The Annual General Meeting of KCOBA USA Inc. (NY Chapter) was held on Sunday, August 8, 2010. The location of the meeting was St. Luke’s Home for the Aged, Bronx, New York. St. Luke’s has served as the home of the association for 12 years. Their Chapel recently hosted the Founder’s Day Service commemorating the 85th anniversary of the founding of the school by the Right Rev. Bishop Percival Gibson. The AGM provides the forum for a review of the past year’s activities and is also a time when officers that will lead the association for the next one or two years are elected. In his report, President Robert Kelly outlined some of the advances that have been made over the last year, but bemoaned the fact that there was a lack of involvement in the activities of the association by elected board members.
President Kelly also highlighted the leadership crisis that the school is faced with, once again. Herbert Nelson, who was appointed/anointed Principal in October 2009, was fired at the end of the school year. This is the second time in three years that we are faced with this situation. He firmly believes that the Board of Governors, who are the guardians of the school and responsible for selecting the school’s Principal have consistently failed in fulfilling their duty and should now execute one final act in the best interest of the College and resign forthwith.
The NY Chapter sponsors a Nutrition Program on the Melbourne Campus. Currently in its 12th year at a monthly cost of is $600, the project provides a warm breakfast and lunch to thirty-five to fifty boys daily. Under the leadership of Vice President Rainford Bloomfield the program is being re-structured and will be morphed into The Core Program, geared towards the development of more rounded individuals, Guidance Counselor, Sonia Watson, School Nurse, Tanashia Tyrell-Bonner and Chaplain, Rev. Abner Powell will be active participants in this expanded program.
The Joyce Baxter Math Club is another initiative being sponsored by the association. Launched last year, the Club has already achieved some success with several members winning awards at the 2010 edition of the Vivian Rochester Memorial Mathematics Competition. The club members, thirty four to forty boys, meet twice weekly and are guided by dedicated teachers, Joan Malcolm, Carmeta Cameron-Sinclair and Katwanshe Thompson. We provide $7,000 to fund scholarships for boys at school and another $9,000 in scholarships for old boys at tertiary institutions in the Caribbean and the United States.
KCOBA USA Inc, are also major sponsors of the annual prize-giving contributing approximately $3000 each year. In addition to the programs mentioned above, we are committed to the development of the physical infrastructure of the school and have contributed or pledged support for the completion of the Douglas Forrest Building, the refurbishing of the Science lab, Pavilion and Well on the North Street Campus and the installation of a 21st century library on the Melbourne Campus.
To fund our many programs we depend on the contribution of the few dedicated Old Boys and friends of Kingston College, as well as, our major fundraising events the Scholarship Dance and the Reunion Dinner and Awards Banquet and our paid membership. We have also introduced a new line of Fortis Forever products as part of our merchandising initiative and we expect that through enhanced marketing and demonstrable fortis pride, this will become one of our primary sources of future fundraising.
While the downturn in the economy has impacted our fundraising, the actual reason why we have incurred a loss at this year’s Reunion Dinner and last year’s Scholarship Dance was lack of effort and support by Old Boys. Despite our best efforts intake from membership dues held steady, rather than generate the 100% improvement we had expected. For accounting year ending May 31, 2010 we collected a mere $3500, reflecting a paid membership of only seventy “Fortis Brothers”.
Despite the many challenges, this association is committed to the development of Kingston College and will continue to work in the quest to achieve our objectives. It is our hope that we will be able to engage more old boys as we strive to grow the association and ultimately provide the kind of support that Kingston College deserves and needs.
Upon his re-election President Kelly indicated that this will be his last year at the helm of the association and so the ball is now in the court of the younger members of the Board to keep the NY chapter of the old boys association a viable and relevant group of alumni, actively supporting their alma mater. In support of the mission our next major fundraiser will be the Scholarship Dance on Saturday, October 16, 2010, at Chef Orchid, Bldg 14, JFK, Queens, New York. We trust that you will come out and support this event. All proceeds will go towards assisting our scholarship recipients.
Refreshment was sponsored by KCOB Curtis Whittle, owner of New York City’s best SUBWAY located at 400 East Fordham Road, Bronx, NY 19458, 718-365-2330.
A vote was taken to increase the number of Directors of the board by two. This facilitated the election of Jermoth Dixon and Robert Scarlett. The full slate of officers for the 2010-2011 year is:
PRESIDENT Robert Kelly
1st VP Robert ‘Rodo’ Rodney
2nd VP Rainford ‘Perry’ Bloomfield
SECRETAR Earl Gordon
TREASURER Ansell Barrett
Clinton ‘Fatman’ Clarke
Donald ‘Clive’ Davidson
Jermoth ‘Bobby’ Dixon
If more information is needed please do not hesitate to contact me: