SARâï¿½ï¿½undergoes structural changes
Published: Thursday, July 3rd, 2014
Come Jan. 1 there will be a new man leading Custer County Search and Rescue (SAR) and it’s all due to the talents and dedication of SAR members.
Rick March, SAR member,âï¿½ï¿½will take over the reins of the organization from Steve Baldwin on that day, after March was unanimously elected to the post by SARâï¿½ï¿½members at the group’s May meeting. When March takes over, he will be only the third director in the organization’s history. Paul Muehl led the organization at its outset and led SARâï¿½ï¿½for around 20 years before Baldwin took over in 1996.
Baldwin was instrumental in bringing about the organization’s new structure, which will see a director, deputy director and secretary/treasurer elected on an annual basis. He pitched the idea of the group electing its leadership annually to the county commission, which oversees SAR, which the commission approved.
“I’veâï¿½ï¿½said a lot of times that we had a dictatorship,”âï¿½ï¿½Baldwin said. “I was director and that was it. That started changing a few years ago and I often thought it would be nice if Search and Rescue could select its own leadership and have a rotation. I have often felt if one person is in charge of an activity, especially a nonprofit or a committee, eventually it tends to become that person. It’s good to have new blood.”
SAR always operates as a team and Baldwin would make a decision based on what the group preferred. Also, as he got closer to retirement, he felt it was time for SARâï¿½ï¿½to switch over to the elected leadership structure.
“We have a lot of qualified people,”âï¿½ï¿½he said. “Iâï¿½ï¿½visited with some of the people who have been around quite awhile and told them what Iâï¿½ï¿½had in mind. Everybody thought it was a good idea.”
Once the commission gave its blessing, the election was held and now March will shadow Baldwin for the remainder of the year before taking over as director Jan. 1.
Baldwin said March, a certified land appraiser who is knowledgeable in GPS, digital mapping and communications, could step into the role today and do it well.
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