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  • 07 Dec 2006 1:37 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Brats,
    In this announcement:
    _________________________________
    1- Coming to a Mailbox Near You
    2-A Little Shameless Groveling
    3- Plastic Anyone?
    4- Shameless Groveling Revistited
    5- Time to Polish The Gold
    6- Attractive Headware Required
    7- One Big, Happy Family
    8- 'Tis the Season
    _________________________________

    1- Coming to a Mailbox Near You
    The next edition of BratNews is nearing completion.  This issue will
    be packed with business stuff like election information, reunion news
    and the long-anticipated reunion registration information.  It's hard
    to believe but Asheville is only six months away. We'll also have
    updates on the database upgrade project, the ABI audit and the credit
    card project.  In addition, look for important information on
    anticipated information sharing with Aramco Services Company as well
    as all the other regular columns, reports and features you've come to
    expect from the ABI's flagship publication.

    2-A Little Shameless Groveling
    As the year draws to a close, please add paying your AdBak
    (Administrative Baksheesh) to your list of things to do. If you are
    doing your budget for '07 don't forget this all-important line item.
    It's just $18(US)and $23(international).  And that's for two years, a
    directory and that special good feeling that you've done your part to
    keep the ABI going into the future.  The AdBak is used for ABI
    operations which include reunion planning, newsletters, website
    hosting and management, professional fees (accounting, legal,
    etc.),postage and shipping... in short, all the stuff we need to do to
    keep the organization viable. For a complete listing see the ABI
    Budget at http://www.aramco-brats.com/ .
    We are an all-volunteer organization and that spirit of volunteerism
    extends to our fundraising as well.  The AdBak is completely
    voluntary, but we depend on it to keep the doors open and the
    newsletters and website going.  The only caveat is that those folks
    registering for the reunion will be required to pay their AdBak to
    complete their registration.  AramcoBrats, Inc. is classified by the
    IRS as a 501(c) 7 Social Organization so, while we are a non-profit,
    your donations are not tax deductible.  Sorry about that, but the
    cause is a good one so don't let it deter you from participating. Go
    to http://www.aramco-brats.com/adbak.htm for more information on how
    to pay your Adminstrative Baksheesh

    3- Plastic Anyone?
    After years of talking about it, the Brats voting in favor of it and
    months of research and deliberation, the ABI board has elected to
    begin taking credit cards as a form of payment for AdBaks,
    registrations, and other purchases from our various fund-raising
    programs.  This was not an easy decision as the world of credit cards
    and merchant services is a very messy place. It's basically a jungle
    out there and we needed to make sure we were selecting the most
    cost-effective, reliable and secure program possible. After much
    floor-writhing and gnashing of teeth we settled on PayPal as the best
    option to start with.  Future boards may wish to reevaluate the
    options, but PayPal's much-improved service really is the best for us
    to use at least initially until we can really measure the costs and
    benefits of a credit card program.  The service allows for the
    processing of payments with or without a PayPal account and allows the
    ABI to offer the payment option without paying truly exorbitant fees
    for the many months of the year when we simply don't have any
    financial activity.  Look for more information on this exciting new
    option in the very near future.

    4- Shameless Groveling Revistited
    Another critical component of our fundraising activity has always been
    the very popular raffle and auctions at the reunions.  In order to
    keep those happening, we need things to raffle and auction.  If you
    have Saudi or Aramco-related items taking up space in you attic or
    garage, why not consider donating them to this worthwhile effort.
    You'll be using your stuff to make other Brats happy and will be
    funding the ABI at the same time.  Beats having that stuff taking up
    storage space.  Contact raffleauction@aramco-brats.com to offload your
    stuff to a good cause.

    5- Time to Polish the Gold
    I've said it above, but I'll say it again: Asheville is only six
    months away!  Better polish those bangles and name rings.
    Registration forms are coming out in the newsletter and there will be
    an online registration option once the newsletter hits also. In the
    meantime, though you definitely need to make your travel and
    accommodation arrangements right now.  There is information on that at
    http://www.aramco-brats.com/navreunion.htm

    6- Attractive Headware Required
    Speaking of Asheville, the North Carolina Reunion Committee is still
    looking for ghutras of any color or variety.  If you have any of these
    tucked away in the linen closet that you can part with to enhance the
    reunion experience for everyone, shoot an e-mail off to
    reunion2007@aramco-brats.com

    7- One Big, Happy Family
    The database upgrade, another long-anticipated project, has progressed
    by leaps and bounds thanks to some very dedicated hard work by two
    Brat volunteers.  Jay Crawford and Mark Rines have put their database
    and IT genius together to work out the consolidation of the ABI's many
    databases into one comprehensive system that will allow the various
    functional entities (Database Director, E-mail Director, Webmaster,
    Treasurer, Reunion Registration) within the organization to work with
    the same data in real time. It may not sound like much, but it is a
    huge step forward and a project that could have cost the Brats
    thousands of dollars if not for the able and generous help of our Brat
    volunteers.  A parallel system is being set up and the project is
    entering the test phase.  We anticipate several months of testing
    before we finally flip the switch and go live with the new system.

