GM Christopher Mitchell bids farewell


Following is the speech given by CLPOA General Manager Chris Mitchell at Tuesday night’s Board meeting. 

Tonight, September 6, will be my last meeting as the General Manger for the Association. For over five years, almost four of them as the GM, I have seen a lot of positive changes. There have been two accomplishments that I’m very proud of.

First, getting the POA’s finances in order. When I arrived in 2011, the Association was still reeling from the Financial Collapse of 2008. This was evidenced by the huge amount of accounts receivable, in which a large percentage of homeowners were not paying assessments. This negatively affected cash flow and, toward the end of 2011, the POA was barely meeting paying its bills and payroll.

By revamping the collections and cash budgeting, we were able to right the ship. After this we revamped the Reserves Controls to track when monies are moved in and out of the reserves. This will help to ensure reserve funds are accounted for correctly. This foundation not only created financial stability within the POA, but helped to provide accurate and timely financial information that will help future staff and Boards in continuing to make good financial decisions.

Second, I’m very proud of spearheading the Canyon Lake Beatification Initiative. This is important as it focuses on restoring our existing amenities like our parks. It’s critical that the infrastructure is maintained for the continued enjoyment of the membership.  This project has helped bring parks back to life like Indian Beach, Harrelson Park and Sunset Beach.

Next I would like to thank the Boards I have served under. From the 2010/11 Board that hired me as the Director of Finance, to the 2012/13 Board that believed in me and promoted me to the General Manger position, to the current Board, I would like to thank them all for their service to the community. It is a thankless job that requires commitment to do what is best for the community as a whole.

I would also like to thank all the committees and clubs for working with me to better Canyon Lake.And special thanks to the the committees that I have had the opportunity to be a staff liaison to:

To the Quality Assurance Committee, for their advice and guidance on several issues that affected the POA. They were always there to help and I greatly appreciate that.

To the Facilities Review Committee, for their efforts to balance the need to create new amenities, with the need to maintain our existing facilities, while also being mindful of the budgetary constraints.

And to the Finance Committee, which was the first committee I ever laisoned. This committee has continued to be the watchdog of the POA finances, and I’m confident they will continue to be just as tough on the new GM.

And now to the greatest staff I have had the ability to work with. I want to thank my senior staff Lynn Jensen, Mike Morrow, Susanne Webb, Carrie Pratt, Mark Scheck and of course, Ron Long.

To my staff in the corporate office that made sure I had the information I needed and helped me get through the day: Lynn Jensen, Harmony Owen, Lisa Rogers, James Trask, Bryan Salazar, Selina Lara and Tiffany Cribbs.

And to all the other department staff at the POA that I have had the privilege to work with: Accounting, Operations, Activities, Member Services, Planning and Compliance, Food and Beverage.

And to the vendors that assisted the Board and myself, specifically: Silldorf and Levine, Securitas and Valleycrest.

I’m grateful for the opportunity to work at this Association and for the friendships that have come from it as well. I will keep in touch and hope to come back for the great events like 4th of July, Fiesta Day and the Car Show.

And finally, one quote I have lived by and believe in, from Fredrick Douglass: “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.”

We live in a democratic society that requires participation from its citizens. If those citizens never stand up to unite to do the right thing, to never struggle to overcome apathy, there will be no progress, there will be no future. I ask that the membership not sit by and let someone else do the heavy lifting, but to get up and participate in making the community the best it can be.

Thank you all, and may the sun never set on Canyon Lake.