in Chicago and wanted to offer a different type of a leadership program. Chuck Tokar, MMC, former IIMC President and current Mayor of Chicago Ridge, worked with the Institute Director, Paul Craig, and developed the Athenian Dialogue. After participating in 10 Dialogues, a Clerk is eligible to become an Athenian Fellow. If reading is something you enjoy, this is a wonderful way to find different leadership approaches, and to read books you might not have considered.

If I had just one word to describe the Clerks in Illinois it would be passionate. We are passionate about being professional, expanding our learning, and assisting other Clerks to be the “Clerk That Won’t Be Replaced,” which is a two-day seminar offered bi-annually to new and newly elected Clerks by one of the regional groups, Central Illinois Municipal Clerks. Most often heard among our group are the words, “Clerks get it done.”

Missouri City Clerk and Finance Officers Association (MoCCFOA)
Jeanie Woerner, MMC, City Clerk of Raymore is the current President of the Missouri City Clerks and Finance Officers Association (MoCCFOA). The fiscal year begins May 1 with incoming President Betty Montanõ, CMC, Kirkwood; President Elect Leesa Ross, CMC, Frontenac; Secretary Maribeth Matney, MMC, Carl Junction; and Treasurer Lisa Westfall, MMC, Branson, beginning their terms at that time. MoCCFOA has 544 active members.

MoCCFOA recently held the annual Spring Master Academy, New Clerks session, and Spring Institute. This is followed by an annual retreat held in June, which provides an opportunity for incoming and outgoing committee chairs to review existing goals and to set new goals for the upcoming year. The organization’s second educational event of the year is a full day master academy and two additional sessions held in conjunction with the annual Missouri Municipal League conference in September.

A final educational opportunity of the year will be a two-day Regional Master Academy and a one-day educational session held in the fall. This two-day event is held in three different areas of Missouri to reach the maximum number of clerks possible.

During the Spring Institute banquet and award ceremony in March, MoCCFOA recognized City Clerk Lisa Westfall, MMC, Branson, as the 2016 Outstanding City Clerk of the Year. Lisa was chosen from among 11 nominations for this prestigious award. Congratulations to Lisa on the recognition of her commitment and achievements to her City and community.

This year, Missouri will be hosting the Region VII meeting in St. Louis to include a one-half day educational session and social event on Saturday, September 10. The annual meeting will be held the morning of Sunday, September 11, followed by a full day Athenian Dialogue.

MoCCFOA received good news last November. MoCCFOA was awarded the conference bid and members are looking forward to hosting an outstanding 2020 IIMC Annual Conference in St. Louis!

Meet The Region VII Directors

Denise R. Chisum, MMC, City Clerk, Lee’s Summit, Missouri

Denise Chisum joined Lee’s Summit, MO, in 1985 and was appointed City Clerk in 1991. Located within the Kansas City, MO, metropolitan area, Lee’s Summit has a population of approximately 94,000, considerably larger than the small town of about 3,000 during Denise’s childhood. Although she has spent the last 30 years serving her hometown, Denise’s municipal career actually started with the City of Tulsa, OK, from 1977 to 1983.

In 1995, Denise received the IIMC designation of Certified Municipal Clerk. While serving as President of the Missouri City Clerks and Finance Officers Association (MoCCFOA) in 2001-2002, she initiated and facilitated development of a state certification program, which adheres to IIMC standards and guidelines and includes educational opportunities for MoCCFOA members. She became one of the first members to receive the Missouri Professional City Clerk designation in 2003 and obtained her MMC designation from IIMC in 2009.

Denise has presented numerous sessions for MoCCFOA and served on the Host Committee for the 2001 IIMC Conference in Kansas City, welcoming delegates as MoCCFOA president. In 2007, she was named Missouri CCFOA “Outstanding Clerk of the Year.” She served as the MoCCFOA representative to the Missouri Municipal League Board of Directors from 2009-2013. In 2014, she began her term as IIMC Region VII Director.

For the City of Lee’s Summit, Denise initiated training on minutes and customer service; established a committee of Administrative Assistants, which now serves as the City’s Records Review Board; and, helped develop a paperless packet process. She provides presentations to various organizations on city government and her City’s history. In 2010, she helped develop and administer the City’s well-received Citizens Leadership Academy, consisting of seven, four-hour sessions for interested citizens to learn about municipal government. She is a recent member of the Lee’s Summit Historical Society Board of Directors.

