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The Official Publication of the Michigan Association of Retired School Personnel JULY-AUGUST 2011 VANGUARD

Volume 66, Issue #4

Winter 2017

VANGUARD begins quarterly schedule in 2017 In order to keep MARSP members abreast of current public school retiree news and issues, MARSP’s newsletter, VANGUARD, is moving to a quarterly publication cycle. The change comes after several months of review and careful consideration from MARSP’s board members. “MARSP wants to ensure its members are receiving useful, timely information from its publications,” says MARSP Executive Director Mark Guastella. “Our new distribution schedule will keep members informed and make the best use of MARSP’s resources to advocate for retiree pension and health care benefits in 2017.”

“We need you and you need us!”

MARSP members will receive four issues of VANGUARD by mail each year, along with four electronic issues of VANGUARD Preview and Vision newsletters.

by Mark Guastella, MARSP Executive Director Sounds a little self serving, I admit, but there’s truth in those words. Hess Bates, MARSP treasurer, deserves credit for them during a conversation in the MARSP Membership Committee. Co-chairs of the committee, Pam Trask and Vicki Barnes, deserve credit for taking the words to a higher level. Let me try to clarify why the words are so critical to MARSP. MARSP is the largest and most successful public school retiree organization in Michigan with more than 40,000 members. That’s a pretty significant number of members and it is very valuable when we speak to legislators and to the MPSERS

administration. Nevertheless, it is only about 20 percent of the eligible public school retirees in Michigan. Therefore, the quote, “We need you!” seems a fair comment on our potential membership. MARSP staff members spend every day working to advocate for our members and all public school retirees on health care matters and in defense of your pension benefit. As health care advocates, we educate members on the plan covering members and beneficiaries, intervene on behalf of members who may not be able to clearly explain their circumstances to the health care or prescription providers, clarify health care

(continued on page 5)

“We encourage your feedback as we move into the new schedule,” Guastella notes, “and always welcome other ideas for making MARSP communication more helpful to its members.”

Inside This Issue MPSERS reform update................ 3 BriovaRx correction........................ 4 Chapter awards grants.................. 8 Foundation scholarships.............. 9 MARSP Office 1.888.960.4022




President’s Message

You float MARSP’s boat! Hop on board…. By Catherine “Kit” Spring, MARSP President As I gazed from my balcony on the panoramic view of the bustling marina in Cabo San Lucas, I saw all manner of vessels, each jockeying for the most advantageous position as they maneuvered to be first in the channel to the sea. Row boats, pleasure crafts, sports fishing boats, sailboats, cruise tenders, huge yachts, each with their individual interests in mind. That trip to Mexico with my former college roommate and fellow MARSP member Barb Smith gave me time to reflect and I noticed it wasn’t the largest and most important that seemed to prevail, but rather the ones who were thoughtful and skillful in their navigation techniques. This brought to mind the continuing and most recent news regarding attacks on public pensions. The scene reminded me that it continues to be crucial for MARSP to fight such attacks skillfully and thoughtfully. And, like the numerous boats zipping in and out to thwart the big ships’ passage, strength in member numbers from our many chapters is crucial to our success. At the end of the day in Cabo, the fishing boats returned from the Sea of Cortez. They

were inevitably followed by bold and persistent sea lions jumping on the swim platforms, seeking their share of the catch. Like some determined legislators attacking our pensions, the barking sea creatures prevailed on occasion due to their charm and daring. Quite often, alert fishermen pushed them back into the sea. Nonetheless, they were never discouraged and came back day after day, getting their bites in. The lesson for MARSP? No doubt certain legislators will continue their relentless attacks on the pensions and health insurance wellearned and well-deserved by dedicated public school employees. It is our responsibility, as MARSP members in a non-partisan association, to thoughtfully and carefully maneuver, even when the attacks are fierce. Our dedicated MARSP Legislative Committee and lobbyist have our best interests in mind, but, they need your support and assistance in resisting such attacks. Do not be complacent. Be informed, be alert, and let your representatives know where you stand. Your voice counts. Let’s keep our boat afloat!

