History #14 The 1990’s contd.
By Ted Corcoran DTM, Past International President
District Newsletter #14 (continued from edition #13) To recap at the 1990 Autumn District Council meeting the following three proposals were passed, almost unanimously.
- “That with effect from the District administrative year 1991/92, the position of Public Relations Officer be subject to election, by the District 71 District Council and, subject to satisfactory performance, be in line for progression through higher Executive offices.”
- “That the structure of the split District Executive be divided equally between England and Ireland in such a way as the District Governor and Lieutenant Governor Marketing be elected from the alternate country to the Educational/Training Lieutenant governor and Public Relations Officer, and that this will take effect from the District year 1991/92 as previously approved by the District 71 District Council in Spring 1987/88.”
- Where, for any reason, an elected District Officer is unable to continue his/her term of office, his/her replacement shall be a qualified member, selected from the same country as the officer retiring, and be subject to the ratification of the District 71 District Council.”
In the explanatory notes distributed with these motions, it is stated that about Proposal #1
“In consideration of the options, the 1990/91 District Executive believes a fourth elected District Executive position would facilitate the even distribution of elected officers between England and Ireland in executing its requirement to provide a “split” District Executive from 1st July 1991.”
About Proposal # 2, it is stated,
“In order to improve the quality of leadership, the 1987/88 District council approved a split District Executive to take effect from 1st July 1991. Until now a “gentleman’s agreement” has ensured that the elected District Officers were drawn from either England or Ireland on an annual basis. This ensured fairness for all members seeking the experience and leadership opportunities, in the face of weighted voting power whose bias is capable swinging drastically between the two countries (currently 66% Ireland 33% England). The 1990/91 District Executive are conscious of the need to retain this fairness of opportunities for all future members. The benefits of a “Split” Executive are evident: 1) Enhanced bonds between England and Ireland 2) Improved continuity between annual District Executives 3) Accelerated progress of members through leadership training at District level
Although the principle of the split executive membership was decided, the actual structure and distribution of officers was not. This is the question now addressed by this proposal to
- Maintain fairness of opportunities
- Improve continuity
- Accelerate progress through the leadership ranks
- Enhance the English/Irish bond.
The 1990/91 District Executive sought advice from WHQ, its Directors and from District 45 (NE USA/Canada) where such a system already exists. The system proposed has operated successfully for several years in D45 and in the Bahamas, the only other district with a similar situation.”
(This conference also passed the following motion, “That District 71 introduces Division Rounds of the International Speech Contest with effect from the District Administrative year 1990/91.”)
It was decided that in year 1 the District Governor (DG) and Lieutenant Governor Marketing (LGM) would be elected from country A and the Lieutenant Governor Education and Training (LGET) and Public Relations Officer (PRO) from country B. It was understood that these positions would alternate each year, so that in year 2, the DG and LGM would be from country B, while the LGET and PRO would come from country A. This arrangement has worked very satisfactorily since and has played an important part in our district’s success.