The Multiple Sclerosis Society - Michigan Chapter Newsletter - Issue | Winter 2014
WINTER 2014 MICHIGAN CHAPTER MS CONNECTION NEWSLETTER Annual Meeting and Recognition Breakfast This year’s Annual Meeting and Recognition Breakfast will be Saturday, March 1 from 8:30am to 12:30pm at the Ukrainian Cultural Center, 26601 Ryan Road, Warren, MI 48091. At this meeting we will recognize key volunteers, top individual fundraisers and top fundraising teams for their outstanding contributions in 2013. Also included in the program will be motivational speaker, Patricia Lay-Dorsey. Visit nationalMSsociety.org/mig for additional information including a complete listing of our top volunteers, individuals and teams. INSIDE 2&3 6&7 THIS ISSUE FUNDRAISING: FORD MUSTANG ACTION PATRICIA LAY-DORSEY IS A DETROIT BASED PHOTOGRAPHER WHO WAS DIAGNOSED WITH PRIMARY PROGRESSIVE MS IN 1988. TWENTY YEARS LATER SHE TURNED HER CAMERA ON HERSELF IN HOPES THAT BY SHOWING THE DETAILS OF HER DAY-TO-DAY LIFE, VIEWERS MIGHT RECOGNIZE OUR COMMON HUMANITY WHATEVER OUR ABILITIES. PROGRAMS & SERVICES: ASSISTANCE YOU CAN COUNT ON 12 FUNDRAISING: 2013 TOP TEN 13 FUNDRAISING: VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT 2 MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 THE FORD MOTOR COMPANY AND THE NATIONAL MS SOCIETY, MICHIGAN CHAPTER WILL PARTNER IN 2014 TO RAFFLE OFF A VERY SPECIAL VEHICLE IN CELEBRATION OF 50 YEARS OF MUSTANG. STAY TUNED, MORE DETAILS COMING SOON! Mailing Label Changes Please check the appropriate box below, correct the label then return to National MS Society, MI Chapter q Name change or misspelled q Address change q Remove from mailing list q Received more than one copy q Please send me my MSConnection via e-mail. My e-mail address is: ____________________________ CONNECT WITH US ONLINE: Michigan Chapter nationalMSsociety.org/mig firstname.lastname@example.org Like us: facebook.com/nmssmi facebook.com/walkMSmi facebook.com/bikeMSmi facebook.com/ daVinciAwards Follow us: email@example.com Watch us: youtube.com/mignmss AUCTIONED FORD MUSTANG BENEFITS NATIONAL MS SOCIETY, MICHIGAN CHAPTER On September 28, 2013, at the Barrett-Jackson Auction Company’s Las Vegas sale, the 2014 Ford Mustang Cobra Jet prototype was purchased for $200,000. Ford Motor Company auctioned it at no reserve with proceeds benefitting the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter. After spirited bidding that electrified the auction block, an anonymous bidder purchased the Cobra Jet. The winning bidder is not only the proud owner of the NHRA-legal vehicle, but they are now an honorary member of Team Mustang with full backstage passes to the Ford Product Development Center, Ford Design Studios and Ford Racing. The winning bid also made an important contribution in the fight against multiple sclerosis. “Watching the car cross the block in support of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society was very rewarding,” says Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer. “It is an amazing competitionready car that will make any team an instant force in its class. This Mustang Cobra Jet will be an inspiring reminder for anyone who sees it on the drag strip to continue working to combat the effects of MS.” 3 NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 This Ford is powered by a 5.0-liter supercharged V8 mated to a T4 racing transmission, and boasts an optional traction “wheelie” bar, 8.50 ET certified chrome-moly safety cage, exclusive Cobra Jet-branded Weld wheels, three-link rear suspension, lightweight racing brakes, 9-inch rear axle, and custom Cobra-branded Recaro seats. The purposebuilt factory race car was the prototype for the 2014 model year racer, and carries a unique serial number of #2014 BJMS CJXX1. Clad in a fiery orange satin finish with dark gray reflective stripes, it also bears a distinctive license plate with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s logo. tireless work for our cause,” said Elana Sullivan, president of the Michigan Chapter of the National MS Society. “Because of the incredible outcome of this auction, we will be able to move even closer to creating a world free of MS.” NATIONAL MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS SOCIETY Michigan Chapter 21311 Civic Center Drive Southfield, MI 48076 1-800-344-4867 Chairman: Michael Brady Chapter President: Elana Sullivan Editor: Sarah Borst Design: Graphinity, Inc. © 2013 National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter The winning bidder also received the following with their purchase of the Cobra Jet: • Training at Roy Hill’s Drag Racing School in Sophia, N.C. • Their experience captured for a future Mustang book and documentary • Video of the vehicle build, testing and the action from Barrett-Jackson Las Vegas “We cannot be more grateful to the entire team at Ford Motor Company for their Information provided by the Society is based upon professional advice, published experience and expert opinion. Information provided in response to questions does not constitute therapeutic recommendations or prescriptions. