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Meet APA's Newest Chapter

The Chapter Relations Department affiliated APA's 164th chapter on September 29!

Please welcome the South Jersey Chapter! Serving Burlington and Cape May Counties of New Jersey, the chapter currently has seven members who look forward to growing their membership. The chapter officers are eager to promote payroll through education and membership.

This will be the fourth chapter in New Jersey. Before the South Jersey Chapter joined APA, it was difficult for payroll professionals in the southern part of New Jersey to participate in educational/networking chapter events because of the long commute.

"When realizing seven counties in South Jersey remained unsupported by a local APA chapter, we knew we had to take action," said Chapter President Melissa Maressa, CPP. "Starting this chapter is our way of giving back. We want to ensure our profession receives the recognition it deserves. We also want the payroll professionals in this area to have convenient access to the necessary education and networking support to meet their needs."

The South Jersey Chapter is starting off strong with four chapter officers. They are looking forward to being able to reach out to other payroll professionals in their communities.

"We are very excited to be able to serve the southern counties in New Jersey," said Chapter Treasurer Karen Bachmann. "This now means all of New Jersey is covered by the American Payroll Association. We are excited to offer education, networking, and roundtables for the lower half of New Jersey. I am especially proud to be on the board with my fellow co-workers. We are looking forward to our first meeting."

Join us in welcoming the South Jersey Chapter.



Showcase Your Chapter
With 2015 Chapter Contests

This prestigious 2015 Chapter of the Year Contest (COTY) gives chapters the opportunity to share their developments, accomplishments, innovations, and activities. From the COTY contest entries, four Gavel Awards are presented. The Gavel Awards recognize specific achievements, activities, or aspects of a chapter's COTY entry in four separate categories: Innovator, Mentor, Facilitator, and Communicator. The deadline to participate is February 6, 2015.

Now is the time to look back on 2014 and show off your chapter's successful enhancements, events, and community service by participating in the 2015 Chapter Contests. This is the perfect opportunity to share with APA your chapter activities and conduct your own evaluation for future enhancements. Each chapter has its own unique way of sharing its creative ideas and showcasing achievements. All chapter contest information can be found on the Local Chapter Contest section of APA's website.

Your chapter's entries will not be judged on the size and volume of your chapter's activities, but on the quality, creativity, originality, enthusiasm, and service your chapter has provided to the payroll profession over the past year. All awards will be presented at the 33rd Annual Congress in Las Vegas. Start your contest entry preparations now and enter on or before February 6, 2015.

Here are some tips to make sure the odds are ever in your chapter's favor:

Incite proactiveness -- The chapter contest guidelines are posted on the APA website. Start collecting information from all your chapter events that happened in 2014.

Know the contest rules -- Make sure to read the Chapter of the Year Questionnaire and the other contests' guidelines to make sure that your chapter completes your entry correctly.

Contact Chapter Relations with any questions -- You may volunteer as tribute, but ask for help! This project could be assigned to one individual, but it is better to make it a group effort. Form a committee or a group dedicated to gathering information and creating the entries for the chapter contests.

Let the flames rise -- This is your time to let your chapter shine! Make certain you show your chapter's accomplishments and achievements. Be the chapter on fire!

Give your entry a second look -- Have other individuals who didn't participate in creating the entries proofread the entries for grammatical errors. Make sure all contest guidelines have been followed, all questions have been answered, and any confusing statements have been clarified. You do not want to lose points for missing questions or not providing clear instructions or details. Multiple pairs of eyes will help your entry thrive!



Chapter President Profile
Sue C. Romaire
Acadiana Chapter

By Caren Bennett

As President of the APA Acadiana Chapter, Sue C. Romaire has worked to embrace both "old school" and "new school" mindsets in her chapter.

"The most enjoyable part of being President is the ability to see an organization communicate different knowledge experiences," she says.

On the new-school front, Romaire is working to launch various chapter digital media resources, including a chapter website, Facebook page, and possibly a Twitter account. On the old-school front, she encourages the new generation of payroll professionals to step out of the box and "challenge the pen and paper method; before it is forgotten." Sue keeps an "open mind and open door" policy to encourage networking and the flow of ideas within the chapter.

The Acadiana Chapter is unique because of the different cultures represented in the region's various communities, or parishes, and the hospitality standards in the area as a whole.

"The success of our chapter is a collaborative effort of people and their unique payroll circumstances, culture, history, and various business policy procedures," Romaire explains. Looking forward, she hopes to continue to expand chapter membership to the outer parishes of the Acadiana region.

Having started her career in payroll 29 years ago, Romaire feels that serving as Chapter President is an "adventurous chapter" in her career.

"This position has opened more doors to networking knowledge and opportunities in the digital world of today," she says.

Her fellow chapter officers and members enhance the position, she says.

"I am so fulfilled with supportive officers and members who participate through personal contributions and resources to ensure efficiency and growth of this organization," she explains.

Romaire is extremely proud of her two children: Justin, who is pursuing his doctorate in Research of Organic Chemistry Synthesis at Yale University, and Gabrielle, who is pursuing her career studies to become a Registered Technician in Veterinary Medicine.

"I live for my family and friends," Romaire says. "They are the greatest gifts my heart will ever know."



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