December 2013 President’s Report


Happy Thanksgiving (belated, of course)! With a membership census currently approaching four hundred, many commuting volunteers, and with members dispersed around the country and overseas, there must be some organization. Our Board of Directors meets on the third Thursday of each month. Who are they and what do they do? Have you ever asked that? Sure you have! Currently, seven directors and four officers comprise the Board. During the year they collectively have worked approximately 8,000 to 9,000 hours on behalf of our membership and have over 150 years of DRM membership. Following is a little bit of information about DRM “staff”.


Al Baker, Danbury Police Chief, relocated from the Midwest. He is in charge of Museum relations with the city of Danbury, head of DRM security, participates in fund raising, and gives many of the Wednesday night presentations.


Justin Chapin, a 15 year veteran of Optimum Cable services is our Chief Mechanical Officer who brings a legacy of railroad background to the DRM. Also on our Building and Restoration Committees, Justin is in charge of our equipment in the yard and its maintenance, and assists with the education and qualification of operating personnel.


Dr. Bob Boothe is a retired orthopedic surgeon and a graduate of Princeton University. He is a modeler, member of the Restoration Committee, writer, and currently project manager of our 1455 B&M steam locomotive.


Dr. Mike Madyda is a pharmacist who holds a Bachelors and Doctorate from the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia and a couple of Masters degrees from Quinnipiac University. As our newest Board member, Mike has many years with the museum, has recently put his expertise to use as our new newsletter editor, is currently the project manager on the restoration of our Burro crane and is also a conductor for the Railyard Local.


Pete McLachlan, a DRM founding member and retired railroad engineer with 40+ years’ experience, is our resident history expert/historian, which makes him a valuable asset to our Library staff. He is a member of the Restoration Committee, our volunteer coordinator, outreach member, Wednesday night presenter and avid rail photographer.


Jeff VanWagenen, another longtime DRM member, is employed in the banking industry and is our Yard Superintendent. Jeff is in charge of yard operations, education and qualification of operating crew and crew scheduler. He is also a member of the Restoration Committee and modeling group, and an engineer/conductor.


Don Konen, a longtime member, is DRM Board Chairman, a position elected by the Board each year. Don, a graduate of Bridgeport University and formerly an electrical engineer with IBM, is involved with museum and yard operations. He is an operating engineer/conductor, tour guide, assists with our finances, front desk, modeling and shows, and is a member of the Restoration Committee.


Patty Osmer, also a longtime member, is our Treasurer, an officer position elected by the DRM membership every two years. Patty, also a graduate of Bridgeport University, was employed by AT&T as an IT expert. She manages our finances, assists at the front desk, heads up Gift Shop operations, assists with shows, oversees the computer and phone systems, and assists in the day-to-day operations of the Museum. These are just some of the tasks Patty has undertaken during her many years with the DRM.


Steve Gould, a graduate of American University is our Secretary, also a membership-elected position. A longtime DRM member and former Pepperidge Farm V.P. of logistics, Steve is Chairman of the Restoration, Nominating and Grant Committees. He also handles communications, public outreach, helps out at the front desk and is a tour guide.


Stan Madyda, DRM Vice President, elected for a two-year term, a founding member and graduate of Mercy College, is Senior Vice President of marketing with Espee Co. Stan is currently in charge of our Station, acquisitions and library. He works on the restoration of the NYC caboose and is a member of the Restoration Committee.


Wade W. Roese, President, is also a position elected every two years. Wade graduated in1966 from LIU with a degree in civil and electrical engineering. He was employed in the aerospace industry, was VP of a local construction firm and was self-employed as an architectural designer for over 40 years. Also a longtime member of the DRM, Wade is a modeler, Director of Exhibits, Chairman of the Building Committee, Tuesday night modeling group member, liaison and outreach member. He also assists in shows and at the front desk, and is in charge of customer service and the complaint department. The President is also responsible to assist all the people listed above without whom the president could not do his job. This president has the opportunity to interact with all the officers and directors listed above on an ongoing basis.


A Thanksgiving acknowledgement: I am thankful to have the pleasure of serving with and friendship of the ten people listed above and the service and devotion of the DRM membership.


On behalf of the Danbury Railway Museum, Wade W. Roese