    8- 'Tis the Season
     Avoid those crowded stores, long lines, and other things that make
    you go ?bah, humbug!?  Pick out something fun and a little closer to
    home for your favorite Brat or family member from the ABI Suq.  To see
    what?s available, just click ?ABI Suq? under Quick Links on the ABI
    home page ( http://www.aramco-brats.com/ ).  What better stocking
    stuffer than an Aramco Brat t-shirt or lapel pin?  Questions?  Just
    drop us a line ? suq@aramco-brats.com

    Mike Simms AB'78
    ABI President
  • 18 Aug 2006 2:35 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    1- The Secret Zip Code
    2- Newsletter at aramco-brats.com
    3- World Series, Dhahran Style
    4- Musical Reunion Chairs

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The Secret Zip Code

    Those of you who have received your newsletter and dutifully attempted
    to fill out and mail in your AdBak for the term, have most likely
    noticed the missing zip code for our esteemed treasurer.  The complete
    address for AdBaks is:

    AramcoBrats, Inc.
    c/o Doug Webb
    P.O. Box 270931
    San Diego, CA  92128-2931

    We apologize for any inconvenience the omission may have caused.  AdBaks
    are very important to keeping the ABI going, so we hope you can forgive
    us and send in yours today.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Newsletter at aramco-brats.com

    Speaking of newsletters.  In case you didn't receive yours or it got
    thrown out with all the other junk mail, you can view the latest edition
    of BratNews in all its glory on at http://www.aramco-brats.com . We have
    received some returns due to invalid addresses, so make sure you update
    us with your new address if you have moved.  You can also do that on the
    website.

    Make sure you check out the outstanding article on Brat bands and be
    sure to take note of the call for board candidates.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    World Series, Dhahran Style

    Transatlantic Division Little League Champions, Arabian American LL from
    Dhahran, Saudi Arabia make their way to the Little League Baseball World
    Series tournament once again.  From the looks of the stats from the
    Transatlantic tournament, these kids are good.  The team is set to begin
    their tournament play Friday, August 18, 2006 against Canadian champs,
    Whalley Little League from Surrey, British Colombia.  Tune in to ESPN2
    at 6:00pm ET (currently GMT -4:00) for all the action and to cheer on our
    home team.  Better yet, grab a couple of other Brats and have a party to
    watch the game. For complete listings of the schedule and to follow the
    standings as the tournament progresses go to
    http://www.littleleague.org/series/2006divisions/llbb/series.htm

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Musical Reunion Chairs

    The 2007 Reunion Committee has a new chairperson.  Amelia Knight-Sutton
    has graciously agreed to step into the leadership spot vacated by Mary
    Martin-Venker.  Mary has stepped aside for personal and family reasons
    but will continue to serve on the committee. Since the  team is still
    all together, and the reorganization is internal to the committee, we
    anticipate that the planning of the best reunion ever will continue
    without a hiccough.  Please welcome Amelia as your new 2007 Reunion Chair.

  • 20 Jul 2006 2:25 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Brats,

    We've got some new information to share and some old stuff that just
    bears repeating, so read on for an ABI update.

    Brand new financial reports reflecting activity through the second
    quarter of 2006 have been posted to the AramcoBrats website. Take a
    look if numbers are your thing. Even if they're not, take a look
    anyway to get a picture of the financial health of the ABI. It's your
    money and we want you to know that we're taking good care of it. Also,
    read on below for a discussion and primer of sorts on the report from
    Doug Webb, ABI Treasurer.

    Also, Asheville, NC has been in the news lately and we thought you
    might like to take a closer look at the home of the 2007 reunion.  If
    that inspires you, we've included instructions for making reservations
    at the reunion hotel.

    And finally, there is stuff we need to get rid of and stuff we need to
    get, so take a close look at the last two items in this update. Each
    describes an excellent way to support the ABI and it's work.

    Mike Simms AB'78
    ABI President


    In this update:

    1- Financial Reports Posted on aramco-brats.com
    2- Information on Asheville, NC -- Home of the 2007 Reunion
    3- Make Your Reservations for 2007
    4- Past Reunion Swag for Sale
    5- Raffe/Auction Donations Needed

    ------------------------------------------------

    Financial Reports Posted on aramco-brats.com

    Financial Report by Doug Webb
    As someone who has benefited greatly from the dedicated efforts of the
    ABI, primarily as a result of having more fun than humans should be
    allowed to have at several Reunions, I've always wanted to find a way
    to contribute to the Aramco-Brats. So when I was approached last
    summer and asked whether I would like to help out and fill in as
    Treasurer, naturally I said, "Are you out of your mind?!".

    Eight months later, here I sit with binders of correspondence,
    statements, and receipts, not to mention a 1982 edition of Managerial
    Accounting on my desk. To be honest, the job of ABI Treasurer has
    been a learning experience for me; much of this due to getting
    familiar with using a Quicken program that tracks all the financial
    activity and the corresponding chart of accounts that creates a
    category for all expenses and receipts.

    Most of the categories you see in this report are also broken down
    into sub-categories. For instance, the Publications expense account
    contains sub-accounts for newsletter, directories and election
    ballots, and each of those has categories for printing, and mailing
    costs. AdBaks are divided between a category to offset costs of
    printing the directory and a donation category. So, when the Treasurer
    writes a check for something or processes a receipt, in many cases
    they have to be apportioned into different sub-categories. Certainly,
    I have a new found admiration for those who preceded me in the job.
    And I can hear Cathie and Kathy saying, "Just wait until the Reunion."!

