As President-Elect, my main task is to carry out forward planning for the Society, which I have tried to undertake over the past year as best as I can. Since being officially designated as President-Elect of the Society at the AGM in Orillia last year, I have participated in all 6 Council meetings, chaired the newly-convened Student Engagement Committee, and also joined the meetings of the Finance sub-committee. I have also worked with the Nominations Committee chaired by Past-President Ron MacDonald in identifying and contacting nominees for upcoming vacancies in the Council, particularly for the Alberta Regional Director position. I am also currently involved in the Local Organizing Committee for the AGM in Saskatoon this year. In addition, I had a couple of face-to-face meetings in Saskatoon with President Zhang as well as a number of phone conversations with him over the past year discussing current critical issues facing the Society as well as future directions and initiatives that can be considered by the Society leadership to ensure long-term sustainability.
One highlight of the past year was the convening of the Student Engagement Committee in response to the Strive Report. While the Committee was originally tasked “to prepare an action plan for engaging and attracting students” to the Society, the scope has evolved to planning and implementing regional activities to engage all current and potential members in the different regions represented in the Society. I have served as Chair of this Committee, with 10 members including all the Regional Directors, VP-Regional, and two invited members (Department Chairs from two universities). The Committee had four meetings over the past year, out of which a document outlining the mechanisms for funding, approval, and reporting of regional activities has been developed; this document has been presented to the Council and was subsequently approved for implementation. Additionally, a related document describing the duties of regional directors, the potential regional activities that can be carried out, and the procedure for organizing such activities, has been drafted by the Committee to help Regional Directors in planning and carrying out member engagement activities within their region.