THE FIRST ever female President of Saddleworth Rotary Club says she is “proud and excited” to have taken the chains of office.
Barbara Howse took over the role from outgoing President Tony Burke at a special dinner and handover event hosted at The White Hart, Lydgate.
Only a member for two years and the only current female member, Barbara will guide the Club through their usual array of fundraisers and events over the coming 12 months.
The former headmistress will be supported by husband David, who is the club’s treasurer and a member of three years, while former policeman Clint Elliot is vice-president.
Barbara said: “I am proud and excited to be in the privileged position of being the new President.
“I’m hoping my 35 years in Secondary Education, many of them in Senior Leadership, will set me in good stead for the challenges I will face this year.
“I am especially delighted to be the first female President of this Club. I sincerely thank all our members for giving me this fantastic opportunity.
“I would like to thank our current President, Tony. His achievements have been significant, in particular the continued success of the ‘Engage, Develop and Succeed’ project and his work with the Satellite Club in Greenfield.
“In addition, he has procured some fascinating guest speakers, attended many events on the Club’s behalf and led the Club strongly.
“Rotary International’s aims this year are summed up by the words ‘Making a Difference’. and I intend to make a difference at Saddleworth Rotary Club.”
Barbara also revealed she will be following an ‘F Plan’ approach this year – fellowship, friendship, fun, format, formal, and focus.
And she said she expects the year to be a busy one, filled with social events, club meetings and visits, fundraisers, and more.
As a thank you to Tony for his hard work during his time in charge, she presented him with a scrapbook made of newspaper headlines of his achievements and events.
Highlights included the launch of the ‘Engage, Develop, Succeed’ scheme, the Summer Show, Turnpike Challenge, Saddleworth Village Olympics, saving the Satellite Centre, Christmas pantomime and long service awards.
Tony, who was supported by Sue during his year, said: “I wish to say thank to you all the committee chairs and our members for what they have done in support of me and the club over the last 12 months.
“I’ve been thinking what the high point was. For me, it was our ‘Engage, Develop, Succeed’ programme for young people and hearing their parents say what an impact it has had.
“It was great to see how it has helped them and will continue to do so going forwards.”