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President's Page (Mary George)
Memo from the Ethics Study Committee
Give a Guess!!

The President's Page

This is my last time to address you from this platform; a final opportunity to express my real gratitude for the opportunity of serving the Honolulu League as its president for two terms.

While I disapprove of parting guests who stand in the windy doorway expressing at length what a lovely time they had at the party, I can't resist making a brief valedictory comment, with special reference to the privileges and rewards of leadership.

I joined the League just five years ago, and became an active participant as recently as January 1965. A cram course in League program and policies and procedures preceded my (somewhat astonished) acceptance of nomination to the office of Honolulu League President in 1966; I have made this a full-time job for two years -- and now want to be most definitely on the record as saying that I got a great deal more than I gave.

Especially friends. To all of you with whom I have had the privilege of working, discussing in units, arguing in committee, rehashing on the telephone, and generally rubbing elbows with on League matters, my thanks. It's been fun.

Sometimes it hasn't been fun, but I still got more than I gave. Sometimes League motives have been questioned, or League positions criticized. Sometimes the governmental agencies through which we try to make our positions effective have been less than eager to adopt our recommendations. For the valid research, the thoughtful study, and the considered judgment of Leaguers which gives confidence to the spokesman for a League position, my thanks.

I had not expected prominence in the community to be a by-product of League leadership -- but it happened, and, once again, my gratitude to the League. It's probably no secret that I was named a member of the State Ethics Commission on January 4 of this year, following nomination by the Judicial Council. I cannot help thinking that this is a fruit from the Ethics Tree planted by the League in 1965, and I wish there were some way all of you could share this honor with me. All I can do is be a Commissioner in a League-like way, and I hope I'll do you credit.

Add to the lessons I learned: Quality counts; not quantity. The League could have two thousand members instead of two hundred (Membership will assassinate me if I don't say 234) but if they lost the cherished League reputation for careful research and thoughtful discussion and nonpartisan viewpoint, our organization could not be effective.

Add another: Tigers are important. The world seems full of hand-wringers and self-anointed advisors. One of the refreshing things about a League effort is that the planning stages don't involve people saying "Why don't you ---" but rather a gung-ho collection of people who are willing to say "Why don't we?" So down with pussycats, and my thanks to League tigers who are willing to stand up and be counted!

So MAHALO -- and please give me a chance to express this personally at the Annual Meeting on March 29. (I am sure there is a notice elsewhere in this Voter.)

Quite apart from any speech which I will try to restrain myself from making, and the very important agenda items dealing with by-law amendment and adoption of the budget and program, there is the pressing matter of electing League leadership -- and I need you to help me pass along that gavel!

I also gather that we are to have the privilege of hearing Durell Douthitt talk on the subject of the Constitutional Convention. His talk to the Con/Con Conference we co-sponsored was outstanding -- after hearing him talk, I have only one recommendation: DON'T MISS IT!

Mary George

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