SPPETS report Gillian Jones  South Pacific President Elect Training (SPPETS) at Waipuna Lodge in Auckland at the end of February was another wonderful opportunity for our upcoming Rotary leaders to learn about the wider world of Rotary, share ideas and experiences and have fun! 
 
In the end we had a really strong turnout and I believe all will agree that they experienced a great weekend which really set the basis for their year a President and Assistant Governor.  As incoming District Governor, I am delighted with the energy, openness, camaraderie and innovative thinking of our District leaders. It bodes well for a great year.
 
District 9940 held their ‘top up’ PETS training on the Friday for those who were unable to come to our PETS weekend in Palmerston North in November, while it was great to see a number of incoming Presidents at both events.  In particular, Friday was an opportunity for Assistant Governors to spend time with their Clusters, planning for the new Rotary year.  Much discussion was had around the benefits of collaboration – between clusters and across the District. 
A very big thank you to our learning and Development team Mitchell Brown and Roger Buchanan for their brilliant organisation of the Friday event in particular, but also their input into breakout sessions during the weekend.  Mitch in particular was a gem with his ability to pluck accommodation options out of nowhere, his unwavering energy in all aspects of planning and delivery and his support for me.
Saturday and Sunday was the wider South Pacific Training with a very full programme of keynote speakers and breakout groups focusing on a wide range of topics. 
Saturday opened with a presentation from the incoming Governors from each of the Districts.  We introduced our Rotary International theme for the year – Rotary Opens Opportunities – which we had learned from our recent International Assembly in San Diego. We each focused on a particular opportunity that we were excited to explore during our year as DG.  The opportunity I’m most excited about is the increasing opportunity for Clubs to be flexible and innovative in order to engage their current members and attract new members.  During the year you’ll hear me talking often about our Clubs reflecting our communities, flexible meetings, innovative Club models. Incoming RI President Holgar Knaak has told us that there are few limitations on ways we build a positive Rotary experience. Exciting opportunities to think innovatively!
We were honoured to have Jennifer Jones, Rotary International Trustee and her husband Nick Krayacich – also a passionate Rotarian – both from Ontario – and brilliant speakers.  Speakers too from our South Pacific RI office in Parramatta, other Australian guests, our very own Tony Heyward, to name a few.
I believe we all returned home enthusiastic about our year as Centenary leaders and knowing more than we did previously about this huge organisation we’re proud to be part of.
Ngā mihi
Gillian Jones District Governor Elect D9940