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President’s Letter: September 2019

Integrity and Perseverance

These days there are speakers echoing with high volume to look after the number one. We are becoming more and more focused on our self-interests and paying less and less considerations to other’s needs. The money is becoming the common denominator at the expense of living and environment.

Efficiency is the magic word and we take the easiest routes.  As an engineer, I totally get it that we need to reduce waste and increase the ratio of output over the input for our systems….improving the efficiency. But as we consider the human factor and dealing with each other we should note that the system is not purely of physical nature and variable are neither as clear nor measurable with similar yard sticks as in a mechanical system. To take human factor into account requires closer observation with far more live monitoring. I find it more and more important to stop on my path, my journey in life and to see and smell the roses.  In the hustle and bustle of life, we need to not only focus on destiny but also the journey itself. It is important. For you may reach the destination and wonder about what happened through the journey and why the destination is different than you had envisioned.  I feel it is even more important to be more conscious of the journey and to look at our surrounding to understand the variables on the fringe of our path. To appreciate others who may not be as fortunate as you and I.  In a time and era where divisiveness is becoming a rule, the conscious needs to adjust and make more room for inclusion and acceptance of other’s faults or extraordinary styles in life approaches.  When I was young, I learned from my parents that going with the flow, meant being like a leaf. Floating on the water in the river where one would not be in charge of his/her destiny. It would be the easiest and therefor the most efficient path. But that be OK to be taken to where you have no choice but to go?

On the contrary, swimming against the current, is tiresome, yet in order to cross a river to reach your own destination, you will have to swim and endure the work and tiresome efforts. But that is what makes you a free man. And trust me, choosing to swim is far more gratifying each time you accomplish something; for you know you have earned it and most often you will get respect of others.  Inclusion is what made America great.

As this is my last letter as the president of CMS, I would not steer away and will not speak on politics of things, but policy of humanity and natural system.  By natural system, I am including the human factor, the animal kingdom, the land, the forest, and of course the mycofloral portion. Namely the earth wind and fire….laughing. As we cannot focus on trees only and ignore the effect of mankind, nor consider the first two and ignore the effects on mycelium and environment, by the same token we should never ignore our brother and sisters, the old and young, the white and black, the weak and strong and ultimately our diversity.  How could a father love his strongest child and be mean to his disable child? As a father, I can tell you that would not happen, and therefore we should follow suit toward each other as members of human factors within the Natural System. To be considerate of each other.

That is why during my term as presidency of CMS, I took that into my consideration to include everyone and anyone who had interests in Mycology, mushroom, our environment and anyone who cared about our planet and living condition.  It did not matter to me if someone was a favorite among others or there were broken bridges because of the past. I know that we are not gifted equally to express our thoughts and desire as clearly and effectively as each other. I took such into consideration. The most important contributors to me were not how large of a contribution made but what was the intent and level of efforts put by individual to our environment and specifically to our Colorado Mycological Society (CMS).

While president of CMS, I received numerous requests, some contradicting with my own vision and belief system, some contradicting with the CMS unwritten policy and vision. I did my best within my ability to adhere to the CMS policy, to adhere to its bylaws and set aside my own personal feelings. To have the integrity to perform the duty of the president for the best interest of CMS and it’s long term membership interests. I tried to focus on common goal and common ground. For example to those who contacted me and wanted me to provide expertise (a mushroom Expert) so that they could obtain a commercial harvesting license to sell wild mushrooms…..I replied patiently that the policy of CMS is against such. At the same time I also expressed that we still had common interests and common base. We shared the same environment and if someone planned to sell mushroom, he/she still should care for the trees and ground where those mushrooms fruits for no mushroom would grow on a toxic land without any trees.  I thanked them for staying focused on the environment and for becoming a member of the CMS, so that we collectively could make contributions to prevent further degradation of our environment.

That vision of INCLUSION is not mine, but it has been proven throughout History. It is what made Persia a great empire, and it is what has made America great. We bring and accept the best and brightest from around the world, in every field (from science, to sports). It is not about whom you are but what your level of efforts and your contributions are.  It was that inclusion that allowed CMS to break through several barriers this year. It was that inclusion factor, having the eye for each and every member, to accept all (members from all over our state and as far as New Jersey and Texas) to include all that helped CMS achieve numerous FIRST TIME EVER achievements. We had the first ever Winter foray, the earliest foray ever held (late January), the most number of foray, the fastest growth in membership and largest total membership ever for CMS.  Thank you all for your contributions.

As stated in my July letter to members, that I had decided at the beginning of 2019 to focus on two items to achieve this year. One was to IMPROVE the VALUE and benefits to the members (specified several tools that we had installed in support of item #1).  And my second mission was to drive the membership of CMS to over 500 members strong.  I had predicted that we were on that road and was certain to achieve it. CONGRATULATIONS to those who stood by me and helped achieve this. But most importantly, I WOULD LIKE TO THANK EACH active CMS MEMBER for joining me as a member and for having faith in me, my efforts and my intent to serve and represent you.

I noted that upon the announcement that we have achieved 500+ memberships; an email was sent with high level of compliment to the announcer for achieving 500 plus membership. It truly made me laugh.  It is NOT the announcer who deserves the credit. It is not even me, who set up in motion the necessary tools to achieve it. I really thank several of CMS board members who supported me to collectively achieve this milestone, but we cannot ignore the fact that the most active members were not even on the board of directors. In my book they all were behind the scene heroes who helped us no matter when we asked for their help. The True credit deservedly shall go to the IDEA OF INCLUSION.  We all have heard the old saying “A chain is as strong as it’s weakest link”. Please think about this when you deal with others in life. So long as all links are of the same material; removing the weakest link is NOT the answer; because the chain will become shorter and shorter till there is no chain anymore but a single ring. The credit shall go to the “inclusion” and to recognition that each CMS MEMBER, each link of the chain does matter.  To have a strong chain, we must establish and design a system which supports strengthening each chain link. As the old saying goes, “United We Stand”.  We the more experienced members should pass on the knowledge to the new members to help them see the vision.

As I pass the torch on, I am hoping that we continue to include and accept our variances (in shortcomings and in strengths) and to continue the path of inclusion.  By appreciating the positives within people we will achieve positive results.

Thanks again for honoring me to serve you.

David Nazeri Sr.

2019 President, Colorado Mycological Society

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Bryce

    So glad to have joined the society while you were the President. You, David did a remarkable job, while seated in a volunteer position. You treated the office like one would with a good paying job. And yet in the short while that I got to know you, I know your heart was all in, and making money for yourself took a backseat. Your final letter hit me hard. Good thing there’s a mycelial net out there, with folks like yourself to represent it. Having made some mistakes in my past and knowing they’ll be more in my future, I felt welcome right from the gate! Your shoes and accomplishments will be hard to fill. I hope no one has to worry about that, and we still see you around from time to time. I learned more from you in 6 months than I had in the last five years. I’d be proud to call you a friend with any faults included. Thank you again for your time and confidence in the people, right, wrong, and indifferent.

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