Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

We are now about three-quarters of the way through the year, and I, for one, am looking forward to the normalcy of what an off-election year brings in 2021. To say this has been a challenging and disappointing year would be an understatement. Put aside the issues surrounding COVID-19, the political ramifications that have arisen from this year will be long felt. I do not think I ever thought that our political system could ever be as divisive as it has become. I have watched in disappointment the hate and vitriol spewing from the left and right. Worse yet, the media has become complicit in spreading hate and fear within our communities. Where does the public go to get the true news without political bias? We are constantly bombarded with half-truths and sometimes outright lies. Is it any wonder why there is so much unrest? Propaganda has been used for hundreds of years to undermine governments and political systems. Our media has become nothing more than propaganda. The “cancel culture,” which we live in today, seems hell-bent on changing the very fabric of our country. It seems the mantra now is, if we do not like our history, we will erase it and rewrite it based on political agenda, despite what the facts may be. God forbid, we focus on our progress and growth. As a nation, we have areas of dark and disappointing history. We also have so many things to be proud of. I think we can look at our own personal history in a similar fashion. I myself can say I have said or done things in my life that I am not proud of. Whether it was out of immaturity, ignorance or arrogance, I have made mistakes. But I have learned from those mistakes and have tried to be a better person as a result. It’s called personal growth. As a nation and as individuals, I think it’s important to know where you came from and where you want to be. 

I have written often about being civically involved and how important it is. Now, more than ever, we need our members to be involved in our communities. The activists have taken over the media and the political agenda. There is a deliberate and very vocal push to defund the police in our communities. Behind the scenes, there is a push to undermine our POAs and DSAs. Our ability to collectively bargain for our members is being attacked as an impediment to reform. If our voice is stifled, who will be there for law enforcement? At PORAC, we often speak of the “silent majority,” but the silent majority is you — those of you not engaged with your local POA or DSA who go out and do the job every day and go home to your families. We need the everyday person to start engaging in their communities. I’m not asking for people to get political. In fact, I think that’s where we all struggle to communicate with each other. As members of the community, we all have similar needs — the desire to live in a safe and clean environment. We need everyone to start having common-sense conversations with our friends, families and neighbors. Call or email your legislators — it does work! I believe together we can make a difference despite the obstacles the media may put in front of us. 

PORAC will continue to be a voice for law enforcement, and be a resource for our elected officials on legislative issues. Through our collective voice of over 930 organizations, we will force dialogue and try to bring reasonable solutions to the elected who, in many cases, act with emotion and without facts. These are tough times, but together we will get through it. Take care and stay safe out there!

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

Well, we are halfway through 2020, and to be honest, I’m kind of done with the events of this year. It seems like every article I’ve written this year starts out talking about the strange times we are experiencing. It feels like we are living through a cheesy made-for-TV movie with plot twists and conspiracies. Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined a world in which “defund the police” is a political platform debated at the highest levels of our government, or in which a pandemic literally shuts down our nation.

Unfortunately, this is the world we live in these days, and it has kept President Marvel and I on our toes. Our advocacy efforts have had to be very adaptive as we try to navigate the political landscape of both state and federal legislation pertaining to law enforcement reform. Reform is not a new thing for law enforcement, and it’s not a scary word. The truth is our profession is and has been in a constant state of reform. Always changing and adapting to new challenges. Always training on new techniques and tactics for better outcomes, both for the officer and the community. The difference is today the reform is about having less law enforcement and, in some cases, no law enforcement.

As our federal, state and local lawmakers debate these issues, many law enforcement agencies have had to re-evaluate their enforcement strategies. Proactive policing has been severely hampered, and consequently, crime is on a sharp increase, especially violent crime. To add to these challenges here in California, we have the added burden of zero bail and the early release of thousands of inmates from our prisons. For some reason, the news media and our elected officials are under the belief that everyone in prison or who is arrested does not deserve to be in prison and is not a danger to our communities.

With all the rhetoric about how bad police are and the protests, what is sadly forgotten is the victims — I will say it again, the victims! They have been completely overshadowed by every political pundit and candidate trying to seize the moment for their own benefit. Where is the outcry for the victims of the crimes these early-release individuals committed? Who stands up for them? Who is standing up for those victimized everyday as crime rates skyrocket in our communities? That is an easy question: it’s our law enforcement officers who swore an oath to protect our communities.

