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A Message from our District Trustee

Region B District Trustee Gail Norris-McKeown


I travelled to Montego Bay, Jamaica with my husband Brian McKeown in December of 2017 to meet with the Host Committee. Brian is the Convention Chair for the EC & C District, having been asked by  Governor Bobby this  past year to take on the role of Convention Chair for the EC & C District.

Our trip to Jamaica in December, allowed Brian the opportunity to view the facilities for the 2018 Convention and to meet and talk with the Host Committee.

The Host Committee were well organised and were looking forward to hosting the District Convention in Montego Bay in May of 2018.

The District Convention was held in May, 2018 and 506 attendees, with 319 voting  delegates  in attendance, with 137 Clubs represented from the District.

A  great time was had by all in attendance.  The LG training took place at the Convention  and from talking with several of the LG Elect, I was told the training was intensive and informative. 

Forums were well attended and the hotel accommodation was very nice.  The Convention Centre in Montego Bay is according to what I was told, the best one in the Caribbean.  It certainly was  a very beautiful setting and sound system, etc. all worked well.

Delores Lewis, was acclaimed as VG Elect and the plenary sessions were well  attended.

For the first time, the First Timers to the District Convention, had a forum on what to expect and do at the District Convention.  There were over 100 "first timers" to the District Convention and the organising Committee had a scavenger hunt for the first timers to participate in and get to know other delegates at the Convention.  One of the items to find on the scavenger hunt was to get a "signature from a District Trustee".  I did attend the First Timers event and felt like a "rock star" as I signed many cards for the first timers.  The event also gave me the opportunity as District Trustee, to welcome them to their first District Convention.

The Jamaicans hosted "Jamaica Night" and the location had to be changed at the last minute due to weather.  However, it was a fun night and the venue was certainly adequate and demonstrated how very well organised the Host Committee was in the event of a change being needed to be made at the last minute.

In June, Brian and I flew to Las Vegas to attend the KI Convention and support our International Trustee Gary Levine. 

For those that haven't been to Las Vegas, it is a lively city, lights galore, lots to see and do and KI offered an interesting way of presenting the KI Convention in Las Vegas.  President Jim Rockford was front and centre and the forums were interesting, educational and the Paris Hotel was very busy and full of traffic when the forums were over and people were making their way down the halls to the next forum.

As one of the three judges of the Signature Project for EC & C, I attended the Breakfast, where the winners were announced.  There was a large crowd in attendance at the Breakfast and it was interesting to watch as the winners were called forward to be recognised for their Signature Project. 

One Club from Jamaica did place in the finalists for the KI Signature Project!

It was a pleasure to walk around the Vegas Convention with a shirt indicating that I was supporting Gary Levine for the position of VP of KI.  Brian and I also worked at Gary's booth and we answered questions, as we walked through the Convention Centre about Gary !

It was extremely disappointing to witness IT Gary be defeated by a mere three votes. The voting was all done by electronic means.  There was a large number of delegates disappointed that IT Gary was not voted in as VP Elect.

IT Gary was recognised with Awards outlining his commitment to opening new Kiwanis Clubs, sponsoring new members and his ongoing dedication to Kiwanis.

So while Kiwanis International doesn't have IT Gary Levine as Vice President Elect, Kiwanis has a man - IT Gary, a man of integrity, committed to the work of Kiwanis, helping children and a man who truly reflects the Objects of Kiwanis.

IT Gary may not have been elected to the role of Vice President of KI, but he can walk tall, because he is very well respected by the current KI Board, members of the District and I know that he made many  new friends with his professional, warm approach to people at the Convention in Vegas.

My three year term as your District Trustee on the EC & C Board will be finished as of October 1, 2018.  My third and final Quarterly Trustee Report will be sent to LG's for Distribution to the Clubs in Region B in September.

On a closing note, I would like to thank my Club, the Kiwanis Club of Owen Sound for paying for my registration at both the District Convention and KI Convention.  Their financial support was very much appreciated, as the cost of accommodation , travel, meals, etc. are at my own personal expense.

Enjoy your summer and I leave you with a quote that I consider worth sharing!

"Look to past with gratitude, live today with passion and look to the future with hope!"

Kiwanis has made a significant difference in the lives of children around the world in the past,  we continue to make a difference into day's Kiwanis work and looking to the future, Kiwanis will be there for the children, thanks to the efforts of the Club Openers who work diligently to open new Clubs and thanks to the sponsoring Clubs, for ensuring the new Clubs move forward with their Kiwanis work.

Gail Norris McKeown

District Trustee

EC & C Board