Stay tuned in, follow @MARSP 2




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Wi nter 2017

Executive Director’s Message

MPSERS reform package dies in lame duck, but issue far from buried By S. Mark Guastella, Executive Director

Thanks to the effort of MARSP substantially higher out-of-pocket members and other supporters of the expenses or reduction in coverage is yet Michigan Public Schools Employees to be determined, but in any event, be Retirement System, the Michigan Senate prepared for a renewed effort to reduce late last year decided not to vote on your benefits. Senate Bills 102, 1177 & 1178, which, among other Taking appropriate measures, would steps to head off the The transition costs are real, and the next round of reform have eliminated state cannot afford to close out the pensions for efforts is critical to system. It is, simply put, bad fiscal newly hired public our success. First policy for the taxpayers of the State of and foremost, do not school teachers Michigan. and replace them become complacent. with 401(k)For every argument style retirement we have put forward, accounts. another effort will attempt to undermine each point. Stay The decision to back away would not committed to the financial implications have happened without MARSP members’ of closing out the MPSERS plan. The strong efforts to oppose the legislation. transition costs are real, and the state Of particular note, many members of cannot afford to close out the system. It the Senate were concerned about the is, simply put, bad fiscal policy for the transition costs to close out the system taxpayers of the State of Michigan. ($25 billion to $33 billion of additional costs) that Michigan taxpayers would In fact, the 2012 reforms have reduced have to cover. Additionally, there was the unfunded liability in the system by concern that the bills were rushed to the more than $12 billion, which includes floor and that the reforms instituted in prefunding of health care costs that 2012 were working and rapidly reducing previously had not been set aside. The the unfunded liability. bottom line is the reforms are working extremely well and there is no solid Let me offer my thanks and reasoning for moving to close the system. congratulations for “dodging this bullet,” and I hope your holidays were a bit less Please continue your efforts to engage stressful as a result. with your senators and representatives. Thank those who have opposed the bills Now for the other side of this coin: The and express your concerns with those bills were fully expected to be offered who have yet to make a public comment almost immediately in the Senate and on them. House when the new legislative session begins in January. I also expect a strong The last and possibly most important effort will be made to increase the action you can take is to ask public costs you will be responsible to pay for school retirees or active employees to your health care. Whether that is in the join MARSP. Nothing speaks louder form of increased monthly premiums, to elected officials than the power of

the vote. Increasing our membership (currently just above 40,000 members) will exponentially expand our ability to influence critical legislation. Getting a friend, spouse or someone you just met who worked in public schools to join MARSP is the best way to support our mission: Protecting your future.

Winter 2017

The pension reform issue is sure to take many twists and turns, and I encourage you to monitor the MARSP website for the latest information.



VANGUARD is the official publication of the MICHIGAN ASSOCIATION OF RETIRED SCHOOL PERSONNEL (MARSP) 3645 E. Jolly Road PO Box 23214 Lansing MI 48909-3214 Phone Numbers 1.888.960.4022 517.337.1757 Fax Number 517.337.8560 Email Homepage Office Hours Monday – Friday 7:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m. 12:00 noon-4:00 p.m. Send all material for publication to the MARSP Office

Circulation 46,500 Publisher S. Mark Guastella Editor Mark Nixon Assistant Editor Mandy Hitsman Publication Management Lezotte Miller Public Relations Inc. MARSP Officers Catherine “Kit” Spring President Paul B. Lerg President-elect Robert Kucera Vice President Hess Bates Treasurer Speedy Bates Secretary S. Mark Guastella Executive Director

Due to production time, each issue of the VANGUARD is written about six weeks before publication. Therefore, some of the information may be updated by the time you receive each issue.





MPSERS Hearing Benefit Summary Although the hearing benefit is unchanged for 2017, here is a reminder of the coverage available to MPSERS members who participate with the MPSERS health care program.

Non-Medicare Members

Blue Preferred PPO

Blue Care Network

Health Alliance Plan

Priority Health

Hearing Exam

10% co-ins plus deductible. One exam every 36 months.

Covered in full. One exam every 36 months.

$50 co-pay, deductible does not apply.

Covered in full. One hearing exam, one audiometric exam every 36 months.

Hearing Aids

10% co-ins plus deductible/two hearing aids

Covered in full. One hearing aid every 36 months.

Medicare Plus Blue Group PPO

BCN Advantage

HAP Senior Plus


(if purchased same day).

Medicare Members

10% co-ins after One basic hearing aid per deductible, covered for ear every 36 months, max authorized equipment, $500/hearing aid. conventional hearing aids.

Hearing Exam

10% co-ins plus deductible. One exam every 36 months.

Covered in full. One exam every 36 months.

$50 co-pay per visit, deductible does not apply.

Covered in full. One hearing exam, one audiometric exam every 36 months.

Hearing Aids

10% co-ins plus deductible/two hearing aids

Covered in full. One hearing aid every 36 months.

10% co-ins after deductible, covered for authorized equipment, conventional hearing aids.

One basic hearing aid per ear every 36 months, max $1,000/ hearing aid.

(if purchased same day).

