Eric is absolutely capable of making a huge positive impact on the Laser sailing game. I had the opportunity to work with Eric from 1995 until 2001 , first in my boat repair shop ( while we traveled to dozens of regattas in Lasers and J-22s) and for the two years he served as newsletter editor for the North American Laser Class.
Eric understood how important it was and always will be to gather and disseminate as much information as possible about the Laser game. You can find his 8 newsletters from late 1999 to mid 2001 on line at www.laser.org and notice each of his 64 page issues had far more pages of information than advertising. There were photos from every district in every newsletter and as many as 200 recognizable faces in each issue.
I remember those last weeks before our quarterly publication deadlines and sending 3 am emails to Eric only to have my phone ring at 3:05 because he was up trying to make copy for an ad and "since I was up anyway, could I write a couple hundred word article to fill in for that district secretary who didn't send anything?"
Those newsletters were produced by a person who knew how important it was to not only spend at least 40 hour per week in the office but to travel to 20 to 25 events each year and get to know regatta hosts and our sailors on a personal basis.
There is no doubt in my mind that having Eric on my team in the North American Laser Class office made it possible to turn our shrinking game and organization which had been shrinking since the 1970s into the fastest growing sailing organization in the world.
If the Laser game is going to weather the storm of builder indifference and aging players and organizers, there is no doubt in my mind Eric is capable not only of putting in the long hours but of targeting some of the most important tasks which simply must be handled.
Eric is a lot older than he was when we did all that stuff and age has a way of curing enthusiasm, but he takes reasonably good care of his ancient self. My guess is he has at least a couple years of productivity left in him before we will need to replace him with somebody 30 years his junior.
I look foreword to some measurable positive impact.