Chieftain’s Chatter August 2020

Immediate Past-Chieftain, Alan Wallace

Dear all,

It’s certainly not been the year we expected, that’s for sure! Every one of us has been impacted to a great extent, both personally and professionally, and it’s going to require a great deal of patience and resilience to get back to something like normality.

Now, rewinding back to the start of the year. For those who attended our Burns Night at the “Cedar on 15” restaurant, in the Impiana Hotel, I hope you will agree that it was a great location. With its smaller capacity, compared to other venues used in the past, the feedback has been positive. It will certainly be worthy of consideration for next year’s event. An excellent dinner, including haggis, neeps and tatties, was served up by Chef Helmut Lamberger and his team as we enjoyed a full programme of entertainment, with traditional bagpipes from members of the St John’s Alumni pipe band, beautifully recited poetry from students of the Alice Smith school, an amazing performance by the Vox Suara choir, and speeches by Dr Alistair Wallis (Toast tae the lassies), Chieftainess Carol Wallace (Reply on behalf of the lassies) and the Immortal Memory by Dr David Barron. All in all, another very successful event.

Then, just before the COVID MCO and lockdown, we managed to hold our Society AGM on Saturday 7th March, when our new Chieftain, Vice Chieftain and Committee was voted in.

After the AGM, we enjoyed a social evening complete with whisky tasting and quiz. It was great to catch up with members and guests and highlight the benefits of being involved with the Selangor St Andrews Society, and supporting our events throughout the year.

As I said earlier, the new committee for the forthcoming year 2020-2021 is now in place, and I’m pleased to announce that your new Chieftain is Ken Ross, who will be supported by his Vice-Chieftain, Linda Ross. I believe this is the first time the Selangor St Andrews Society has had a husband and wife team taking on the Chieftain & Vice-chieftain roles, since it was founded in 1887.

Looking back, it was a great year (until March 2020) in which we managed to deliver successful events. Membership growth has been steady. We cut our cloth accordingly, in terms of realistic expectations for ticket sales for our St Andrews Ball and Burns Night respectively. It’s still disappointing to note that despite an increasing membership, event participation (at St Andrews Ball and Burns Night) by our Society members has been relatively poor. Thankfully, we were able to rely on non-members, and both these events were very close to being sell outs. From a committee perspective, it’s always good to welcome fresh faces to generate new ideas, provide support, and thus ensure we can continue to put on the quality events which are expected of us, given our excellent track record.

In what was my official year as Chieftain, I was able to build on the learning experience gained during my 9-month stint in 2018-2019 and I’ve really enjoyed my time in the role. This last year seems to have flown in, and I can hardly believe its now time to hand over to my successor. It’s been a great honour to have represented the Society on behalf of our membership.

I would like to thank the outgoing 2019-2020 office bearers, committee members and supporters for their hard work, dedication and passion, which has made my role a pleasure to fulfil. Of course, I will still be working closely with the incoming Chieftain and committee to ensure the Society has continuity and can sustain momentum as we come out of this challenging period.

Finally, to my wife Carol, the outgoing “Chieftainess”, I would like to say a special thanks for supporting me in my role as Chieftain for almost 2 years.

For those seasoned committee veterans, your knowledge, experience and wisdom on Society formalities, activities and events has helped me fulfil my role more effectively, and I look forward to joining you in support of our incoming Chieftain, Ken Ross. On behalf of the Selangor St Andrews Society, I would like to officially welcome Kenny Ross as your new Chieftain. Over to you, Ken!

Yours Aye,

Alan Wallace

128th Chieftain of the Selangor St Andrew’s Society

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