The Alford American Family Association
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AAFA 9th Annual Meeting and Family Reunion

Alford American Family Association, Inc.

1996--October 11-12-13, Springfield, Missouri at the Holiday Inn

AAFA Vice President Lynn Shelley, who lives in Springfield, was the hostess. For the first time, we had a "greeter" at the hotel, JoLynn Long, on Thursday to welcome the approximately 110 attendees representing 31of our identified branches from 14 different states. The official meeting kicked off Friday morning as the Genealogy Workshop got underway with Alicia Houston, Lynn Shelley, and Gil Alford presenting topics dealing with researching genealogy and local history where you live, the Family History Centers, census records, etc. Peggy Taylor and Betty Braden, owners of Dogwood Printing, the company that prints AAFA ACTION, gave a presentation on publishing not only your family history but other genealogical books as well. Over 90 people attended the reception on Friday night, where we renewed old acquaintances and made some new ones.

At the Saturday morning business meeting, members elected next year's Board of Directors. Five newly-elected members will be joining the Board: Jimmie Alford, Cecil Alford, Robin Sterling, Gil Alford, and Lodwick Alford. Re-elected returning members are Pam Thompson, Max Alford, Janice Smith, Doris Vetri, Lynn Shelley, and Paul Alford. This was the first Board elected under the new by-laws which were adopted in early 1996 by the membership. Following the election of the new Board, it elected AAFA officers for the 1996-97 term. Officers elected were: Gil Alford, President; Lynn Shelley, Vice-President; Doris Vetri, Treasurer; and Max Alford, Secretary. The states for the 1999 and 2000 meetings were selected by attending members. Texas, which has more members than any other state, was approved for 1999. We will start the new century in the state where the first meeting was held: Georgia in 2000. The Saturday afternoon Alford Family Forum was, as usual, the event that had the largest attendance with the exception of the Saturday night buffet. After dinner, there was an awards program for photos shown at the meeting, three members were inducted into the Alford Hall of Fame, and a plaque was presented to outgoing President, Ben Alford, recognizing the outstanding job that he has done as our President. Entertainment was provided by Posey Alford, who gave a short, very humorous talk on "Stress," providing an upbeat ending to the Saturday night buffet. Throughout the meeting, the AAFA Store was open for business, operated by Sally Stoewer (ably assisted by her husband, Dick, and her sister, Jeanne Singleton). New items this year were ball point pens emblazoned with the AAFA name and the first AAFA cookbook. There were also the old familiar items such as T-shirts, golf shirts, pins, framed Alford mementos, caps, coffee cups, etc. The Sunday morning meeting in the research room gave people the first real chance to just visit with one another. Some people took the opportunity to do some research in one of the many volumes that Gil and Mary Alford hauled to the meeting from AAFA headquarters. After the meeting, some members extended their stay in Missouri and visited Branson and other surrounding attractions.

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