    For those of you keeping score at home, the numbers in certain
    categories may change on occasion due to modifications to past
    activity; a good example being the few Brats who are due refunds as a
    result of overpaying their reunion fees, and checks that were written
    to Brats that were never cashed. Some may opt for a refund; others may
    want to have the money applied to 2006-2007 AdBaks. Others still, may
    be feeling generous and will donate all or a portion of their refund
    to the ABI. And believe it or not, we do have some bad debt: checks
    received from Brats that bounced a while ago, and have yet to be
    replaced. Currently, this amount is less than $300, but if never
    -----------------

    Information on Asheville, NC -- Home of the 2007 Reunion

    Check the Reunion pages at www.aramco-brats.com to find out more about
    Asheville. The 2007 Reunion Committee has provided a list of ?Things
    to do in Asheville? which includes links to some interesting area
    restaurants, architectural and outdoor interests, historic attractions
    and museums, as well as shopping areas. For more ideas or just to get
    you daydreaming about the next reunion location, read the travel
    article from the Sunday San Diego Tribune, ?Blue Ridge Mountains a
    haven for the handmade in a soothing setting,? at
    ",1] ); //--> recovered, will have to be written off the books. Finally, we are
    still in the process of having our books audited - a task that must be
    completed at the end of each Board Term. All of these activities may
    result in changes to the posted numbers.

    Many of you have expressed a desire to pay for your AdBaks and Reunion
    fees with a credit or debit card. Yes, we have a committee for that
    (!), and it is exploring a variety of solutions that will allow us to
    incorporate credit card processing to our bank account and website.
    The service is not free and normally involves a flat monthly fee and a
    nominal charge for each transaction. In addition to being
    cost-effective, we also want to be sure that our chosen solution is
    one that protects both you and the ABI from fraudulent activity. It is
    our goal to have this feature available by the end of the year.

    If you have any questions, concerns or suggestions, please don't
    hesitate to write me at
    doug@aramco-brats.com.

    Until next time, ma'a sallaamah!

    -----------------------------------------------

    Information on Asheville, NC -- Home of the 2007 Reunion

    Check the Reunion pages at www.aramco-brats.com to find out more about
    Asheville. The 2007 Reunion Committee has provided a list of "Things
    to do in Asheville" which includes links to some interesting area
    restaurants, architectural and outdoor interests, historic attractions
    and museums, as well as shopping areas. For more ideas or just to get
    you daydreaming about the next reunion location, read the travel
    article from the Sunday San Diego Tribune, "Blue Ridge Mountains a
    haven for the handmade in a soothing setting," at
    -----------------

    Make Your Asheville Reservations

    Reservations at the Crowne Plaza must be made by May 10, 2007. To make
    your reservations, go to
    http://www.ashevillecp.com) and click on
    ?reserve online?. You will be prompted to enter dates needed and
    number of people. At the very bottom of the screen there will be a box
    for ?group booking code?. Enter ABR to get the group rate. For those
    who prefer to make their reservations by telephone, dial the toll-free
    reservation number for the Crowne Plaza in Asheville - (800)733-3211.
    Don?t forget to give them our group code to ensure you receive the
    group rate. For those of you who are planning a longer vacation around
    the reunion dates, our group rates will be valid for an additional 3
    days before and 3 days after the event.

    Suites cannot be reserved directly at this time. If you would like a
    suite, please send an email to suiterequest@aramco-brats.com and
    request to be added to the waiting list. Suites will be offered to
    those on the wait list on a first come,first-served basis closer to
    the reunion.

    ------------------------------------------------

    Past Reunion Swag for Sale

    2005 ABI reunion merchandise is available at the AramcoBrats Online
    Store. For those of you who were unable to attend the reunion but
    inquired about purchasing reunion t-shirts and goodie bags, we?ve made
    an entire goodie bag ?bundle? including a t-shirt and AramcoBrat pin,
    available for a special price. To order, visit the ABI Suq at
    ",1] ); //--> http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20060716/news_lz1t16blue.html.

    -----------------------------------------------

    Make Your Asheville Reservations

    Reservations at the Crowne Plaza must be made by May 10, 2007. To make
    your reservations, go to http://www.ashevillecp.com) and click on
    "reserve online". You will be prompted to enter dates needed and
    number of people. At the very bottom of the screen there will be a box
    for "group booking code". Enter ABR to get the group rate. For those
    who prefer to make their reservations by telephone, dial the toll-free
    reservation number for the Crowne Plaza in Asheville - (800)733-3211.
    Don't forget to give them our group code to ensure you receive the
    group rate. For those of you who are planning a longer vacation around
    the reunion dates, our group rates will be valid for an additional 3
    days before and 3 days after the event.

    Suites cannot be reserved directly at this time. If you would like a
    suite, please send an email to suiterequest@aramco-brats.com and
    request to be added to the waiting list. Suites will be offered to
    those on the wait list on a first come,first-served basis closer to
    the reunion.

