Legionnaires welcome a new member during the Sept. 1 awareness drive in Stuttgart, Germany. (Photo via “Charlie” Brown)

Gaining awareness, and members

The name “American Legion Department of France” is a bit of a misnomer; the department also includes posts from Ireland and Germany, from Thailand and one operating “in exile” from China, and more. With such vast distances within the organization, messaging is crucial.

Department membership chairman “Charlie” Brown reports that a Sept. 1 awareness drive by Post GR06 in Stuttgart, Germany, netted 26 new members and three renewed members, and even a member for another post – 27 new members in all.

But behind those numbers is a process that is followed. This includes attendance by both post officers and general members; one member whose sole job is to help new recruits fill out paperwork; always having Legion banners and colors displayed; welcome packets on hand with a variety of post and department contact information and brochures; and even a tradition of photo ops if the new member would like one.

As of Nov. 23, eight posts in the Department of France had already joined the 100 Percent Club for 2019. And Post GR06 is on its way.