The year 2015 marked Lee’s Summit’s 150th anniversary and for two years, Denise was involved in the planning of events for the celebration. In addition, she served on a committee that began working in 2010 to produce a well-researched history book. Containing more than 200 pages, the book was printed and ready for sale at the City’s Founder’s Day Celebration in 2015 and is now in second printing.

In her spare time, Denise attends auctions and scours flea markets, sews, creates, and repurposes home décor and furniture. Denise has two daughters and is the proud grandmother of six grandchildren.

Brian “Petie” Ruch, MMC, City Clerk, Beardstown, Illinois

Brian “Petie” Ruch was elected City Clerk of Beardstown in April 2001 and he is currently serving his fourth term in office. He previously worked in the City’s Public Works Department for 12 years giving him 27 years with the City. Beardstown is a diverse rural community of 6,200 residents located in central Illinois on the Illinois River. The area is known for its hunting, fishing and agricultural base. Signs entering the community use to state Beardstown as the “Watermelon Capital of the World.” Other tidbits: Al Capone owned a cabin on the Illinois River and Beardstown has the only active courtroom today where President Abraham Lincoln practiced law.

Ruch graduated from MacMurray College in 1983 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting and Business Administration. He joined the International Institute of Municipal Clerks (IIMC) in 2001, attaining his Certified Municipal Clerk designation in 2004 and his Master Municipal Clerk Designation in 2009. Ruch began his term as IIMC Region VII Director in 2015 and serves as liaison to the Records Management Committee.

“Petie” has been an active member of the Municipal Clerks of Illinois (MCI) since 2001 serving two terms as MCI’s President from 2011-2013. He also served MCI in the offices of Vice President, Treasurer and District Director. He is currently Co-Chair of the Legislative Committee and serves as MCI’s liaison to the Illinois Municipal League (IML). Ruch received the prestigious “Ilion Crabel” Clerk of the Year award at the 2015 MCI Annual Meeting. During his term as MCI President, Ruch was instrumental with MCI partnering with the IML creating a statewide database for MCI.

Petie is proud to serve as IIMC Region VII Director and pledges to perform the duties as Region VII Director and represent IIMC to the best of his ability. He looks forward to meeting and learning from Clerks throughout the world during his time on the IIMC Board.
May 11

President’s Message - April 2016

Posted on May 11, 2016 at 12:45 PM by Denice Cox

 Dear Colleagues,

It is my pleasure to introduce you to IIMC’s remarkable Region V Directors, Mary Johnston, MMC, (OH) and Lanaii Benne, MMC, (TN). Besides their passionate leadership and positive energy, Mary and Lanaii enjoy a combined total of 53 years in municipal government. It is true what they say… when you love what you do -- it certainly shows! There is no mistaking our Region V leaders have made their mark in their respective communities, their region, and on behalf of IIMC’s membership. Their dedication and commitment is demonstrated through their leadership and service on the Education & Professional Development Committee and the Policies & Procedures Committee. Please take this opportunity to join Mary, Lanaii and me and learn more about your incredible peers in Region V and the good work taking place in Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee. Thank you, Region V, for making an important difference for all!

IIMC Region V Newsletter
The great Region V for the International Institute of Municipal Clerks consists of the states of Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee. Lanaii Benne, MMC, of Franklin, Tennessee, and Mary Johnston, MMC, of Westerville, Ohio, currently serve as the Region V Directors. Region V membership with IIMC is a strong 1,109 and the Directors hope to increase those numbers. Region V voted, at their last meeting in October 2014, to return to an alphabetical rotation between all five states for the selection of the Region V Director. All future Directors will follow state rotations for a three-year term starting with Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee. For this year’s Region V Director vacancy, Indiana decided to pass on putting forth a candidate; therefore, Kentucky will be presenting a candidate at their Annual Conference/Meeting in April. This candidate will be introduced to the Region in May.

Region V has been fortunate to have representation on the IIMC Executive Committee recently. Sharon Cassler, MMC, of Cambridge, Ohio and Brenda Young, MMC, of Nashville, Indiana, provided outstanding leadership while serving on the Executive Committee and as IIMC Presidents. The Region is very proud of their service to our membership.

Region V hopes to schedule a Region meeting in 2016 and the Region Directors will be contacting state presidents to see if they are interested in hosting a Region meeting for our members.