    ------------------------------------------------

    Past Reunion Swag for Sale

    2005 ABI reunion merchandise is available at the AramcoBrats Online
    Store. For those of you who were unable to attend the reunion but
    inquired about purchasing reunion t-shirts and goodie bags, we've made
    an entire goodie bag "bundle" including a t-shirt and AramcoBrat pin,
    available for a special price. To order, visit the ABI Suq at
    -------------------

    Raffe/Auction Donations Needed

    We are extremely fortunate that our now-famous (and highly
    anticipated) reunion raffle and auction is totally supported by
    generous donations of much sought-after treasures from our days in the
    Middle East.  The items are donated by Brats, parents, teachers, and
    other friends of AramcoBrats, Inc.  Last year this event raised over
    $5,000.  If you have items you would like to donate to the upcoming
    raffle/auction in Asheville, please send a note to
    raffleauction@aramco-brats.com.

    ",0] ); D(["ce"]); //--> www.aramco-brats.com (select AramcoBrats from the top menu). Goodie
    bags, t-shirts and pins may also be purchased separately. Sorry, only
    XL t-shirts remain!

    -------------------------------------------------

    Raffe/Auction Donations Needed

    We are extremely fortunate that our now-famous (and highly
    anticipated) reunion raffle and auction is totally supported by
    generous donations of much sought-after treasures from our days in the
    Middle East.  The items are donated by Brats, parents, teachers, and
    other friends of AramcoBrats, Inc.  Last year this event raised over
    $5,000.  If you have items you would like to donate to the upcoming
    raffle/auction in Asheville, please send a note to
    raffleauction@aramco-brats.com.
  • 22 Apr 2006 2:21 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Brats,

    We're back. We realize we've been kind of quiet for awhile, but we're back now. There has been much going on with the ABI. We've been wrapping up finances from last term, creating a viable budget for this term, negotiating hotel contracts for the 2007 reunion (see item 2 if you just can't wait any longer), and getting to know each other on the new board. There's a lot to talk about and we'll be sending out these e-mail updates regularly again at a rate of about one per month.

    Mike Simms AB'78
    ABI President

    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    In This Update:

    1- Who's on the ABI board?
    2- Are we going to have reunion or what?
    3- Who are those party people?
    4- Where is that newsletter anyway?

    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    Who's on the ABI board?

    Please welcome your ABI board for the 2005-2007 term. There are some new faces on board as well as a number of old hands who have returned for the fun. This organization depends on the time and effort of these dedicated volunteers. If you want to put a face with the name, you can always go to http://www.aramco-brats.com/board.htm. Please take a moment to buy these hard-working folk a glass of something at the next reunion in...umm... oh, yeah, that's the next item.

    Mike Simms AB'78 -- President
    Diane Knipfel-Adams AB'75 -- Vice President
    Doug Webb DH'72 -- Treasurer
    Pat Meadors-Desormeau RT'60 -- Secretary
    Marie Littlejohn-Dunn DH'77 -- Reunion Oversight Director
    Diana Ryrholm-Geerdes RT'62 -- Director at Large - Contracts
    Gretchen Connally DH'91 -- Website Director
    Nominations - Gary Barnes DH'70 -- Director at Large
    Penny Dougharty-Maher DH'72 -- Database Director
    Doral Zadorkin-Allen DH'66 -- E-mail Director
    Dean Barnes DH'67 -- Publications Director
    Dawn Kolb DH'92 -- Class Representative Director

    E-mail addressses are posted on the website, so feel free to drop any one of us a note if you have a question or need something.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    “In My Mind I’m Going to Carolina…….”

    Finally ! The announcement for which you have all been so patiently waiting! We are very excited to announce that the 2007 ABI Reunion will be held at the Crowne Plaza Resort Asheville in beautiful Asheville, North Carolina. Just off the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway, Asheville is a wonderful blend of art, history and nature and was voted one of the “10 Great Adventure Towns” by National Geographic Adventure. There is something for everyone in our Brat family, old or young, from strolling around historic downtown Asheville to hiking and river rafting. The area around Asheville offers many different things to do. The Biltmore Estate, Chimney Rock Park, Lake Lure and the Blue Ridge Parkway, one of the most scenic drives in the country, are just a few.

    The Crowne Plaza Resort Asheville sits on 125 acres nestled against the Blue Ridge Mountains, just minutes from downtown Asheville. Surrounded with verandas loaded with rocking chairs for enjoying the spectacular views, the property has some other inviting gathering spots, including Mulligan’s Bar and Grille, with its overstuffed furniture and large, stone fireplace ; an outdoor pool and patio, and the aptly named Overlook Room and adjoining Overlook Terrace, which offer spectacular views of the 18-hole golf course against a mountain backdrop – perfect settings for late night reminiscences, rekindling friendships and starting new ones! All guest rooms include private patios or balconies with mountain or golf course views, and additional accommodations in the form of vacation villas are tucked in the woods along the golf course.

    The Crowne Plaza will only take reservations *after* June 10,2006. Keep your eye on the ABI website for more information as June rolls around.

    Please be on the look out for an upcoming newsletter, and check the ABI website often for more details on Reunion 2007 and tips on getting to Asheville. Be sure to check out http://www.exploreasheville.com for details on local and area attractions.

    The stage and crew are set for another great ABI reunion. We’re just waiting for the cast of Aramco Brats to arrive and bring the party to life. Mark your calendars for Memorial Day weekend (May 25-28) 2007, make your reservations, then pull up a rocking chair on the veranda and join us! See you there!
    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    Who's giving this party?