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society recommends that all questions and information be discussed with a personal physician. The Society does not endorse products, services or manufacturers. Such names appear here solely because they are considered valuable information. The Society assumes no liability for the use or contents of any product or service mentioned. 4 HEALTHY LIVING IS THIS NORMAL? BY L AUR IE CLEMENTS L A MBETH At a recent appointment, I listed my cognitive lapses over the past year. I have mild cognitive impairment; I was tested after 25 years with MS and suspicions that I wasn’t quite up to my old speed of thought. Dividing my attention, shifting focus and finding words have steadily grown more difficult. But three recent events had felt different: sudden, strange, like the seizure I had nearly 20 years ago—misfires, blips, spikes on some tiny chart kept by little scientists in my brain wearing white lab coats and horn-rimmed glasses. The charts ribbon out of their little machines, and when a blip occurs, the scientists rip them from the machines and conceal them in their lab coat pockets. So I asked the physician’s assistant the question we all ask at some point: “Is this normal?” MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 scooter into a quiet aisle. He approached and said, “Chobani’s on offer.” “Chobani?” I said. “You know, Chobani.” “What . . . is . . . Chobani?” I asked slowly. His face went from quizzical to startled. I play little practical jokes sometimes, and he thought at first this was one of them. But then he realized I was far from joking. I was confused. “You really don’t remember what Chobani is?” he asked. “No.” I panicked. “Is it bread?” I thought of another word that begins with a ch- sound, but couldn’t place it. Ciabatta. Two years before, I had come home from a trip to a writer’s retreat telling him all about the Chobani Greek yogurt I had for breakfast while I was there. So you can imagine his surprise that I did not recognize the name. I wanted to shrink into myself. How strange it felt, as though a shell of silence had formed around me and nobody could come in or let me out. THE “OH . . .” BLIP I forgot. Please hold. I need to find my list in my purse to jog my memory. Listen to some Muzak while you wait, or talk amongst yourselves. La la la . . . SUPERMARKET BLIP Found it: my list says, “time concept.” My husband was somewhere behind me, getting milk while I ducked the supermarket I was scheduled for a haircut and color at 1:00 p.m. It takes me half an hour to 35 minutes 5 NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 to drive to the salon. At 11:45 I was answering email and feeling as though I had plenty of time. I took a shower. Then it was 12:20. I dressed, did my makeup. I took my time. Then I glanced at the clock. How did it become 1:09? There was no way I could make it. I was beyond late. At 12:15 I should have been thinking of leaving. At 11:45 I should have realized I was running late. I couldn’t tie it together. Imagine two strands of yarn. One is the hours ticking by, time itself, and at 1:00 I had my appointment. The other strand of yarn represents the amount of time needed to prepare and drive. The problem is, in my head the two strands of yarn were very far apart, and parallel. I could not connect them. They were loose and felt tiny in my mind, like when my hand is weak or shaky and I can’t grasp a small object. PARKING BLIP At the vet’s office there’s a steep little hill you need to accelerate to climb. At the top I eased the brake. The car sped up. Why aren’t we stopping, I thought. Something’s wrong with the car. I pressed harder. We headed faster toward the building. Just as I reached for the emergency brake I saw my foot firmly pressing the gas pedal, not the brake. I lifted my foot and slammed on the brake just in time. It took me two days to tell anyone. No harm, but I was shaken, ashamed, confused. When I asked if having cognitive blips is “normal,” the physician’s assistant paused a moment. “It’s—common,” she said, her voice measured and lifting. And I was grateful: more common than normal, strange but shared. n Laurie Clements Lambeth’s first book Veil and Burn was selected for the 2006 National Poetry Series. To learn more about her work, visit www.laurieclementslambeth.com. WHAT THE SYMPTOMS MEAN Unusual symptoms should be reported to your doctor. They may signify MSrelated disease activity that your doctor may wish to treat, or they may be unrelated to your MS. For example, changes in cognition may be caused by many different factors, including MS, depression, stress, medications (for example, some bladder medications), or aging. Your doctor may refer you to a cognitive specialist/neuropsychologist to help you determine the cause of whatever changes you may be experiencing. Rosalind Kalb, PhD, vice president of Clinical Care at the National MS Society 6 PROGRAMS & SERVICES ASSISTANCE YOU CAN COUNT ON Happy New Year! Our 2014 fiscal year and financial assistance program are in full effect. This statewide financial program is available to people with MS who meet certain qualifications. We offer assistance with the purchase and repair of medical equipment, incontinence supplies, and personal computers. In addition, we can arrange for a number of services including transportation to medical appointments, short term counseling and rehabilitation therapies. The chapter