In April of 1991, when I joined the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa, I had no idea that I would one day have the honour of serving as your President. I have Barry Moffatt and my good friend Ian Hendry to thank for fuelling my interest in becoming a member.
Membership is the theme that I have adopted for the coming year. Not only do we need to continue to attract new members to the Club, we must encourage active participation of our current members. And stepping outside of the box, we must find a more efficient way of attracting and maintaining corporate and community sponsors.
To this end, and with the assistance and approval of our incoming Board of Directors, Chairs and Vice-Chairs, I have introduced the following changes to our operations this year:
• Members have been asked to commit to only one Committee, and this has received a very positive response. It’s not the numbers that make a Committee successful, it’s the commitment and calibre of its members.
• I will be asking the members of the Board of Directors to mentor each new member joining our club for whatever time it takes to integrate that member successfully. We want to make sure that new members are made to feel welcome and part of our Kiwanis family. As well, I have asked our Membership Committee to recommend guidelines for a new recruitment program whereby new members would be asked to meet certain criteria before being inducted as a full member of the Club.
• Membership has its many rewards and one of them is networking. Over my Kiwanis year, I intend to develop ways of better informing our members about what our members do. Through our weekly newsletter, Page Four, our web site, a new Club brochure and a more aggressive public relations strategy, we will communicate the activities of our Club to our members, to our sponsors and to our community.
• Corporate and community sponsors are key to our Club’s fundraising success. Donor fatigue and multiple approaches to the same donors are a concern. I have heeded the advice of a number of Kiwanians who have requested that we develop a database of our patrons and donors in order to avoid approaching the same donor for different reasons.
I thank you for entrusting this high honour to me. I promise you that I will do my best and that together we will make a significant impact this millennial year in the Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton, in Kiwanis International, and for all of the children that we are able to touch with our good works. By our good works, the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa will continue to be touted as one of the best, if not the best, service club in the world.
In all of our good works this year, let’s have a hell of a lot of fun doing what we do. To all of the members of our Club, let us see that this 83rd year of the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa continues the traditions of the last 82 years while we look to our future in a new century with positive changes and exciting results.
— John Callan