    Your most excellent volunteer 2007 reunion committee consists of:

    Mary Martin-Venker DH'73 - Chair
    Pam Branch AB'79
    Sherri Dent-Moxley DH'77
    Kathleen Hines-Reardon DH'71
    April Jones-Morris RT'87
    ---------------------------------

    Where is that newsletter anyway?

    The Spring 2006 newsletter is in progress and just waiting for a few
    final bits of information before we put it to bed. Dean has done another
    great job with the layout and art as well as an excellent article on
    Brat bands over the years. This issue will be packed with information on
    the ABI, Photos and reminicenses about the Houston Reunion, the upcoming
    Asheville reunion and more. Look for it in your mailbox in May.

    # # #


    ",1] ); //--> Kim Kirkwood-Knox RT'73
    Amelia Knight-Sutton DH'77
    Mark Lameier DH'68

    A picture of this great team is also available on the ABI website. These folks are the ones who really need you to buy them a drink in Asheville.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    Where is that newsletter anyway?

    The Spring 2006 newsletter is in progress and just waiting for a few final bits of information before we put it to bed. Dean has done another great job with the layout and art as well as an excellent article on Brat bands over the years. This issue will be packed with information on the ABI, Photos and reminicenses about the Houston Reunion, the upcoming Asheville reunion and more. Look for it in your mailbox in May.
  • 08 Oct 2005 2:20 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    ABI Announcement List #22 - October 8, 2005

    1. ABI Treasurer
    2. ABI Audit
    3. BratStore Update: New Products, Autumn Sale

    ===================================

    1. ABI Treasurer

    We are pleased to announce that Doug Webb, DH 1972, has been appointed as
    the new ABI Treasurer. Doug's experience over the last 30 years has been in
    purchasing and contracts, which involved the use of a variety of account
    software and methods. We are all looking forward to working with Doug. If
    you have any questions for Doug you can reach him at doug@aramco-brats.com.

    ===================================

    2. ABI Audit

    Our bylaws require the ABI to commission an audit by a volunteer or
    compensated professional, of AramcoBrat and Reunion Committee finances every
    two years. A huge thank you to Kirk Lippert, DH 1972, for offering to audit
    this term's financial records.


    ===================================

    3. BratStore Update: New Products, Autumn Sale

    The ABI BratStore (<http://www.cafepress.com/aramcobrats>) has added
    a number of new products to all the district (ABQ, DH, RT, UDH)
    stores. Among the new items: district-logo holiday ornaments and
    giftware, kids' hoodies and sweatshirts, women's track suits, and
    other clothing items. As always, the BratStore has a wide variety
    other district-logo items, including T-shirts, coffee mugs, and
    decorations with district and reunion logos.

    To make things even better, the BratStore is currently offering a
    $2-off sale on on autumn attire (Long Sleeve Tshirts, Junior
    Hoodies, Women's Raglan Sweatshirts, Baseball Jerseys, Hooded
    Sweatshirts, and Regular Sweatshirts) from October 11-25. To get the
    sale price on these items, enter the the Coupon Code ("Fall2") when
    you place your order.

    All products have a 30-day 100% money-back guarantee, so if you're
    not satisfied with a purchase for any reason, return it for a full
    refund. Products are priced $1-2 above costs (to pay for the expense
    of maintaining the online store). Any profit remaining at the end of
    the year goes to the ABI. The main goal here is to get quality Brat
    stuff into Brat hands as cheaply and easily as possible.

    Please contact webmaster@aramco-brats.com if you have any questions
    or comments. Thanks.

    ===================================

    Diana Ryrholm-Geerdes RT 1962
    For the ABI Board of Directors
  • 21 Aug 2005 2:19 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
      ABI Announcement List #21 - August 21, 2005

      1. Volunteers Needed = Treasurer and Auditor
      2. Brat Band Information Wanted
      3. 2005 AramcoBrat Directory and 2003-2005 AdBak

      ===================================

      1. The ABI Board continues to seek a Brat with experience in business finance or bookkeeping to fill the vacant Treasurer's position. The position requires familiarity with Quicken and Excel, and the time to manage the ABI finances and participate in board discussions and votes. Cathie McCoy, our last treasurer, has offered to help her replacement become familiar with our books and her system, and additional support and guidance is available from all of us on the ABI board. The ABI Board does not issue badge numbers, but we do promise the satisfaction that comes from helping to make the biennial reunions possible, and a chance to connect with more Brats than you would find at a Ras Tanura Tri-D dance.

      The ABI Board is also seeking a second volunteer to provide a term-end audit of the ABI books. Accounting skills and an eye for procedural inconsistencies, math errors, lack of detail or other potential problems are required, along with a day or two of your time.

      Please contact Gary Barnes, DH 70 at gary@aramco-brats.com if you are interested in either of these positions, or if you know of any Brat who might not see this announcement but may be interested or qualified. We would encourage you to contact Gary or any member of the ABI Board if you want to learn more about what is involved.

      ===================================

      2. Brat Band Information Wanted

      Are you familiar with the Leaky Roof Circuit Band, Fourth Run, Hell No, Arabian American Music Company, Rubber Band, the Exit Visas, or any other Brat Band?

      Brats have often mentioned the bands that played the Tri-D dances, but there doesn't seem to be any collected information on when these bands existed and who played in them. Dean Barnes, our Publications Director, is collecting information on Brat Bands for an upcoming issue of the Brat News.

