The Fraternal Order of Police Jim Fogleman Lodge 50, Inc has been serving law enforcement and corrections deputies of the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office for 55 years. What a tremendous accomplishment! I want to highlight some features of our organization that I feel are part of our past success and will continue to be important in the future.
Members. The Fraternal Order of Police is a Member Driven organization. Therefore, our membership is the strength of Jim Fogleman Lodge 50. All decisions affecting Lodge 50 are voted upon by the members. This accounts for greater fiscal responsibility, accountability and above all, transparency. This is your lodge and your voice matters!
Volunteer Board. For an organization our size, we are blessed to have a very capable and competent board of directors who receive no compensation for the daily management of Lodge activities. Their dedication is obvious in keeping operational costs down and membership dues at a very reasonable price. Basically speaking, our overhead is significantly low when compared to similar labor organizations.
Commitment to mission. Lodge 50 has held true to its core mission throughout the years. The mission has always been the same. Looking back, it is evident that Lodge 50 has successfully achieved its goals. The future, however, depends on all of us and not just a select few.
Monthly meetings. Members’ meetings are the cornerstone of our organization. It provides an excellent opportunity for members, active and retired, to actively participate in Lodge business. Law enforcement is a profession and therefore, our meetings become venues for professional interaction and serve as an open forum for new ideas and direction. I encourage everyone to become more involved in your Lodge, particularly our younger members. You are the future of Lodge 50. If you are concerned with your career and want your voices to be heard, take advantage of this opportunity to make that happen.
Organizational structure. Our organizational bylaws govern our activities. Our board of directors, elected by the membership, meets once a month to review the organization’s activities and take actions. Committees, such as Deputy Sheriffs, Legislative, Membership, Corrections, Legal and Labor, are formed every January and report their activities at each monthly meeting. Members of those committees also meet on a quarterly basis at FOP State Board of Trustee Conferences, networking with board members of the Florida State FOP Lodge and other local FOP Lodges. Committees have been active in advancing position statements, legislation and initiatives that affect all law enforcement and corrections in Florida.
Financial stability. Five years ago, the board of directors realized the need to streamline and modernize our financial management which reduced unnecessary costs incurred by the Lodge. We believe that we are well positioned financially to take advantage of new opportunities and withstand challenges we may encounter.
Innovation. In keeping with the vision set forth by the board of directors five years ago, FOP Lodge 50 continues to grow and provide opportunities in support of our mission. One of our first steps was the introduction to our new Member Management and Communication website. We also said goodbye to costly telephone service and antiquated answering machines and services through the acquisition of a virtual office system. This assures someone will answer or return your call 24/7. We also added two new highly experienced legal representatives who are on call for critical incidents as well as internal investigations.
Research. We are among the many labor unions in Florida that represent public safety. Several Lodge 50 board members serve on local and state committees that decide what is important for the welfare of our members as well as our brothers and sisters in the Florida law enforcement community as a whole. These representatives attend Legislative sessions seeking support from both state and local elected officials encouraging legislators to vote in favor of bills that benefit you as well as, defeating bills that can negatively affect your career and pension. Delegates from Lodge 50 also attend State and National conferences to vote on FOP matters as well as attend training classes to remain better informed on labor and legal issues relating to your profession. Though we are not a collective bargaining agent, Lodge 50 is poised and stands ready when that time arrives. Remember, the Fraternal Order of Police is the leading voice of law enforcement with over 2200 lodges and over 330,000 members nationwide. The state of Florida ranks number four nationwide in the number of FOP members and lodges.
Leadership. We have been blessed to have great leadership at Lodge 50 both past and present. It is an honor for me to continue to serve as your Lodge president for 2021. Thank you very much for this opportunity.
I hope you are as proud of our heritage and excited as I am for the future of this great organization!