Following several months of training on location, President David started this new meeting on a swift note, empahsizing the fact that thanks to the PolioPlus program, only 5 countries remain with active wild polio virus: Afghanistan, Egypt, Niger, Nigeria and Pakistan. He noted that March does not have a designated Rotary theme, so he suggested that we make it MJH month. More on that later. He then called on Tom Lidkea to play for O Canada and Ben Andersen to say grace.
Visiting Rotarians & Guests, introduced by Mark Bedford:
Ian MacLean, Stratford Ont., Dentist;
Greg Read, Stratford, Ont., Education;
Rod MacLennon, Brandon, Men’s Clothing, Retail;
Burton Kennedy, Winnipeg, S/A;
Jim Porter, Calgary S., S/A;
Gary Naza, Calgary S., Oil & Gas;
Sig Balfour, Lethbridge, Retired;
Joe Prentice, Whitehorse, Retired;
Doug Downs, Harbourside, Construction;
Christopher Causton, Harbourside, Restauranteur (& Mayor).
Bruce Hooker, Saanich, Real Estate;
Tom Martin, Harbourside, Automotive.
Editor’s Note: It is obvious that the March blahs have struck in the Real Canada, and the annual trek to the coast is in full swing.
Health of the Club by Barbara Bristol-Price:
Mary Canty is still in Hospital recovering from her replacement knee surgery.
Jack Petrie welcomed members to join his Community Services meeting on March 16th in the Snug. On the Agenda:
1 - Setting a time for the Carnavon Park Project
2 - Getting organized for the Oak Bay Tea Party
Heather Aked summarized the last Social Event “Salute to the Stars” held last Saturday. Giles Bixler was the big winner in the role of Columbo.
Regarding “Salute to the Stars”, it is also the theme of the next District Conference to be held in Victoria. Registrations can be made directly on line.
Leslie Warnock relayed an E-mail from Bob White who accompanied the RYLA Group to Tacoma. It was a great life-turning experience for all attendants.
A decision has been made to have funds raised out of the fines and other miscellaneous collections from March 20 - March 24 directed towards a Dedicated Donation to Polio Plus.
Sergeant At Arms
The usual S@A sting from Dallas followed by a few Happy and Sad dollars on a variety of subjects.
Ted Harrison won the draw but drew a black!
The Featured Presentation
We were finally served the very much anticipated main course in the person of Oak Bay Mayor, Chris CAUSTON, as Guest Speaker and a Rotarian in his own right, introduced by Giles BIXLER. Mayor CAUSTON is a very dedicated and highly efficient member of our Municipal Administration; many of the projects and transformations that Oak Bay is currently witnessing
owe much to his leadership. He brought us up to date on a long list of Centennial projects nearing the end of their planning stages. From his long experience in the public service, dating back almost 20 years, he is able to discern and make good use of the relevant ingredients of a situation that keep the momentum going. He also developed a very sensible philosophy that paid off when the Penny Farthing Pub came to existence. Obviously, everyone was waiting to hear about what’s going to happen with the Oak Bay Beach Hotel and Chris certainly placed the project in due perspective. Getting his backing from the majority is a comfortable way to govern but can needlessly antagonize forever the minority. Thus, in the present case, a small but very vocal minority is very much against the rebuilding of the hotel; they would prefer a condo development. Another group simply doesn’t want any change, while the majority favor the new propsal by the Walkers, which is greatly reduced from the initial proposal. In a prudent way, Mayor Causton believes, and his results attest to his success in doing so, that a lot can be achieved by listening to the minority too and bringing it on board - an approach that defines a great negotiator and leads to a win-win outcome.
Barbara BRISTOL-PRICE, who is familiar with the ins and outs of the development saga, conveyed to Chris the most sincere thanks from our Club. Finally, John Snively auctioned off a T-shirt from the Crystal Meth Society which Rod Sim bought for the very generous amount of $130.