      If you played in a band, if you were a fan, or simply in the crowd to enjoy the music in one of the Aramco camps, and you can recall who was playing on stage, please email dean@aramco-brats.com with the following information:

      a.) The name of the band.
      b.) The years in which the band was actively playing (please list reunion appearances separately).
      c.) The names and instruments of the band members.
      d.) The district the band was primarily from.
      e.) The songs and type of music played by the band.
      f.) Any interesting stories about the bands that you remember.
      g.) If you have any photographs of a Brat Band which you would be willing to share.
      h.) If you have any recordings of a Brat Band which you would be willing to share.

      ===================================

      3. 2005 AramcoBrat Directory and 2003-2005 AdBak

      The 2005 AramcoBrat Directory has been mailed to all Brats that paid their AdBak and were unable to attend the reunion. If you paid your AdBak, but have not received your directory, please contact diana@aramco-brats.com.

      There is still time to pay your AdBak for this term - and receive the new Directory. Sign on to www.aramco-brats.com, click on ABI, click on Administrative Bakasheesh, print out the form, and mail to Diana Ryrholm-Geerdes. If you have any AdBak questions, please contact Diana at diana@aramco-brats.com.

      ===================================


      Diana Ryrholm-Geerdes RT 1962
      For the ABI Board of Directors

      ===================================

      Email webmaster@aramco-brats.com if you have any questions.

  • 27 Jul 2005 2:17 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
      1. Cathie McCoy (Treasurer) Resignation
      2. Message From Cathie McCoy
      3. Replacement Treasurer Needed
      4. 2005 AramcoBrat Directory
      5. Auditor Need - Stay Tuned

      ===================================

      1. Cathie McCoy (Treasurer) Resignation

      I regret to announce the resignation of the ABI Treasurer, Cathie McCoy. Cathie struggled with this decision for some time and concluded that this was the best decision. We appreciate all of the fine contributions that Cathie made during her time on the ABI Board. She established a standardized Chart of Account system which will enable us to have meaningful comparisions of income and expenses from term to term. She developed new financial reports for Board use which enable us to monitor our finances in a timely fashion. And, she revised the financial information which has provided better information and communication for the Brat population. Her humor and wit will be missed. We wish her well with her future endeavors.

      ===================================


      2. Message From Cathie McCoy

      With regret, I have resigned as Treasurer of AramcoBrats, Inc. effective immediately. The ABI Board and I will work to ensure a smooth transition of my duties per the ABI Bylaws.

      This decision was hard to reach, but due to a change in my personal circumstances, I am not able to perform the duties required of the position and feel that I am currently hurting the organization by remaining in place.

      I know this will come as a shock to some - but I assure you that my respect and affection for and belief in the ABI and its Board is in no way diminished. I wish you and the organization every success.

      For those who have been or will be directly affected by my inability to do my job in a timely manner, I thank you for your patience and extend an apology for any difficulty I have caused you.

      With much affection,

      Cathie McCoy, RT'74

      ===================================


      3. Replacement Treasurer Needed

      Cathie McCoy's recent resignation from the ABI Treasurer's position leaves the ABI Board with a critical vacancy. I would like to invite any Brat with experience and interest in business finance to consider submitting their name to fill this position.

      The ABI Treasurer is the equivalent of the Chief Financial Officer of the organization, responsible for overseeing a budget that approaches $100,000. Anyone interested in this position should be familiar with both Excel and Quicken, and be able to devote several hours each week to fiscal management and participation in the Board discussions and votes.

      The Treasurer's position is normally an elected position, but since Cathie's resignation comes in mid-term, her replacement will be appointed by the Board. Cathie has told us that she is available to consult with her replacement to help them become familiar with her responsibilities and her records system. Support is also available from other Board members to help our new Treasurer throughout their term.

      Anyone who would like to know more about this opportunity, or would like to submit their name for consideration, should write Gary Barnes, who chairs the ABI Nominating Committee, at gbarnes@ne.rr.com. Please describe your credentials and experience, and why you would like to consider becoming the ABI Treasurer. Participation on the ABI Board is a serious commitment, but one that brings with it many personal rewards and the satisfaction of helping to keep the ABI mission alive.

      ===================================


      4. 2005 AramcoBrat Directory

      We have had several unavoidable delays in the reunion wrap up which affected the mailing of the 2005 Directory to those Brats that paid their AdBak and were unable to attend the reunion. Our current plan is to get them in the mail next week. We thank you for your patience.

      ===================================


      5. Auditor Needed - Stay Tuned

      We are looking for a volunteer to audit our books for the 2003-2005 term. Our heartfelt thanks to Annie Oskam who has done this for us for the past several years. She has decided it is time to retire. :-) More details in the next Announcement. In the meantime, if you are interested, please contact me (diana@aramco-brats.com) or Gary Barnes (gary@aramco-brats.com.

      ===================================


      Diana Ryrholm-Geerdes RT 1962
      For the ABI Board of Directors

      Email webmaster@aramco-brats.com if you have any questions.

