Letter from the president

Dear all,

Thank you for participating in our virtual AGM several weeks ago. Even under these exceptional circumstances it was encouraging to have full representation from almost all our clubs. The AGM was our chance to farewell and thank outgoing Board members Sue Schofield (3 years), Dionne Watson, Danny Duquette (2 years each) and Mike Pope (1 year). Paula and I are very happy to welcome Annie, Jodie, Kim and Stephen to the Board, and I would like to outline how your Board will be working this year.

Boards of sports organisations such as ours usually work in one of two ways: “policy” boards set overall directions and leave implementation to the staff while “operational” boards work with staff to set and implement directions. As SNB has only one staff member, we tend to be an operational board. Each of our Board members brings their own expertise and commitment and will be working with our Executive Director to support clubs and swimming in New Brunswick in specific ways.

Marwen Ghali (Executive Director) is responsible for overall implementation of all our activities, for assisting your clubs, and for coordinating our response to Covid-19. Please take a few minutes to familiarise yourself with Marwen’s statement of duties.

Stephen Wyatt (Edmundston) is President and so works closely with Marwen on new and ongoing issues, coordinates the Board and attends the Presidents Council.

Paula Stewart (Fredericton) is Vice-President and as a coach will continue to lead our Development and Performance Program and attend the Technical Committee.

Jodie Lowe (Fredericton) is Treasurer and as a Level 4 official will be supporting clubs in training coaches and officials, helping organise provincial meets, and attending the Officials Committee.

Kim Stevens (Moncton) is Secretary and will be working on communications and on establishing a group of swimmers to take responsibility for our social media.

Annie Robichaud (Bathurst) is also a health care professional and will work with Marwen to help clubs and SNB with their Covid plans and precautions, for training, competitions and access to funding.

Stephen Smith (Saint John) is also General Manager of the CGAC and will work on improving our links with government, pool managers and other partners across the province, and will provide backup to the Treasurer in reviewing our financial management.

We will be contacting you about all these issues (and others) as they move forward and you should feel free to contact Board members directly (but please put the ED in cc on any emails). We also realise that responding to these requests can be a challenge, especially for small clubs with part- time coaches and few Board members. Hence, I suggest that each club decides what issues are the most important for you, and that you let us know who we should contact – coach, president, another person, or no-one. We will continue to use the Bulletin and the Presidents’ Council to keep all clubs “in the loop”. Board members come from all corners of the province and will be trying to turn up regularly at meets, including in-house meets, to keep contact with you.

Covid-19 has forced us all to make changes in our daily lives, and organised swimming is no exception. But it has also shown the strength of swimming in New Brunswick and provides us with new opportunities. Your clubs are the front-line for swimming in the province, and our role is to support you and to coordinate efforts beyond what a single club can do. Your Board and your Executive Director look forward to working closely with you over the coming year.

Stephen Wyatt, President Swimming New Brunswick