Chilliwack FC held their annual general meeting last week, and the biggest news to come from it is that a familar face is back in the presidency.
Bruce Davies is stepping aside and Andrea Laycock is back in the position she held for 15 years.
Unfortunate circumstances forced Laycock to step away from the role in June of 2008 as she waged a war with endometrial cancer.
Following a successful year long battle, Laycock returned to the fray, rejoining the CFC board in 2009. And now she is back in a role she describes as ‘a comfortable fit.’
“When Bruce announced that he wasn’t coming back, I thought maybe it was time to jump back into the saddle and get busy again,” she said. “It’s the opportunity to help create change and move the club forward. Bruce did a great job getting us to this point and now I can guide us through the next steps.”
Typically, one run at the head of a major minor sports organization is enough.
Few people have the desire to come back for more.
But Laycock insisted no arm-twisting was required to get her back.
“It was tough to step away in 2008 because I’d invested so much time and energy into the club,” she said. “To focus on myself, which is something I didn’t and still don’t do a lot, it was very tough. I didn’t even have to think about coming back, even though my family was like, ‘Are you nuts?’”
The landscape has changed remarkably since Laycock left. For a while, it seemed like CFC was trotting out a new team or program on a weekly basis, and Laycock is still catching up on what’s gone on in her absence.
“Wow, there’s been quite a few, and you don’t get told a lot when you’re vice-chairperson,” she said. “Ian (former head coach Knight) gave us a great foundation to build off of, and Glenn (current head coach Wilson) is now tailoring things a little bit more towards what the membership is asking for.”
What that means is still undefined.
Laycock thinks much is already in place, and the rest will be determined through careful evaluation.
“The first thing I want to do is have a ‘how are we doing?’ session so I know where we’re at in the eyes of the membership,” she said. “I don’t know if I can honestly answer where we’re at, because I don’t know. I need to hear from the membership, the people who pay the bills.”
Laycock had kind words for Davies, who did an oustanding job building and nurturing relationships in Chilliwack.
“He did a phenomenal job when Ian moved on (to Abbotsford), getting things organized so the club could continue,” she said. “He provided leadership through that transition.”
Get more information on local youth soccer online at www.chilliwackfc.com.