Each year, BCA holds an Annual General Meeting (AGM) in accordance with BCA Bylaws and to meet the requirements of the BC Societies Act. This is a very important milestone, as it keeps our status as a non-profit society active, in accordance with the wishes of our founders and our members.
The 2023 AGM, held on December 6, 2023, was once again an online video meeting, which made it easy to attend and participate. Since our bylaws require 10% of voting members to attend in order to achieve quorum, and since our membership is widely distributed geographically, meeting online is an excellent option. All members in good standing have voting privileges and are eligible to participate in the AGM. Thank you to everyone who made time to attend the meeting or to send in their proxy votes.
Business of the AGM
This year’s AGM business was short and sweet. There were no special resolutions to vote on, so the main business was accepting the Minutes of 2022 AGM and accepting the 2022-2023 Financial Statements, both of which had been provided in advance to the membership for review. Both were accepted as presented.
Our Commodore, David Mitchell, provided a brief update on the status of the 2023-2025 BCA Strategic Plan. The Board of Directors and Chapter Watchkeepers have spent time and energy working on refinements through 2023, and the next step is to roll this out to the wider membership at large in the coming weeks and months.
Of course, an important outcome of the AGM is the election of the 2024 Board of Directors. We are fortunate this year in that our existing Board members agreed to stand for re-election, and each was acclaimed to their position by the attending members at the AGM. Please welcome back:
BCA Commodore: David Mitchell
This will be David’s fourth year as Commodore, having previously served as Vancouver Island Vice Commodore. While he has enjoyed leading BCA as Commodore, and we have appreciated his leadership very much, he is looking forward to moving into the prestigious Past Commodore role. We will be actively looking for a new Commodore for 2025 and are keen to talk to any members interested in this important and well supported position.
BCA Vice Commodore: Ralph Lapp
This is Ralph’s second year as Vice Commodore. In 2023, he also took on the role of Board support for the VICE (Vancouver Island Cruising Experience) and is a welcome addition to Board discussions.
BCA Treasurer: Darryl Lapaire
Darryl has been Treasurer since 2022, and has proven to be a conscientious and effective manager of our overall finances. Working with the Chapter Treasurers, he helps guide the overall financial activities in a way that meets BCA’s goals and strategies. In 2024, Darryl will lead some important activities to review and solidify the financial processes and governance across BCA. Thank you, Darryl, for the great work you have done and are continuing to do for us.
BCA Secretary: Dee Logan
Like Darryl, Dee joined the Board in 2022. As Board Secretary, Dee manages the agenda and minutes of the AGM and Board meetings, and takes care of the important actions needed to maintain our legal status as a non-profit association. In 2023, Dee was instrumental in pulling together an even better picture of our board activities and the status of our membership numbers. We are very happy that she has agreed to continue as Board Secretary and look forward to the continuation of her work.
Past Commodore: Leslie Hansen
The Past Commodore is an ex-officio (non-voting) member of the Board of Directors, an important position that provides continuity between incoming and outgoing boards, and helps support and inform board decisions. In addition, the Past Commodore manages the BCA Awards process each year.
Since joining the Board as BCA Vice Commodore in 2016, Leslie has served in both Commodore and Past Commodore positions. She is looking forward to helping find a new Commodore and assisting David in his transition to Past Commodore.
Chapter Vice Commodores
The three Chapter Vice Commodores are voting members of the Board of Directors, who are elected by their respective Chapter membership at a Chapter meeting prior to the AGM, and presented to the membership at large during the AGM. Each Chapter Vice Commodore provides support to their respective Chapter watchkeepers, as the Watch plans activities throughout the year for the Chapter membership – from Club nights, to Rendezvous, to education courses, and more. The Chapter Vice Commodore also works with other members of the Board of Directors to identify any issues or opportunities that might affect the Chapter, its watchkeepers, or its members. We are pleased that all three Chapter Vice Commodores have agreed to return and have been re-elected by their respective Chapters.
Vancouver Vice Commodore: Don Hutchison
Don Hutchison became Vancouver Vice-Commodore in 2022. Since then, he has provided the Vancouver Watch with strong support for the many projects they undertake, including all the Chapter member activities, as well as the Vancouver International Boat Show participation, The August Rendezvous, and the Ocean Cruising Adventure series (OCA) that is run from time to time. In addition, Don has taken the lead on some significant and successful projects such as the RFP to find a new supplier for our BCA burgees.
Vancouver Island Vice Commodore: Scott Crawshaw
Scott Crawshaw returns as Vancouver Island Vice-Commodore, having held that role since 2021. In addition to his support of both the Vancouver Island South and Mid-Island BCA Groups, Scott is also a strong champion of the BCA Mentorship Program, as well as working with the Education Watchkeepers across all chapters on joint initiatives.
Calgary Vice Commodore: John Kortbeek
John Kortbeek has been Calgary Vice Commodore and a welcome member of the BCA Board since 2020. In addition to the much respected leadership he gives the Calgary Chapter and Watch, he provided invaluable expertise during the years BCA was dealing with COVID and its impacts. We look forward to his continuing contributions in the coming year, as he also furthers his own bluewater adventures on Bear North (check out his travels on the BCA Fleet Map).
Thank you to all three Chapter Vice-Commodores for the work you do for your Chapter membership, your watchkeepers, and for BCA as a whole. Your energy and optimism are invaluable, and I look forward to seeing the Chapter activity updates I hear you have promised to write for Currents!
Other AGM Highlights
The AGM also allows us to catch a glimpse into some of the many teams that underlie the services and events that BCA provides to its members. I would like to highlight two of them:
The BCA Member Directory
The Directory is an incredible resource for BCA members that takes months to produce. From the initial data scrubbing to extracting and validating member data, from coordinating advertisers to the delivery of the final printed document, a small and dedicated team works tirelessly, and achieves stellar results each year.
On behalf of all BCA members, a heartfelt “Thank You” to the Directory Team: Donna Sassaman, Rhonda Schuller, Jennifer Handley, Cathy Norrie, Sally Holland, Guylain Roy-Machabée, Nello Angerilli, and Linda Mitsui.
Before 2015, Currents was a monthly printed digest much beloved by BCA members. In 2015, a decision was made to move it online, and today Currents has over 1300 online subscribers around the world. Collecting and publishing the articles for Currents also takes a strong and dedicated team and we extend a warm thank you to: our publisher and technical support Nick Ward; outgoing Managing Editor, Rosario Passos and incoming Managing Editor, Barb Peck; editors, Jennifer Handley, Glenda McDonald, Karina McQueen and Ann Lange; proofreader, Sally Holland; Currents Credit support, Rudy Witt.
Huge thanks also to Danielle Tate-Stratton and Jennifer Handley, who stepped up while Rosario was travelling, to ensure that the photo contest was a success again this year! Winners were announced in December and will each receive a $10 Currents credit toward their membership.
If you are interested in joining the Currents team as an editor or proofreader, send an email to Currents@bluewatercruising.org. If you are interested in writing an article…what’s keeping you! Join the merry band of Currents contributors and earn credits toward your membership!
Thank You! And See You in December…
And finally, thank you again to everyone who helped make the 2023 AGM a success, specifically Heather Marshall, John Oliver, Al Kitchen and Amanda Lance, our BCA Administrator. We are grateful for your ongoing technical and administrative support.
If you were not able to attend the 2023 AGM, I really hope you can join us this year. The AGM is usually held the first or second week of December.