The Defence Force Welfare Association (DFWA) wishes to express deep disappointment to learn that once again the largest support organisation for men and women who have served or are serving in the Australian Defence Force, namely the Returned and Services League, Australia (RSL National), has been thrown into leadership uncertainty.
This follows the somewhat unexpected resignation of yet another National President in Robert Dick, who had previously served with distinction as the Tasmanian RSL State President for over five years.
In commenting on the resignation, the National President of the Defence Force Welfare Association, Kel Ryan, acknowledged that a new path for the 100-year organisation was arguably long overdue. Governance failings at varying levels and numerous misconduct allegations swirling around its precincts has the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) demanding it review its governance and organisational structures at all level.
Notwithstanding, to the wider veterans’ community itself, the leadership that was exhibited by Robert Dick in his short tenure as National RSL President seemed the appropriate one to allow the organisation to emerge into a new era of its existence.
Robert had displayed a long-standing strong commitment to the on-going and future growth of the RSL as an organization dedicated to the welfare of veterans and serving ADF members alike, including their dependents. He had also shown a willingness to closely cooperate and work with the Alliance of Defence Services Organisations (ADSO) and other national organisations such as Legacy Australia to project a unified voice to Government. He willingly accepted the Government’s challenge for the veterans’ community to ‘speak with one voice’.
Kel Ryan wishes to publicly express his gratitude to Robert for bringing in that refreshing new era of cooperation by RSL National that had been so absent from leaders of the recent past.
DFWA – Voice of the Defence Community