Today was a very big day for the Committee and for its administration. As I have described in previous posts, next week will see the constitutive plenary session of the 2010-2015 mandate, and no less than 102 of the Committee’s full complement of 344 members – almost one third – will be brand new. Today and tomorrow we are welcoming these new members to what we have dubbed ‘information days’, designed variously to: enable them to get all of the bureaucratic formalities out of the way (insurance, security passes, lockers, etc) in a ‘one stop shop’; to help them to understand how the Committee functions and to explain about their rights and prerogatives; to explain a series of practical matters, from the layout of our buildings to how the voting machines work; to meet sitting members; and to meet the administration. This afternoon I chaired two information sessions (two so that we could cover all of the different languages in interpretation) and presented the future President, Staffan Nilsson, and then the members of the Committee’s management board. Everything went swimmingly and there was a positive buzz about the whole day. As I never cease repeating, you never get a second chance to make a first impression, and I was proud of my colleagues for I think we amply demonstrated a simple truth; we are very much looking forward to working with our new members, just as we are much looking forward to getting our ‘old’ members back next week!