Port Dover Power & Sail Squadron will be celebrating its 70th Anniversary in 2019.
At a National Conference of the 20,000-plus member Canadian Power & Sail Squadrons in Ottawa, Bill Jerry, Commander of the local, long established group, was presented an Office of the Year award by Chief Commander, Charles Beall.
For Bill and Karen Jerry, boating safety has been a family affair since 1996 when the couple first joined Power & Sail Squadron.
They had just purchased their first power boat. Both their children, Braden, 21 and Kristen, 25, participated in the organization. Kristen is currently Treasurer, Public Relations and Webmaster for the Port Dover Power & Sail Squadron, Bill told the Maple Leaf last week.
The family became involved with the Port Dover group eight or nine years ago, Bill said. They are members of the Port Dover Yacht Club where they keep their 32′ Regal, “Latitude Adjustment”.
Bill is currently serving his second term as Commander in Port Dover and is honored to be recognized by his peers with this award, he shared. He mentioned his daughter was similarly honored in 2013.
The Port Dover Power & Sail Squadron is a volunteer, non-profit organization, Bill said. “Our mandate is safe boating through education.”
He explained that they offer a number of courses, including Boating 1, 2 & 3, Charting, Seamanship, Navigation and more. They also have an inventory of courses covering such areas of general interest as weather, boat maintenance and paddle sports. Courses are taught by volunteers.
Port Dover Power & Sail Squadron currently has 121 members, Bill said. They are currently involved in a merger with the Brantford organization which will see the membership increase, he said.
“I’ve been boating most of my life,” Bill said. His father had a trailerable boat. “I spent a lot of time in Long Point Bay as a kid.”
After the purchase of their first boat, he said, they suffered from four footitis. In 2013, they purchased their current 32′ boat, moving up from a 28′ one. They used that boat to support Annaleise Carr on her Lake Erie crossing, he said.
Prior to being Commander, Bill was Treasurer of the Port Dover organization. He has continued to be the promoter and active volunteer of boating safety in the community. Bill was nominated for the award by Julie Ditmar.
Note: This article was written and printed in the December 5th issue of the Port Dover Maple Leaf.