1. Fritzsche, Sharon D. MSN, RN, FNP-BC, CPSN

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In this first message as president of the ASPSN, I want to share my goals and aspirations for our wonderful society that we are members of, but first I want to share a short story, a type of analogy, (author unknown) of why I am where I am today.

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A man was exploring caves by the Seashore. In one of the caves he found a canvas bag with a bunch of hardened clay balls. It was like someone had rolled clay balls and left them out in the sun to bake. They didn't look like much, but they intrigued the man, so he took the bag out of the cave with him. As he strolled along the beach, he would throw the clay balls one at a time out into the ocean as far as he could. He thought little about it, until he dropped one of the clay balls and it cracked open on a rock. Inside was a beautiful precious stone!!


Excited, the man started breaking open the remaining clay balls. Each contained a similar treasure. He found thousands of dollars' worth of jewels in the 20 or so clay balls he had left. Then it struck him. He had been on the beach a long time. He had thrown maybe 50-60 of the clay balls with their hidden treasures into the ocean waves. Instead of thousands of dollars in treasure, he could have taken home tens of thousands, but he had just thrown it away.


It's like that with people. We look at someone, maybe even ourselves, and we see the external clay vessel. It does not look like much from the outside. It is not always beautiful or sparkling, so we discount it. What we have not done is take the time to find the treasure hidden inside that person. There is a treasure in each and every one of us. If we take the time to get to know that person, then the clay begins to peel away and the brilliant gem begins to shine.


Years ago, when I first started my membership with ASPSN, I met different people within our organization that were friendly, outgoing and who encouraged me to participate and become involved. First they encouraged me to start out being a room monitor and to introduce a speaker. Before you know it, I had done a poster, written articles for the journal, and then served on several committees. Last but not least, I was elected and have served on your board of directors for the last 6 years. I had been touched by people who did not really know me at all but who saw potential in me and believed in me. I was officially bitten, I had the bug and I was totally involved in the association. I was committed and wanted to make a DIFFERENCE.


There are some wonderful people in my life that just kept peeling away my clay; they saw something that maybe I didn't. I want you to know that each and every one of you has something worthwhile to contribute to this association!! You will find people within this wonderful association, like I have, who will make a huge difference in your life, and who will peel away your clay. For me my clay was occasional self-doubt or a lack of self-confidence. Because of this organization and the wonderful people who are a part of ASPSN, I am where I am today, your new President for 2011, 2012. ASPSN is a success today due your past leaders and their compassion, integrity, and commitment to excellence.


My theme: Compassion, Integrity, and Teamwork-A tribute to ASPSN Excellence summarizes what ASPSN is all about and what I want to promote. Excellence is a term and goal I want to be a part of, and what we as your board and management firm will uphold. ASPSN is made up of nurses who are compassionate. I want to maintain that principle as your president.


I will be your president and act with a value I hold dear and will hold others accountable too, integrity. Our association is in possession of very firm principles, and we adhere to high moral principles and professional standards. This can set us apart from other organizations.


Teamwork is vitally important for this association. We, as an association have a shared purpose, to promote ASPSN as a professional organization. We are going to thrive and grow based on new ideas, innovative technology, and mentoring of our future leaders. I intend to embrace this concept, promote, and encourage it. As I have said in previous newsletters, teamwork is a joint action by a group of people in which each person contributes with different skills, and has the ability to express his or her individual interest and opinions to the harmony and the effectiveness of the group, and to have common goals.


With the help of your board and our management firm, some goals I would like to accomplish during my tenure as your president in 2011-2012 include: the start of webinars, revision of our Scope and Standards of Practice, increasing our membership, providing new online opportunities for continuing education and new online resources, and to continue to build our collaboration with ASPS and other associations to the benefit of you, our membership.


Thank you to each of you for believing in me and supporting me. I know that I am who I am because of my life experiences, and the people that surround me. I have already had some incredible experiences with ASPSN; I have learned so much, and best of all, I have made friendships that will last a lifetime. It is truly an honor to be surrounded by such a great group of people who are leaders and members of ASPSN. Feel free to call, email, or write me anytime. I look forward to and accept the challenging but rewarding experiences ahead of me. Working together, as a team, ASPSN will succeed!!