Murat's Divan (Leadership)
Scott A. Schuster
Greetings Nobles and Ladies and Happy New Year!
I want to thank you for the honor of serving as Murat’s Potentate for 2019. Karen and I are excited and ready for a fun filled year. I would also like to thank all Nobles who have taken a leadership position in their Clubs and Units and express my appreciation in advance for your efforts. I’ve received tremendous output of offering for support in 2019 and look forward to engaging and working with many Nobles.
I want to congratulate Illustrious Sir Chuck Shull and the Divan for an outstanding 2018 and the Divan is committed to continuing the charge. Membership is our primary focus and that takes on many different meanings. Typically, I’ve always thought of membership in attaining new members. However last year we focused on bringing activities to Murat that created fun for the membership. Following are some of the new activities developed in 2018 and others activities that we will continue and enhance for 2019:
* Indy Fuel Night
* St. Patrick’s Day Party
* Murat Pacers night
* Murat Shrine Easter Egg Hunt
* 4th of July Party
* Indian’s game night
* Symphony on the Prairie at Conner Prairie
* President’s Ball
* IU vs Ohio State tailgate party – “The IU Hoosiers”
* Murat Day at the Indianapolis Zoo
* Reverse Raffle
* Halloween Party
* New Year’s Eve Party
We welcome and want your family and friends to participate in these events. Hopefully if we are having fun that will become contagious and grow!
The stars aligned in 2018 and we were fortunate to have one of the largest Ceremonials we’ve had in years at the November Grand Master’s One Day Class exceeding 120 new members. Our total new membership in 2018 exceeded 200 members. To our new members, please attend events mentioned above, explore our Units and Clubs and find a place in Murat. We will be reaching out to you to make sure we are meeting your expectations. We will continue the initiation fee of $50 plus cost for the fez to promote new membership.
We’re on track to make Murat Shrine the largest Shrine in Shriner’s International and our membership committee is committed to achieving that Goal. Our motto in 2019 is “Make Murat #1 Again”. We will be reaching out to our Lodges and including their members in our activities and events. Several of our Clubs do an excellent job of supporting their Lodges and fostering new members through that effort. Our goal is more than being the largest we want to be the most active. We’re looking for opportunities to have a presence in the Community and engage more people. Again, several of our Clubs do an excellent job in this area. We’ll take a page from their book and assist other Clubs in developing the art.
Two of our time honored events have been the Potentate’s Ball and Imperial Session. The Potentate’s Ball will be held at the Grand Hall in Union Station on February 23rd. Union Station is a majestic facility rich in Indiana history. We have a Big Band, “Twilight Nites”, ready for the evening with our own musician and Highlander, Joe Ketterman, being a member of the band. Please plan to attend and make your reservations at the Crowne Plaza downtown.
We’re very fortunate this year to have the Imperial Session located nearby in Nashville, Tennessee. The dates are June 30 to July 4th 2019. Murat’s headquarters hotel is the new JW Marriott just opened in 2018. The JW Marriott is located across the street from the convention center and within blocks of the Honky-Tonks on Broadway. We’ve secured a 55 passenger bus for Nashville, TN with excursions planned while in Nashville. The cost of the bus trip will be $100 per person which is a great value for attending the Imperial Session. The bus will return in time for Murat’s July 4th festivities. Our reverse raffle held in 2018 pays off now. We’re using the proceeds of the raffle to support attendees, participants in competitions and parade units for the Imperial Session. We are providing a $100 stipend to members staying in the JW Marriott. This pays for your bus ride if you choose to stay at the JW Marriott. We are also providing a $100 stipend to members competing or parading in Nashville, TN. We have a Presidential Suite reserved for your hospitality room and hope to see you there!
One of January’s big events will be attending the 94th Annual East-West Shrine game and Imperial Sir Jim Cain’s East-West Shrine Cruise to the Western Caribbean. We’re honored to have our own Imperial Sir John Cinotto attending the trip with us and Murat may well have the largest Shrine group on the Cruise. I want to thank the 70 plus attendees for supporting Murat.
Our largest fraternal fundraiser is the Sportsman’s Raffle. The Sportman’s Raffle is being held on June 1st in the Egyptian Room. This is also an excellent opportunity to showcase our fraternity so please invite guests to attend. If all members bought one ticket the event would be a great success and this helps support Murat’s operating costs.
Congratulations to Scott Roberts on being appointed to the Divan line and his wonderful wife Janine. Scott’s family has a rich history in Masonry and he is eager to join the Divan and take on our efforts of “Make Murat #1 Again!” I also want to thank Mike Harrison for his enthusiasm in taking on the role of Chief Aide. Karen and I look forward to working with Mike and Mary Anne.
Lastly, thank you to Illustrious Sir Jim Priest for appointing me to the Divan Line. If you don’t know Illustrious Sir Jim he’s John Montgomery’s brother-in-law. The best thing about Jim is his wonderful Lady Tammy!
I’m looking forward to an exciting 2019 and working with the Divan to meet the challenges ahead. Your support and participation makes it all worthwhile!
Yours in the Faith,
Scott A. Schuster
Murat Potentate 2019