O’Flaherty re-elected by acclamation to lead Kenora District RTO
A number of pertinent reports were presented at the Retired Teachers of Ontario, Kenora District 26, (RTO/ERO) Annual General Meeting that took place at Seven Generations Educational Institute on June 14 with President Evie O’Flaherty presiding. She welcomed Helen Williamson as it was her first time attending as a member.
The Blessing was delivered by Beth Courtney before members went to the buffet table to help themselves to a tasty luncheon catered by the 7 Gens culinary crew. Rosey Robertson gave the Treasurer’s Report followed by her notes on attending the recent RTO/ERO Spring Senate in Toronto. She was accompanied to Senate by Courtney, Marlene Nelson and Cookie Wicks. Local RTO members were informed the new Board of Directors were elected using a very efficient electronic method. This was the first election since the new governance model was adopted earlier this year.
Senate will from now on have a Board serving the Senate and membership. From the nine elected, Martha Foster was named chair with Rich Prophet named vice-chair. Topics on the Senate agenda were the promotion of RTO/ ERO using the publication, ‘Vibrant Voices’ which features articles on trusted voices that speak out in salute to seniors so their voices can be heard and a volunteer recruitment kit. The keynote speaker at Senate was former Ontario Premier, the Hon. Bill Davis.
Copies of printed GM minutes of the Nov.16/17 GM meeting were distributed to the dining tables as well as interesting, informative and detailed reports from conveners of the various standing committees.
O’Flaherty turned her gavel over to the Nominations Chairperson, Courtney, to present the list of members running for office for the upcoming term. Acclaimed officers are Evie O’Flaherty, president; Rosey Robertson, first vice; Josie Groen, 2nd vice; Elaine Sinclair, secretary and Marlene Nelson, treasurer.
Accepting nominates to hold positions on Standing Committees are Stephanie Kennedy, Communications; Josie Groen, Benefits, Social Media and Newsletter; Beth Courtney, Goodwill & Foundation; Cookie Wicks, Membership; Irene Kember, Pension/Retirement; Mary Bawden, Political Advocacy; and on the Social Committee are Bawden, Judy MacFarlane and Louise Gale.
President Evie again took the microphone to discuss a few important items before Kenora RTO/ERO recessed for the summer. She noted the RTO/ ERO Project Service to Others grant to assist the Rotary’s Splash Park has been applied for and Kenora District will be informed in the fall by the Project Service to Others Provincial Committee if grant has been approved. She reminded members the Retirement Planning Workshop for upcoming Kenora retiring teachers and educational workers will be held Sept. 27 under the organization of Lois Dale.
Evie also commended Bawden for setting out the ‘Get Out & Vote’ lawn signs around town and those having signs are to keep them for display during the coming municipal elections. Since the signs are generic they can be used for any future elections.
With elections over and the portfolios of Webmaster and Archivist still to be filled she said, “Due to the commitment of our members in the community we have reduced the number of Executive and general meetings in the past few years. We are now reducing the number of events during the year. For the 2018-2019 year we will hold a cruise on the MS Kenora on Sept. 5 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of RTO/ ERO, this will also serve as our congratulations to new retirees, the GM/lunch in October, a Christmas lunch in December, the AGM/lunch in May and a windup function in June.”
On a personal note Evie made a statement that she recently joined the New Horizons Seniors (NH) and with permission from the centre she will be sharing the monthly calendar of events with RTO/ ERO members. This will enable the membership to be informed of the many activities offered through the centre. Before adjournment President O’Flaherty wished everyone a safe, fun-filled, warm and pleasant summer reminding them the Sept. 5 meeting to start a new season will welcome new members to the organization on a beautiful luncheon cruise aboard the M.S. Kenora. Tickets must be purchased in advance. The last opportunity to purchase tickets will be in early August. Check your RTO/ ERO e-mails and the Facebook page for details regarding time, date and location of ticket sales.
Special draws were exciting as a prize of $200 was awarded to Sandra Tankard for having attended five lunches this year. In celebration of RTO/ ERO’s 50th anniversary golden scrolled t-shirts were raffled and won by Sinclair and Bill Sokolyk.