So, if you follow my Twitter, then you already know I am officially a former AAJA convention co-chair. After my early morning with Michael and our lunchtime nap (somehow this little guy only likes to sleep in the daytime), I answered a phone call from AAJA president Sharon Chan and executive director Kathy Chow. Essentially, even though LA chapter co-president Jinah Kim had said she did not want to accept my resignation and convention co-chair Leezel Tanglao had asked me to reconsider quitting, they talked everyone into the idea that it would be better for me to just go away — er, step down. Their rationale? I should spend more time with Michael.
There was going to be no doubt about my spending time with Michael — I spent a ton of time with my mom, even though we were always out and about as she worked. That was going to be my strategy with Michael — he was going to be with me every step of the way with whatever I was doing. However, while it rankles that they think I cannot mix family and regular life, I am done with AAJA, the governing board’s PR concerns and the national staff’s doltishness.
And did I mention at least one governing board member was unhappy with my “airing dirty laundry?” And that now they’re all concerned that my online venting will endanger their sponsorships? Oh, brother. First off, this is only a big deal to AAJA members. And I know they’re all looking to see what the drama is, and at least I’ve done everyone the courtesy of making it plain what happened. Secondly, AAJA should be more concerned about losing members like myself (and yes, they’ve lost me) — because if there are no members, there’s no organization, and then sponsorship becomes a moot point. And I’m not the only one who has felt burned by AAJA’s pettiness. A coworker commented as such, reminding me of her reluctance to join AAJA again.
Now, I’m thinking I don’t even need to be on the L.A. chapter board anymore! The only reason why I was going to be on the board was because I was a convention co-chair and this was going to be my last year in active service, so in a way, this is early parole. As I cooed to Michael earlier, when the convention comes to town, I can stop by the convention hotel and see my friends from out of town, let them visit with Michael and….take them to the beach, the Getty Center, Porto’s…..whatever! I don’t have to do a thing at the convention anymore! W00t!
I do want to set the record straight on one thing. National wants to make it seem like I am resigning so I can spend more time with Michael. This is incorrect. I quit because the larger organization has no regard for all the hard work the LA chapter has done for this convention. I also quit because it seems they don’t even need local co-chairs, so what do they care if I quit? They also want to make it seem like Trinity and I did not meet design deadlines when it came to the convention logo and registration booklets. This is also incorrect — Trinity sent in the final convention logo and a booklet mockup in November. But for some reason, they didn’t want to use it. If they didn’t meet deadline, that’s their own fault. Someone pointed out to me that quitting over the logo was like throwing the baby out with the bath water, but essentially that’s also what national did — nitpicked Trinity’s logo to death, then threw it out because it didn’t meet their changing standards.
A friend pointed out that I did try to get clarification on the change in designers two weeks ago. I had sent an email when national told Trinity they were “moving forward” with another designer. But my email got no responses, so I tweeted angrily about the situation, but didn’t blog it at the time. But only now, after going public with my irritation, did I get a response. That’s your fault, AAJA.