Correction to BriovaRx co-pay information Page 5 of the November/December VANGUARD contained an error in the BriovaRx Pharmacy section at the bottom. Non-preferred specialty drug prescriptions filled at a non-BriovaRx pharmacy will also have a 40 percent copay with a $10 minimum and no maximum. We apologize for any inconvenience caused by this mistake. The corrected chart is below:

BriovaRx Pharmacy Effective 1/1/2017

Non-BriovaRx Pharmacy Effective 1/1/2017

Preferred Specialty Drugs

20% ($10 Min/$40 Max) 30 Day Supply

40% ($10 Min/No Max)* 30 Day Supply

Non-preferred Specialty Drugs

40% ($10 Min/No Max)* 30 Day Supply

40% ($10 Min/No Max)* 30 Day Supply

Medicare Members

*There are other specialty pharmacies in your network.

Winter 2017





The Bottom Line

Membership: Where treasury and mission meet By Hess Bates, MARSP Treasurer

MARSP has long been the only support of retiree benefits. Clearly, organization in Michigan that speaks membership is everything to MARSP! for all retirees who worked in public education under the umbrella of the Recently while I was inviting a couple Michigan Public School Employees of former colleagues to join MARSP, I Retirement System (MPSERS). MARSP’s inadvertently said our dues are $35 per voice in Lansing month (rather than the is amplified by correct $35 per year). Thirty-five dollars represents every member on After my friends stopped a tiny portion of our monthly choking and their jaws the rolls and from benefits; indeed, some folks the treasurer’s returned to their normal easily spend that much on their elevations, I corrected perspective, it is Starbucks habits in a month. membership alone myself and continued that floats MARSPS’s with my pitch. Later as financial boat. A quick I thought about that look at the budget conversation, I began to reveals that the largest part of revenue think that even if our dues were $35 per (almost 98 percent) comes directly month, they would still represent one of from dues with the remaining 2 percent life’s great bargains. coming from interest income, a few miscellaneous sources and contributions. Consider your own total monthly So membership provides both the benefit as a MPSERS retiree, adding power behind MARSP’s voice and the together your pension and healthcare. wherewithal to exercise that voice in Consider MARSP’s respected, non-

partisan presence in Lansing. Consider MARSP’s daily efforts on behalf of every retiree. Thirty-Five dollars represents a tiny portion our monthly benefits; indeed, some folks easily spend that much on their Starbucks habit in a month. When in conversations with nonmember friends and colleagues, speak up for MARSP and encourage them to join. Never doubt your importance as a dues-paying member. And think about this; we could nearly double our strength if every member were to sign up his or her spouse! I invite all members to enroll their better-halves as members. Through their dues and by being included on the rolls, all members contribute to both MARSP’s bottom line and to the organization’s effectiveness in speaking on behalf of MPSERS retirees. And don’t worry, we’re not raising the dues to $35 a month!

We need you (continued from page 1) and pension benefits to members who are having a hard time understanding the “system”, participate in the process of developing coverage that benefits the vast majority of retirees; and, hold a position on the MPSERS Board as the largest retiree organization. As legislative advocates, we educate members on the latest goings on in the Legislature, educate legislators on the importance of the guaranteed and promised benefits to retirees, lobby against issues that could harm members and for issues that could benefit members, communicate to the media our positions on proposed legislation, encourage members to share our positions directly with their individual legislators, and share information for the benefit of members on the actions taken by the Legislature and their impacts on the membership. 5




That last paragraph is pretty long and our English and writing professionals may take exception to its length. But the point is there are many reasons “You need us!” We need you and you need us! How do we fulfill the true meaning of the phrase? MARSP will be strong for many years to come only if we can acquire new members at a rapid pace. To do so, we need each and every MARSP member to take a personal responsibility to bring in new members. It requires a renewed commitment from our members to communicate our purpose and value to current and new retirees, and even to active school employees. Our association is based on the premise that every public school retiree deserves the benefits and our

support to retain and enhance them. Every retiree should be interested in having MARSP as their advocate because a voice of thousands carries the weight necessary to effect change, while a single voice will only echo unheard through the hallways of the Capitol in Lansing. “We need you!” Will you take this message forward and ask someone to join MARSP? Can we count on your support to strengthen our voice? “You need us!” If you believe in our work and the value it brings to you.

Wi nter 2017

Contributions to the MARSP Foundation September 27, 2016 – December 8, 2016 Contributions to the MARSP Foundation include donations to the following funds: Scholarship Fund, General Fund, Richard and Margaret Smith Fund, and the MARSP Foundation Endowment Fund.

