Esperance SES and VMR see new leadership

Glenn Churchland assumed the leadership of the Esperance SES and VMR units from August 7. Photo: Jake Dietsch.
Glenn Churchland assumed the leadership of the Esperance SES and VMR units from August 7. Photo: Jake Dietsch.

The Esperance SES and Volunteer Marine Rescue have a new leader following the joint unit’s annual general meeting on August 7.

Glenn Churchland was appointed by DFES as the SES local manager and elected by fellow volunteers to be the VMR commander.

Russell Palmer announced his resignation from the leadership positions in May, although he will remain a member of both groups. 

Mr Churchland described his predecessor’s leadership as “excellent” and said he was excited to step into the new position. 

The meeting also saw Jamie Saunders take on the role of SES deputy manager and David Dodge become the VMR vice commander.  

“I know I’ve got a good team, the unit here is an excellent unit,” Mr Churchland said.

“The group of people down there are absolutely brilliant.

“I did 20 years in the navy and left there 28 years ago.

“Since then I have never found a group of people I felt fully comfortable with until I met this lot.”

Mr Churchland has been a member of the units for five years and a deputy for two.

He said he had plans to keep the groups at the high efficiency rate they were at, and to possibly even improve.

Mr Churchland said he would only serve a single three-year term as leader.

“I have said up front ‘it’s only for three years’ because I want younger blood to come in,” he said.

“I’m 68 now, I’ll be 71 at the end of this appointment.”

Mr Churchland said the main reason he was involved in emergency services was to help the community.

“I’m retired and it gave me that avenue into working into the community,” he said.

“During my 20 years in the Navy I got into the frame of mind that you're working for other people.”

Mr Churchland said while he had experience, he would have a learning journey.

“I have a lot to learn, but once again the team is going to help me out with that and the backup from DFES is really good,” he said.

“It’s a huge progression for me.

“Not everybody gets to be 68 and still play with toys like we've got down there.”