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A Word from the Acting President
It is with regret that I have to advise members that the Club President, Neil Brandie has decided to stand down a President due to ongoing health issue. Neil attended the National Council at its meeting on 26 February and to explain his decision to stand down as he felt he could not perform his Presidential duties to the fullest extent due to health issues, which had not improved as he had hoped.
Neil, who was elected as President in August 2015, commenced many new projects with enthusiasm and dedication, including the preservation and display of historical ANARE vehicles and the setting up of an Antarctic Museum at the Antarctic Precinct site in Hobart. Neil initiated the Clubs involvement in the 2016 Antarctic Festival in Hobart and the recent comprehensive and detailed survey on members preferred format for Midwinter Re-unions and dinner was also undertaken by Neil. The Secretary, Treasurer, Council member and myself as Acting President will make sure it is "business as usual" for the remainder of the 2016-2017 Council term and Club projects will be continued to be supported for the benefit of members.
On a happier note, Neil was awarded the CFA National Medal at his home on 26 February, together with the 15 years service medal as a CFA volunteer, This was a surprise presentation that followed Neils return home from the Council meeting.
Another milestone has been achieved with the formation of a Victoria Branch to conduct Victorian social events an, including the Melbourne Midwinter Dinner, Special thanks to Chris Gamgee whos initiative got this project up and running. Chris has offered to act as Interim Treasurer for the Interim Branch along with other Interim Office Bearers, until the Branch elections are held around 2017 Midwinter time. This Aurora will most probably be the last one before ANARE Club Branches conduct their Midwinter Functions in June and I urge members where possible to attend their local or interstate Re-union dinners in this ANAREs 70th anniversary year commemorating the establishment of Heard Island in December 1947.
On behalf of the National Council, I extend Midwinter Greetings to all Club members and serving expeditioners south of Latitude 50 degrees.