Years 2007-2010

A Brief History of the Dryden STO/RTO/ERO

Part Eight: 2007 – 2010

2007 – Once again District 35 RTO/ERO hosted the January Birthday Party at the Patricia Gardens seniors’ complex and a Retirement Workshop in March organized by Bob Bourre, Judith Hamilton and Mark Tinkess with the Pension Benefits Officer, Tony Sawinski, from the Provincial Office, and Lori MacDonald-Blunden from Johnson’s Insurance. When Shirley Roberts relinquished her position as the Membership Services Chair in December, Linda Salonen and Sandra Bourre stepped in to help out. Newly retired Wanda Towns joined the Red Lake Unit of District 35 RTO/ERO. One other member of the Red Lake Unit, who has not been mentioned before, is Linda Aucoin who has moved away but still retains her Unit 2 membership in District 35 RTO/ERO. New retirees Linda Anderson and Allan Kusano joined District 35 RTO/ERO. As this was an election year, District 35 PAC Chair, Marilyn Tinkess, met with a number of politicians and political candidates including Roger Valley, Howard Hampton and Stephane Dion. Condolences were sent to the family of Mona Clarke. Guest speakers at the monthly luncheons included Genefer Latter, a local massage therapist, Sharon McGillivary of “Communities in Bloom”, M.P. Roger Valley, and Provincial RTO/ERO President Ron Poste.Also, Julie Apland spoke on the role of Big Brothers and Big Sisters and Karen Ingebrigtsen spoke on Planning Integration and Community Engagement of the Northwest Local Health Integration Network (LHINS) The annual golf tournament concluded activities before the summer break. At the fall Senate District 35’s Brian Kenny was elected President of the Retired Teachers of Ontario.

2008 – Betty Lyle took over the reins as District 35 RTO/ERO President. When Lynne Euler “retired” from her position as Social/Phoning Chair, Julie Dzeoba volunteered to take over. District 35 members hosted the January birthdays celebration at the Patricia Gardens Residence for Seniors and a retirement workshop in March which led to an increase of 11 % in our membership (first in the province wide recruitment competition) and as a result Ray Nielsen was invited to speak to approximately 100 people at the recruitment workshop in Toronto. Our total membership for District 35 at this point was 198 (including 19 in Unit 2 Red Lake). In May we received notice that our application for a “Service to Others” grant had been approved and $ 3500 would be put towards enhancing the Dryden Museum grounds with a walkway and flower beds. The new District 35 Website came on line and the annual golf tournament in June was as popular as usual thanks to Frank and Susan Clarke. New retirees Anne Silander, Sandra Hall and Gord Brooks joined the Red Lake Unit . Dennis Gushulak continued as President of this Unit, assisted by Janet Duncan (Vice), Margaret Gall (Secretary), Ethel Dodd (Treasurer) and Donna Gushulak (Goodwill). Guest speakers at the monthly luncheons included Warner Bloomfield, Editor of the Dryden Observer, Alison Dove speaking about “living off the grid” and D.H.S. science teacher Kathy Boone speaking about her experience taking part in the Teacher Science and Technology Outreach Program sponsored by the Ministry of Research and Innovation. At the fall Senate, Brian Kenny was re-elected Provincial President of RTO (for a precedent setting second consecutive term). Mark Tinkess joined the Provincial Health Services and Insurance Committee. Condolences were sent to the family of Stuart Calvert. Guest speakers planned for the fall, 2008 luncheons included Irene and Andrew Skene on their mission to Kilema, Tanzania. Further possibilities under consideration were: “The Challenges of Being a Young Female Doctor,” “The Advantages of Physiotherapy as We Age,” “The Role of a City’s Economic Development Officer” and “The New Role of the Dryden Hospital Auxiliary”.

2009 – Judith Hamilton became District 35 President in June. The positions of 2nd Vice and Secretary were not filled in June. The May luncheon welcomed Provincial 1st Vice Marg Couture as the guest speaker. New retirees joining the Unit 2 Red Lake Unit were Jerry and Cathy Kaczmarek and Cathy Nord. The Executive of the Red Lake Unit, in addition to Dennis Gushulak as President, included Sandra Hall (Secretary), Wanda Towns (Treasurer) and Donna Gushulak (Goodwill). The District 35 membership topped the 200 mark with 206 members (171 regular members, 11 associate members and 21 Red Lake members). Wendy Wiedenhoeft organized the annual January birthday party at Patricia Gardens and Joan Hatch played the piano for the Sing-A-Long. Condolences were sent to the families of Rolande Nault and Martha Murray. Brenda McGogy was a guest speaker at the February Luncheon and a representative from the Dryden Area Cultural Planning Committee spoke in March. In April Andrew Skene spoke about his experience assisting with the administration of the hospital in Kilema, Tanzania. In Red Lake Russell Smart made a presentation on “Estate Planning and Power of Attorney” at the December Red Lake Unit 2 luncheon. New retirees joining the Red Lake Unit included Adele Briscoe and Cheri Carroll (Associate).

2010 – Judith Hamilton continued in June as District 35 President in this, Dryden’s Centennial Year. New this year was the monthly “Birthday Poster” where each member, who has a birthday during that month, is recognized and their names placed on a poster which is displayed at the monthly luncheon.  Judith Hamilton attended the annual RTO/ERO President’s Workshop in Toronto in April. Lynne Dingwall and in March Donna Gushulak attended the first ever “Goodwill Workshop” (now known as Member Services) in Toronto. Speakers at the monthly luncheons included Saralyn Semeniuk and Roberta Lappage from the Northwestern Health Unit on the “Thrive Program” for youth. Donald Ames, Manager of the Chamber of Commerce Board, updated us on changes and plans for the future. Thelma and Barry Sampson had an article (complete with photos) printed in the May District 35 Newsletter on their trip to Cambodia. It was originally published in the November 2007 edition of the Travel Society magazine. Dryden hosted another well-attended Retirement Planning Workshop which saw representatives from Southern Ontario make presentations: Roger Regimbal, Lori Macdonald-Blunden from Johnson Inc. on the Health Plan and Richard Arbic on Financial Services. New retirees joining the ranks of District 35 included Pat MacKenzie, Gerry Powell, Ward Cockriell, Lucille Ayers, Bill Hovi and Donna Gereben. World travellers Thelma and Barry Sampson had an illustrated article printed in the November District 35 Newsletter about their trip to Ireland.