A Personal Note from Richard Howell, President, Southwestern District




The year 2020 will go down in history as a year of upset and turmoil.  We have been thrown into a different reality than what we are used to or what we expected.  From the comments and discussions I’ve heard over the last 11 months, I don’t think anyone will argue.  When this year started, I was excited about my last year as SWD President and was looking forward to holding our face-to-face Board and HOD meetings, visiting with friends and enjoying the fellowship and satisfaction that our Spring and Fall conventions would provide.   I was able to attend the January Midwinter meeting before the pandemic hit.  I was really looking forward with great anticipation to the International convention to attend BHS meetings representing the Southwestern District and to participate in the marvelous singing opportunities that these gatherings provided.  The Harmony University classes, and Leadership Conferences were always a great way to meet new friends and renew old friendships.  And, it was difficult, but necessary, to cancel our SWD 2020 Spring and Fall conventions.

But, as you know, the COVID pandemic was the cause of all those cancellations.   We have been thrust into quarantines, periods of isolation and an overall situation that none of us were comfortable with.  All of this has made my role as SWD President challenging.  Our normal routines were just not possible.  I sincerely believe that the Southwestern District as well as BHS can recover from the disruptions caused by COVID, but it will take time.  So, here’s to a successful and enjoyable 2021 and beyond!

I would like to thank all of you for your support over the past two years.  I just wish we could have experienced this year’s Barbershop gatherings under normal circumstances.  But that is now in our past.  Let’s move forward!  I certainly want to wish the incoming Board and House of Delegates the best as they lead the Southwestern District through new challenges.  I want to extend a special thanks and well wishes to our incoming District President, Russell Shaner, as he assumes the district leadership role for the next two years.  We will be in good hands!


Richard Howell

District President (and almost IPP)

Southwestern District