The newly-assembled Daleville High School Alumni Association discussed membership, fundraising and more during its third meeting on Monday, July 29.
Though the name of the organization includes “alumni,” the association is open to any individuals who have attended, worked at or support the Daleville City Schools system, according to President Robby Chambers.
“I’ve had someone message me saying they did not graduate from Daleville, but they call Daleville home,” he said. “I told them, ‘You are more than welcome.’ It’s not just alumni. It’s administration, parents who have had kids who went to school here, even if it’s just supporting Daleville City Schools but never had any kids here. We want everybody to participate and join.”
He said joining the association could help keep pride and tradition in Daleville schools.
“The way I see it, there’s not enough pride,” he said. “There’s not enough tradition. That’s what we want to do. We want people to be proud of where they graduated from.”
Members and officers are also encouraging younger alumni to join the association.
“It would bring in a new generation,” Chambers said. “Maybe there are some things that maybe they can think of that us older generation can’t, and they may be great ideas.”
To join, individuals must pay the membership fees and provide their name, the year they graduated or attended any Daleville school, their mailing address, an email address and an optional phone number. This information can be sent to the organization’s address at P.O. Box 551, Daleville, Ala. 36322.
Membership fees to join the DHS Alumni Association are $20 per person every year. What that fee entitles a member to was discussed during the meeting after Chambers said he was asked about the association.
“It will go toward many things,” Chambers said. “It will go towards starting a scholarship fund. Plus, we want to try to sponsor a kid who may not be able to go on trips, like a band trip or a JROTC trip. Also, we want to help out the teachers and administrators with things they may need.
“We’ll also be there for all alumni, from helping with reunions to letting all alumni know about homecoming events. There will be other things we will be doing that will be brought up at a later date. We will keep everyone up to date with what’s going on with the association with a monthly newsletter.”
Following the meeting, Chambers said the association also plans to start a scholarship fund for students.
Other members offered suggestions for what membership offers.
“It’s becoming a member of the first alumni association,” Secretary Jan Robertson said. “They’re just being a part of it and building it for the future.”
Vice President Mel Fairchild said the association’s mission statement could also be presented to any person who would like to know what the membership fee entitles them to.
Member Josh Robertson said the association will have an event during homecoming each year for members only.
“What we want to have is basically a cookout for alumni,” he said. “I guess we’re going to limit it to the association people. That way if they show up, it may not be their reunion year, but they still have something when they come. We want to welcome everybody back every year. Homecoming is for alumni.”
He said more events for members only could also be planned by the association.
“I think by the time we put the bylaws out and everybody reads what the purpose behind everything is, then I think they would get a feel for what their $20 is going toward,” he said.
Chambers said future plans for the association and members include having guest speakers come to meetings.
Josh Robertson said the association will also have a Facebook page, which could also feature live videos of each association meeting. He also suggested the association create a membership card, perhaps an electronic one, for those who join.
Treasurer Michelle Powell said the association could one day have a website, that could also serve as a member directory, where members can download a membership card after joining the association.
Association members also discussed potential fundraisers for future projects.
“I want everyone to stop and think of some good ideas for fundraisers so we can start getting some funds in our account,” Chambers said during the meeting.
Jan Robertson suggested the association create T-shirts to sell as a fundraiser and encouraged other association members to submit designs for the next meeting. Powell said the organization could design a T-shirt and hold an online fundraiser so that alumni who may not live near the city or in Alabama could have the chance to purchase a shirt as well.
“You can do an online T-shirt sale where the other alumni that aren’t right here could order one, too,” she said. “They pay for it and it goes right to their home.”
Fairchild also said the association could consider holding a Boston butt fundraiser.
More discussion is expected to occur at the next association meeting.
Chambers and Fairchild spoke to the Daleville City Council during its Aug. 6 meeting. Chambers introduced the organization to the council, and Fairchild read the association’s mission statement, which states the association was created to “maintain the traditions of Daleville High School (DHS), assist in the advancement of DHS through its alumni and to generate and maintain the active interest of all alumni as a support organization with diversity and pride in the heritage of our alma mater.”
The mission statement also states the association will support DHS through “volunteerism,” offer “opportunities for alumni to assemble and maintain relationships,” “promote and sustain alumni involvement in school programs” and more.
The next meeting of the DHS Alumni Association will be held on Thursday, Aug. 15, at 6 p.m. at Searcy’s Funeral Home.