Letter from the President - January 1st, 2016
Hello to the extended SORA family. I’m Robert McClory and I think most if not all of you know me. I am now acting President of SORA and want to give you an idea of where we’ve been, where we are and where I see us going as a club.
First, I'd like to thank outgoing board members, President Scott Deweese and Vice President Justin Lednar, for their years of service and dedication to the cause of making SORA great for our members. Without them, we'd not be where we are today.
Where we’ve been…
The past several months have been tough from a “business” standpoint. Rather than concentrate on the “fun stuff”, we have been forced to implement several measures to tighten up how we do things internally so we can keep our 501c3 status and at some point pass an IRS audit if it comes to that. This is not necessary for the general membership to know/be concerned with but I wanted to share that so you understand what the previous board lead by Scott Deweese has been focused on most of the year starting last Summer. Hopefully the trailing edge of that effort is here and we can move forward to things that are more “membership facing” like better planning, communication, etc but first we had to shore up the core of SORA so it was around for the long haul.
Where we are…
The efforts of the previous board, a few of whom are still active board members (in the same or different positions), have left SORA as a much more efficient organization in nearly every way from finance to communication. As president, I will try to make sure those changes remain in place as well as putting the finishing touches on ongoing projects. Then I want to turn my attention to making sure your experience, and your rower’s experience is as good as it can be. After all, this is an organization that exists solely to provide our kids and members the opportunity to participate in this amazing sport. It’s not rocket science and it should be fun so my goal is to guide SORA in directions that supports that idea.
Where we’re going…
I really want to see us grow as an organization but also grow the participation of each member in the club. We are dependant largely on volunteer efforts by the membership to get certain things done, from the board on down. The only “staff” we have is our coaches, the most important being Katie Lednar, our head coach and director of our program who shoulders a lot of the burden but not nearly all of it. Everyone else is a volunteer. I believe with effective communication of our needs and what can be done to help, most people are happy to pitch in now and then, especially if it means their kids are going to have a better experience at SORA. Together we can create an environment where our rowers can thrive in their training and produce results in competition.
To that end, I want to ask each of you to be as open as you can in communicating with me any concerns, questions, or comments you may have. I admit that if it has to do with coaching or “on the water” issues, I’ll simply defer to your kid’s coach but I can help make sure those things are heard by the right people.
I look forward to the rest of the season and serving as your President.
Thanks for your time!