Indiana League of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers
The Indiana League of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers (ILMCT) purpose is to promote the best methods of conducting the affairs of their elected offices, to offer educational information for the growth and advancement of Clerks and Clerk-Treasurers, and to work with the State Legislature in enacting laws for the betterment of state and local government. Their motto is “We Search for a Better Way.” The Indiana League of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers have 89 newly elected clerks and treasurers as of January 1, 2016. Their annual Institute and Academy was held on the Ball State Campus, Muncie, Indiana on March 6 – 10, 2016. Their annual conference will be held in Michigan City, Indiana from June 5 – 9, 2016. New state officers will be elected at this conference. The Fall District meetings, one in the northern area and one in the southern area, have not been scheduled at this time. More information will be forthcoming. ILMCT has 197 IIMC members, 81 Certified Municipal Clerks and 37 Master Municipal Clerks. Current ILMCT leadership: President Vicki Kitchen, MMC, of North Liberty; Vice President Tamara Runyon, MMC, of Bluffton; Secretary/Treasurer Terri Buckmaster, MMC, of Walkerton; and Immediate Past President Kathy Parsons, MMC, of Fremont. Website:

The Kentucky Municipal Clerks Association (KMCA) was established in 1976 to promote professional and educational standards for Kentucky’s Municipal Clerks through leadership, training, and communications in order to provide outstanding public service to citizens in the Commonwealth. The KMCA initiated a certification program in 1980 and an opportunity for additional/advanced training began in 1984. KMCA also hosted a successful IIMC Conference in Louisville in 1995. KMCA’s purpose and objectives are: to develop a better understanding of the official duties and obligations of its members; to promote the improvement of their offices by development of standard procedures, discussion of various problems arising in these offices, promotion of wider city consciousness concerning the importance of municipal government and its operations with particular reference to those services and facilities administered by the City Clerks; to develop closer relationships and understanding within this organization, and to improve municipal affairs. KMCA recently conducted a survey of the association and as a result they are revamping their training programs in 2016. This will begin with their Spring Conference hosted by the KIPDA Region Clerks in Louisville on April 20 – 21, 2016. They will hold an election at their Spring Conference and a new slate of officers will take the reins and move the association forward. KMCA has 132 IIMC members, 44 Certified Municipal Clerks and 15 Master Municipal Clerks.

Current KMCA leadership: President Robbie Hume, CMC, of Lawrenceburg; Vice President Joe Christofield of Florence; Treasurer Bethany Cooper of Benton; and Secretary Missy Williams Gordon, CMC, of West Point. Website:

The Michigan Association of Municipal Clerks (MAMC) was established in 2000 and their purpose includes serving the citizens and municipalities of the State by providing education and training of Municipal Clerks, Deputy Clerks, and election officials throughout the state by utilizing seminars, institutes and meetings; to promote and encourage improvement of methods and procedures of duties performed by Clerks; to address legislative matters relating to the Municipal Clerk’s responsibilities and how Municipal bodies and the public can be better served; and to do anything reasonably in furtherance of, or incidental to, the foregoing. MAMC is currently working on their 2016 Conference, “Capital Stampede” to ensure they make this one memorable for their membership. It will be in the City of Lansing on June 14 – 16, 2016.

MAMC will have many challenges in the upcoming year with the 2016 Presidential election and MAMC is working hard to provide a great year of education and training. MAMC has 472 IIMC members, 255 Certified Municipal Clerks, and 66 Master Municipal Clerks.

Current MAMC leadership: President Joe Bridgman, MMC, of Huron Charter Township; 1st Vice President Sarah Bydalek, CMC, of Walker; 2nd Vice President Susanne Courtade, CMC, of East Bay Charter Township; 3rd Vice President Dan Kasunic, MMC, of Kentwood; Director/Treasurer Mary Clark of Delta Township; Director/Secretary Leon Wright, CMC, of Van Buren Charter Township; Director Holly Thompson, CMC, of Williamston; Director Jennifer Venema of Caledonia Charter Township; Director Jeremy Howard of Mt. Pleasant; Director Lisa Kay Hathaway, MMC, of Grosse Pointe Woods; Director Anna Perales, CMC, of Holland; Director Lanie McManus of Garfield Charter Township; and Past President Chris Swope, CMC, of Lansing. Website:

The Ohio Municipal Clerks Association (OMCA) held their first meeting in 1954 and the first president was S. E. Klewer of Maumee. OMCA’s Mission Statement is “The Ohio Municipal Clerks Association advances the Municipal Clerk profession through education, networking and member benefits, which establishes Clerks as experts in their field and leaders in the communities they serve.” OMCA approved many changes to the association in the past year and some are being implemented this year. OMCA contracted with a local branding company who will take OMCA into the 21st century by creating a new modern and recognizable logo. The first year of OMCA’s new educational opportunities such as One-Day Academies and Athenian Dialogues were a big hit with the membership. OMCA is also in the midst of planning their Annual Conference on July 18-21, 2016 in Dublin, Ohio. There will be valuable educational sessions for everyone who attends. OMCA has 182 IIMC members, 99 Certified Municipal Clerks and 42 Master Municipal Clerks.

Current OMCA leadership: President Heidi Milner, MMC, of Roseville; Vice President Molly Kapeluck, MMC, of Green; Secretary Kathy King, MMC, of Newton Falls; Treasurer Anthony Rodgers, MMC, of Huber Heights; and Immediate Past President Misty Cheshire, MMC, of Loveland. Website:

The Tennessee Association of Municipal Clerks and Recorders (TAMCAR) is a professional organization dedicated to the advancement of the Municipal Clerk. TAMCAR encourages Clerks to continue their professional growth and development through continuing educational opportunities. TAMCAR is in the process of evaluating new conference locations due to increased hotel and conference space costs. TAMCAR’s Board is also addressing the challenges of how to balance conference credits for IIMC and state requirements due to a new requirement that local municipalities have a “Certified Municipal Finance Officer.” The Board is evaluating how to blend the Clerks and Finance Officers programs to retain membership. TAMCAR’s spring conference is right around the corner and will be held at the Embassy Suites in Murfreesboro on April 20 – 22, 2016. TAMCAR has 126 IIMC members, 60 Certified Municipal Clerks and 11 Master Municipal Clerks.

Current TAMCAR leadership: President Allison Myers, CMC, of Farragut; Vice President Linda Adair, CMC, of Lawrenceburg; Secretary Jason Griggs, CMC, of Milan; Treasurer Debbie Hedgepath, MMC, of Brentwood; West Director Randy Potts, CMC, of Greenfield; Middle Director Barbara Culp of Clifton; and East Director Cathy Dixon of Dandridge. Website:

Meet the Region V Directors

Lanaii Benne, MMC,  Assistant City Recorder, Franklin, Tennessee

Lanaii has served in municipal government for 20 years, beginning with five years in the Codes Enforcement department at the Village of Orland Park, Illinois. In 1997, she continued her career with the City of Franklin, Tennessee, in the Codes Department. Lanaii was promoted in 1999 to Administrative Assistant to the Mayor and City Administrator, and then Assistant City Recorder in December 2005. She is a graduate of the Franklin Leadership University 2007 charter class.

Since 2005, Benne has been an active IIMC member, serving on the host committee for the 2011 IIMC annual conference held in Nashville. She also served as Vice President of the Tennessee Association of Municipal Clerks and Recorders (TAMCAR) from 2008 to 2010 and as President from 2010 to 2012. She received the President’s Award from TAMCAR in 2008. Lanaii established and currently serves on the Policies and Procedures Committee of TAMCAR. She is a member of ARMA. She has attended IIMC annual conferences in New Orleans, Atlanta, Reno, Nashville and Portland; the ARMA conference in Las Vegas; and Tennessee Municipal League conferences in Nashville, Memphis, Chattanooga and Knoxville.

Married with one adult child, Lanaii enjoys traveling, gardening, attending auctions and event planning.

Mary Johnston, MMC, Clerk of Council/Records Manager , City of Westerville, Ohio

Mary Johnston, MMC, began her municipal career in 1983 as the Deputy City Clerk for the City of Freeport, Illinois and was then elected City Clerk in 1993 serving two terms. In 2003, Johnston was appointed Clerk of Council/Records Manager for the City of Westerville, Ohio.

Johnston obtained her Certified Municipal Clerk designation in 1996 and her Master Municipal Clerk designation in 2005. Johnston was inducted into the Athenian Fellowship Society in May 2014 at the Milwaukee Conference.