Donations from Members & Chapters From Members Axelrood, Mae – Wayne Downriver Kittle, Gladys – Kent Ling, Patricia – FL Sun Coast Parker, Emabeth – Kent Priest, Donald – Tuscola

From Chapters Macomb North Ottawa

In Memoriam from Chapters Berrien – Ruby Dudley, Charles Hampton, Anna McCaster Charlevoix – Kris Skornia Crawford-Oscoda – Margery Baughman, Marilyn Bloomfield, Edward Collinsworth, Velma Esch, Catherine Knepp FL St. Petersburg – Betty Jarrett Roscommon – James Rigling

Contributions to MARSP September 27, 2016 – December 8, 2016 Contributions to MARSP include donations to the General Fund, as well as the Building Fund and the Bonnie J. Carpenter Educational Center.

From Members Borchers, Thomas – Roscommon McGraw, Brian – Wayne Detroit Pride, Linda – Wayne Detroit Towers, Carolyle – Washtenaw

In Memoriam from Members Cimek, Rose – from Sophie Inman Helm, Herbert Sr. – from Doris Helm

Winter 2017

In Memoriam from Chapters Branch – Elnore Loose, Joyce Myers Cass – Alan Andrews, Iola Holtz, Calvin Titus Leelanau – Elizabeth Stayer Saginaw – Margaret Grekowiak, Louise Harrison, Elizabeth Holsder, Donna Lee Johnson, Lottie Majewski, Norman Moore, Betty Newman, Susan Otto

Building Fund from Members Read, Mary – Oakland Farmington

VBDF contributions fight for benefits The MARSP Board of Directors expresses sincere thanks to every member and chapter listed below for the contributions between September 27 and December 8, 2016, to the MARSP Voluntary Benefit Defense Fund (VBDF). The fund will be used to initiate and/or participate in legal battles that may be necessary to protect Michigan school retirees’ benefits over the next few years. To date, the fund has been used to educate legislators regarding defined contribution and graded premium insurance subsidy legislation; to research and investigate defined contribution and other plans in other states; to purchase the software needed to provide an effective grassroots network; to provide written information to legislators; and other activities necessary to the protection of school retiree benefits.

From Members Andrews, Shirley – Cass Baublit, John – Washtenaw Bennett, Victoria – Wayne Northwest Benvenuto, Joyce – Ingham Greater Lansing Bogdan, Maria – Monroe South Bogner, Cheryl – Macomb North Borchers, Thomas - Roscommon Boyle, Brian – Oakland North Brown, David – Wayne Northwest Brown, Julius – Michigan Dow, Allen – Genesee Halper, Allen – Oakland Suburban Kaminski, Diane – Wayne Downriver Kehoe, Doris – Branch Lemmen, Nancy – Crawford-Oscoda Lewandowski, Gerald – Wayne Metro Livingston, Daniel – Calhoun Marcell, Arthur – Michigan Marx, Charlotte – Grand Traverse

McCracklin, Elizabeth – Kalamazoo McMacken, Susan – Oakland Suburban Moy, Anna – Oakland North Ostrander, Donald – Roscommon Parker, Emabeth – Kent Peterson, Daryl – Alpena Pierson, Susan – Allegan Plummer, Diane – Washtenaw Randolph, Tad – Crawford-Oscoda Rockind, Gladys – Oakland Suburban Rogers, Thomas – Montcalm Rudolph Joellen – Charlevoix Sample, Wendy – Oakland Farmington Area Schramski, Marilyn – Muskegon Stanowski, Rene – Washtenaw Swetkis, Candace – Delta Tarzia, Frank – Washtenaw Vanciu, Barbara – Midland Voss, Mary Ann – Kalamazoo Wagonlander, Dorothy – Washtenaw Weber, Kathryn – Oakland Suburban Whitney Terrill – Saginaw Wierenga, Nancy – Kent Wozniak, Eugene – Oakland Farmington Area Yelsik, Beverly – Washtenaw

In Honor of from Members Former students – from Jane Mayes

In Memory of from Members Barone, Marilyn – from William A. Barone Benjamin, Maxine – from Barbara Eyre Cardone, Michael – from Doris Cardone Denay, Nathaniel – from Clifford Denay Fowler, Philip – from Barbara Fowler Jensen, Howard – from David Throckmorton

In Remembrance September 24, 2016 – November 14, 2016 “... these immortal dead, who live again in minds made better by their presence.” Michigan

