President’s Message – December 2020

President’s Report, Annual General Meeting, Dec 4, 2020

We are again rapidly approaching the Christmas season. However, for most of us this Christmas will be the most unusual that we have ever experienced. The challenge for all of us is to make the best of it and follow the rules to rid ourselves of Covid as soon as possible. Please know that you can draw on your Probus friends at any time to help in any way we can in these most challenging times. Please BE SAFE!

This time of the year brings us around to our Annual General Meeting (AGM) for our Probus club. It will be held via Zoom at 9:15 am on Friday, Dec 4. The AGM is expected to be about 30 to 45 minutes long and your attendance will be greatly appreciated.

We have now had several successful Management Committee (MC) and General Members meetings with guest speakers, using Zoom. So, we are confident that we can accommodate holding the AGM via Zoom with a little patience as needed!  Information on joining the AGM via Zoom will be provided to all Members prior to the AGM.

There are 3 resolutions that need to be voted on at the AGM. One is to appoint the Financial Reviewer for the 2020 financial statement which will be prepared early in 2021. The second is to adopt the proposed budget for 2021. The third is to appoint your Management Committee for 2021.  Please see your December e-News for financial details and see below for the proposed Management Committee.

The proposed budget for 2021 is based on several assumptions. They are:

  • All of our meetings for Members, the Management Committee and the SIG’s throughout 2021 will be via Zoom.
  • If we are able to start with regular Member meetings at St. Mary’s sometime in 2021, it has been estimated that the income associated with those meetings would cover the cost of those meetings.
  • We will have Guest Speakers for most of our General Member meetings.
  • We have reduced our projected revenue and expenses according to the new meeting format. Of note, we have reduced the annual Member Dues from $30.00 to $15.00 per person.

We have also recognized that we may lose some Members since we cannot hold regular Member Meetings with Guest Speakers. We know that our regular meetings with Guest Speakers are a major draw for our club – along with the camaraderie and refreshments, of course. At the same time, we will continue supporting our Special Interest Group activities such as our book clubs, TED Talks, golfing group, kayak club, wine clubs and whiskey club. Of significance, we will continue to publish our monthly Newsletter with an expanded format for the Grapevine and Special Interest Group reports.

The slate for our Management Committee for 2021 is below. You will see that most the same people who were on the MC this past year have agreed to stay on for 2021. Personally, I very much appreciate that gesture in view of the current Covid situation and I trust you will support the slate at the AGM.


President                     Al MacDonald        
Vice President             Susan Kelly
Treasurer                    Hart Pfortmueller
Co- Secretary              Marnie Swanson
Co- Secretary              Don Dempson
Membership                Barbara Hartley
Speakers                      Robert Grose
Hospitality                   Leslie MacDonald
Social                           Joanie Miller
Co-Communications   Gail Sherson
Co-Communications   Kim Rasmussen
Member-at-Large       Phil Howell (Audio Visual)
Member-at-Large       Don Dempson
Member-at-Large       Bea Kolodziej (Communications)

Please note that, in accordance with our bylaws, Marnie Swanson is no longer listed as the Past President but she has agreed to be the Co-Secretary. Also, our succession plan has Sue Kelly coming in as Vice President. Also, I am pleased to announce that Kim Rasmussen is joining Gail Sherson as a Co-Chair for our Communications Team. Bea Kolodziej has served a leadership role with the Communications team for 5 years and she wants to take a step back at this time. However, she will continue to support the team as a Member-at-Large. That will create an even stronger communications capability in our club at a time when it is needed most. Thanks Bea! Thanks Gail. Thanks Kim.

Thanks to the entire MC team who have helped your Probus club adapt to new and ever-changing circumstances this year!

Your Management Committee welcomes any questions you may have leading up to the AGM. You can forward financial oriented questions to Hart Pfortmueller ( and others to Al MacDonald (

Al MacDonald