On November 10, 2014, at the BFS board’s annual meeting at Seng Thai restaurant, Bruce Snider joined the Belfast Flying Shoes board of directors. Seven years later, at our annual meeting this month, the BFS board wistfully accepted his resignation. Current and past board members are deeply grateful for his support of our nonprofit and its programs.
Throughout his tenure, Bruce was a pillar of BFS volunteerism. At the First Friday BFS Dances, he was always willing to help, diligently moving chairs and tables, lugging heavy sound gear, sweeping the floors, and installing fans. He cheerfully played mandolin, banjo uke, and harmonica in the All Comers Band almost every month, and was a steady presence at the door, seeming to relish the role of good-humored ‘meeter and greeter’. And whenever he danced, Bruce positively beamed!
Bruce was a visionary board member. He felt that the First Friday Community Dance & Contras created a kind of magical elixir that we should broadly share, with people from our local community and beyond. For example, he spearheaded the 2020 collaboration with WBFY-Belfast Community Radio that led to our ongoing Flying Shoes Radio Hour. His witty and entertaining publicity helped further the elixir-sharing goal, and his thoughtful writing and editing elevated all of our BFS communications, from policy documents to blog posts.
As our board President, Bruce was a careful steward, albeit one who occasionally doodled on the agenda or came out with some zinger of self-aware sarcasm. His creative wryness came into play in many ways, such as his signage explaining how to keep the sensitive Legion toilets from getting clogged.
This dry sense of humor, in concert with Bruce’s candor and civility, also helped him provide balance at our board meetings. He kept the more excitable elements from getting carried away, simply by being a calm and centered presence. All of us have appreciated Bruce’s consistency, patience, and methodical approach, especially over the past couple of years when so much has happened and information has been rapidly changing.
Thank you, Bruce, for all that you have given to Belfast Flying Shoes and our local community!