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December, 2004 - Nr. 12


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Toronto Labour Council

KWS – Next Chapter

by Herwig Wandschneider

Herwig WandschneiderThere is always lots to say after an election, particularly if you are the loser. But as in politics, it would be time to throw resources together to make things work for the future. Except there is no "opposition member". Not one member of "Slate B" has been elected to the K-W Symphony Board of Directors, so that the new Board can now do as it pleases without the slightest control. The landslide victory was, after all, roughly 2.5:1. Some 350 members voted live for the 18 Member Board at Marshall Hall at Bingeman’s – the rest were proxies (about 1,000).

Slate A – The new Board – can now implement their policies, balance the budget, go all out for fundraising, find more conductors worth their baton, and pay the musicians what they are really worth (not just find them additional work). In addition, they can raise the subscriptions by the 1,000 or so, which were lost after the departure of Fischer-Dieskau. Perhaps even implement some, if not all, of the very worthy items of Slate B’s platform, like re-organizing the artistic reporting structure for example. Winning the game was the campaign objective, so, as in politics, you can later do what you really think should be done. The rancour of the campaign will have been forgotten, and the ability of the Board to

a) repair the past,

b) handle the present and

c) prepare for the future

will show the quality of the directors and its management team.

Hopefully the "Slate" will turn into a Team of dedicated cooperative decision-makers and policies will not be dictated by individuals or by a leading clique. Many of the subscribers, who have not renewed, will be sitting back and await the good things to come. Including solutions to items a, b, and c. The removal of the offending article from the Symphony’s website is a good start.

Fortunately there is substantial business-ability on this Board. In addition, a good chunk of humanity, humility and psychology – not to mention symphonic knowledge and appreciation - would help to right the overturned applecart. Perhaps the most democratic thing to do would be to install the member of the Board with the most votes and the longest commitment as Chairman.

Update: At the Board Meeting last week the board appointed Mr. Robert Astley as Vice Chairman. For the complete Board and their positions see http://www.kwsymphony.on.ca/2004-05/board.htm.


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