Even as we are maligned in the media and in the political arena, officers continue to do their duty. It’s that sense of duty that motivates our profession. I have said it before, but I am proud of our profession, and most of all, I am proud to have worked side by side with many hardworking officers whose dedication to their job and communities is unrivaled. Knowing the character of the men and women of law enforcement allows me to passionately represent this profession. I rest easy knowing that despite all the ugly rhetoric, our officers are still out there protecting our communities and will continue to do so. As for Brian and I, we will remain laser-focused on the Legislature to make sure common sense  is part of the discussion when it comes to reforms. As always, thank you for your service, and stay safe out there! 

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

To say 2020 has been life-altering would be an understatement. We began it with a sense of optimism: After three years of negotiations on use-of-force reform in California, we had landed on a solution that we felt addressed the needs of the public and law enforcement with AB 392 taking effect in January and SB 230 set to go into effect in 2021. But by March, the COVID-19 pandemic was in full effect and we all experienced a complete shutdown of our country. Now, in the aftermath of the George Floyd incident in Minneapolis, we find ourselves in a national battle over extreme reforms to law enforcement at a national level.

I don’t have to write an article about the actions of the officers in Minneapolis; it goes without saying that we as law enforcement officers condemn what occurred. The media and some of our elected officials have used this incident to fan the flames of fear and anger across the country. To say there is an epidemic of police brutality is a gross exaggeration of the numbers. Law enforcement has millions of contacts a year, and a minuscule amount turn into violent encounters. The actions of the suspect are rarely taken into account and often dismissed entirely. This rhetoric has turned to calls for the elimination or defunding of law enforcement across the nation. For those of us who have sworn to protect the communities we serve, we find these arguments offensive and frightening at the same time. It’s rarely acknowledged that we live in the communities we serve. We know these proposals put our own families at risk as well as the public.

We have seen the evil that lurks in our society. We use metaphors to refer to our fellow officers as “sheepdogs” protecting our flock from the wolves that prey on our communities. In 25-plus years in law enforcement, I have worked in three different agencies and a multitude of different communities with different racial and socioeconomic demographics. In every instance, I can tell you the officers in those communities took their jobs as “sheepdogs” to heart. It didn’t stop when they logged off and went home — it is always on their minds. So much of what we do for our communities goes unrecognized because we don’t do this job for the recognition. Officers give every day to the communities they serve, on and off duty.

President Marvel and I have been lobbying nonstop with our elected officials at the local, state and federal levels. We’ve done countless interviews with the media, all in an attempt to force dialogue and rational discussions about police reform. I know that many of our members want to see us out front of the camera with an angry message. I have to tell you we are angry too. We would love to publicly show you and our supporters the anger and disgust we feel about how law enforcement is being depicted. Saying these things may make us feel better, but ultimately, we feel it would only embolden our elected officials to move forward with legislation without our input and dialogue to ensure the reforms are reasonable. Brian and I are using every opportunity to insert PORAC into the discussions being held at the state and national levels. I am very proud of my law enforcement profession, but this does not mean I am proud of some of the things that have been done by those in our profession. It’s not an either-or proposition. Similarly, the calls for defunding the police and funding other programs are not an either-or proposition.

I believe that society must decide what it wants from our profession. All of society’s problems are set at the feet of law enforcement to fix, often with no resources or training to do so. By and large, we do a pretty good job, but in the end, we are still human. The image of a police officer is glamorized in society through Hollywood and other media as the hard-nosed cop, edgy and ready to jump into action at a moment’s notice. We rarely see a softer side of the law enforcement officer depicted in the media. I guess a real look at police work would be too boring for today’s Hollywood. With numerous positive reactions in the public and hours of report writing, it doesn’t fit the agenda of today’s political climate. We all know that in reality, we have to have the ability to be the “edgy cop” in one moment and then be Andy Griffith in the next.

Brian and I will continue to fight for our profession alongside all of you. Thank you for all of your support, and stay safe out there!

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

As we move into the summer months, there seems to be some movement toward a degree of normalcy. Businesses are starting to reopen and, hopefully, this means getting back to work for those who have been laid off. No one could have predicted the pandemic or the effects it would have across this nation, but the challenges to law enforcement are at the forefront for us here at PORAC. We continue to push legislatively for better testing of first responders and workers’ compensation protection should you be infected. With the governor’s executive order on workers’ compensation and the pending AB 664, I am confident we will be able to provide appropriate protection for our first responders.