Johnston served in all offices for the Ohio Municipal Clerks Association and has served/chaired on many OMCA committees. Johnston currently serves as Board Liaison to the Education and Professional Development Committee. Johnston also served on and chaired the IIMC Conference Committee, IIMC Membership Committee, and the IIMC Public Relations/Marketing Committee. Johnston holds memberships with ARMA, NAGARA and the National Parliamentarian Association. Johnston was selected the Ohio Municipal Clerks Association’s 2015 Clerk of the Year.

Johnston received her Master degree in Public Administration in 2014. Johnston is a member of the Westerville Honor Flight Committee serving as Treasurer and worked on the Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast Celebration Committee this year. Johnston is a graduate of the Leadership Westerville program and the Highland Community College Leadership Institute.

May 11

President's Message - March 2016

Posted on May 11, 2016 at 12:42 PM by Denice Cox

Dear Colleagues,

One thing for certain, there is much energy and excitement-taking place in Region VIII! Starting with our upcoming Annual Conference in Omaha, Nebraska, Region VIII is truly making their mark in 2016. A big shout out to our Nebraska host clerks and all Region VIII states (and, yes, there are 11, believe it!) for planning and supporting the development of IIMC’s 70th Annual Conference. Region VIII has also been focused on electing their newest Region Director. As we welcome Region VIII Director, RaNae Edwards, MMC, (NE) to the Board, it is important to recognize Director Nancy Vincent (CO) for her vigilance and leadership during a time of transition. Thank you, Nancy, for your incredible dedication and thoughtful work in representing Region VIII at the highest level. I am pleased to join Nancy in introducing you to RaNae in this feature.

Persistence of Vision was the theme of the Region VIII Meeting and CGFOA/CMCA Conference in November 2015. It was an honor to be in attendance, and the warm reception and gracious hospitality extended was deeply appreciated. The conference and meeting were outstanding, and I truly enjoyed spending time with our Region VIII colleagues. Having the opportunity to address Region VIII delegates in Loveland was a privilege. I was highly impressed with the thoughtful recognition they extended to many members and special guests for their accomplishments and contributions to CMCA and throughout the Region. Great job, Region VIII… we can’t wait to see you in beautiful Omaha this May!

News from Region VIII

Greetings from Region VIII! First, I would like to congratulate and welcome the newest Region VIII Director, RaNae Edwards, MMC, and provide you with her contact information. RaNae is from the City of Grand Island, Nebraska and her email address is Here is a little information about RaNae: she is currently in her 16th year with the City of Grand Island. She started her political career at the age of 23 when she was elected as the Howard County Clerk in St. Paul, NE. RaNae received her CMC in 2003 and MMC in 2008. In 2010, after years of work, raising kids, and a career, she attained her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. One of the proudest moments in her life was being named the 2010 Nebraska Municipal Clerk’s Association (NMCA) Outstanding Clerk of the Year. She currently serves as Second Vice-President for NMCA. RaNae is excited to represent Region VIII on IIMC’s Board of Directors and looks forward to working with all of you.

Congratulations to Elizabeth Burke, Flagstaff City Clerk who will replace Nancy Vincent on the IIMC Board of Directors in May.

Region VIII is a very large geographic area consisting of 11 states which include: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, and Utah.
Due to its size, it has often been difficult to hold a Region Conference. However, in November of 2015, Colorado had the opportunity to host the first Region VIII Conference in several years. It was held in conjunction with its Colorado Government Finance Officers and Municipal Clerks Association Annual Conference that included excellent educational sessions. It was an honor to welcome President Monica Martinez Simmons, MMC, to Colorado and Region VIII. President Simmons made a donation on behalf of the Colorado Municipal Clerks Association to MCEF – we thank you so much for that donation! Clerks thoroughly enjoyed visiting with and listening to her and we would like to thank her so much for taking the time to join us.

Region VIII is also honored to host the 2016 IIMC Conference in Omaha, Nebraska in May of this year. There will also be a Region VIII meeting during the 2016 IIMC Conference with more information to follow.

While the Region may not hold Region conferences annually, each State has state-sponsored institutes and other education sessions throughout the year. Below is information about our Region and training opportunities within the various states.

Arizona Municipal Clerks Association (AMCA)
Bev Bender, CMC,, from Fountain Hills is the current President of AMCA. Join me in congratulating AMCA on celebrating its 55th (Emerald) Anniversary this year! AMCA is currently working on its 3-year Strategic Plan and the creation of a Mentoring Program. The Executive Board recently approved revisions to the AMCA Handbook and policies at its January meeting.

