Letter from the President
These are emotional days for those of us living here, days of both celebration and commemoration. Celebration, in that we can rejoice together the newly found freedom in Libya, whereby for the first time in 42 years the population is able to wake up in the morning without a dictator determining its agenda. Germany and the United States shall be heavily engaged in assisting the Libyans establish a respectable level of liberty in the transition to a new democratic republic. This is a long and painful process and most assuredly will be one with many difficulties along the way. But it is so very much a cause for celebration: one more dictator is now fallen to man’s eternal desire for freedom and liberty.
It is also a time for commemoration. It was 10 years ago that the agents of Al-Qaeda attacked the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon on the Potomac River. As we know, over 3,000 people were senselessly slaughtered. This horrible event will be commemorated in many locations around the world. It ultimately evolved into the war in Afghanistan. Germany and other NATO countries have joined the US in this effort.
The American German Business Club Bonn e.V, along with over 21 German and American organizations, has organized a benefit event (see link: www.mit-mut-in-die-zukunft.de) (Together-With Music- With Courage-Into The Future) for families of fallen and wounded Bundeswehr Soldiers. This will take place on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, at the Brückenforum Bonn, September 11th, 15:00 to 17:30. Tickets can be ordered online from BonnTickets, (www.bonnticket.de) Tel. 0228-502010.
There will be a total of 110 musicians and three orchestras, volunteering their time and their best performances. The musical theme is Beethoven and Bernstein, a German and an American, both cultural representatives of their respective countries. The event also includes two discussion rounds. Well known radio/TV personality, Carmen Thomas, will moderate discussions with German General Egon Ramms, former Commander of German troops in Afghanistan, MdB Elke Hoff, German parliamentarian, American Consul General Janice Weiner, other US and German political representatives, and the families of fallen and wounded Bundeswehr soldiers. You are invited and encouraged to join us at this wonderful event. All proceeds are being donated to the families of the fallen and wounded Bundeswehr soldiers.
The Association of American Business German Clubs e.V. has biannual meetings of its Executive Board, consisting of two elected representatives from each chapter throughout Germany. I am happy to announce that Heidelberg is hosting the next upcoming event on Saturday, the 22nd of October. We will be meeting in the beautiful Heidelberg Marriott Hotel, along the banks of the Neckar River. The meeting will start at 10:00, and go until approximately 16:00. Naturally we will resolve all of the challenging questions which have confronted us over the last 6 months. Every member of the AGBC is invited to attend these business meetings if he/she so desires. We will be meeting for a very nice dinner on Friday evening, the 21st, and probably have a Happy Hour before our Saturday evening dinner following the business meeting. Understandably, we will provide entertainment for any guest you bring along to Heidelberg, who is not attending the meeting. With good weather, we will have a guided tour of our wonderful Heidelberg Castle. If the weather is not good, we will take you on a tour of the famous museums in Heidelberg, along the Hauptstrasse. Chapter Presidents have all been sent details on inexpensive rooms at the Hotel Marriott; so we encourage you to join in the fun.
Early fall is always an exciting time for business people, especially entrepreneurs. The Entrepreneur of Tomorrow program from the AGBC, aimed at German and international high school students, starts its fourth year in September. This business plan competition, which awards up to €1,750 in prizes, brings young people together with AGBC mentors to teach them something about entrepreneurship, planning ahead, and all in business English. They will receive five mentor classes over a five month period, before the best business plans are selected. Anyone interested can visit our special website and register at www.entrepreneursoftomorrow.de. This program has been so very successful in so many areas, we would like to expand it throughout the AGBC. Please touch base to share ideas because every volunteer is welcome.
We also need some Fun and Freude in these challenging times, and what better way to do that than a day at Munich’s world famous Octoberfest. Our resourceful colleagues at the AGBC Munich organized something of an AGBC party during this celebration. That will be Sunday afternoon, 2 October, from 12:00 until 17:00 at the Hofbraeu Festzelt. This is the most American tent of the Wiesn, and you can meet guests there from all around the world. So dust off your Lederhosen and Dirndl and join our Munich group for food, fun and frolicking. Reservations in advance are required for this party, so please check our website for all the many details. Our world famous Octoberfest, by far the biggest Bier Fest in the world, can brighten the spirits of every heart.
Barry E. Swanson, CFP