Unfortunately, while there is positive news, there is also very concerning news. While everyone has focused on the pandemic, our legislators have been hard at work attacking the criminal justice system here in California. This is not a new attack, but what is different is how the “reform” is happening. “Never let a crisis go to waste,” our California lawmakers are taking full advantage of this crisis. With the pandemic at the forefront, a zero-bail policy was instituted, meaning the automatic release of most criminals arrested. Also, the early release of inmates in prison and county jails was instituted using the pandemic as the reason, stating the health of inmates as a concern. While many in law enforcement are aware of these actions due to media coverage, there continues to be a reshaping of the criminal justice system that seems to be flying under the radar.

With budget shortfalls looming, the governor has proposed the closing of two prisons in the state, which will result in the release of more felons into our communities. As if this wasn’t enough, the governor has created a “Committee on the Revision of the Penal Code.” You can find more information at clrc.ca.gov/CRPC.html. The committee is tasked with revising the penal code, specifically the reduction of prison sentences for most crimes. I would encourage everyone to watch the recorded meetings and voice your opinions to your state representatives.

Meanwhile, back in our local communities, our police officers and deputies are being asked to enforce stay-at-home orders. This is a no-win situation for our law enforcement community. Many people in our communities have become impatient with the speed at which the opening of businesses has gone. With so many at risk of defaulting on loans or simply being able to feed their families, tensions are high. Asking our officers and deputies to enforce what amounts to code enforcement violations is a recipe for disaster. If there is a new shutdown in the fall, it will put our members in a very tenuous position.

At PORAC, we are asking our police chiefs and sheriffs to focus on protecting our communities from criminal activity. Cities and counties should use other means of enforcement for businesses operating outside of state and local directives. The shutdown has created a financial crisis in this country that will renew the cry for pension reform and, most likely, budget cuts that will affect all our members. Just as it was in the last recession, we will again rely heavily on our communities for support in our local budget shortfalls. Will that support remain if we are active in shutting down our local businesses?

We will remain vigilant in protecting our members and providing quality services. Our training classes are set to resume soon to better assist you in the challenges to come.  Look for a newly developed peer support class later in the year and an advanced collective bargaining class. This class will be focused on current events and negotiating in a down economy. As always, feel free to contact President Marvel or me if you have any questions or concerns. Stay healthy and stay safe out there! 

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

May is a time for law enforcement and our communities to remember those we have lost and for the names of those officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice to be enshrined on memorials so that we never forget.

Normally at PORAC, we are preparing for the California Peace Officers’ Memorial Ceremonies and our annual Legislative Day at the Capitol. Instead, these events have been canceled and we are going on more than six weeks of sheltering in place. Although this year’s events have been canceled, we at PORAC will still take the time to honor our fallen officers. At the same time, we will continue to push for better protections for the officers still on the job. PORAC continues to lobby our state and federal leaders for better resources for first responders. Our priorities include making sure first responders have access to personal protective equipment (PPE) and priority COVID-19 testing and making sure those who have been infected with the virus have a workers’ compensation presumption.

The disconnect with most elected leaders regarding what we do in law enforcement remains constant. This is why it’s so refreshing when you have elected officials like Assemblymember Jim Cooper, a former captain with the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department. It’s nice to have an elected leader who “gets it” when we approach him with our issues.

Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, we have remained focused on representing our members so that they can focus on keeping our communities safe. It’s our goal that we provide you with the best possible benefits here at PORAC.

As soon as the shelter order is lifted, PORAC and its staff are eager to get back to the business of representing our members. We will turn our focus to training classes that have been postponed and on this year’s Conference of Members at the Disneyland® Hotel. We have a number of training classes that we think will benefit the members; visit PORAC.org/training to see a list of trainings available. We are also in the process of developing a peer support class and an Advanced Collective Bargaining class. The Advanced Bargaining class will be held in October here at PORAC Headquarters in Sacramento. The class will cover issues related to negotiation in times of a down economy, which we are already hearing about due to the impact the current economy is having on contract negotiations.  

