Note from the Director of Programming: Giving thanks for a spirit of service

CDI Strategies - Volume 16, Issue 51

by Rebecca Hendren

Next week is Thanksgiving and I’m experiencing the traditional feelings of “Where did this year go?” and “How can Christmas be just around the corner?” I’m sure many of you can relate.

As we go crashing into the holiday season—whether we’re ready or not—I do hope you will all be able to find some time to stop, reflect, and take a moment to give thanks.

As a Brit, I love this wonderfully American holiday, which has no equivalent in the United Kingdom. I relish the opportunity for time with family and friends and I’m enchanted by the opportunity to give thanks for all that we have.

As I mark all that I am grateful for this year, I want to give thanks for the incredible people I work with every day at ACDIS. I also give thanks for the ACDIS community, whose enthusiasm and passion for CDI provide the guiding light for everything that ACDIS does.

I give thanks for the spirit of service that runs through the CDI community. CDI professionals are a giving bunch. You are natural educators who love to lift others up and share your knowledge. Many of you give back to the profession through volunteer work, including with the various ACDIS committees and boards, local chapters, and networking groups.

We will be recognizing that spirit of service at the ACDIS conference in May 2023 when we award the inaugural Melissa Varnavas Spirit of Service award. Melissa supported many of our committees and the local chapters until her untimely passing in August 2022. The ACDIS family wants to ensure her name continues to live on with the association, and there is no better way to honor her legacy than by recognizing individuals who have committed themselves to service by volunteering their time and skills to assist their peers and advance the CDI profession.

The nomination period for the new award—and all the other ACDIS Achievement Awards—will open December 1, so stay tuned for the nomination link. The awards are an incredible opportunity to recognize your peers and colleagues for the work they do. Now we add a new opportunity to honor those who give so much to others.

Editor’s note: Hendren is the director of programming for ACDIS. Contact her at

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