also has limited financial assistance for utility, rent, and mortgage payments. Last fiscal year, the chapter was able to assist over 300 clients with a variety of requests. A new application is required to be submitted beginning October 1, 2013. If you are in need of financial assistance for the products and services we offer, please call 1-800-344-4867, option 1, for more information, program eligibility, or to request an application. PROGRAMS CALENDAR Midwest Teleconference Series Targets Newly Diagnosed February 10, 2014 Dr. Adam Carpenter from the University of Minnesota MS Center will present “Newly Diagnosed with MS.” If you have not participated in a newly diagnosed program, MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 this one is for you. Learn about MS and identify available resources and supports. Also explore the accompanying emotions that go along with an MS diagnosis. Call 800-344-4867, option 1 or visit: nationalMSSociety.org/mig to register for this program and more teleconference programs. SAVE THE DATE: MS and the Visual System March 20, 2014 in Lansing, MI Presenter: Dr. Ari Green, Assistant Clinical Director of the University of California San Francisco. This program is being held in collaboration with MSU Department of Neurology and Ophthalmology. Family Getaway Weekend March 22-23, 2014 Bavarian Inn Lodge in Frankenmuth, MI This two day program will include educational presentations for adults, activities for children and “tweens,” and a Sunday yoga session. You will need to register for the program with the National MS Society and also register for lodging through the Bavarian Inn Lodge. What Everyone Should Know about Symptom Management Saturday, April 5, 2014 in Ann Arbor. Edmund Chadd, M.D. from the Ann Arbor MS Center for Comprehensive Care will be the featured presenter. Look for registration information in February. 7 NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 Making Treatment and Lifestyle Decisions: Thinking About Benefits and Risks April 12, 2014 in Flint, MI This program is being held in collaboration with the Department of Physical TherapyUniversity of Michigan-Flint. U.P. Spring Conference May 17, 2014 in Marquette, MI MS Legal Clinic Do you have a legal question? Your legal question can be on any issue relative to your disability, such as job discrimination, social security benefits, financial planning, or other related topic. Our Legal Clinic is held the first Saturday of every even-numbered month. Our volunteer attorney returns calls between 10:00am and 2:00pm. Please be available during that time! Eligibility Requirements: • Must be a member of the Michigan Chapter • Must have a diagnosis of MS • Legal issue must be related to multiple sclerosis The attorney will call clients who have registered in advance for the service. Participants are called on a first-come, firstserved basis. Topics include: Divorce/Child Custody, Job Discrimination, Employee Benefits, Financial Planning, Powers of Attorney, Social Security Disability and Insurance (Medicaid & Medicare). MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD: ATTEND MS STATE ACTION DAY Relentless, bold, a person with MS, a friend, passionate; what do all those words describe? You - and MS State Action Day participants. Join us on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 at the state capitol in Lansing. You have a story to tell about living with MS. Your story is important to share with state legislators. We need you to join us to make our collective voice stronger this year for the sixth annual MS State Action Day. Appointments will be arranged for you with your Michigan Representative and Michigan Senator or one of their staff members. All appointments are arranged for small groups so everyone has one or more partners for all meetings. Our messages will focus on the importance of state funding for home care and health care issues important to people with MS. Everyone receives training about the issues via a toll free conference call. The call explains how to prepare for your appointments and gives a summary of key things to say about the issues. Transportation assistance will be available. Register by calling 800-344-4867, select option 1 or via the calendar page at nationalMSsociety.org/mig/. Ask boldly for support of what is important for people with MS. It’s easy, it’s fun. Speak up NOW! 8 RESEARCH MAKING ADVANCES IN PEDIATRIC MS An increasing number of medical centers across the United States are collaborating on research on how and why multiple sclerosis happens in young people. Their work is already yielding valuable information on early MS triggers. A COLLABORATIVE APPROACH The Network of Pediatric MS Centers was initiated in 2006 through a grant from the National MS Society. Thanks to its multidisciplinary approach, researchers at participating institutions are gathering important data on the disease. “We have been able to unravel key features, such as distinct characteristics of the disease on the MRI and in the spinal fluid of patients younger than 11,” says Emmanuelle Waubant, PhD, professor of Neurology and Pediatrics at the University of California – San Francisco (UCSF), which is currently running a large study aimed at unraveling the triggers of pediatric