I became Ontario Regional Director fall 2014 and it has been challenging, fun and interesting. I have participated in most Council and Membership conference calls when able. In my opinion, our relatively small technical organization, with such a diverse and changing membership, two languages, spread over such a huge country, with membership that cannot attend all technical meetings because of distance, cost or time, it is important to find ways to connect with grassroots members. For this reason, for the on-line newsletters of December 2014, March 2015 and June 2015, I randomly called (yes, using that thing called a telephone that seems to be so seldom used anymore) about five Ontario members per newsletter to solicit a little information (about 100 words) about what they were doing, how long they had been a member, and what advice they had for younger members. It was easy and painless, using a short template I sent to them. This has been both interesting for me and also for those I call because I find members are genuinely pleased, but surprised to hear from someone on Council. I plan to continue doing this in the coming year. Check out what members have told us at http://csbe-scgab.ca/
I also participated in a Jobs Fair at the University of Guelph in January 2015. Along with Vice-President Membership, Harry Huffman, we spoke to undergrads about jobs in Agricultural Engineering and opportunities joining CSBE. It was fun event and students were very interested in learning from a couple of grizzled veterans. There were perhaps 30 companies involved and perhaps 100 students attending.
I look forward to the coming year.