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Executive Director's Letter: Be a part of the momentum

Updated: Mar 11, 2022

What a whirlwind tour the past two months have been! SPOA has been burning up the miles since late January, starting with attending SPAC in Las Vegas and moving on to having the honor of representing so many of our members at AASA's National Conference on Education in Nashville, TN, then to leading training sessions at state education associations and finally to helping teach and speak at several school photography companies planning meetings.

We are not done! We have the honor of speaking on behalf of SPOA and our member companies in Las Angeles this coming April at the National Spring JEA Conference where we will be sharing many of the changes and impacts COVID has had on the industry along with sharing many of the new projects and programs our trade association has completed or is working on to make both of our rich traditions successful for generations to come.

In addition to this, we plan to represent our membership at several more state superintendent and other education-related conferences either as an exhibitor or in many cases where we have been asked to speak giving updates about the industry and future coalitions, councils, and programs that together will make impacts in students’ lives and future careers.

Power of collaboration already seeing results

The impact of so many companies joining SPOA has truly helped advance our mission faster than we ever anticipated. The power of collaboration and unity to help solve some of our industry's toughest challenges has been downright unbelievable. It is a true honor and blessing to see competitors and industry partners work together to help solve some of the largest challenges our industry has. From creating new standards that help make school administrative software have one export that starts with school photographers receiving a consistent set of data fields to the simplicity of a standard file size and format so the export from the photographer is now protected and more consistent with the needs of the school administrative software companies to make schools and districts safer across the entire United States of America. This is just one of the many projects and initiatives that will forever change our relationships with the schools, the districts, and the families we serve.

Obviously, we have some more mountains to climb when it comes to things like sales tax, rebating or commissions, licensing, accreditation and so many other issues. But with so many companies joining, what we thought maybe in the distant future maybe now possible in 2023 or even 2024. We can't stop the momentum. If we reach 200 member companies by this June, we might be able to advance most of the initiatives we thought were 3-4 years out to potentially within the next 18 months. With that number of companies, the opportunities are endless. Look at just the recent software created to remove watermarks, this impacts everyone and we need all companies participating to fight issues like this. So if you know of a school picture or yearbook company that has not become a member, then please help them get on board, and let's make school photography and yearbooks one of the most popular traditions our country has ever had.

Some of that starts with joining us this June in Houston for the International Conference on School Photography and Yearbooks. We are so excited about our keynote speakers, our sessions, and the complete focus on leadership and education. You will not want to miss the official launching of the foundation, the first-ever industry report, our new student and teacher national photography training, and the launching of our new national educational round tables and focus groups that will radically transform marketing departments, products, and services for years to come. There are so many exciting projects and training that will be offered, just by attending you could radically transform your company in growth in so many areas. From sales and profitability to cybersecurity and legal protections that could save your company for future generations. Please visit: to order your tickets today!

David Crandall

Executive Director

School Photographers of America

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