MS. [See box at right, “What triggers MS?] Thus far, the network has learned that MRIs of patients under 11 show larger and more poorly defined MS scars compared to adults, and that MS scars in young patients often go away within a few months, which is very MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 rare in adults. They also observed that the spinal fluid of young patients can show more inflammation than in adults. These findings have helped make the way forward clearer. “Now that these distinct features in younger patients have been identified, accurate diagnosis in children with MS is made easier, and early treatment can better prevent disability onset,” says Dr. Waubant. To learn more about pediatric MS and research in the field, visit www.nationalMSsociety.org/pediatricMS. Originally published in the Gateway Chapter’s MSConnection newsletter. WHAT TRIGGERS MS? The Network of Pediatric MS Centers is currently recruiting 640 children with relapsing-remitting MS or clinically isolated syndrome (a single episode of MS-like symptoms) and 1,280 children without MS for a multiyear study to determine risk factors for developing MS. “We expect the study will provide precious pieces of information on risk factors for MS in general, and maybe help develop new treatments or preventative strategies,” says lead investigator Emmanuelle Waubant, PhD. For more information about participating, and the 13 participating locations, contact janice. firstname.lastname@example.org or call (415) 514-2476. NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 da VINCI AWARDS Thursday, April 10, 2014 The Ford Conference and Event Center - Dearborn, MI Since its inception in 2001, the da Vinci Awards速 has become a prestigious international forum of recognition of the most innovative assistive & adaptive technologies. These innovations play an important role in helping people overcome physical limitations. Proceeds from the da Vinci Awards速 benefit the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter. For tickets and more information about this gala dinner and awards, visit daVinciAwards.com or call 248-936-0342. 9 10 NEWLY DIAGNOSED IS IT HARDER TO WORK WITH MS? MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 MEMORY ISSUES MAY IMPACT EMPLOYMENT JULIE STACHOW I AK, PHD Many people with multiple sclerosis find it difficult to continue working, even in the early years of the disease. Tasks that seemed challenging before MS can become seemingly insurmountable afterward. The fluctuation of daily symptoms and unknown levels of future disability make mapping out a strategic career path a challenge, to say the least. We simply do not know what the future holds around our ability to perform a job. “I AM ABLE TO WORK MORE WHEN I FEEL GOOD, LESS WHEN I FEEL BAD, AND TAKE A QUICK NAP IF NEEDED.” I am lucky enough to be able to work from home. I am able to work more when I feel good, less when I feel bad, and take a quick nap if needed. There are days when I can work a full day, but there are many days when I do not feel productive at all — when even looking at the computer screen feels like torture. I know that as each year has gone on, the problems that I have had in trying to work efficiently seem to get worse. However, recent research indicates that some people who are newly diagnosed or have had an episode of a clinically isolated syndrome may already need to adjust their time at work. Researchers in the Netherlands wanted to look at how MS-related cognitive dysfunction affected work in people who are recently diagnosed with MS. In the Cognition and Socio-Economics (COGNISEC) study, the researchers studied 45 people who had been diagnosed with MS or had a clinically isolated syndrome within the past two years and have been on disease-modifying therapy for less than six months or not at all. WHAT THEY FOUND: n People with higher levels of fatigue and disability all decreased their working hours within 12 months following diagnosis. 11 NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 n Lower long-term memory scores correlated with a lower number of hours and days spent working during the week. n People who scored lower on “focused attention” and “speed of memory” were more likely to say they “wished to work less.” n Scores on tests assessing depression (Beck Depression Inventory) did not correlate at all with quantity of working hours. While its findings need to be replicated in larger studies, so far this research shows that cognitive dysfunction can negatively impact the capacity to work, even in the very early stages of MS. WORKING A BALANCE What does this mean? Let’s face it, even jobs that we love can lose some of their luster when we have to negotiate symptoms that add to our physical disability. While it is tempting to keep pushing ourselves to do more and overcome some of these challenges, it is important to remind ourselves that we may have very real cognitive symptoms related to our MS that are impacting our abilities to work the same way we did in the past. “... SO FAR THIS RESEARCH SHOWS THAT COGNITIVE DYSFUNCTION CAN NEGATIVELY IMPACT THE CAPACITY TO WORK, EVEN IN THE VERY EARLY STAGES OF MS.” On the other hand, many people with MS continue working long after their diagnosis. Disease-modifying