Kerry was a charter member of SI Benella, joining in 1985, Kerry has held many positions at club level and was the editor of the magazine "The Soroptimist, SWP", from 2006-2014. Kerry resigned in 2020.
My association with Soroptimist International began in 1970 when my mother, Lorna Brown, became a charter member of SI Shepparton.
When SI Benalla was chartered in 1985, my mother as region president of SI Victoria presented me with my badge. I held several club executive offices during the 35 years we operated, and I took on the role of Regional Publicity Officer for SI Victoria in the 1990s.
In 2002 I was given a Friendship Grant to the Region of SI Southern Sweden, where I spent four marvellous weeks touring a beautiful country.
I had met Lorna Mead through my mother and when Lorna became SI SWP President 2006 she asked me to take on the Federation Appointee position of Editor, SI SWP Magazine. At the time I had 40 years experience as a Graphic Designer since graduating from RMIT, Melbourne.
On accepting the task I had two initial aims. The first was to produce a magazine that the grass roots club members would want to take home with them to read.
The second aim was to send clubs a printed product that was professional enough to be used for extension purposes. To achieve these aims I gradually built up a network of club reporters throughout the 13 SWP countries. These club reporters were the mainstay for the contents of each magazine that was sent out every quarter from 2006-2014. My two proof readers, Maggie Mitchell and Judy Hunter stayed keen and diligent throughout these 8 years.
I made many friends during these times as editor giving me a wonderful opportunity to visit clubs throughout the federation. Often these visits coincided with club charters, Federation Conferences or SI Conventions. There are far too many stories to relate here but one story springs to mind.
My first SISWP Conference of Clubs as Editor was in Chiang Rai, Northern Thailand. After the conference, 16 Australian Soroptimists took a trip down the Mekong River through Laos. We finally berthed in Luang Prabang, just as the wet season was starting, to find all international flights from the airport cancelled. We sat huddled in the little airport for hours waiting, when the Mayor of Bangkok decided he’d waited long enough. He ordered a plane from Thailand to come and collect him. Thankfully, he invited us to share his plane. We could have been stranded there for the entire rainy season!
When my position as Editor finished I felt that I had accomplished both of my original aims by introducing full colour with many photographs with five to six countries being represented in each edition of the magazines.
Read the past SWP magazines from 2004 - 2014 here . Kerry has greatly assisted the SWP Centennial committee with historic publications and history.