The Association provides training certificates electronically and makes them available to the membership from the AMCA website. The AMCA Education Committee is currently in the process of creating an organized spreadsheet that will be placed on the AMCA website that lists IIMC points awarded for the various trainings as a reference for AMCA members working toward their CMC and MMC designations. The 2016 Institute will be held June 5th through June 10th in Scottsdale.

This year, AMCA is offering its first scholarship for the IIMC Annual Conference Registration fee to its membership to further promote attendance at the 2016 IIMC conference (Omaha).

Colorado Municipal Clerks Association (CMCA)
Rhonda Coxon, MMC,, from Snowmass Village is the current President of the CMCA. As mentioned previously, Colorado hosted the Region VIII Conference November 17 –20, 2015. It was a great opportunity for everyone to meet and talk with President Simmons. The conference began with an Athenian Dialogue on Tuesday the 17. Colorado Institute Director Kathie Novak and IIMC member Kerry Bush, MMC, facilitated Dialogue. During its Annual Business meeting at the Conference, Chris Koch, CMC, Arvada was presented the prestigious 2015 Clerk of the Year Award.

The Education Committee met on Thursday, January 28, planning for Colorado’s Institute in July from the 17 through the 22 at Regis University and is busy planning for its next Annual Conference this November. There will be additional Masters Academy training available in June and September. These training opportunities will be firmed up and information distributed in the near future.

CMCA makes available on its website transcripts for the institutes as well as Professional Development Opportunities that are held at various locations of the State throughout the summer months.

Idaho City Clerks, Treasurers and Finance Officers Association (ICCTFOA)
Lynn Hagman, MMC,, is the current President of the ICCTFOA. The Idaho City Clerks, Treasurers and Finance Officers (ICCTFOA) holds two conferences a year. For the first time in June of this year, the Association of Idaho Cities and Mt. West Conference are being held together. This conference has educational classes for Mayors, Council, City Clerks, Treasurers and Finance Officers. In September the ICCTFOA will hold an annual conference for City Clerks, Treasurers and Finance Officers. This conference is both educational and fun. There are six Districts and each one will bring two baskets full of great things that are raffled off at the conference and all proceeds go to scholarships to help other Clerks attend the conference.

Idaho has many historical sites and towns that date back 100 years or more. The Association of Idaho Cities puts out a magazine each quarter and highlights a new City each time as well as helping the Cities keep up with new legislation.

Montana Municipal Clerks Treasurers and Finance Officers Association (MMCT/FOA)
The Montana Municipal Clerks Treasurers and Finance Officers Association (MMCT/FOA) will be holding their Annual Institute Sunday, May 1 through Friday, May 6 in Billings, Montana. Classes range from the Code of Ethics and Bylaws of the Association, Annual reporting, Records of Local Government, Clerk relations with the Executive Branch, bid procedures to employee hiring processes. Several retirements have occurred across the state of Montana over the course of the year and they will be recognized as well as a Lifetime Achievement Awardees. The Association will be electing a new President to fill the resigned position left by second term President Stacy Ulmen.

Nebraska Municipal Clerks Association (NMCA)
Kellie Crowell, CMC,, from Ravenna is the current NMCA president. Below is information regarding the IIMC 2016 “Investing In Education” Omaha, Nebraska.

Come enjoy the sights and sounds of Nebraska…come enjoy the amazing educational experience of IIMC May 22 – 25, 2016 in beautiful Omaha. Plan to come early and visit some fabulous attractions such as: the world famous Henry Doorly Zoo and the African Grassland exhibit; Boys Town home to Father Flannigan; the Strategic Air Command and Space Museum with its amazing aircraft display; the Joslyn Art Museum with its Chiilhuly glass sculpture; and the Durham Western Heritage Museum offering a fascinating look at the history of Omaha. In addition, to these great sights there are over 80 diverse restaurants, bars and shops in the beautiful downtown area, all within walking distance of the hotel.

The theme for the 2016 conference is “The ‘70s.” so take out your medallions, polyester, butterfly collars, bell bottoms, skin-tight t-shirts, sandals, leisure suits, flower patterned dress shirts, sideburns and, yes, tennis headbands. And, men remember the chest hair! And help us celebrate 70 years of IIMC. Bill Wakefield and Random will provide live entertainment.