Adrian Hoag, Elizabeth Bay City Koerber, Norma Wyneken, Helen Belding Sorvari, Hilda Brooklyn Cryderman, Dale Canton Moore, Walter Cedar Springs Michaels, Dell Coldwater Loose, Elnore Comstock Park Heldt, Albert Detroit Rodgers, Ernest Trujillo, John Essexville Knapp, Marcella Grand Rapids Andree, Kenneth

In Memory from Chapters

Harrison Lindsley, Richard

St. Clair – Patsy Tubb St. Joseph – Frank Kime

Homer Hinkle, Jeffrey

From Chapters

Lake Odessa Woodrow, Ivan

Baraga Cheboygan Crawford-Oscoda Dickinson Emmet FL Greater Daytona Genesee South East Macomb North Menominee Newaygo Otsego Tuscola TX Dallas/Fort Worth

Lewiston Clifford, Jean Marquette Bottrell, Sarah Gaball, Nellie Laurich, Esther Specker, Kathleen Zenti, Rose Marysville Wieland, Alfred Nazareth Wood, Doris Negaunee Pynnonen, Leino





Port Huron Bynum, Dale


Portage Bambacht, Wilma Kemper, Sara Susanne Saginaw Hosler, Betty Otto, Susan

Go Green for MARSP

Altoona, Florida Bell, Wayne

Merritt Island, Florida Pearson, Audrey North Fort Myers, Florida Cooper, Charles

Saranac Jackson, Evelyn Rhoades, Marie

Receiving your VANGUARD by email offers an eco-friendly alternative to save MARSP financially.

Sparta Pulsifer, Martin

As an added benefit, you will also receive VANGUARD two weeks earlier!

Three Rivers Johnson, Leola

Contact MARSP at 888-9604022 or email us at staff@ to provide your email address.

Wyandotte Stewart, Jean

Duluth, Minnesota Brown, Viola

Stanton Christensen, Geraldine Sterling Heights Rinke, Beverly

Warren Aleks, Albert Masiak, Dolores

January 17 Membership Committee meeting January 18 Executive Committee meeting

Email listed incorrectly Area 7 Director Carol Pratt’s email was listed incorrectly in the September/October issue of VANGUARD. It should be


Member Shareholder


As seminars are added frequently, please check the MARSP website for the current list of events:

Make your check made payable to: MARSP Mail to: PO Box 23214, Lansing, MI 48909-3214

Member Participant

MARSP Building Fund to be used for the MARSP Center building and to complete the Bonnie J Carpenter Educational Center.

Fund Choice:

Scholarship Fund - Any amount of contribution to be used to help persons with tuition costs to further their education. General Fund - Any amount of contribution to work toward the Foundation mission. Richard and Margaret Smith Fund - Any amount of contribution to be used to assist less fortunate members with financial needs such as prescription co-pays, medical expenses, heating expenses, etc. Endowment Fund - Any amount of contribution; interest only used for Foundation programs.

Pension 301 Seminar dates

Plan your future. Protect your future.


Honorary Director

January 19 MPSERS Board meeting

Contribution Form

$1 to $299

VBDF (Voluntary Benefit Defense Fund) to be used for the

legal defense of school retiree benefits.

General Fund to assist the finance committee in meeting expenses for the current budget year.

Name Address City

Name Address






Zip Chapter Name

Phone Chapter Name


January 17 Legislative Committee meeting

Harlingen, Texas Woodcock, Jerry

Cornerstone Level


January 16 Martin Luther King Jr. Day - MARSP office closed

Lake Oswego, Oregon Rexer, Carolyn

Founder Level

I am in support of the MARSP Foundation and wish to make a Contribution. (Contribution may be tax-deductible.) Make Check Payable to: MARSP Foundation, Inc. Please do not combine with MARSP Dues.

MARSP committees (Legislative, Finance and Membership) meet as necessary during the same week as the MARSP Board/ Executive Committee. Please check with MARSP’s office for the schedule if you are interested in one of these committees.

Minnetonka, Minnesota Erickson, Ruth

$5,000 PO Box 23214, Lansing, MI 48909-3214

Calendar of events

Fort Lauderdale, Florida Hocking, Edna


In Honor of or in Memory of


Wi nter 2017

Osceola Chapter awards classroom grants The Osceola County Chapter of MARSP recently awarded grants in two area schools. Three Evart Public Schools staff members and one staff member at Reed City Middle School received $300 grants each. The Evart presentations were made by MARSP Osceola County Chapter President Marie Wilkerson at the October 14, 2016, professional development seminar held at Evart High School. The Reed City presentation was made by MARSP Osceola County Chapter’s Gloria Thompson and Karen Crosson at the November 16, 2016, Reed City Middle School staff meeting. Marie Wilkerson presented Kari Bernard, Rene Stieg (Evart Middle School) and Andrea Wheeler (Evart Elementary) with certificates and a $900 check. Kari Bernhard will use her grant money to purchase books for her classroom reading needs. Rene Stieg will purchase ‘special ball chairs’ for her classroom. Andrea Wheeler is the music teacher and will purchase a glockenspiel and some rhythm sticks for student use. All three teachers will use their purchased items with many students and for many years to come.

