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Dear Members,

Enclosed with this letter is this year’s dues assessment for the American Society for the French Order of Merit. The Board concluded that it is not possible to maintain the dues at their historical level any longer. We have attempted in many ways to keep the dues at their artificially low level and encourage all including life members to make a donation to the scholarship fund.

Each of us, recipients of the Ordre du Merite, has been recognized for our past contributions to the seamless interaction that France and the United States has had since the beginning of our history. It is important that each of us continue to contribute to this interaction, and ASFOM is one of the ways that we can do that. Our collective presence continues to reaffirm the responsibility placed on each of us to act in a manner that reflects the recognition that France has given us. It is also important, however, to maintain our active role at this time, as the cooperation between nations, particularly France and the United States, is critical to maintaining global stability.

It is my intention to increase the ways in which we can contribute to this goal. We continue our scholarship program, and I will be looking for ways this next year to increase that program. We also need to find new ways to participate in the cultural exchange between France and the United States. In the past, we co-sponsored a special evening in Washington, DC with the former Ambassador, Honorable Pierre Vimont, to support the magnificent exhibit of Yves Klein’s work at the Hirshhorn Museum. We had a good representation at this wonderful evening and the private tour of the exhibit the next day.

This next year, I anticipate that we will do more to participate in other similar events, and we will look for new opportunities to help promote the active cultural and social interaction between the two countries.

We have our website, which we will continue to improve upon, and will make it more useful for all members. We will also hold a social evening early next year for members, the proceeds of which will be used to enrich our scholarship fund. The planned date is May 9th and a save-the-date notice will go out shortly for this.

Our Annual Meeting is scheduled for November 2013 I hope that each of you will plan to attend. I look forward to welcoming you at the meeting.

George P. Sape