Happy Hour at Cafe Divan Restaurant
The first MATA Happy Hour was held on Friday, January 30th, at the Cafe Divan restaurant, in D.C. MATA plans on having a series of Happy Hours, on a regular basis, at local merchants' venues. This first event was well attended and the turnout was greater than expected. We met many new and old friends! Plan on attending our future happy hour activities for fun-filled evenings with family and friends!
(Past President, MATA; 1/31/2015)
My First MATA Meeting
[Click for Turkish Version: Türkçe ]
I have lived in the U.S.A. for the last 14 years. Although I have been in ATAA’s mailing list, to be informed of current events, I hadn't had the chance to actively be part of a Turkish community, until last September, when I took my family to the Turkish Festival, in Washington, D.C., where I met MATA members in attendance, and the organization's president, Cennet Köse Rivera.
My first MATA meeting, on December 24th, 2014, was a result of an open invitation, from Cennet, to Meet the Committees, and to learn about their charters. During this event, I had the chance to meet with MATA members and committee volunteers. The Board of Directors has set-out on a mission to push the limits, in order to allow the association ---which has a long standing historical goal of reaching larger groups--- to build a stronger and closer-knit Turkish-American community, within the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area. All meeting attendees shared ideas, discussed expectations, and assumed responsibilities and tasks for future events.
As we learned, all the committees ---Membership, Activities, Marketing & PR, Publications & Content, Web & IT, and Finance & Budget--- work cohesively to achieve the following goals: increasing membership, broadening the association's reach, building a stronger community, and preserving the Turkish language and culture. The committees are chaired by the persons responsible of carrying out the communication and information exchange within the group.
During the past couple of months, I have had the privilege of experiencing, first-hand, the work that the active members do on a daily basis for the association. As a result, I have realized that more committee volunteers are needed in order to achieve current organizational goals.
Would you like to join us for our next meeting? If so, you can contact Cennet directly, or send e-mail to:
(MATA Member/Volunteer for Activities and Publications/Content Committees; 5/15/2015)
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MATA held its annual general meeting on April 27, 2014, at the East Columbia Howard County library. In addition to a review of finances and membership, activities conducted the previous 12 months were discussed, including last year’s general meeting, held in conjunction with the April 23 Children’s Day Lunch, at the Four Points hotel, at the Baltimore Washington International airport. Other successful activities included dinners at the Turkish restaurants, Rudy’s Mediterranean Grill, in Columbia, and Cazbar, in Baltimore, a repeat of the popular picnic at Centennial Park (Columbia), and participation in the annual DC Turkish Festival. The highlight of the year for MATA was the 2 week trip to Turkey, which consisted of 22 people, including the coordinator, Cennet Köse Rivera, Lisa Culhagill, and Orhan Suleiman.
Outgoing president, Orhan Suleiman, thanked the members of the Board and presented awards to individuals who had contributed to MATA’s successful year. He felt the “new blood” has ensured that MATA will continue a long tradition of serving the local Turkish-American community. He noted that the MATA by-laws prevent a president from serving more than two consecutive terms, an amendment that he proudly sponsored many years ago. He stated this was his last term as president and looked forward to working with the new Board members.
The new directors for the 2014-2016 term are President Cennet Köse Rivera, Vice-president Kadri Hasbay, Co-Treasurers Kent Drummond and Cathy Prada Ward Suleiman, Secretary İdil Hasbay, Directors Huseyin Koca, Benjamin Rivera, and Nuran Saydam, and an at large Director, Corina Koca.
In closing, the members were reminded of the upcoming picnic at Savage Park, Savage, MD, on Sunday, May 18th, commemorating the “19 Mayis Gençlik ve Spor Bayramı picnic” (May 19th Turkish National Youth and Sports Day), which will feature activities and döner, catered by Rudy’s Mediterranean Grill. On May 29th, a Thursday evening, there will be a soccer game, at RFK stadium, between Turkey and Honduras, and MATA is coordinating a group trip to the game. Please contact Board members or our website (www.MATAMD.com) for additional information.
(Past President, MATA; 5/1/2014)
Dear MATA Members,
I am happy to announce that, this past April, 2014, we elected a new MATA Board of Directors that will serve through April, 2016. A list of the new board members, and their functions, can be found at the following link: www.matamd.com .
As you can see, Mr. Orhan Suleiman continues to be in the board and now occupies the position of “Past President” and, as such, he will advise and help the new board in accomplishing their responsibilities. He remains available and eager to provide guidance and assistance to our MATA members. Thank you, Orhan Bey, for your tender, loving care of MATA through the years, and for your continued invaluable support!
As your new president, I will represent your opinions and interests within the Turkish-American community in Maryland and the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. Please do not hesitate to contact me or any of our board members with your concerns and/or suggestions. Thank you.
As you know, Turkey has appointed a new ambassador to the U.S., His Excellency Serdar Kilic. I am honored to have already met with him and his staff, and have had the chance to introduce them to MATA’s organizational goals and aspirations. I have also met with the leaders of most of our affiliate organizations, and have found common ground for current and future endeavors.
MATA’s basic mission is to promote Turkish culture in the U.S., and to strive to build ties of friendship between Turkish and American people, of all backgrounds, as, together, we foster a stronger Turkish-American community in Maryland, through educational, social and cultural activities.
The Maryland American Turkish Association (MATA), Inc., was established in 1967, as a nonprofit organization, under regulations of Section 501 (c) (3) of the internal revenue code. As such, your donations and membership fees are tax deductible. Our proclamation of establishment, by the state of Maryland, can be seen here: Maryland Proclamation .
I want to thank you very much for your loyalty and sponsorship through the years. Please continue to support MATA with your membership and/or donations. Also, please consider serving as a board or committee member. We need you!
With all my best wishes,
(President, MATA; 4/27/2014)
Unforgettable Turkey Trip
A trip to Turkey takes you not only across mountains, plains, and seacoast but also back through many centuries and civilizations. Where else can a traveler find so much variety and diversity in a single country?
In May 2013 I was privileged to be part of MATA’s marvelous two-week tour of some of Turkey’s most remarkable cities and archaeological sites. Now, to be honest, this was not my first such trip to some of these tourist locations, but this MATA trip was truly unique. Our guide, Mr. Ertan Turgut, has been working with the American Research Institute in Turkey (ARIT) since 1991, and Ertan Bey never settles for the ordinary experience.
On my previous trip to Turkey, the bus would stop in, say, Cappadocia. Everyone would file off the large, crowded bus, snap a picture, climb back on board, and the bus would drive on. Not on this MATA trip. On these MATA excursions, when our tour group would stop, Ertan Bey would ALWAYS say "Follow me!"
Continue reading... click here!
(MATA Supporter & Trip Participant; Dec. 2014)