therapies, new technologies, better symptom management, legal employment protections and community resources can help you remain in the workforce — and education and preparation can be your most powerful tools for success. n Diagnosed with MS in 2003, Julie Stachowiak, PhD, is the author of The Multiple Sclerosis Manifesto and www.ms.about.com. Originally posted at blog. nationalMSsociety.org TOOLS TO WORK If you’re struggling to keep up at work, but aren’t ready to throw in the towel just yet, visit www.nationalMSsociety. org/employment or call an MS Navigator at 1-800-344-4867 to learn more about your options and get connected with employment resources in your area. The Job Accommodation Network ataskjan.org also offers information on a range of subjects for working people with disabilities. 12 MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 2013 TOP TEN 2013 Top 10 Bike MS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Bruce Kantor........$20,862 Ely Tama..............$20,456 Bill Ogden........... $16,216 Anne Coursey...... $11,720 Tanya Nordhaus... $11,089 Thomas Marx....... $11,075 Wendy Keem....... $10,087 Edward Rightor..... $8,145 Beth Gotthelf......... $7,341 James Holwerda.....$6,345 2013 Top 10 Teams 1 Team Ford.................... $379,916 2 Team GM..................... $107,504 3 Dow/TCC......................$97,232 4 Circle of Friends..............$50,717 5 Champagne & Marx...... $44,064 6 The Fighting Shamrocks..$32,645 7 Real Estate One..............$30,594 8 Comerica Bank...............$28,523 9 Roz’s Rangers................. $24,830 10 Team BASF..................... $23,155 2013 Top 10 Walk MS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Tracy Tanis.......... $16,239 Amanda Palmer...$16,200 Rosalind Nadeau.. $16,128 Justin Champion.. $12,460 Christine Davis.... $10,670 Steve Rummel........$8,900 Helen Myers........... $8,199 Alexa Nerdrum......$8,073 Madison Narens.....$6,720 Lynne Kindy.......... $6,162 2013 Top 10 MuckFest MS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2013 Top 10 Making Strides Against MS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Jim Soter................$3,903 Rick Leedy............. $1,120 Jennifer Haugh.........$998 Courtney Kipke........$835 Laura Claussen..........$620 Michelle Corrigan.....$586 Amanda Dabaldo...... $576 Joe Von Wahlde........ $525 Sloth I.......................$480 Matthew Zabka........$471 Heather Pijor................... $11,216 Teri Quigley......................$3,750 Elana Sullivan...................$3,670 Rob Cohon.......................$3,561 Terri Willman...................$2,816 Diana Tremblay................$2,145 Rebecca Kuchar................$2,105 Jill Sharp.......................... $2,065 David Roegner..................$1,805 Rosemarie Petty................$1,770 2013 Top 10 Golf MS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 John Rahie....................... $2,000 Stan Nunn........................ $1,533 Beth Rose.......................... $1,175 Patrick Korte.....................$1,000 Bill Pikarski.........................$835 Tom Kostecke..................... $750 Emily Frascaroli.................. $700 John Gormley..................... $685 Matt Anthony......................$650 C. J. Phillips........................ $640 2013 Top 10 Do It Yourself Events 1 Sam’s Club $72,477 2 Thrilla at the Villa $44,450 3 Hacker’s Scramble Golf Outing $22,786 4 ATO Walk Hard: Many Steps for MS $15,836 5 L. Barge Golf Outing $15,000 6 16th Annual MS Motorcycle Run $10,164 7 One Eye Open Golf Outing $9,500 8 3rd Annual MS Dinner/Dance $8,355 9 2nd Annual Dewitt Take A Breath for PH and Get Moving for MS $7,634 10 Twin Lake 5K Walk/Run for MS $6,500 13 NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 FUNDRAISING GET INVOLVED Ed Rightor has been a dedicated Bike MS participant for the last 20 years, beginning by founding the DOW team in Texas before moving to Michigan and starting a team here. The DOW/TCC team has raised just shy of the $2 million mark thanks to his leadership as team captain and Ed has personally raised over $100,000! We need YOU! MS Awareness Week is March 3-9 and we need volunteers to help increase MS awareness throughout the state of Michigan! Get creative and have fun while educating people about MS. Have a connection to your local bakery? See if they will make orange cupcakes during MS Awareness Week. Get your colleagues at work to wear orange. Host an all-orange poker night. Decorate your vehicle orange. Only eat macaroni and cheese this week. (Get the theme here…it’s all about going ORANGE). The opportunities are endless! We need your assistance in making MS Awareness Week HUGE! Please contact Cheryl Rothe, 248-936-0360 or Cheryl.Rothe@nmss.org and get involved in MS Awareness Week planning activities! VOUNTEER SPOTLIGHT MS AWARENESS WEEK ED RIGHTOR MARCH 3-9 He embraces the spirit of our mission to create a world free of MS and consistently goes above and beyond in his volunteerism. Ed has worked for the DOW Chemical Company for 26 years and is the Director of Strategic Projects. In 2009, DOW recognized his commitment to the MS movement with the company’s prestigious Human Element Award. At our national conference this past November, Ed was inducted into