Although it was disappointing that we were forced to cancel this year’s Symposium, we have already begun planning for the 2021 Symposium, which will be held at a location in Dana Point overlooking historic Doheny Beach and the Pacific Ocean. We will once again host the POREF Open in conjunction with Symposium. After a few months of limited travel, I know I am ready to get our training and event schedule back to normal. I hope to see you at one of these events in the near future. 

Stay safe and healthy out there! 

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

March started like any other month for us at PORAC. Our staff was focused on their normal duties, but mostly on Symposium, which was approaching fast. It’s important to us at PORAC to provide our members with a meaningful experience, whether it’s at a training class or a larger event like Symposium or Conference. This year’s Symposium would have culminated in our first golf tournament, the POREF Open, benefiting the Peace Officers Relief & Education Fund.

While at PORAC it was business as usual, President Marvel and I traveled to Washington, D.C., for our annual fly-in with the Executive Committee, ready to take our advocacy efforts to the nation’s capital. We began our trip with an Executive Committee meeting to conduct normal PORAC business such as approving membership applications, and to prepare for our meetings with our congressional and Senate leaders. At that point, on Tuesday, March 10, the coronavirus (COVID-19) was more of a white noise in the background. Although everyone was aware of the virus, there was not a noticeable worry felt by any of us in the room.

By the end of our trip, there was talk of shutting down the Capitol, and many of the elected officials were no longer meeting in person. My flight home on Friday the 13th was filled with people wearing latex gloves and protective masks, a stark change from the trip out on Monday. And as I write this article, we have a statewide order to “shelter in place” and people are desperately hoarding toilet paper for some reason. PORAC has had to cancel Symposium, the POREF Open and training events. To say it’s been a surreal month would be putting it mildly.

Although we are a nation in crisis mode, at PORAC we are still focused on representing our members. We know that it’s our first responders who will be leading us through this difficult time. Our elected officials and others will steal the spotlight, but it will be you who will provide a calming presence in our communities — a familiar face there to say, “Everything is going to be OK.” At the end of the day, our first responders will always answer the call. That’s why at PORAC we are busy communicating with the Governor’s Office and at the federal level for the protection of our members. We are requesting additional resources for agencies to provide personal protective equipment to our law enforcement and firefighters. We are pushing for additional presumptions for workers’ compensation as it relates to the coronavirus so that our members are covered if they contract it. Our members will be at a higher risk, and that needs to be recognized.

When the dust settles and a sense of normalcy resumes, we will continue to provide our usual services. Our training will resume and, although the 2020 Symposium is lost, we can focus on our upcoming annual Conference of Members in November at Disneyland. When we can meet again, I hope to see you at one of our events.

As always, if there is a way PORAC can assist you or your association, don’t hesitate to reach out to me or to President Marvel. Thank you for your service, and stay safe out there!

PORAC COVID-19 Resource Page

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

By the time this article reaches you, the March primary elections will have taken place. In previous issues of the magazine, President Marvel and I have written articles on the importance of being engaged in the political fray at the local level. I wanted to take a moment to reiterate the importance of engaging at the local level. PORAC’s advocacy starts with you, the individual member. For us to be successful in our lobbying efforts at the state and federal levels, we need the help of our members and their local associations in the districts. This election cycle will be as important as ever. No race is as important as the Los Angeles County district attorney’s race. It will take a concerted effort to keep this office from falling to a candidate like George Gascón. His progressive, anti-police agenda has handcuffed San Francisco law enforcement from protecting the city, and he seeks to do the same in Los Angeles. 

Often, politics become a heated topic among the member ranks as those argue why the associations endorse certain candidates and whether we should be involved. I have said it a thousand times, “You’re either at the table or on the menu.” Sitting on the sidelines gains you no favor with any candidate. It’s important to remember that when it comes to association and PORAC endorsements, there is typically a strategy involved. In most cases, many individuals vote on a straight party-line based on their chosen party with no regard for the viability of the person they are voting for. At the PORAC level, we cannot be beholden to a party line. Instead, we look for candidates who are more on the moderate side and are supportive of law enforcement and the benefits we receive. Unfortunately, those candidates are somewhat rare, and we are left trying to keep the bad ones out. If we had 100 candidates like Assemblyman Jim Cooper, I wouldn’t have to write articles about the minefield of Californian politics. In the end, I’m asking that you get involved rather than get angry. There’s enough anger in politics without us adding to it. 