  • 06 Jun 2005 2:11 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
      1. Many Thanks to the Houston Reunion Committee
      2. Shukran From the Reunion Committee
      3. Class and Group Photo Orders
      4. ABI Reunion Photo Gallery
      5. Reunion Lost and Found
      6. Reunion 2007!!
      7. 2005 AramcoBrat Directory and 2003-2005 AdBak
      8. 2005-2007 ABI Elected Board

      ===================================

      1. Many Thanks to the Houston Reunion Committee

      The ABI Board sincerely thanks the Houston Reunion Committee (Marie Littlejohn-Dunn, Penny Dougharty-Maher, Lisa Menicke-Sandefur, Osama Mikhail, Andrew Bobb, and James Erwin) for a superb job in organizing and hosting the 10th AramcoBrat Biennial Reunion. Over 850 Brats, parents, teachers, and guests registered for the reunion. Many were first-time attendees.

      My favorite reunion story is about a classmate of mine that attended her first Brat reunion. Every time I saw her she was smiling. On the second day she came up to me with a huge grin on her face. She proclaimed, "I am never missing another reunion in my life!"

      ===================================

      2. Shukran From the Reunion Committee!

      The Reunion Committee would like to express its sincere appreciation to all who turned out and made it such a great weekend! We merely provided the backdrop, but it took all of you to come and bring it life for us! It was so nice to look around and see everyone having such a good time with old friends and making some new friends. Mission accomplished!

      To the BAGS, what can we say? The reunion would not have been the same without Suite 333 (a.k.a. Halfway-to-Hell). Thanks so much for your desert hospitality in opening the doors to all.

      Thanks so much to the many who volunteered to help us out, from the early arrivals who contributed their muscles to setting up those palm trees to the class photo shepherds to the prize runners at the banquet.

      And last, but certainly not least, thanks to all of you for the compliments and kind words about your reunion experiences. It really means a lot to us!

      See you in 2!

      ===================================

      3. Class and Group Photo Orders

      Class and group photo orders can be placed at Elegant Portraits (http://www.elegantportraits.com). To see the reunion galleries, click "Click Here to Order Prints" and then click "Aramco Brats Reunion - Houston" in the Galleries section (or just point a browser here).

      In addition to standard prints, there are several other fun options available: t-shirts, mugs, mousepads, and picture puzzle. The group photo shots were done with large film that requires special processing but will be posted as soon as they are available.

      ===================================

      4. ABI Reunion Photo Gallery

      Webmaster Michael McCoy is setting up a photo gallery on the ABI website to display pictures folks took during the Houston reunion. If last reunion is any indication, we might end up with *hundreds* of pictures. We welcome your pictures if you are inclined to share them with the rest of us.

      A couple of guidelines:

    • Identifying who is in the pictures is very welcome, since that lets folks who may not recognize a face get more enjoyment when they see a name they know.

    • Try to be at least somewhat selective. Space on the ABI website is not limited, but we would prefer 20-30 excellent pictures over 100 pictures of the back of someone's head or a blurry close-up, especially if you're sending them as large files. Emphasis is on quality, not quantity: if you have 100 excellent pictures you want to share, by all means send them along.

    • If you have 100 excellent pictures you want to share, don't send them all at once. Send about 10 per email. Michael's server gets grumpy when it has to deal with enormous attachments.

    • You can save upload time by (a) resizing your pictures to about 4" x 6" and/or (b) using a compression utility such as Stuffit or WinZip to reduce file sizes.

    • If possible, send the files as medium-to-high resolution JPEG files. Michael can handle other non-obscure file formats, but getting everything as JPEGs makes life easier.

    • We would be happy to provide a link to a photo gallery on your site (or a class site on the ABI server) as an alternative to putting all the pictures on the ABI site. Feel free to send a link if that works better for you.

      If you want to have your pictures included in the ABI gallery, please send them to Michael at webmaster@aramco-brats.com

      ===================================

      5. Reunion Lost and Found

      We've added a Lost and Found forum to the Reunion section of the ABI BratBoard (http://www.aramco-brats.com/BratBoard/). If you lost something you'd like to get back (or if you found something you think some Brat is going to miss), please post a message in the Lost and Found forum and maybe somebody can help.

      To post a message, you'll need a (free) BratBoard membership*, but non-members are welcome to read the messages to see if something sounds familiar.

      Questions? Contact Michael.

      *To request a BratBoard membership, just click the Register link at the top of any BratBoard page and use the member form to specify what username you want to use and what your email address is. Once you respond to a confirmation message, your account is active. Simple.

      ===================================

      6. Reunion 2007!!!

      The ABI is proud to announce that Mary Martin-Venker (DH'73) has accepted the job of chair of the 2007 Reunion. While an exact location has not yet been selected, we are quite sure that you'll find the 2007 reunion somewhere in the Carolinas. Watch the ABI website for further updates.

      ===================================

      7. 2005 AramcoBrat Directory and 2003-2005 AdBak

      The new directory will be mailed to those Brats that have paid their AdBak (and were unable to attend the reunion) within the next several weeks. We need to wrap up reunion finances before sending them out.

      It isn't too late to pay your AdBak for this term. Sign on to www.aramco-brats.com, click on ABI, click on Administrative Baksheesh, print out the form, and mail to the address on the form. If you have any. AdBak questions, please contact treasurer@aramco-brats.com.

