RIDE, RECRUIT, AND RETAIN MEMBERSHIP - State Commander Jim Wallace
State Commander article from October 2014 MI Legionnaire -
LANSING,MI - WOW! Isn’t autumn a beautiful time of the year. It is even better if you ride a motorcycle. Getting a chance to enjoy Mother Nature’s most remarkable scenery while being close to her on a bike is terrific, whether you ride alone or with friends. During this time of the year, I really look forward to riding along Huron River Drive between N. Main Street in Ann Arbor and N. Territorial in Dexter at the peak color show. What an awesome feeling seeing the full colors of Mother Nature at her best. I am sure you have your special areas to enjoy this fall season. Please try to find the time to ride, however, please be careful and obey all the rules of safe riding.
As you may know I am a Legion Rider. While I am enjoying the time I get to ride, when I stop for gas, food and other essentials, I am always looking for additional riders to join this organization. What a better way to promote the American Legion and the Riders than to have the opportunity to talk bikes and to recruit membership. A lot of veterans enjoy riding motorcycles and that makes the connection mutual. If talking to Riders, either from the Legion, Auxiliary or the Sons of the American Legion, I encourage them to continue their connection to this great organization by retaining their membership within the Legion Family.
The Legacy Scholarship Fund is a program of the American Legion Riders (ALR). This fund is set up to assist children getting into college if their parent was killed during or because of the War on Terrorism. Since this fund was started it has been the “go to program” for the ALR, as they promote the Legacy Ride. This past year the Legacy Ride started at National Headquarters in Indianapolis, Indiana and approximately 600 riders signed up to ride to the American Legion National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina. During this year’s 5-day ride they collected approximately $435, 000. While at convention, through donations made on the convention floor, a total of over $1,000,000 was raised for the Legacy Fund. This is the first time that much money has been raised. Nine Legacy Rides have risen over $5,000,000 for the children of our fallen brother & sisters. I was proud to be part of this joyous and humbling occasion. Hopefully, next year we, as a Department, can be a bigger part of the program. All Chapters, Post, Units and Squadrons are invited to promote activities that will help the Legacy Scholarship Fund at the next Legacy Ride to the National Convention at Baltimore in 2015.
We should take pride in knowing that the American Legion Riders are an asset to this organization through their dedication to the veterans, their families and the communities they serve.
The American Legion Department of Michigan represents over 70,000 members in the State of Michigan. The American Legion was founded in 1919, based on “The Four Pillars”; veteran rehabilitation, Americanism, child welfare, and national security and continued above all its mission as a consumers’ advocate for veterans. For more information contact the Michigan Legion at 517-371-4720 ext 16, email@example.com, or visit our website at www.michiganlegion.org.