the Volunteer Hall of Fame for funding the mission and accepted the Circle of Distinction Award on behalf of DOW. We hope you will join us in extending our congratulations to Ed for his work to raise critical funds and for being a strong advocate for people living with MS. P.S. Please keep in mind MS awareness is every week. Keep moving and spread the word to others about the disease and how they can get involved with the National MS Society. Join us on Facebook: facebook.com/msaw 14 HAPPY RETIREMENT TO A GREAT EMPLOYEE Sharon Underwood began her career with the National MS Society, Michigan Chapter back in April of 1988. She answered an ad in the paper and over 25 years later is now retiring from the Society. Her last day was the end of December. When Sharon was hired, she began in the fundraising department as the assistant to the executive of Marketing and Development. Since Sharon’s been an employee at the Michigan Chapter, she’s gained a lot of experience by working in various departments and positions working on all events including Walk MS, Bike MS, and Golf MS. For the last 10 years, Sharon has dedicated her time to the finance department as the Chapter’s Database Manager. Times have changed drastically since Sharon started. “My greatest accomplishment was learning how to use a computer,” Sharon said laughing. She explained that when she began her career at the Society, computers didn’t exist and everything was done via paper, index cards, and ledgers. MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 As the Database Manager, Sharon enjoyed her job as a whole as she had many responsibilities. Her favorite part of her job was data entry. “I just love it,” said Sharon. Personally and professionally, Sharon is a very devoted and dedicated individual. While committing to the Society for over 25 years, she’s been with her husband for 52 years. She has four children, nine grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. “THERE HAVE BEEN SO MANY [MEANINGFUL MOMENTS] OVER THE YEARS, BUT BASICALLY I THINK EVERY TIME A CLIENT OR PARTICIPANT AT ONE OF THE EVENTS WOULD THANK ME FOR WHAT I DO.” During Sharon’s retirement, she’s really looking forward to spending time with family and having the freedom of doing what she wants to do, when she wants to do it. When asked what Sharon’s most meaningful moment over the last 25 years was, this is how she responded. “There have been so many of them over the years, but basically I think every time a client or participant at one of the events would thank me for what I do.” The National MS Society, Michigan Chapter will certainly miss Sharon at the office and we wish her the best in her retirement. NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 15 Dear Member of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter: This letter accompanies an official Notice of the Chapter’s Annual Meeting to be held March 1, 2014 (the “Meeting”). Since we have quite a bit of business to conduct at this year’s Meeting, we wanted to provide you with adequate information in advance. Below is a brief explanation of the two votes the Chapter will be taking on the day of the Meeting. A detailed explanation follows in the enclosed Proxy Statement and Proxy Form for those who cannot attend. Proposal 1. In December 2013, the Board of Trustees recommended that our Members amend the Chapter’s Articles of Incorporation. Proposed Article IX, appearing on the Proxy Statement, will make definitions found in our Articles of Incorporation consistent with those in our Bylaws. Proposed Article X permits a majority of our Members to pass a measure by written consent. With so many Members, the latter amendment allows the Chapter to operate in a far more efficient manner. Proposal 2. The Michigan Chapter became a separate legal entity in 1965. Today, we are one of only a small handful of chapters retaining this separate legal status. The National MS Society is one unified organization and one single organization is preferable to a collection of separately incorporated entities. It has recommended that the small number of chapters still having a separate legal status un-incorporate under their respective state laws. Our Board has thoroughly assessed this position and agrees that it is in the best interests of the Chapter and its Members to follow this recommendation. Even though this is a legal change only, it will allow for the Michigan Chapter to have a uniform status with all society chapters and will reduce business redundancies to create a stronger organization. The Board therefore recommends that the Members adopt the “plan of dissolution” on the Proxy Statement, which sets forth the step-by-step procedures the Chapter will take to accomplish this change. We want to assure you that the change will have absolutely NO impact on the programs or services the Michigan Chapter provides to you, its Members. Like other society chapters that have gone through this process, the Michigan Chapter will continue to exist. Our Board and its fiduciary responsibilities to you will stay exactly the same. Most importantly, the Chapter will continue to support people with MS and their families throughout Michigan, just as we have since our founding. What we are asking of you: You will be receiving