At a most unusual Annual General Meeting last night, West End Traders Association elected a new committee without a chairperson/president. Paul Hey, elected unopposed as vice-president, will be the interim head of the Association.
Peter Marinelli, president of the Association for the last two decades, was initially nominated but withheld his acceptance of that nomination until an extraordinary general meeting to be held on 14th November.
These decidedly unusual circumstances were brought about after a number of new businesspeople – including local identity and president of the West End Community Association, Darren Godwell – attended the meeting with the intention of joining the Association and voting at the AGM.
Darren was nominated for the position of president but unsuccessfully, as he was deemed not to be a financial member of the Association.
(The most recent meeting, in August, had advised those present that they could join, vote and nominate on the night of the AGM. At last night’s meeting, however, it was considered that this would be in breach of the Associations Incorporations Act.)
Peter Marinelli generously withheld his nomination so that new members have time to join, vote and nominate prior to the extraordinary general meeting to be held for that purpose.
Many long term members expressed disappointment and dismay at the process, and fervently hope that the extraordinary annual general meeting is less extraordinary than the ordinary Annual General Meeting.
Those same members, however, also expressed their sincere appreciation at the influx of new membership, and looked forward to new, more dynamic West End Traders Association.
Declaration of interest: Westender has had a long commercial relationship with Peter Marinelli through Swiss Gourmet Deli and has been a longstanding supporters and associate of West End Traders Association and the West End Community Association, Including serving as a committee member on the WETA.