Chicago/Midwest and Dallas/Fort Worth TMA Chapters Earn Top Honors
CHICAGO — Two Turnaround Management Association chapters will receive awards for exceptional achievement at the TMA 2009 Spring Conference April 28-30 at the Hotel InterContinental in Chicago. The Chicago/Midwest Chapter has been named as the 2008 Chapter of the Year, and Dallas/Fort Worth TMA receives the Most Improved Chapter of the Year award.
With nearly 9,000 members in 45 chapters worldwide, TMA is the only international nonprofit association dedicated to corporate renewal and turnaround management. Award criteria used to select these exemplary chapters encompass five areas: membership, programming, community service, communications and administration.
Chapter of the Year – Chicago/Midwest
President Norman B. Newman, Much Shelist, Chicago
One of the challenges that TMA’s largest chapter faced in 2008 was sustaining the momentum to reach new heights in membership growth, quality programming, innovative events and special networking opportunities for each segment of its membership.
Among the first TMA chapters to be founded in 1990, it has grown from fewer than 400 members in 1997 to 1,122 by the end of 2008. Despite having already achieved deep penetration into the Chicago and Milwaukee corporate renewal community, it recruited 225 new members by focusing on underrepresented segments, including graduate students and women professionals. Its programs to reach MBA students include a resume bank and support of turnaround clubs at the universities, and it established a “Leading and Succeeding” series for women to develop new networking and leadership opportunities.
A September 2008 insert in Crain’s Chicago on “Best Practices in Corporate Recovery and Renewal,” supported by ads and articles from members, helped raise the profile of the chapter.
The chapter offered a full slate of 44 educational and networking opportunities, ranging from:
- New member receptions
- Breakfast forums with high profiles speakers
- The annual members-only Senior Executive Forum
- A Bankruptcy Judges Forum with 10 of the 11 Northern District of Illinois sitting judges attending
- Quarterly luncheons for Certified Turnaround Professionals
- A regional conference with Upper Midwest, Ohio, Detroit and Missouri chapters
- A charity golf outing that raised $15,000 for the chapter’s Memorial Scholarship Foundation, through which three scholarship were awarded
- Unique networking events such as attending the world premiere of The Dark Knight, working at a membership drive for the public television station, gathering donations for Toys for Tots, and painting rooms in a shelter for abused women
The chapter gives much of the credit for its success to its strong leadership structure, honed in a process that involves adding 10 new leaders each year to its existing 50 members in leadership positions, who advance to the senior ranks solely by performance and then cycle off, making way for developing new leaders.
Most Improved Chapter of the Year– Dallas/Forth Worth
President Peter Franklin, Lock Lord Bissell & Liddell LLP, Dallas
The chapter receiving the Most Improved Chapter of the Year credits the power of public relations, consistent communications and outreach for its success in raising awareness of the Dallas/Fort Worth Chapter. The hard-working Public Relations Committee:
- Secured interviews for its members at media outlets
- Solicited members’ case histories to offer as story ideas to the news media and to feature on the chapter’s website
- Made members aware of publishing opportunities in The Journal of Corporate Renewal, resulting in three articles during 2008
- Redesigned the website to enhance functionality and content and devoted an entire chapter meeting on how to use the website to maximize member value
- Maintained a media kit that was featured on a TMA International Public Relations Council call
- Created a 24-page section in the Dallas Business Journal, “How Healthy Is Your Company?” to highlight the chapter and its members in articles and advertisements. More than $47,000 was raised in ad revenues to support this effort.
- Held a roundtable discussion with a business reporter
Due to its active University Relations Committee, the chapter was represented in the Carl Marks Student Paper Competition for the first time with two students from Texas Christian University submitting papers.
The chapter held 17 educational events and 5 social events during the year, with these notable achievements:
- The second annual Corporate Renewal/Restructuring Boot Camp for the legal community was named by the Inn of Court, a legal mentoring organization, as the best special project in the nation. Fourteen members were involved in teaching courses over a 10-week period.
- The all-day Corporate Restructuring Workshop featured 19 speakers on “Timely Topics in Restructuring,” and attracted 65 attendees.
- The TMA Regional Conference involved the three Texas chapters in a three-day educational, networking and social event, drawing 144 participants.
Significant gains were made in all areas as a result of the chapter’s efforts to be more visible in the business community, including higher attendance at events, new members, and financial sponsorships.
Turnaround Management Association (http://www.turnaround.org/) comprises a professional community of turnaround practitioners, attorneys, accountants, investors, lenders, venture capitalists, appraisers, liquidators, executive recruiters and consultants. Members adhere to a Code of Ethics specifying high standards of professionalism, integrity and competence. Its Certified Turnaround Professional (CTP) program recognizes professional excellence and provides an objective measure of expertise related to workouts, restructurings and corporate renewal.
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