an official invitation to attend the Chapter’s Annual Meeting and Recognition Breakfast in the mail shortly, if you have not received it already. If you will attend: Please review the attached material in advance of the Meeting, and RSVP as instructed in the official invitation. If you will not attend: Please review the attached material, complete the Form of Proxy and return to us by the deadline listed. Please feel free to call or email either of us with any questions. We look forward to seeing you on March 1st. Thank you for all of your support. Very truly yours, Elana Sullivan Michael Brady Chapter President Chairman, Board of Trustees (248) 936-0357 (248) 739-0404 email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org 16 MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 NATIONAL MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS SOCIETY, MICHIGAN CHAPTER NOTICE OF ANNUAL MEETING OF MEMBERS TO BE HELD ON SATURDAY, MARCH 1, 2014 MEMBERS: You are invited to attend the Annual Meeting of Members (the “Meeting”) of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter (the “Chapter”). The Meeting will be held at the Ukrainian Cultural Center, 26601 Ryan Road, Warren, MI 48091 on March 1, 2014 at 10am. PURPOSE: The purpose of the Meeting is for the Members to vote on Proposal 1, amending the Chapter’s Articles of Incorporation (the “Proposed Amendments”). The proposed amendments were approved for recommendation to the Members by the Chapter’s Board of Trustees (the “Trustees”) in its meeting dated December 19, 2013. If Proposal 1 is approved by a majority of the Members present at the Meeting in person or by proxy, the officers of the Chapter are authorized and directed to file a Certificate of Amendment with the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. OTHER ISSUES FOR CONSIDERATION: Once the Meeting is adjourned, the Members will have the opportunity to vote via written consent on Proposal 2, approving the dissolution of the Michigan Chapter’s separate legal status. On December 19, 2013, the Trustees voted to recommend to the Members that the Chapter, a separately incorporated Michigan entity, dissolve and transfer its assets to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society (the “Society”). The Plan of Dissolution, approved by the Trustees, appears in the Proxy Statement that follows. PROXY: Members may complete, sign, date, and return the accompanying form of proxy for use at the Meeting if they are unable to attend personally. Proxies should be delivered by mail, fax, or email to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter, using the information provided on the attached Form of Proxy. Only those proxies received prior by February 26, 2014 will be counted. DATED at Southfield, Michigan this 9th day of January. Sincerely, Elana Sullivan Chapter President 17 NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 PROXY STATEMENT NATIONAL MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS SOCIETY, MICHIGAN CHAPTER ANNUAL MEETING OF MEMBERS Meeting Information: This Proxy Statement and the attached notice and proxy form are being furnished to Members of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter (the “Chapter”) on or after January 23, 2014 in connection with the solicitation of proxies for use at the Annual Meeting of Members (the “Meeting”) to be held at the location, date and time provided on the attached notice. Members who attend the Meeting in person, or by having his/her completed proxy form delivered to the Chapter by February 26, 2014, will be entitled to vote at the Meeting and to provide his/her written consent to the Member resolution presented immediately following the adjournment of the Meeting. The purpose of the Meeting is to vote on Proposed Amendments to the Chapter’s Articles of Incorporation. The purpose of the written consent following the Meeting is to vote on dissolution. Proposal 1: Approve the Proposed Amendments to the Chapter’s Articles of Incorporation At a meeting dated December 19, 2013, the Chapter’s Board of Trustees (the “Trustees”) voted to recommend that the following changes (“Proposed Amendments”) be submitted to the membership for approval: Article IX The membership of this Corporation shall consist of all persons who are members of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, who reside within Michigan (or who have previously resided within and have indicated that they wish to retain their membership), and who attend the annual meeting of the Corporation in person or by proxy. Termination of membership in the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, removal from Michigan, or failure to attend the annual meeting in person or by proxy shall automatically terminate membership in this Corporation. Article X Any action required or permitted to be taken at an annual or special meeting of members may be taken without a meeting, without prior notice, and without a vote, if consents in writing, setting forth the action taken, are signed and dated by a majority of members. Prompt notice of the taking of the corporate action without a meeting by less than unanimous written consent shall be given to each member who has not consented in writing. The Trustees recommend that Members