PCA Director Election 2016 Results
Congratulations to Tim Laros, David Wright, and David Nishimura, who were elected to the PCA Board for 2016. A big "thank you" to these board members for their willingness to serve PCA for three years.
Each Board Member serves a three-year term. During that time, he or she serves on at least one and possibly more committees, and participates in monthly conference calls, which are supplemented by meetings at pen shows when possible. One meeting, usually directly after the DC Show, involves the annual Board retreat, which is a several-hour gathering to discuss larger strategic issues. This is not a "title-only" position. The current and former Boards have worked hard to establish and maintain key projects, including the evolving website, Pens for Kids, and the partnership with the Smithsonian National Postal Museum. We have several exciting things in the works. We are looking forward to working with our new board members on these and also hearing their new ideas for our PCA!
I've been collecting and studying vintage pens for over 20 years. I specialize in Parker 51's and particularly early and prototype 51's. I have one of the largest collections of First Year 51's in the US. I collect other Parker pens including Vacumatics, Jotters and 21's.
I repair Parker 51's as part of Parker51.com in partnership with Ernesto Soler.
I attend most of the major pen shows in the US and I have written articles for The PENnant, Pen World Magazine and was a contributor to the Parker Jotter book.
I was asked to run for the PCA Board of Directors by my pen collecting peers and I agreed to as I feel I can help the current BOD make a difference and keep the PCA a vibrant association for writing instrument collecting and collectors.
I joined the PCA shortly before it became the PCA, some twenty-five years ago. Back then, pen enthusiasts didn’t have a fraction of the resources available today. The PCA stepped into the gap, helping collectors to share information and to find each other. The pen community has grown tremendously since, and while in some respects it is now more connected than ever, its pell-mell expansion online and through social media has also left it fragmented and overwhelming in its complexity. We are flooded with information, yet it is largely ephemeral. Online posts (and whole sites) come and go, too often unfindable when we try to locate them months, let alone years, later. There is much that our massively decentralized collecting community does brilliantly, and yet there are essential tasks that slip through the cracks, which require a dedicated organization – most notably, the gathering, preservation, and sharing of knowledge: curatorship, if you will. Despite missteps and delays in updating its web presence, the PCA has quietly been fulfilling the role of curator since its foundation, and is now poised to expand that mission to the benefit of pen enthusiasts worldwide. The best is yet to come, and I hope you will join me in working to build up this essential educational organization of ours.
Fellow members of the Pen Collectors of America,
My name is David Wright and I am running for a position on the board of directors of the PCA.
My interest in pens, fountain pens in particular, began in high school when I bought a Sheaffer cartridge pen in a blister pack at a local pharmacy. Using that pen sparked an appreciation for writing and increased my attention to what I wrote with. Nearly forty years later, in 2005, I picked up something I’d never seen before - a pen magazine. Its ads led me to pen websites, avid collecting, and the PCA.
In an age of rapid communication using complex devices I am concerned about general level of respect for writing instruments and the process of writing. Preserving the history of these more simple tools is the core purpose of the PCA and the mechanism to do so is to engage those who are interested in that preservation – the members of the PCA.
I believe that the general membership of the PCA would appreciate more information about the organization’s activities and programs and that more active communication with members might lead to more engagement in some of our efforts. If elected I will advocate for a communication committee to provide information to members at a level they can individually specify. I proposed this approach as a non-board member at last year’s general meeting and feel that my recent retirement will provide me the opportunity to activate the process should the rest of the board agree. The benefits of PCA membership are of high quality. The Pennant is an outstanding and entertaining source of information and the library is a vast trove of research-ready details for the pen community, with some additional access available to members. I wonder though if we might be able to provide some additional value to members by linking them more actively through the organization and directly soliciting suggestions for ways in which the club can enrich their involvement with pens and writing.
Serving on the board of directors of a non-profit organization is a responsibility, especially when the entity is as important as the PCA is to me. I understand the functions and operations of volunteer boards as I have served on several, including one that has recently received recognition from a Pennsylvania state agency for the contribution of my subcommittee to a community issue. Additionally, I served for fifteen years as the executive director of a non-profit and recognize the challenges that these operations face. My concern for the PCA and its mission is reflected in my involvement over the past two years in the cataloging and sale of donated pen collections to support the club, including manning sales tables at two pen shows.
I hope you will give my candidacy positive consideration.
By the way, the pen I’m holding in the accompanying photo is my high school Sheaffer.