Neil Anderson appointed chairman of National Sailability Committee of Yachting Australia as Bruce Dickson steps down
Following discussion, the Board of Yachting Australia has accepted the recommendation that Neil Anderson be appointed Chair of the National Sailability Committee.
Commenting on the appointment, Phil Jones, Yachting Australia CEO said; “Neil has been very active in Sailability NSW, having been its president from for eleven years. He brings valuable hands-on experience, enthusiasm and energy to this national role.”
Phil Jones also paid tribute to the retiring Chairman of the National Sailability Committee, Bruce Dickson. “Bruce took on the position in 2004, after serving as President of Yachting Australia from 1996 to 2000. In 2003 he was a made a Life Member of Yachting Australia for services to yachting. He was tasked with re-forming, and reinvigorating, the National Sailability Committee after a hiatus of some years, a task which he has performed with excellent results.”
Neil’s love of sailing started at an early age, joining the Port Hacking Open Sailing Club when he was eight. He has been a key figure in the expansion of sailing opportunities for people with disabilities in NSW since 1995. He became only the second President of Sailability NSW in 1996. From two branches, Sailability NSW now has 26 across the state.
Amongst other activities, Neil has been involved in raising operational standards at NSW branch level, as well as assisting the establishment of Sailability associations in Malaysia, Greece and the Netherlands. He introduced the Beeping Buoy to Australia for vision-impaired sailing events. He is also the Sailability NSW representative on the committee of the NSW Association of Disability Sport.
Whilst Neil has only just been appointed, he already has one very passionately-held goal for Sailability across Australia: “Bruce and the committee have prioritised closer links with able-bodied sailors and I want to buiId on that work, to achieve greater recognition of sailors with disabilities within the broader sailing and yachting community.”
Sailability Australia is the Australian arm of the international Sailability movement with eight state or territory Sailability associations and some 65 branches/programs nationally.
Australian sailors with disabilities are represented nationally by delegates on Yachting Australia’s Sailability Committee (nominated by State Yachting Associations) and internationally through Yachting Australia’s membership of Sailability World, the International Association for Disabled Sailing (IFDS) and the Australian Paralympic Committee.