The Opening Ceremony will feature Rita Pakowitz a professional Storyteller, facilitator with the Joselyn Art Museum, and Adjunct Faculty member at UNO for the School of Communications, School of Public Administration and Department of Education. Rita has developed her career as an actress, writer, improvisationalist and standup comedienne into a storytelling career that knows no bounds. Whether creating a support group curriculum for mothers who have lost a child to stillbirth or miscarriage and training the group's facilitators or helping families at a museum discover the story in a work of art, Rita brings an excitement to her work that is infectious. Her goal, is to help everyone find and tell their own powerful of story.

For the Reception, we are honored to have the 18-piece University of Nebraska Omaha (UNO) Jazz Band. The UNO Ensemble performs the finest big band literature available, covering a range of styles including swing, Latin and contemporary arrangements by UNO Faculty and students. The ensemble hosts the annual UNO Great Plains Jazz Festival, one of the biggest educational Jazz Festivals in the Midwest and regularly tours abroad and throughout the USA. The UNO Jazz Ensemble regularly performs with major guest artists including Randy Brecker, Diane Schuur, Jon Faddis and Peter Erskine.

So don’t delay, come to Omaha, Nebraska and check out all the amazing things that will be going on!
Nevada Municipal Clerks Association (NMCA)
The current president of the NMCA is Sabrina Mercadante, MMC,, from Henderson. Their Nevada Municipal and County Clerks Academy was first offered in 2005 and is a proven program designed by the University of Nevada, Reno in partnership with the Nevada State Municipal Clerks Association to provide training and development for city, county and deputy clerks, recorders, and city secretaries. The Nevada Clerks Academy and Institute is offered by UNR Extended Studies in Reno, Nevada and is tentatively scheduled for July 25-28, 2016.

New Mexico Municipal Clerks and Finance Officers’ Association (NMMC & FOA)
Ann Mackie, MMC, from Silver City is the current president of the New Mexico Municipal Clerks’ and Finance Officers Association. She can be contacted at NMMC &FOA has 156 active members in the New Mexico Municipal Clerks & Finance Officers Association. Many of the Clerks are working hard to obtain their Master Municipal Clerk and Certified Municipal Clerk designations. They currently have 11 MMCs and 50 CMCs in its Association membership, but in October 2015 we were excited that there were 49 attending the Institute and 38 attending the Academy so that many more are working towards it. We have a strong Association with a lot of cheerleaders and mentors that are eager to help each other across the State of New Mexico. It is wonderful being part of such a knowledgeable and helpful group of clerks. I believe that is why so many Clerks have pursued their CMC and MMC designations. We are proud of our Association and our clerk family.

Currently, most of the Clerks in New Mexico are going through their election process with absentee and early voting, and Election Day will be on March 1, 2016. As you know, that makes for an exceedingly busy time for clerks. We had our Association Election School for all of the clerks last November so we are all well equipped for another election, including training on the new vote tabulator machines by Dominion Voting that the New Mexico Secretary of State recently changed to. I understand Dominion Voting handles elections across America so perhaps many other Clerks are familiar with their machines. Also, new election innovations are available to many of our municipalities with the option of using an E-Pollbook ballot management system, also known as a ballot on demand system, and the use of Voting Convenience Centers for consolidated precincts and/or districts. It is certainly satisfying when new processes are beneficial to the voter, as well as the municipal election process.

Our Association has great participation in our Standing Committees and our Ad Hoc Committees; one of which is our Municipal Clerks Handbook Committee that will begin their work after the elections. The Committee consists of 12 experienced Clerks that will work to review and update the 29 chapters in our current handbook that was last reviewed in 2007. As you know, the Clerks’ world is always changing with new legislation, new processes, etc. so we look forward to working on that project and its subsequent completion and adoption.

We invite the Clerks in our surrounding states and Region to join us at our Spring Meeting on April 20-22, 2016 in beautiful Albuquerque, New Mexico at the Albuquerque Marriott Hotel Uptown. It will be educational, informative, and a great opportunity to meet the Clerks of New Mexico. Information on the NMMCFOA Spring Meeting should be available on the New Mexico Municipal League's website at sometime in March.

