David Barry Takes Over As President

David Barry

On 1 July, Gail Woodford ended her year as President of Cranleigh Rotary, passing the 'baton' to David Barry.

Here is David's introduction to himself and his plans for the coming year:

"I am very pleased, even if also a little fearful, to have been selected as Rotary President after some 16 years as a member (and almost 50 years living in Cranleigh). 

"Part of my lengthy ‘postponement policy’ was linked to my role as a trustee in a significant local charity, my continuing professional involvement in UK and overseas projects addressing historical industrial pollution risks, and considerable domestic carer responsibilities.

"So now I am on the ‘front line’ but, I am sure, will benefit from the wealth of colleagues’ experience in Rotary protocols, whether at Club, District or National levels.

"It is common knowledge that membership numbers of many Rotary Clubs have been declining over recent years, not least as a result of Covid aspects, as well as inevitable social changes and age factors. Fortunately, however, there has been no diminution in the essential strength of Cranleigh members’ resolve to regain our pre-Covid status vis-à-vis activity and membership. Indeed, in that particular regard, it is pertinent to refer to the indefatigable efforts of our previous President, Gail Woodford, and the untiring supporting efforts of, in particular, Terry Stewart regarding new membership.

"At a practical level, so to speak, many members have significant skills in organising and managing community support events, and obviously a strong focus on teamwork can greatly enhance the benefits of those skills, i.e. a crucial part of our philosophy. Furthermore, such teamwork can be greatly enhanced through Rotary’s own social events; for example, inviting some family members and friends can be invaluable as we get to know each other better, such as at last week’s delightful ‘hand-over’ party.  

"While the socialising aspect is just one facet of the club’s routine it can enable our core strengths to be harnessed more productively as we try to optimise our choices of the community projects that we will support in the near future. Making such choices now involves ‘rushing slowly’ but yet positively.

Overall, therefore, the club’s resolve will continue to be based on sustaining and enhancing our fraternal well-being through our social engagements, all in full recognition of a key truism, namely that, “If we do not look after ourselves effectively, we cannot look after others”!"