At the risk of being redundant, I would be remiss if I didn’t bring up the first annual POREF Open Golf Tournament on April 23. The event will be held in conjunction with our annual Symposium in sunny Palm Springs. This will be our first fundraiser for PORAC’s relief and education fund. It will be a good time for all, with tons of swag. If you don’t play golf, that’s OK; it’s a best-ball tournament. In the end, it’s more about the cause and the people you are with. Our goal is to make sure everyone has a good time, and the money raised will go to relief efforts and our scholarship fund.  Symposium & POREF Open Registration

Lastly, remember to take a look at our Fund a Hero page. If you see a Fund a Hero fundraiser on your social media, make sure you like and share it. Thank you, and be safe out there!

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

When I speak or write about PORAC, I often list our benefits, which can be found on our website, PORAC.org. It’s easy to point out what PORAC offers to its members and how it benefits them. The reality is that the most valuable benefit of PORAC membership is the members themselves. I am always amazed to see the amazing family we have in the law enforcement community. Acts of heroism and compassion are the norm, even in the face of adversity. I feel a sense of pride knowing I get to represent such an incredible group of people. Even though law enforcement seems to be the focal point of negativity from the media and our elected officials, rest assured that PORAC will continue to push back against this narrative and highlight the amazing job our members do every day.

A testament to the compassion of the law enforcement family has been shown in the recent introduction of our Fund a Hero program. We have had a handful of campaigns for our member associations and have raised around $85,000 so far. We will continue to work on improving ways we can help our members in need. It’s disappointing that we still see instances of fundraising platforms that take more than they advertise and make it difficult to get the money to the designee once it is raised. PORAC’s Fund a Hero program makes no profit and disperses funds quickly so that those in need are taken care of. If you see a Fund a Hero campaign on your social media feed, make sure you like and share it. Help us spread the message so that the campaigns can be more effective.

Meanwhile, registration for the 2020 Symposium is open at PORAC.org/events/symposium. Scheduled for April 21–23 in beautiful Indian Wells, Symposium is a pared-down version of our annual Conference that is more focused on training and education instead of bylaws and elections. Symposium is an excellent place to network with your peers in law enforcement labor and meet with panel attorney firms and vendors. This year’s list of presenters will cover a wide range of topics, from a legal defense case overview by Allison Berry Wilkinson to Lieutenant Colonel Robert J. Darling’s discussion on crisis management. He will discuss what it was like to be inside the presidential bunker in Washington, D.C., during the terrorist attacks of 9/11. Finally, you will hear from retired Phoenix Police Officer Jason Schechterle about his horrible on-duty accident and his inspirational story of perseverance.

This year’s Symposium will culminate with the first annual POREF Open Golf Tournament. We hope you come out and enjoy the event, even if you cannot attend Symposium. The tournament will be held on the Firecliff Course at the Desert Willow Golf Resort. I had the opportunity to tour the course during Conference, and I was not disappointed — it is truly one of the prettiest courses I’ve seen. For avid golfers, this course will be a treat, with a chance to win $25,000 with a hole in one. For normal hackers, as the majority of us are, this will still be a fun event. There will be vendors on the course with plenty of activities, like an air cannon to shoot your golf ball down the fairway. The day will end with a raffle of cool prizes. The proceeds will go to POREF so that we can continue to help in times of crisis and provide quality scholarships. I hope to see you out there.

Take care and be safe!

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

As we enter the new year, it’s a chance to start fresh, and we all have hopes of a quiet year here in Sacramento. Unfortunately, we know we will have similar challenges to face in the coming year here at the Capitol. The trend of attacking law enforcement from both the media and from the Legislature does not seem to be waning. It appears there will be additional battles to be fought both in the Legislature and in the court of public opinion. We are hearing rumors of a bill focused on the ability to revoke POST certificates for officers as part of discipline. It’s legislation like this and last year’s use-of-force legislation that makes it so vital to have a strong presence in the Capitol.

As effective as PORAC is at the Capitol, we still need your help at the local level. We know through polling that our communities overwhelmingly support law enforcement. Unfortunately, this support does not always show in the mainstream media or at the ballot box. The vocal minority is ruling the day. We can change this narrative by simply being more engaged in our communities.