South Dakota Government Finance Officers Association (SDGFOA)
The current President of the Government Finance Officers Association is Mona Val Lint from Philip, South Dakota, The SDGFOA are members of the GFOA in the US and Canada, the purpose of our organization is:
• To establish a forum by which cities and towns may promote matters of mutual interest and provide a closer working relationship that there may be improvement in municipal government and administration;
• To promote the improvement of methods of governmental finance in South Dakota as developed and recommended by the Municipal Finance Officers' Association of the United States and Canada, the National Committee on Governmental Accounting, and other recognized authorities in the field of municipal administration, which include the development of mutually understandable procedures of accounting, budgeting, and financial reporting; the encouragement of the use of common terminology, classification, and principles in regard to those subjects;
• To take an active part in legislation that may affect municipalities of the state through the South Dakota Municipal League
The organization has two meetings a year. One meeting the first week in June of every year when we hold the annual SDGFOA school which is an annual two and a half day training/educational/motivational event. The second annual meeting is held annually the first week of October in conjunction with the Annual South Dakota Municipal League Conference. The annual SDGFOA School alternates between a host city and our State Capitol City, Pierre. The SDML Conference is hosted by varying cities in the state.

Utah Municipal Clerks Association (UMCA)
The current President of the Utah is Thieda Wellman,, from Layton City. Their Institute and Academy is March 21st through March 25th and is held in cooperation with the University of Utah. Our annual conference will be held September 28th through the 30th. We are very busy from now through March 10th actively involved in our State legislative session.

Wyoming Association of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers (WAMCAT)
The current President of the WAMCAT is Julie Silbernagel, In September 2012 Wyoming held its first Municipal Institute. In the past four years we are proud to boast that we have added 10 Certified Municipal Clerks and 1 Master Municipal Clerk as well as one Certified Public Finance Administrator as a result of the Institute.

At the annual Wyoming Association of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers (WAMCAT) banquet we recognized Tracy A. Glanz as our WAMCAT of the Year for 2015. Tracy is the Clerk/Treasurer for the City of Worland, Wyoming.

About Our Region VIII Directors

Nancy Vincent, MMC, City Clerk, Thornton, Colorado

Nancy Vincent, MMC, began working for the City of Thornton in February 1974 in the Utilities Billing Division. In 1979 she became the City’s first Deputy City Clerk and in December 1981 was appointed City Clerk. She received her CMC designation in 1986 and Master Municipal Clerk in March 2002.

Because of her interest in education, she served on the IIMC Education/Personal Growth Committee from 1993 to 2006. She Chaired the Research Committee from 2006 to 2007 and served on the Program Review and Certification Committee from 2008 to 2012. She chaired this Committee from 2009 to 2010 and that year had the opportunity to work with Clerks and Institute Directors to revise the Education Guidelines. She is currently serving on the Policy Review Committee. She received the prestigious Quill Award in 2008 and in May 2010 was the recipient of the President’s Award of Special Merit for her work on the Education Guidelines.

She has also been very active in the Colorado Municipal Clerks Association (CMCA) and since becoming a member in 1979 served on the Audit, Membership, Study, Records Management and Education Committees. She served as President for CMCA in 2006.

RaNae Edwards, MMC, City Clerk, Grand Island, Nebraska

Editor’s Note: Edwards won the Region VIII election in January 2016, replacing the vacancy by Board member Renee Cantin, New Mexico.

Grand Island City Clerk RaNae Edwards, MMC, has been involved with county and city governments for over 33 years. She was the Howard County Clerk in St. Paul, NE for 16 years, which was an elected position that she held at the age of 23.

RaNae was appointed Grand Island City Clerk in July of 2000. She received her Certified Municipal Clerk designation in 2003 and Master Municipal Clerk in 2008. She received her Associates Degree in Business Administration through Central Community College in 2005 and her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Doane College in May 2010.

RaNae is currently serving as Second Vice-President for the Nebraska Municipal Clerks Association (NMCA). She has been a presenter at several NMCA Clerks Institute and Academies, served on the NMCA Board of Directors, Education Chairwoman, and Silent Auction Committee Chair. She has severed as President, Vice-President, and Secretary/Treasurer of the Heartland Clerk’s Association.

RaNae was named the 2010 NMCA Outstanding Clerk of the Year. She is a member of the National Association of Parliamentarians and the Grand Island Unit of Parliamentarians.

RaNae enjoys spending time with her grandkids, traveling, reading, riding her Harley, deer hunting, and fishing.

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