Marie Wilkerson (far right) presents grants to EPS staff members, Kari Bernard, Rene Stieg, and Andrea Wheeler.

Tracie Koopman from Reed City Middle School plans to use her grant money to purchase varied reading level books for her classroom. All books purchased will serve a multitude of students and be read for many years to come.

Tracie Koopman (left), receives grant from Gloria Thompson and Karen Crosson of the Osceola County Chapter.

Winter 2017





MARSP Foundation seeks applicants for 2017 education scholarships The MARSP Foundation Board determined in 1995 that one area of education in which there seems to be a void was financial assistance for the public school employees. At that time, a decision was made to develop a scholarship program. The first scholarships were awarded in 1996.  To date, more than 80 active school employees have been selected to receive MARSP scholarships of up to $1,000. The scholarship is available for all public school employees, no matter what their current position is, as long as they are furthering their education in an area that will be beneficial to working in the public school arena.  The scholarship grants are disbursed in July, and are usually for the fall semester for the year in which the scholarship is awarded. 

Funds for the scholarships come from the contributions of MARSP members and supporters. And, the net receipts of the two Annual MARSP Golf Outings are designated for our Foundation Scholarship Fund.

Please contact the MARSP office if you have any questions or would like more information on the MARSP Foundation Scholarship program.

Because the Foundation Scholarship Fund is a designated fund, contributions cannot be used for any other purpose.  Also, contributions to the fund may be tax-deductible for those who itemize. The same will be true of a portion of golf outing entry fees. If you would like to apply for the scholarship, or know of someone who would, please visit the “Foundation” section on the MARSP website. Applications are accepted only from January 1 to March 31 of the year in which the scholarship will be awarded.

MARSP seeking active school employees for scholarship opportunity.

No meetings required, but go one-on-one-on-one When school retirees are invited to join MARSP, they often respond, “But I don’t have time to go to meetings.” “Belonging to MARSP is not just about showing up at a chapter meeting,” says Mark Guastella, MARSP executive director. “It’s more about showing up among the thousands of other voices that make up MARSP. Our members really don’t need to be seen, but they do need to be heard, especially by legislators who have the power to change your pension and health care benefits.” Although chapters meetings do happen all over the state and even in other states, MARSP has no attendance requirement. Besides paying annual dues of only $35, MARSP asks very little of its members. “Of course, we welcome and encourage your presence at meetings but members can support MARSP in other valuable ways, not one of which involves a chapter meeting.” Go one-on-one-on-one. The MARSP Membership Committee suggests focusing on the “power of one”.

1. Recruit ONE new member. The most important way to support MARSP is to recruit one new member. MARSP needs strength in numbers, especially when pension and health care benefits are being threatened. Legislators know there are more than 200,000 public school retirees and the more that belong to MARSP, the more powerful is MARSP’s voice. Recruit a friend, family member, neighbor or former colleague to join MARSP’s cause. 9




2. Make ONE phone call. Each member can play a critical role in protecting public school retiree interests and that means just one phone call. Legislators pay attention when they receive a call from a constituent in their district. A member’s voice matters. By engaging legislators, members help them understand the importance of a pension and health care system that benefits public school retirees.

3. Volunteer ONE day.

For members who want to do one more thing, MARSP suggests they volunteer one day to the Summ’re Hungry effort, a statewide initiative that is part community service and part MARSP visibility. Summ’re Hungry works to alleviate food insecurity among school children by encouraging donations to local food banks and food pantries. Members may volunteer at designated Summ’re Hungry collection sites across the state to thank donors for their contributions and pass out information about MARSP. Members may also recruit friends, family and colleagues to give a monetary donation to Summ’re Hungry, as food banks can provide a larger, more diverse selection of food than the average consumer is able to purchase. “Whatever your one thing is, we appreciate your support,” says Guastella. “If you can do all three every year, and go one-on-oneon-one, all the better, but don’t let meeting attendance be an excuse for not belonging. Even if we never see you, we still need you in MARSP.” Wi nter 2017

