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Steelhead Community Association

2016-2017 Board Report

AGM June 21, 2017

Welcome to the 2017 AGM! Just one year ago at the last AGM, in 2016, we were rounding the final stretch to complete the vision of building the hall. Even though it seemed to take forever, it has to be noted that 10 years in volunteer time has the dog-year factor going on. The project was just shy of 10-years, starting with breaking ground in 2007 followed by immeasurable and boundless community spirit.

Even better is that our hall sits on the grounds of the old Steelhead School, which served its later years as the Steelhead Community Hall, between the 50s and the 80s when it was eventually torn down.

After a few attempts by others between 1969 and 1988, in 2004, Tami McLellan, founding Chair, picked up the reins and resurrected the dissolved Steelhead Community and Recreation Society into the current Steelhead Community Association, with the original board consisting of Tami McLellan, Larry Colby, Roger Pells, Cindy Diamond, George Nickerson and Bonnie Harber, who was always present from the 70s forward and really hasn’t stopped being present.

In 2006 the SCA board sought and received support for the community hall project from the District of Mission Mayor and Council, and that brought forward a $25,000 grant from BC Hydro with a view to it serving as an emergency staging platform in the event of a local emergency. And it just went from there.

We received a BC Gaming Major Capital Grant of $100,000 in 2007 and District of Mission annual community grants between 2007 and current and Forestry grants that were instrumental in the hall being finished. If that wasn’t enough, the District of Mission Forestry Department also provided all local Steelhead logs for the hall structure, board and batten and wainscoting, which also includes some of Bonnie’s forest.

We will always include a special call-out to Bob O’Neal and the Mission Forestry Department, for what they have done and continue to do for our community, and also because their personal appreciation and immense contributions to honour and truly bond their 60 years’ of working in and with the Steelhead community.

So as the funding came into place, Mark Diamond joined on as Project Manager, and Roger Pells and Dan Simon headed the Building Committee along with Paul Roberts, Larry Colby, Al Georget, Greg Hart, Barry Dahl, and Craig Piche, Tyson Grychuk and many others.

Amazing work bees always included lunch from Bonnie and Lana, and Christina would bring muffins. Everyone pitched in, including everyone’s kids and many others who dedicated their time to our vision. And so much fun was had along the way, from bonfires to fundraisers made special by Pixie & Trixie, our underground party organizers. Terri Cameron too who sat as Chair from 2006 through 2011.

Throughout that time we had to keep track of volunteer hours for grant purposes, and it lists pretty much everyone who lent a hand at building the hall. So it’s kind of cool to have this record for legacy. These and all of the Steelhead records have been put into books for archives and really demonstrate how much and how often the people of Steelhead have stood together for Steelhead!

As well there have been donations in memory of loved ones who lived in Steelhead and shared our unique experience of living here. They will be included into the legacy of our hall with commemorative plaques. There were also  corporate donations and so many people who gave so much of themselves to create this legacy, from bake sales to Jell-O shooters, plumbers, electricians, painters, floor layers, carpenters, weed pullers, email writers, lawn mowers, tile setters, parking lot makers, fundraisers, lunch-makers, and cheerleading contributors. The list goes on.

Without every single contribution from every single person, this hall just would not be here! Not like this! This is here because we are remote, a little isolated. So we have fun somewhere close to home, and to congregate for community events or community issues. Knowing your neighbours really helps out here with Steelhead challenges like last winter. So it’s good for fun and for just in case.

Moving along, another big change this year is to the Board of Directors. Many of the long-familiar faces will no longer be around the old board table. Mark and Cindy Diamond, and Roger Pells each had so much to do with the groundwork of getting this up and running, not just at the beginning but all the way along until the vision was complete.

Bonnie Harber, who has sat on Board and on past Steelhead boards and has participated since the 1970s and has done so much for Steelhead, including now.

We’re also losing George Nickerson, who has sat on the Board as Treasurer since the beginning and did all of the books throughout the whole building cycle like a pro and all that went with it. George and Bonnie barely missed a meeting all those years.

Along with George, we are losing Michelle this year, and although Michelle was more recent to join the board, Michelle and George have been at pretty much every single work bee since the start.

And we are actually losing one more board member, Anne Lewkos, who valiantly sat as our secretary for this last term despite her commute and the dedications of career. Thank you Anne for taking this on as well, and we hope you will come back one day when you have more time perhaps when you retire!

And thank you as well to the Board members that have accepted nominations to stay. Roger will be staying on the Building Committee and we’ve lots of room on board our committees.

One more note before we move on, we are losing long-time residents Ted and Ernie Kearney who have contributed a great deal to this community for many, many years and who will be greatly missed! We wish them the best of everything in their new home, but will miss them here!

If anyone is having any trouble with their telephone land lines, we have found the fix-it guru within TELUS and can pass along his contact info. This will likely be posted on FB shortly. Bonnie and I met with TELUS CEO representative, Mike Black, yesterday. He has confirmed what we already know, that the tower on Red Mountain is well underway and should be ready by September of this year. He has provided us with a drawing of the anticipated coverage area and a rate schedule of what we can get and how fast. This tower will support TELUS, Kudo and Bell services.

We then plead our case that a lot of the phone lines in Steelhead are unreliable, including here at the hall because the phone would not ring in. It took TELUS technicians over two weeks to get this operational which lent to the rationale that TELUS will investigate this as a “plant problem” which includes all lines, switches and apparatus servicing our community, and we will go from there.

It does look dim as far as fiber optics go, but you never know and at least we are this far. We will keep you posted.

This upcoming Board year looks to be pretty fun with almost a whole new board eager to keep the momentum of community fun moving right along. Just to let you know, we are more than just the Board, but also function with committees, which means anything you would like to do when you can, so if your contribution is a one-off or a constant, that is completely up to you. But it all counts! And it can be a lot of fun, so join in with you would like to do.

I would like to thank the outgoing Board for asking me to join in as transitionary Chair. It has been an honour to work alongside each of you and I look forward to joining you in retirement next year when we have at least five people campaigning for each position!

Jana Tennant, Board Chair