Welcome to IEEE Region 2 in the COVID era…

It is my honor to serve as the 2021-22 Director of the IEEE Region 2. IEEE Region 2 is the home to many past and current innovators in technology and tech-policy over the decades, with both a rich history and a bright future.  We support over 22,000 members in Delaware, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland, northern Virginia, southern New Jersey, West Virginia, and Washington, DC as one of 10 global geographic regions of IEEE.

Much has changed over the 9 ½ months of stay-at-home isolation due to the pandemic.  Under normal conditions, my welcome would focus on the programs and activities we support in the Region, in the US, and Globally, but many of these have been radically (if temporarily) altered by the Work From Home, Zoom/WebChat/Teams/Meet/etc. world we have entered into.  We still have a very active (if virtual) program going in many technical areas, and are working to expand both content and engagement opportunities going forward.  Our membership is a mix of academic, industry and Government workers, leaders and learners. We have a range of talents, and a very different set of needs and views of what is and is not working in the technical community.  While we remain (for the most part) homebound, I hope to encourage a series of town hall dialogs to allow focus on where we should focus resources and efforts in the Region.   Funds are available as a result of not travelling, which can be leveraged to create custom programming to support our members.   I herein solicit ideas for topics and features for presentation.

On the up side, the “pause” in regular activities has allowed some newer concepts the opportunity to grow… virtual meetings within the Region and involving broader IEEE have become both more efficient and are better attended.  WIE has been offering a program to decompress and dialog.  Lifelong learning programs have enabled our more senior members who are less likely to travel in any case to confer ideas and wisdom on the rest of us.   Some of this will be retained as normal operation when we return to travel.  We will also begin to offer some Region wide virtual presentations…be looking at the newsletter and website for information on some of these programs beginning later this month.

We await decisions from above and outside as to when in person activities may resume, and I will update my message accordingly, but for now watch the calendar and e-notices for announcements of what we will be bringing forward.  I wish all of you the best.