Outstanding referral effort draws new members New members joined via referrals in October: New Member Sharon Borchers Sandra Borgeld Mary Bruning Kathy Dunn Christine Evans Gladys Kincaid Mary Klemm Douglas Latuszek John Lofgren Richard Murphy Dennis Ritter Geraldine Ruell Wayne Sedlow Kendall Stanley Denise Walke Susan Williams Ned Workman

Referred by Thomas Borchers Theodore Borgeld Terry Habermel LaJane Fee Terry Evans Linda Manthey Kathleen Winczwski Russell Phillips Loretta Lofgren Brenda Murphy Sandra L Ritter Linda Wallender Carolyn Malaski Diana Stanley Barb Teller Rick Williams Jan Horrocks

Primary Chapter Roscommon Oceana Presque Isle Branch Houghton-Keweenaw Allegan Mason-Lake Crawfrod-Oscoda Oakland Suburban Saginaw Oakland North Wexford-Missaukee Genesee West MARSP St. Clair Blue Water Barry Cheboygan

New members joined via referrals in December: New Member

Referred by

Primary Chapter

Judy Anderson

Janet Schroeder

Oakland Suburban

Lori Crowe

Sharon Lyon

Presque Isle

John Davis

Diana Stanley


Mary Florida

Waymon Florida


Sheila Koski Kathleen Sasinowski

Barbara Susterka


Janet Schroeder

Oakland Suburban

Kim Voog-Sabbag

Paul Sabbag

North Oakland

Ethel Washington

Barbara Susterka


$25 Visa gift card winner is Janet Schroder for the Kathleen Sasinowski referral.

$25 Visa gift card winner is Rick Williams for Susan Williams referral. New members joined via referrals in November: New Member Frances Beeman Wanda Chenier Tom Denay Nancy Erickson Barbara Flayer Paul Fuehrer Mary Grant Gladys HaskinsSchoenknecht Brenda Hill Carnette Johnson Bertha Mathies Donna Minock Marcia Powel l Vickie Rattray Kathleen Sapia Norman Schultz Kevin Smith Bernice Washington Barbara WilliamsBryant Linda Workman Sherry Zeiger

Referred by Nancy Massey Lionel Herioux Clifford Denay Dolores Jacobson Cassandra Brown John Baublit Cassandra Brown

Primary Chapter Wayne Detroit Delta Emmet Wayne Metro Wayne Detroit Washtenaw Wayne Detroit

John Koezman

FL – Sun Coast

Cheryl Harvey Cassandra Brown Cassandra Brown Sherry Warden Claudette Gallop Lionel Herioux Gary Lundquist Kathy Schultz Marlene Socall Cheryl Harvey

Wayne Detroit Wayne Detroit Wayne Detroit Washtenaw Macomb North Delta Oakland Suburban Genesee Southeast Oakland Suburban Wayne Detroit

Cassandra Brown

Wayne Detroit

Jan Horrock Cheryl Harvey

Cheboygan Wayne Detroit

$25 Visa gift card winner is Cheryl Harvey for the Sherry Zeiger referral.





Chapter Dues List: MARSP: $35 Michigan: Alger: $5 Allegan: $5 Alpena: $5 Baraga: $5 Barry: $7 Bay-Northern Bay Arenac: $10 Bay Area: $10 Berrien: $9 Branch: $5 Calhoun: $6 Cass: $6 Charlevoix: $5 Cheboygan: $5 Chippewa-Mackinac: $5 Clare: $5 Clinton: $5 Crawford-Oscoda: $5 Delta: $5 Dickinson: $5 Eaton: $7 Emmet: $10 Genesee: $7 Genesee Southeast: $7 Genesee West: $7 Gladwin: $5 Gogebic: $10 Grand Traverse: $10 Gratiot: $6 Hillsdale: $5 Houghton-Keweenaw: $3 Huron: $5 Ingham - Greater Lansing: $10 Ionia: $10 Iosco-Alcona: $5 Iron: $5

Isabella: $10 Jackson: $7 Kalamazoo: $10 Kent: $10 Lapeer: $6 Leelanau: $7 Lenawee: $0 Livingston: $5 Luce County/ Tahquamenon: $6 Macomb East: $5 Macomb North: $8 Manistee: $7.50 Marquette: $5 Mason-Lake: $7 Mecosta-Canadian Lakes: $5 Menominee: $5 Midland: $5 Monroe: $5 Monroe South: $5 Montcalm: $5 Muskegon: $15 Newaygo: $5 Oakland North: $7 Oakland Suburban: $6 Oakland-Farmington: $6 Oceana: $10 Ogemaw: $6 Ontonagon: $5 Osceola: $5 Otsego: $10 Ottawa: $5 Presque Isle: $10 Roscommon: $10 Saginaw: $7 Sanilac: $5 Schoolcraft: $7 Shiawassee: $5 St Clair: $8 St Joseph: $8 Tuscola: $5

