At last year’s AGM in Victoria on May 31st, 2013, the CWCA Organization set out an ambitious plan of action for the Executive to administer. Three new committees were proposed: A constitution committee, an Electronic Media committee and a Conference 2014 Committee. The purpose for these committees was (1) to make the constitution more robust (2) to create a more interactive electronic media presence and (3) to build on the success of our first annual conference with a second conference in 2014. It has been my privilege this year to try, together with our wonderful team on the executive, to fulfil this mandate.
An organization is only as good as the people who volunteer to run it. Our Executive this year has been more than generous with their time and energy. First of all, Brian Hotson and Jane Milton have presented to the executive and, with their endorsement, to the membership, a slate of changes to the constitution that will enable us to carry on the business of an association without too many encumbrances that hinder change, and yet still allow you the members, to have your say in the direction and accomplishments of the organization. I hope that you will take a look at these proposed changes so that you can vote thoughtfully on them at our AGM. Brian, in lieu of an Electronic Media Committee, has also created a CWCA/ACCR website, blog, and twitter feed that make our organization more interactive and our activities more visible to the membership. Miriam Unruh has handled the complex task of treasurer and has streamlined the bill-paying and record-keeping that has burgeoned with the collection of membership and conference fees and the costs associated with our electronic media presence and conference activities. The Conference committee has put together a thoughtful and stimulating conference for you to enjoy and participate in. Margaret Groombridge, as our on-site Conference liaison was wonderful at contacting the right people at Brock, finding volunteers to help out with the conference, organizing the book sales for Laura Greenfield’s book, and making sure all the little details that make or break a conference were well in hand. We hope the day has been as exciting for you as it was for us to organize.
All the members of the Executive Team should be thanked for their quick responses to my urgent emails, time taken out of busy schedules to attend our frequent Executive or Conference meetings, to read missives, suggest adjustments to public announcements, adjudicate proposals, and to give me the benefit of their experience and thoughtful advice at every turn. An especial thanks goes out to Grace Howell, our wonderful secretary, who wrote up complete minutes for every meeting we did within two or three days of the meeting, complete with action item reminders and a roster of who should be doing what when.
Did we fulfil our mandate for this year? I think so, but no mandate is ever quite completed —- there is always something else for the executive to do for next year. Several of our members have already suggested projects for us to undertake next year, and no doubt more will be proposed as we participate in conversations over lunch and dinner. Do we want to fund a bursary to subsidize some of the students and part-time Writing Centre staff who may wish to attend the conference next year? Is our organization large enough to sustain some regional organizations? Where and what shape would those organizations take? Will the SIGs that we have organized for today draw sufficient numbers to make them an annual part of our conference?
Now it is your turn to tell us what you would like to mandate for the future of CWCA, and it is Robyn’s turn to steer the organization for the upcoming year. Thank you for the opportunity of working with you and I look forward to the challenges of the following year in my role as Past Chair.
Submitted by: Theresa Hyland
May 23rd, 2014