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Membership 2016

Happy New Year from PPSNYS

2016 is almost gone, and the dawn of new opportunities is just a day away.

Personally, I would like to thank the officers and the former presidents of PPSNYS for their friendship and counsel. We’re all in this together.

I would also like to thank each individual section for their massive contributions to the craft.

“Why PPSNYS” is a refrain I’ve heard all year, both from members and non members. I won’t go into numbers – only personal experience and observation.

First and most important, trust. As working professionals, we have acts of God happen to us or our friends in the profession. Isn’t it great to know that you have a pool of extraordinary talent that you can TRUST to, in an emergency, take over your assignment? Or know that you are trusted when a colleague calls you for help? This kind of trust is fostered by the organization in our friendships and trainings. We have something in common that just doesn’t exist outside of an organization like ours.

Second, education. At Convention, summer workshop and our section meetings, the best and brightest in the business are made available to us to learn from, probe, question and meld with. We absorb knowledge, yes, but we also find that these extraordinary talents are people, people like us whose greatest wish is to share their talent, and by their teaching elevate the level of the craft.

Third, comradery. The life long friendships I’ve made through PPSNYS would not have happened without this organization. Many of my friends are also people I hold in the greatest professional esteem – Michael O’Neill, Caryn Benjamin, Paul Bernstein, Will Cadena, John Aitken and a hundred others, ALL who I look up to, as well as looking across the table over a beer. NONE of these friends would have ever crossed my path had it not been for PPSNYS.

The friendships extend to the national level as well. Lou Tonsmiere, Marty Grivjack, Helen Yancy and the Timmons’s are all people that came into our family due to the efforts of the state organization.

I want to mention Lou Tonsmiere specifically. Lou was an instructor at workshop back in 2006. 8 months after workshop, I had a problem with a particular job I had done, and sent Lou an email, essentially complaining I had less than beautiful subjects. In just a few moments, I received an email from him in Georgia, asking for my phone number, and he spent the next two hours on the phone with me, teaching me more about lighting than I had ever learned before. Using his help, I re-shot the session, and the results were beautiful.

It is this sharing attitude of our members and those that we meet through the Society that define us as the extraordinary group we are.

Last, and this is YOUR part, our organization is only as good as the efforts of the membership. “The State” can only provide a framework. It is the efforts of the individual sections and the enthusiasm of their members that will drive us forward into a growing and more dynamic society, setting our professionals apart from those who continue to work alone.

Much more to come in 2017. This year is gonna be incredible….


Monroe Payne, 2’nd VP, PPSNYS




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