Van Buren: $10 Washtenaw: $10 Wayne Detroit DARSP: $12 Wayne Downriver: $5 Wayne Metro: $5 Wayne Northwest: $8 Wexford-Missaukee: $7

Arizona: NW Valley of Sun: $8 Tucson/Green Valley: $5

Colorado: Colorado Chapter: $10

Florida: Char-Sota: $5 First Coast: $5 Greater Daytona: $10 Heartland: $5 Lee County: $5 Southwest Gulf Coast: $5 Space Coast: $5 St. Petersburg: $5 Sun Coast: $7 Tallahassee/South Georgia: $1 Treasure Coast: $5 Tri-County: $5

Tennessee: Tennessee East: $5

Texas: Dallas/Ft. Worth Northeast: $5

Wi nter 2017

Membership Committee

Like, follow, share on MARSP’s Facebook By Pam Trask, Membership Committee Co-Chair

relationships among our members and potential members.

Click it or ticket! Just do it! Immediately our minds go to seatbelts and Nike®, right? It’s time for MARSP to have a catch phrase for our Facebook page and here it is: Like, Follow, Share!

will see the story on their Facebook news feeds. We hope it will drive people to our Facebook page (the source of your shared post) and on to our MARSP website where they will learn about our organization and be encouraged to join. The beauty of social media is that it is a way to stay in touch and stay informed. It is great (and free) publicity for our organization and will help us increase our membership numbers. So don’t forget to:

When you FOLLOW our Facebook posts, you will stay informed on health and legislative issues, pertinent lifestyle issues for seniors and topics of interest to former public school employees. Go ahead and make a comment on a post. Your comment boosts awareness of MARSP even more, since it appears in your own news feed and your friends can see it.

If you are one of the 1.5 billion people who use Facebook, MARSP encourages you to go to our Facebook page and click the LIKE button on the left side under the photo of the MARSP office. It lets our staff know that posts are appreciated and resonate with our members. But that’s not all.

But don’t stop there! It is significantly more important to SHARE MARSP Facebook posts. Media research has shown that sharing a post on your own Facebook timeline has a huge impact and will make that post go “viral.” Your friends

You will begin receiving helpful, encouraging information from MARSP in your own “news feed.” Click LIKE on individual posts. It helps raise the visibility of our organization and builds

LIKE the page (and posts) FOLLOW and comment SHARE on your own page

Membership Form Plan your future. Protect your future. Name Address City



Phone Email Address Your educational system or district Referred by

Membership dues: $35 Annual $700 Lifetime membership $ Local chapter dues (See listing this page)

Card number

Payment options: Check enclosed Visa Mastercard

Exp. date

Detach form and return to: MARSP PO Box 23214 Lansing, MI 48909


The VANGUARD classified advertisement deadline is six weeks before the quarterly print date. The Spring issue ad deadline is February 10, 2017.

There are currently no classified ads.

Name as it appears on card Amount


Cardholder signature

Winter 2017





Michigan Association of Retired School Personnel 3645 E. Jolly Road P.O. Box 23214 Lansing, MI 48909-3214



Lansing, MI Permit No. 1114


Legislative Committee Report

MPSERS will continue to be target of conservative Legislature By Legislative Co-Chairmen Joe Curtin and Chuck Abshagen

Happy New Year from your Legislative Committee. Elections are over, the results are in and the Michigan Public School Retirement System (MPSERS) survived the lame duck legislative session. Now we face another year.

Rep. Tom Leonard (R-Dewitt) was elected Speaker of the House. Rep. Leonard has already announced one of his top agenda items will be closing out MPSERS Defined Benefit System. Closing the system would affect all of us and therefore must The election results be taken seriously. With major issues being disbrought no change Instead of saving cussed, MARSP members must in the composition of the government become politically active. the Michigan House money, it would, in of Representatives. fact, cost the state Republicans approximately $4.5 maintained their control, but with the to 5 billion over the next 10 years. The addition of new officials replacing those cost would be necessitated in order who were term limited, the new House for the state to meet its constitutional is even more ideologically conservative. obligation to current and future retirees.

No explanation of where the additional money would come from has been provided. With major issues being discussed, MARSP members must become politically active. We understand for some of our members that seems difficult, but sometimes circumstances require us to step out of our comfort zone. Please check the MARSP website for any information on pending legislation that could adversely affect your retirement benefits. If notified, please contact your state representative and inform him or her of your position regarding such legislation.