– By Wayne Richardson, P.Eng., CMOS President –
My year as President of CMOS seems to be flying by. It is already, once again, time to register for our upcoming CMOS Congress. As you know, our CMOS Local Arrangements Committee in Halifax has been hard at work putting together a fantastic scientific and social programme. Our 52nd Congress will be held from June 10th to 14th at the new Halifax Convention Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia. This year’s congress theme is “marine and environmental risks and impacts”. I have already registered for the Congress, and I’ve made my hotel reservations at one of the two Congress hotels.
Every year at Congress we have our Annual General Meeting. This meeting is where members meet to review, discuss and vote on such things as any bylaw changes, budget and financial matters and important policy issues that may arise from time to time. Over the last couple of years your Executive and Council have been actively discussing and analysing our finances with an eye to improving our service offerings to members, controlling costs and improving our membership numbers over the longer-term. We appear to be getting some good results from the transformation of our CMOS Bulletin from print to web and we are looking forward seeing our free student membership ultimately serving to increase our full memberships. My biggest disappointment this year has been our inability to increase our budget for our Special Interest Groups (currently Arctic and Aviation) as well as our salary budget to increase the current two-day-a-week retainer for our Executive Director. As well, I did not allocate resources to visit some of our Centres as I had hoped. We just don’t have the money. In addition, (compared to the Royal Society, CGU and AMS), we have continually undervalued our service offerings (such as our private sector directory). We are also taking a close look at our various honoraria, contracts and our membership fees. At the Annual General Meeting we will be proposing some changes to our fee structure for services and will be making some modest proposals to increase membership fees. We will continue with our free membership for students.
I look forward to seeing you at the Congress and at our Annual General Meeting!