When I first started arguing the NZACA case with those who felt it represented nothing and offered nothing to its members I never once considered that I would sit as the President of this Organisation.
When I inherited the role in 2014, I never once doubted that I could take this recreational fishers representative body from its all time low back to one of relevance and high respect amongst its peers again.
I have worked hard for four years and given all of 20 plus hours every week for four years to create one of the fastest growing organisations in the country. I have made the relevance of the NZACA a bright star and one that Companies and other organisations are keen to align themselves with. The NZACA is now recognised as being strong and forthright in stepping up for the rights of our members. We do this by placing Submissions on many issues that involve our fisheries. Our Logo appears on many documents and submissions that have been written and placed with other organisations. We meet with Industry, MPI and Government. Our alignment with the NZ Sport Fishing Council and their lobby group LegaSea is huge and then along with this we hold a seat on the NZ SFC Fisheries Management sub Committee. We have been a leading force in creating the largest aligned group of inshore ocean users that has the likes of the NZ Underwater Assoc, NZ Trailer Boat Federation, Yachting NZ, Motor Boat NZ and many others. This is a very powerful lobby group.
Our Public Liability Insurance, Power rebate scheme, Sponsorship, Discount Motel- Holiday Parks Packages and other opportunities are all being added to, much to the benefit our members.
All this is great for our membership and is instrumental in the NZ Angling & Casting Association going ahead as it is. An organisation Clubs want to be part of.
But there is a downside that has become evident. It is all great that we have grown this fantastic representative organisation but who is going to step up. I have one year left. I have led the way and established the path but I need to have someone keen to take over and continue what we have put in place. I need to be very clear, it is not a picnic and it is a big commitment, as it should be. It was very humbling to me that the Association voted to extend the Term of President from three to five years and this was for two reasons. One, to allow the growth of the association to continue and second, to allow for a transition to the person to follow me. Sadly we have had two people and great people they are, realise they cannot step into this level of leadership. I understand this fully and respect their honesty but this is not going to assist the NZACA going forward.
I have enjoyed my time. I have enjoyed every challenge and I know that I have ruffled a few feathers with my opinions and honesty. From Government Ministers, leaders of MPI, Industry Leaders, Mayors, Councillors, Commercial fishers and some of our own members have received both sides of my points of view. That’s how I role. I am immensely proud of what my Executive and I have achieved over the past four years and we have done so with more than our fair share of setbacks and issues. But we have succeeded and I will argue profusely any opposition to that.
SO!!!!!!!! I need someone to step up and someone quickly. I need to bring them up to speed and integrate them within the circles I operate in New Zealand wide. We have created this beast and we need a new person to lead it.