vote in favor of the Proposed Amendments. Proposal 2: Approve the dissolution of the separately incorporated entity The following language is contained in the Trustees’ resolution dated December 19, 2013:At their meeting dated December 19, 2013, the Trustees also voted to recommend to the 18 membership that the Chapter un-incorporate under Michigan law to end its status as a separate legal entity. The Chapter will join the National Multiple Sclerosis Society as a single, unified organization. After much discussion, the Trustees determined that this structural change is in the best interests of the Chapter and its Members. Although part of the National Society, the Chapter will continue to service individuals affected by multiple sclerosis in the state of Michigan just as it always has. The Trustees approved the following Plan of Dissolution, which sets forth step-by-step instructions the Chapter’s officers will take if the Members consent to Proposal 2: This Plan of Dissolution describes the actions to be taken to dissolve The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter, a Michigan nonprofit corporation, (“Corporation”). 1. The officers of the Corporation, under the direction of its President and Board of Trustees, will collect any and all assets of the Corporation and will pay or arrange for the payment or settlement of all proper debts and expenses of the Corporation. 2. As required by the Michigan Nonprofit Corporation Act, MCL 450.2855, the officers of the Corporation, under the direction of its President and Board of Trustees, will assign any remaining property and assets in the Corporation’s possession to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society (“Grantee”), a New York corporation that is classified for federal tax purposes as a public charity exempt from federal income taxation under Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3). MS CONNECTION: WINTER 2014 The Michigan Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society will continue to serve individuals affected by multiple sclerosis residing in the state of Michigan. 3. Grantee must provide to the Corporation a receipt for the assets the Corporation has returned, in compliance with the requirements of the Michigan Department of Attorney General’s exercise of its rights and duties under the Dissolution of Charitable Purposes Corporation Act, MCL 450.251 et seq. 4. All payments and grants must be completed in a timely manner. 5. The Corporation’s officers, under the direction of its President will be responsible for overseeing the preparation and filing of the corporation’s final (2014) IRS Form 990, for obtaining the Michigan Attorney General’s consent to dissolution, for filing of the Corporation’s Certificate of Dissolution with the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs and, if deemed necessary, for submitting a tax clearance request with the Michigan Department of Treasury, and to do or cause to be done such other acts or things as may be required or necessary to carry out this Plan of Dissolution. The Trustees recommend that Members approve of dissolution by written consent. 19 NATIONALMSSOCIETY.ORG | 1-800-344-4867 NATIONAL MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS SOCIETY, MICHIGAN CHAPTER FORM OF PROXY ANNUAL MEETING OF MEMBERS IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN VOTING AND WILL NOT ATTEND THE ANNUAL MEETING, PLEASE SIGN, DATE, AND SEND THIS PAGE BY MAIL, FAX, OR EMAIL TO: National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter 21311 Civic Center Drive Southfield, MI 48076 Fax: (248) 350-0029 Email: email@example.com PROXIES RECEIVED AFTER FEBRUARY 26, 2014 WILL NOT BE COUNTED. The undersigned member of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter hereby appoints the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, as his/her agent and proxy, to vote as designated below (or if no designation is given, as the proxy sees fit), at the Annual Meeting of Members to be held on March 1, 2014 at the Ukrainian Cultural Center, 26601 Ryan Road, Warren, MI 48091 (the “Meeting”), and on the written consent collected by the Trustees immediately following the Meeting. This proxy when properly executed will be voted as directed herein. If no direction is indicated, the proxy may vote at the proxy’s discretion. Your Trustees recommend a vote “for” the following proposal: For PROPOSAL 1: Approve the Proposed Amendments to the Chapter’s Articles of Incorporation. Against Abstain Your Trustees recommend a vote “for” the following proposal by written consent: PROPOSAL 2: Approve the dissolution of the separately incorporated entity entitled the “National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter.” For Against Abstain The undersigned hereby authorizes the Chairman to vote as indicated on this ballot. Dated:________________ _______________________________________________ Member (Print Name) _______________________________________________ Signature of Member 21311 Civic Center Dr. Southfield, MI 48076 THANK YOU TO OUR 2013 SPONSORS WALK MS BIKE MS Official Media Sponsor: The Official Bicycle Partner of Bike MS: GOLF MS For sponsorship opportunities, please contact Sarah Borst at firstname.lastname@example.org or 248-936-0350.