      ===================================

      8. 2005-2007 ABI Elected Board

      We are pleased to announce the results of the ABI election. Your new elected officers will be:

      Michael Simms AB 1978 - President
      Diane Knipfel-Adams AB 1975 - Vice President
      Pat Meadors-Desormeau RT 1960 - Secretary
      Cathie McCoy RT 1974 - Treasurer

      Their two-year term will begin on November 1, 2005.

      ===================================

      Wishing all of you a pleasant summer,

      Diana Ryrholm-Geerdes RT 1962
      For the ABI Board of Directors and the Houston Reunion Committee

      This is the ABI Announcement List, a low-traffic list reserved for official ABI business. To unsubscribe, send an email with your name and class to opt-out@aramco-brats.com.

      Email webmaster@aramco-brats.com if you have any questions.

  • 22 May 2005 2:09 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
      1. On-Line Reunion Registration Closing
      2. Wanted - Pictures of Life in Aramco Camps

      1. On-Line Reunion Registration Closing

      On Sunday, May 22, the on-line registration form will be disabled, and you will no longer be able to submit an on-line registration form. This is to allow the committee time to finalize the database and print name tags prior to the opening of Registration at the Hilton Houston Post Oak. If you have not yet registered for the reunion, you may still do so at the door starting Thursday afternoon. Goodie bags and t-shirts for walk-up registrations will be available as long as "extra" supplies last.

      The Reunion Committee would like to express its thanks to all of you who registered on-line. The vast majority of registrations were submitted electronically. Not only does this cut down on entry errors on the Committee's end, but it also saves an incredible amount of work for the person who has taken on the daunting task of building the database, in this case, Penny Dougharty Maher. THANK YOU for your fabulous response to the on-line registration option!


      2. Wanted - Pictures of Life In Aramco Camps

      ABI Publications Director, Dean Barnes, is looking for a few good pictures of life in Aramco camps for use in future copies of Newsletters and on the ABI website. Dean plans to bring a laptop computer and scanner to the reunion. He will set aside a *limited* amount of time to scan in photographs presented to him by individual Brats which he determines would be of broad interest to all of Bratdom. He is looking for three types of pictures. First, pictures of recognizable features in any of the areas in which Brats lived in Saudi Arabia. Second, images of Arabian cultural items or buildings as well as non-Aramco areas which are generally recognizable to brats. This area can show groups of Brats in front of the generally recognizable areas. Third, group shots of Brats in front of recognizable areas outside of Arabia (i.e. London, Hong Kong, etc.) Dean is not looking for general photos of Brats which could have been taken anywhere - his emphasis is in the first two categories.

      Dean plans to set up in the Suq sometime on Saturday (probably in the late morning). He hopes to post an announcement - if not, look for him. Please only bring photos which you took, or which you have permission to let us use. Dean will look over the pictures and discuss with you what interest it might have to the Brat community. If your photos will be used he will ask you to sign a short release giving us permission to use the image, he will scan the image into his laptop while you watch, then give the picture back to you, keeping, of course, the scanned image. The release will have a space for you to write the correct spelling of your name, a brief description of each image used and the names of any people in the images. Dean cautions everyone that this is an untested process - one which he is putting together at the last moment because he likes the idea. Like many good ideas, it may not operate as he intend s it to, so there are no guarantees that any of this will occur.


      Hope to see you next week,
      Diana Ryrholm-Geerdes RT 1962
      For the ABI Board of Directors and the Houston Reunion Committee


      This is the ABI Announcement List, a low-traffic list reserved for official ABI business. To unsubscribe, send an email with your name and class to opt-out@aramco-brats.com.

      Email webmaster@aramco-brats.com if you have any questions.

  • 15 May 2005 2:08 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
      1. Hofuf
      2. Friends of Bill W. Leader
      3. ABI Election Reminder

      1. Hofuf

      Did you lose that treasured puzzle ring? Forgot to buy a Syrian backgammon board when you had the chance? Well, don't forget to bring a little extra faloose (don't count on being able to use a credit card) to the reunion to spend at "Hofuf" on Saturday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. You just might find something you've always wanted or maybe something you never knew you wanted but have to have! Sorry, no goats or camels will be available -- it's against city ordinance, and we're pretty sure the hotel would NOT approve.


      2. Friends of Bill W. Leader

      The reunion committee has arranged a meeting room for use by the friends of Bill W. We are in need of someone to coordinate a meeting or two during the reunion. Please contact Diane Knipfel Adams at diagain@cox.net with questions or to volunteer. Shukran.


      3. ABI Election Reminder

      Don't forget, this is an election year for the ABI Board. If you haven't returned your ballot, now is the time. If you haven't received a ballot then we probably don't have your correct address. Send us a correction to sherri@aramco-brats.com. We can't send you a new ballot, but you can find one on the AramcoBrat homepage. Click the "ABI 2005 Ballot (PDF Download)" link in the Worth Noting box. The mailed ballot must be mailed in time to be at Gary Barne's address by May 23. Ballots will be available in Houston for those who attend the reunion.


      See you soon,
      Diana Ryrholm-Geerdes RT 1962
      For the ABI Board of Directors and the Houston Reunion Committee

      This is the ABI Announcement List, a low-traffic list reserved for official ABI business. To unsubscribe, send an email with your name and class to opt-out@aramco-brats.com.

      Email webmaster@aramco-brats.com if you have any questions.



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