President Murray Tough told us about his long four year journey to becoming Harbourside's President. He was elected to the Vice President position in December 2013 and was inducted in to the position at the start of the next Rotary year at the beginning of July 2014. He moved without an election to the President Elect position in 2015, and moved to the President position in 2016 and was installed in July 2016. He will stay on the Board for one subsequent year as Past President and will "graduate" from the Board in 2018. Prior to his installation, like any incoming President he was required to go to PETS - Pacific Northwest President Elect Training held in Seattle  where he met incoming Presidents from California to Alaska. 
In June 2016  along with 40,000 other Rotarians President Murray attended the Rotary International conference in Seoul Korea. He chose to make it a family vacation, taking his wife Kathy and daughter Jennifer along with him. As an aside he told us that our club budgets $1,400 for the President's conference costs, and he covered the rest out of his vacation budget.  Living up to their name  the Tough family did not take the easy road to Seoul. Murray and Jennifer packed their bikes and cycled 1,000 km from Incheon to Seoul. Kathy "paced" them on a bullet train. The first leg of the bike trip was 250 km around Jetu Island. The trails are well maintained, but all the signage is in Korean, so there were "mystery meals" but they were all very good. Murray showed lots of photos - many of weird, wonderful and interesting public art, including a lovely manicured garden populated with oversized inflatable polar bears. There was a robot cop managing traffic, and even an inflated lighthouse. Murray showed us that he took very few clothes with him, and washed them by taking a clothed shower every night. They almost went to a bicycle museum, but it was closed the day they were there. He showed us the signpost to the "Grave of the Loyal Cow", but for some reason they didn't visit it. Murray and Jennifer had a challenge finding an appropriate hotel, until they figured out that in Korea "motel" means "sex hotel" and "hotel" means "hotel".

At the convention it was overwhelming to be in the same room with 40,000 other people - Rotarians from around the world - but impressive to have speakers that included Ban Ki-moon, the Secretary General of the United Nations. For entertainment, the headliner was Psy, the founder of K-pop and Gangham style.

When asked about the most exciting thing at the conference, Murray said that it was knowing that there had not been one new case of polio in the previous year. With regard to translation, the sessions were held in English, and simultaneous translation devices were available for those who do not understand English. After Murray and Kathy came home, their daughter Jennifer chose to stay behind and run across Kirghizstan alone . There is no answer as to why she did that, but she just arrived home safely.