CEA Week: Alternate Local Affiliate Experiences by Matt Feldmann

Hello, I am Matt Feldmann, the principal researcher and owner of Goshen Education Consulting, Inc. (http://www.gosheneducationconsulting.com). I am a member of the Chicago Evaluation Association and the President of the Evaluation Association of St. Louis (EASL).

I began my local affiliate experience as a member of the Chicagoland Evaluation Association because I had contracts in Northern Illinois and Chicago and because there wasn’t a local affiliate in St. Louis. I like to joke that I was the furthest suburb south of Chicago. (The really funny part is that there are so many suburbs of Chicago that most of the CEA members never got the joke and really thought that Edwardsville was a legitimate suburb.) Check out the following map.

Map showing Chicago and Edwardsville, IL

Hot Tip: Actively Engage other Affiliates

EASL is officially becoming a non-profit corporation this summer 2018. In many ways EASL has developed through my active participation with CEA and by assistance from CEA leaders. CEA has actively encouraged me by featuring me as a speaker for the annual Jazzin’ at the Shedd event which gave me exposure to many of the members. They further provided by-laws and support as we went through the processes for development.

Lesson Learned: Think Creatively about Programming

A great experience has been to develop a shared regional speaker series between EASL, CEA and the Indiana Evaluation Association. I have presented a short version of a pre-conference workshop about introductory independent evaluation skills in both Chicago and Indianapolis and in exchange EASL has received a workshop from Asma Ali (president of CEA) on mentoring new and emerging evaluators.  Leah Neubauer (former president of CEA) will present a workshop in September on culturally responsive evaluation and we will host Mindy Hightower King (Indiana Evaluation Association) in late fall.

Rad Resource: Local Affiliate Collaborative (LAC)

Get to know the LAC by visiting this AEA LINK. The group has a well-organized conference call monthly that promotes group development and that has resulted in a pre-conference workshop for local affiliate leaders.

The American Evaluation Association is celebrating Chicagoland Evaluation Association (CEA) Affiliate Week. The contributions all this week to aea365 come from CEA members. Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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