I know most officers choose not to be engaged in the political process, and I don’t blame them. In this era, people are attacked for having an opposite opinion. Who wants to be attacked for their opinion? Many political candidates are registering as independents as the environment becomes more divisive. We can make a difference and change the false narrative. If we as representatives took the time to write op-ed articles to our local papers and speak of the good our officers do every day, we could challenge the narrative that is being pushed by the mainstream media with respectful rebuttals. Take the time to educate your friends and neighbors on the issues, and we will see a difference.

Lastly, we need to start focusing on candidates who are about common sense. We must look at candidates based on their stance on issues rather than the political designation. As easy as this may sound, it is hard for people to vote for someone in the opposite party they identify with. If we don’t work together to change the narrative on law enforcement, who will do this job in the future? We all have seen the challenges in recruiting new officers. Candidates who are passionate about the profession are dwindling, and many do not see this as a long-term career. It is up to us to push back and protect this noble profession. PORAC will be there fighting back, and I hope you will be, too.

On a lighter note, I want to point out that PORAC has several upcoming trainings, and I hope you take advantage of what we have to offer. In April, we will be back in Palm Springs for the annual Symposium, which will culminate in our first-ever golf tournament, the POREF Open. This will provide additional resources to our relief and scholarships, along with additional opportunities for networking with our membership. Our Fund a Hero program is up and running, with several causes in need. Please take the time to visit the website at PORAC.org/fund-a-hero and support our members in need if you are able. I look forward to this new year and the challenges it may bring. Thank you and stay safe!

Vice President’s Message

Damon Kurtz
PORAC Vice President

With the completion of our 67th Annual Conference of Members, we enter the holidays. This gives us time to reflect on this past year and gear up for the challenges 2020 may hold. For me, I look back on this past year as a learning experience. Even though I have been heavily involved in PORAC as an association president and as IBT chairman, you never really know what to expect from a position until you are doing the job. The year was not absent of its challenges — none more prevalent than the legislative fight overuse of force. This was in addition to all the day-to-day issues that arise from operating an organization such as PORAC. With over 70,000 miles traveled this past year, it was truly challenging to be everywhere we are needed — most of all, home.

I spoke at Conference about the increased need for officer wellness and PORAC’s desire to provide membership with resources in this area. As I spend time with my family during the holidays, I try to focus on them but cannot help being preoccupied. I am troubled by the growing crisis in our first responder community with stress-related illness and suicide.

Peer support and wellness programs are a must in this environment. It’s not hard to see why there is such a need, with the constant bombardment of negativity thrown at law enforcement these days. Whether it’s on social media or in the mainstream media, there seems to be a strategy of character assassination of our profession. To make matters worse, many of our elected officials see this as an opportunity to attack us as well. It has encouraged an environment void of respect for law enforcement and, in some cases, has led to physical assaults on our officers. Is it any wonder that there is a need for wellness programs? PORAC has started to focus in this area with POWER Project training, which emphasizes wellness and resiliency. These classes are free and will be held in various areas throughout the state. Go to PORAC.org/training/porac-power-project/ for more info. Whether it is through training, the Fund a Hero program or connecting the membership with resources, PORAC will be committed to making an impact in this area.

President Marvel and Vice President Kurtz with Mountain View Police Department Deputy Chief Chris Hsiung

Politically, President Marvel and I will remain vigilant at the state Capitol with our lobbyist, Randy Perry. We know there will be bad legislation coming, and we will be prepared to do what we can to stop it. We will continue to push legislation to benefit the membership and be a strong voice for law enforcement. We need you and your associations to help us in this endeavor. Be engaged at the local level and force a dialogue with your elected officials.
Be active in your community and push forward a positive message.

The media may not want to focus on positive stories of our members doing good in the community, but we can. Use your social media to push back on the negativity and tag #porac so we can help. We know there is still tremendous support for us in the community, but they are the “silent majority.” We need to motivate them to be more vocal, especially at the ballot box. We can be effective in pushing back on this false narrative if we work together.

I would like to end this article with a thank-you to the membership. Thank you for your continued support for PORAC and for me personally. Thank you for your hard work and commitment to the profession and the communities you serve. I hope you all have a blessed Christmas with your families, and as always — stay safe out there!