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Happy New Year!

“And now we welcome the new year, full of things that have never been.”
- Rainer Maria Rilke, Poet, 12/4/1875 - 12/29/1926

“Don’t ignore your needs in the area of new challenges.”
- Debi Peters’ recent fortune cookie insert

Dear OCEA Members,

Speaking of “new challenges,” I’m excited to have been elected to serve you as President in 2017! I never really imagined myself in this position, and I’m looking forward to growing into it in a hurry.

Your Board of Directors and I wish you a very happy new year!  We’re busy at work planning educational (and hopefully fun) meetings for you throughout 2017. Our venue hotel is remodeling our space at present, so we will NOT have a meeting in January.

You will not want to miss our February 15 meeting. Seriously! SAVE THE DATE! We have confirmed speakers for that night from Bank of the West, the FBI, AND The United States Secret Service.  We’re bringing in the ‘big guns’ to give you the very latest intelligence on how to keep cyber criminals out of your trust account. It’s bad out there. Forewarned is forearmed, and ignorance is expensive. Plan to join us, and bring your colleagues along. The formal meeting notice will follow.

OCEA’s mission is to provide education, legal updates and networking opportunities to escrow professionals.  One of the things I personally love about being involved is that OCEA puts me on the cutting edge of what's happening ‘out there,’ allowing me to be proactive vs. reactive to the changes and challenges that continually shift the landscape of how we do business. Another huge benefit is the collaborative inter-company relationships that have been built over the course of many years.  I’m honored when someone calls to ask me an escrow question, and when I have questions of my own, it’s so rewarding to be able to pick up the phone or shoot out an email to a known, trusted specialist, and then to bounce ideas off of one another. By helping each other, we raise the level of service for the industry at large, right?  Don’t we all want and need that kind of connection?  (Don’t you?) Vow to make 2017 the year that you get more involved in your career.  The investment in time is not that great, and the rewards are worth the bit of extra effort.  I promise you that.

Several of your Directors and I will be off to Sacramento later this month to attend the California Escrow Association’s first quarterly meeting of the year.  Together, and with the help of our management team and state advocate, we’ll keep our eyes peeled for “disturbances in the force,” with the goal of deflecting or mitigating the effects of the hundreds of new bills that are introduced in California each year.

The more members we have, the larger our voice. With your membership in OCEA, you’ll automatically receive newsletters and timely updates from CEA and also from the American Escrow Association. The deal is:  your membership dollars afford us the opportunity to actually have an impact on shaping legislation and the future of our industry. Look at your dues not as money out of your pocket, but as an investment in your profession. 

On the local level, we welcome your suggestions and comments for making our meetings better in every way.  And if you are a PD holder looking for another way to earn CE credits, you are welcome to attend our monthly Directors’ meetings, held the 2nd Wednesday of the month in Irvine.  (As a guest, you won’t have speaking or voting rights - those come when you put your hat in the ring and are elected to join the Board! Think about it!)

Thank you for being a part of our escrow family.  Encourage your escrow buddies to join us, too. Get involved.  Reap the rewards of membership.   To borrow a slogan:  Be all that you can be.

Please mark your calendar for all of our scheduled meeting dates this year:
Wednesday, February 15
Wednesday, April 19
Wednesday, June 21
Wednesday, November 15

Dates have been corrected. Please refer to web site Calendar page for complete event information.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Thank you,
Debi Peters, CSEO

Debi Peters, CSEO