As departments have been holding their fall and midwinter conferences, many have included Leadership Education and Development (LEAD) training. From now through February 2014, LEAD training will be presented at 11 different departments. Most of the 11 departments have been able to schedule eight hours of instruction thus qualifying the Legion Family members to receive the LEAD cap pin.
As the departments integrate LEAD training in their Five-Year Membership Plan and incorporate this training into their existing programs National Headquarters is developing more trainers to lead sessions for "blue cap" Legionnaires at the district and post levels.
Starting with the first LEAD courses in January 2013, almost 1,500 Legion family members have received some amount of instruction.
Any department wishing to conduct LEAD training can contact Internal Affairs at (317) 630-1330 or email firstname.lastname@example.org  to check availability of dates and classes.
In other news:
Association for Middle Level Education: Committee on Youth Education Chairman Mike Bredeck, committee member Ann Rehbein and Americanism Deputy Director Mike Buss exhibited at the 2013 Association for Middle Level Education (AMLE) convention in Minneapolis last week. The AMLE is the leading international organization advancing the education of students ages 10 to 15, helping them succeed as learners and make positive contributions to their communities and to the world. Over 4,000 were expected to attend.
2013 National American Legion College: From Oct. 27 through Nov. 1, 56 Legion members from around the country descended on Indianapolis for one week of intensive, thorough and sometimes hectic instruction on the four pillars of The American Legion.
They received lectures and assignments from subject matter experts in the Washington, D.C., and Indianapolis offices on how to create the best district in The American Legion. Emphasis was on creating brand awareness, publicizing The American Legion, how to get American Legion posts and members active in their communities, and membership recruiting. Training was also given on how to establish their own department Legion College of instruction. Their end product was to develop a five-year membership plan for a district.
Membership and DMS Program: The 2014 traditional membership goal is 2,001,806. Membership as of the Nov. 6 membership report is 1,404,055, which is 70.1 percent of the 2014 membership goal.
DMS Program 2014: We have currently mailed 402,000 to under-represented veterans asking them to join The American Legion.
DMS Acquires: 16,648 prospects, 28,037 expires, 42,685 total.
2014 Goal: 101,500 (42 percent of goal)
Current Renewal Rate for 2013 DMS Members: 32 percent (56,135 of 175,430 new 2013 members)
Online Renewal Activity: 2014 Membership Year On-Line Renewals (July 1): 144,539 (This is up 11.9 percent over same date last year.)