Organizing Secretary General Introduction

Written by: Ginnie Storage, Organizing Secretary General
August 12, 2019

DAR is about family to me—and not in the way one would generally think.  I was the first in my family to become a member.  My paternal grandmother knew she was eligible, but was busy with other activities and three children and chose not to join.  My mother, Virginia Sebastian, knew she had the lineage but never pursued it. Little did I know that on a sunny day in 7th grade algebra class when my friend Cindy Steinbach asked me to come to a fun patriotic meeting, I would begin a journey that now finds me serving as Organizing Secretary General for the VanBuren administration.

I joined DAR directly from the Children of the American Revolution and had dual membership until I turned 23.  I was 18 at the time and had been in C.A.R. for several years but my Godmother, Carla Wing, wanted to make sure I was active in DAR as well.  She prepared my papers, told me to “sign here” and got the Chapter Regent to give me a chairmanship—Constitution Week—which I was able to do while going to college at the University of Virginia.  In those early years, I didn’t attend many meetings but I had a job so I thought I was contributing.  When I completed college and returned to Fredericksburg, I started attending my Washington-Lewis Chapter meetings.

In 1991, I married my husband, Mark, and then I became Chapter Regent six months later.  Although Mark is Italian and has no connection to a patriot that we can locate, he loves the patriotic and historical mission of DAR.  He started coming to state conference with me the first year we were married and has not missed one since.  I went on to serve six years as chapter regent and at my last meeting I was able to induct my mother as a member.  She finally decided it was time.  I always like to think it’s because she knew how much fun I was having in DAR.

Fast forward to 1999.  I was State Chairman of Junior Membership.  My mentor Susan Gonchar had appointed me when she became State Regent.  My daughter, Mackie, was born in May and then went on her first district tour when she was four months old.  Seven cities in seven days and she handled it like a champ.  It helped to have my mother and Mark with us along the way.  I went on to serve as National Chair of Junior Membership, DAR Project Patriot, Membership and DAR Leadership Training as well as State Organizing Secretary, State Vice Regent and State Regent.  All of those responsibilities were accomplished with the help and support of my family.

An added benefit of having my daughter grow up in DAR was her excitement about becoming a member when she turned 18.  You see, the family has come full circle—Mackie joined C.A.R. shortly after she was born, was very active on the local and state level and now serves as National President.  I have had the very special privilege of seeing her grow her leadership skills in C.A.R. and participate with me in DAR.  I have had the opportunity to give back to C.A.R. as well, as a senior leader.

However, DAR gives you a family in and of itself.  When I take vacation from my job as a Practice Administrator for an Oncology group, my co-workers always ask me why I am going to work on my vacation.  I tell them it’s because I get to see my friends from all over the world.  And many of those friends have become like family as well. 

As Organizing Secretary General, my primary responsibility is to supervise the organization of new chapters, strengthen existing chapters, discourage disbandments and assist with mergers.  As we work toward accomplishing the 200,000 membership goal established in the VanBuren administration, I encourage you to create your own DAR family.  Seek out friends and relatives, encourage them to join DAR and show them how rewarding it is.  We all benefit in the long run as we Rise and Shine for America!  It is a privilege to serve you for the next three years.

 

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