After three years on the Executive Committee I step down as President on Saturday the 24th March at our 2018 AGM.
I wish to thank the Committee and Staff members I worked with during this time for their efforts on various projects we worked on and wish everyone at the Society best of luck in the future.
I believe the Society has been left in a strong position and as I depart I feel that the achievements of the Committee during our time are praiseworthy and members can particularly reflect on;
• Launch of the new BSWA website and online Dhama library,
• Upgrade of Audio Visual broadcasting equipment,
• More sub-contractor support of our IT department,
• Rewrite of our annual insurance policy’s resulting in significant savings to the Society,
• Introducing new spending and approval procedures to ensure the Society is not exposed to fraud or overspend,
• Analysis and Member Survey on how the Society may use further professional support to meet government compliance,
• The purchase of land adjacent to the Dhamaloka temple for future expansion,
• The construction of the Dhamoloka Community Functions Pagoda,
• Change to proxies voting in line with Associations Act to help prevent fraudulent voting activity,
• Formation of the BSWA Strategy Group,
• Formation of the BSWA Delegated Sub Committees,
• The Nomination of Dr Geoff Gallop, former Premier of Western Australia and Patron of Jhana Grove as an Honorary Member of the BSWA.
The most contentious of these has been the Member Survey with the question of Society governance and how much support our volunteers need. There seem to be two main views that our Survey showed, which reflected either a preference for no paid roles at BSWA or selected paid roles where we did not have the volunteer skills available.
Subsequently external parties, including our Society Audits and Letters of Inquiry from the Australian Taxation Office, have shown that the decision of governance may not ultimately lie with the Society.
I wish you all farewell as I leave the stage (with one final quote) and wish the Society only the best success in the future.
‘Religion wants to assure the future beyond death and Science wants to assure the future to death and post pone it. But tomorrow and plans for tomorrow can have no significance unless you are in full contact with the present.’
‘Alan C Watts
Former Secretary of The (London) Buddhist Society
The Wisdom of Insecurity, 1951′