by Deron Johnston
North Grenville is blessed with a large number of community groups and organizations that contribute greatly to the quality of life for all residents. They do everything, from providing care for the elderly and the sick, to organizing the community events that provide so much fun and entertainment for children of all ages. There is, however, a new organization in the community that is offering something unique to North Grenville. Rather than being another organization that seeks to re-invent the wheel by trying to do things that are already being done by others, this new organization wants to help those other groups and organizations do what they do, but help them do it better.
The Kemptville and District Community Association was born in February, 2018, and has been quietly working away at solidifying its vision. As its website says: “With Kemptville and the surrounding area on the cusp of dynamic change, the time is right for a community association which reflects the diversity of our community and connects both urban and rural residents, organized groups and business owners – working together through common interests towards positive change, respecting the past and building towards a strong future”. (www.kdca.community).
Quickly choosing an interim Board of Directors, they set about creating a comprehensive constitution for a brand new community organization, and contacting all of the local community organizations, sports, arts, and faith communities to invite them all to an open house to discuss what their needs are and how the KDCA could best help them accomplish their goals. No matter what your interest was, the KDCA wanted to hear from you. Many who attended remarked how good they felt at the end of the open house, noting that they heard from other groups on the challenges they are facing, and that it was great to know that someone wanted to try and help coordinate everyone’s efforts in order to help them be more efficient, and to help everyone work together to accomplish common goals and overcome common challenges.
On Thursday, March 7, at the Grenville Mutual Insurance community room, the KDCA held its first Annual General Meeting (AGM) as an organization. Interim President, Wendy Embleton, of Exit Realty By Design, gave the President’s report, outlining what the interim board had been working on since it was appointed last year. Next up was the election of a new Board of Directors for the coming year. All in all, there were eleven people nominated for the board and, in order to accommodate everyone who wanted to join the board and to harvest all of the positive energy in the room, a motion was passed to change the constitution to allow the board to hold a maximum of eleven directors instead of the previous maximum of nine. As a result of the change, all eleven nominees were acclaimed.
Immediately after the AGM, the new Board of Directors of the KDCA met very briefly to elect an executive committee. The results of that election were: Wendy Embleton was re-elected as President, Samantha Rivet-Stevenson was re-elected as Vice President, new member Dale Lowe was elected as Treasurer, and new member Cindy Little was elected as Secretary. The other directors of the new board are: Debbie Wilson, Warren Weiss, Reinder Kuntz, Stacey Dickson, Amanda Riley, Brenda Burich and Anne Walsh.
The new board would like to thank the departing members of the interim Board who helped lay the foundation for the future of the KDCA. Those departing directors are: John Barclay, Deron Johnston, Sara Landriault and Kristin Strackerjan.