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The Journey to Region 2 Director-Sponsor
2003, Q3 (March 04, 2007)
By Victoria (Vici) Koster-Lenhardt

On the second weekend of June, I was in Paris, speaking for the first time as director-sponsor of Region 2 at a France Chapter meeting. It was a personal milestone in my career. When I joined STC, I was affiliated with the France Chapter, because there were no other chapters closer to Vienna, Austria. At my first France Chapter meeting in March 1994, I knew I wanted to be more involved in the STC and to establish a chapter closer to home. Nine years later, I am the first non-North-American-based director-sponsor and STC Board member, and the TransAlpineChapter (TAC), based in Vienna, is nearly five years old.

My journey from joining the STC in 1994 to becoming a directorsponsor took nine years. However, I began my technical writing career in 1984, and I needed nearly the same amount of time to become affiliated with the world's largest society of technical communication. It required only seven steps.
  1. 1984. Graduated from New York University with a degree in journalism.
  2. 1985. Began working for MOTOR Magazine, learning the publishing business from the inside and writing about how to repair cars. I was a member of the International Motor Press Association.
  3. 1987. Moved to Austria. Found a technical writing job, worked a lot, felt very isolated, and wondered, "There must be a professional organization representing the type of work I'm doing." But I had no time to investigate.
  4. 1990. A colleague showed me an STC pamphlet, which she had received from a friend in the USA. But we had no time to follow up.
  5. 1994 (January). Another colleague found out about the technical writing program in Santa Cruz, California. I phoned the contact person, and she told me about the STC.
  6. 1994 (March). Joined the STC and attended my first France Chapter meeting.
  7. 1994 (May). My colleague and I attended our first STC annual conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Since joining the STC, I've met great people, made close friends, and grown personally and professionally because I've been an STC member.

What about you? As summer winds down, as you recharge your batteries and relax before fall activities begin, take a few moments to think about your own personal and professional journeys. What role has the STC had so far? What role will it have in the coming year? While you're at it, think about your goals for the coming year. (I'll share mine with you next issue.) When you're done, please share your thoughts with me. It will help me get to know you better, whether you live in the United States, Europe, or Israel.

Vici Koster-Lenhardt is Director-Sponsor of STC Region 2. She can be reached at vici at vkosterlenhardt dot com. End of article.

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