The Estonian American National Council (EANC) announced on April 14 its General Election for the XXIII Council, to be held this year. With the announcement, EANC issued a call for candidates who support the EANC mission, are willing to share their and time, and can lend their voices as representatives of this nationally-elected body that serves as the central organization of Estonians in the United States.
When discussing what EANC is looking for in terms of candidates, Recruiting Committee Chairman Kristi Allpere stated: ‟We strive to attract candidates from across the US and across generations – the Estonian American National Council values diversity to ensure a wide range of viewpoints and approaches to our mission.”
This year the Council celebrates its 70th year. The EANC mission is to help preserve and promote Estonian cultural heritage; to foster ties with and to represent the interests of Estonian Americans and their organizations; and to support the maintenance of security and democratic institutions in, and cultural exchange with, Estonia. We do this by providing support to local Estonian communities; disseminating information; working with and supporting organizations having similar goals to those of EANC; maintaining informational contacts with U.S. and Estonian government entities; and following developments that affect the well-being of the democracy and security of Estonia.
The EANC mission includes all aspects of Estonian interests in the U.S., which is why it is so important for the Council body to be made up of individuals representing the wide array of experience and perspectives.
Council members are elected for four years. The Council meets at least once a year, usually in Fall, to review past activities and to vote on the upcoming year´s budget and activity plan. There are numerous committees and working groups on which to be active.
‟The Council is what we make it, and great efforts are made to respond to need and opportunity in the community. I am excited to see what candidates bring to the table,“ said EANC Vice President Mai-Liis Bartling. ‟Volunteering in the Council´s work helps strengthen community and empower local and national organizations. For individuals, serving on the Council offers a chance to do new things and meet fellow Estonians from around the country while also honoring our Estonian — as well as Estonian American — culture. We can all play a part in creating and preserving the Estonian spirit and community.“
Recruiting chairman Kristi Allpere added:‟Of course, current world events and threats to security in Europe add an increasingly serious and urgent tone to certain aspects of our work. Our history and daily events demand it.”
It is with respect and great appreciation that we introduce EANC 2022 Election commissioners, co-chairs Lya Karm and Maria Pedak-Kari, who have volunteered to oversee the 2022 General Election of the Estonian American National Council. Both Lya Karm and Maria Pedak-Kari have previously served on the Council, making them well-versed on EANC procedures. They are highly motivated to ensure a well-run and fair election.
To be eligible for candidacy, an applicant must meet the following criteria:
~ Reside legally in the United States and be at least 21 years of age on the closing date of voting;
~ Be an Estonian citizen by descent, or be an immediate family member of such an individual, be a resident member of the Estonian American community through family relations;
~ Agree with the goals expressed in the EANC Constitution (stated for convenience on application form); and
~ Attest to meeting eligibility requirements on the application for candidacy.
Applications for candidacy and more information about EANC and our elections can be requested from the election commissioners, Lya Karm and Maria Pedak-Kari, email: [email protected]. Applications must be successfully submitted via email to the election commissioners no later than 12:30 a.m. (Eastern) on Thursday, May 26, 2022. The list of candidates will appear in the Estonian American weekly newspaper Vaba Eesti Sõna and on the EANC website (www.estosite.org), together with the election dates.
Later this year you will have the opportunity to vote. Please do your part to make sure your viewpoints and concerns are represented! Ballots will be sent to all addresses in the EANC database. If you receive the ERKÜ Teataja newsletter in the mail you will receive a ballot. Sign up for Teataja on our website at www.estosite.org. E-voting is offered by pre-registration; contact EANC Executive Director Leelo Linask to register for the e-voting option. Please notify us of any address changes as soon as possible.