If there existed a secret Mensa handshake, I’d ask you to pretend I was offering it to you now. Hello, Mensans all. My name is George Haynes and I’m just popping in to your newsletter to raise awareness that I’m running for a national office within Mensa that YOU will have the opportunity to vote for.

Second Vice Chair is the name of the office for which I’m running. It’s like the Vice Vice President of Mensa. If Alexander Haig held this position, his grasp of the rules of succession would be correct (that’s my attempt at making a joke).

This is not my official campaign statement or my official biography. This is just a friendly howdy. Although my tone is more informal in this article, you can rest assured that I take this election very seriously and the responsibilities that come with being on Mensa’s national board of directors. I served on the AMC (that’s the national board) from 2015- 2017. I’m currently the LocSec (that’s the president) of St. Louis Area Mensa. I was also the newsletter editor for St. Louis from 2010-2015.

Interesting tidbit, I ran in 2015 for the AMC as a total newcomer to elected office for national Mensa. At that time, there were two ways to get on the Mensa ballot: The Nominating Committee (NomComm) was one way and the other way was by petition, i.e. getting enough signatures to get your name on the ballot. The NomComm initially rejected me because they thought my supposed “lack of experience“ should keep me out of the running for national office. Thankfully, the people who signed my petition thought otherwise and indeed got me on the ballot. I won that election against my two opponents who were, ironically, favored by the NomComm. By the way, the two guys who were my opponents were great candidates; I consider them both my friends. My victory in 2015 as an AMC member was made even sweeter by a ballot initiative that eliminated the NomComm.

I share that story to respectfully highlight that I was a big outsider candidate four years ago. Even though I have substantially more Mensa experience, now, that outsider mentality still pervades my thinking. Everyone plays politics to a degree; there’s no avoiding it. If you say you don’t EVER engage in political machinations (at work, at home, etc.), I have a hard time believing you. However, there comes a point where every person should ask the question, wherever they find themselves, “Am I primarily just an authentic person or am I a politician?” My desire is to be an authentic hard-working person (with skills and strengths) who serves the organization faithfully and diligently. Politics are real, but they don’t have to pervade everything.

Here comes the campaign slogan (forgive me if it’s cheesy): “We’re all in this together. You’re a Mensan too.” If you have specific questions, please email me at: haygeomensa@gmail.com

Please vote George Haynes for Second Vice Chair. Your vote is very much appreciated.