It is my hope that you and your families have had good health and fortune through the difficult times we have all faced during this last year. The Pandemic has forced all of us to make difficult decisions related to activities and events which involve public gatherings, the Maine Chapter of the IAAI is no exception. I am forwarding this letter let you know about some of the things that the Chapter has been doing over the past year and what we are planning for the upcoming Fall.
Last year, again due to the pandemic, your Board voted to continue through this year with the current list of Officers and Board Directors. All trainings and activities involving public gatherings were postponed until things improved. Two scholarships were awarded last year under the Joseph C. Menezes Scholarship Fund and although it was postponed last year, we were able to hold our annual golf tournament this Spring.
At our last Meeting, the Board chose not to have the annual meeting again this year but began plans to resume face-to-face meetings and trainings this coming Fall. This mean that the current list of officers and directors will remain in place until the Annual meeting next June. I encourage all of you to consider putting in for the positions which will become vacant, which allows you to become more active in chapter planning and decisions.
Prior to COVID, the Board had made plans to host a two-part training series related to the prosecution of Arson cases. The first training would be for the prosecutors themselves and the second portion would be for Maine Chapter Members and guests. When the Board made the decision to postpone trainings, plans continued, and I am happy to announce that we were able to complete the training for the prosecutors via TEAMS this April. The training was a collaboration between The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Maine Chapter. This training was well attended (All but one of Maine’s prosecutorial Districts were represented) and received very positive reviews.
Although it is still the Board’s plan to conduct the second part of the Arson prosecution training, we have recently been approached by the Fire Marshal’s Office to cohost a 3-day IAAI Motor Vehicle Fire Investigation Course this October. We are excited about this opportunity and plans are in the works to present this training at Maine Maritime Academy’s new training facility in Bucksport with live vehicle burns at a nearby gravel pit. When the plans are finalized, flyers will be sent out well in advance of the training.
The Maine Chapter Board, Officers and I wish to thank for your understanding and patience through the last year’s challenges and for your faithful membership. We look forward to seeing you at the training this Fall and to a healthy and (hopefully more normal) new year!
Ed Archer, President
IAAI Maine Chapter