About The Men

In The Beginning 1990

Rotary Clubs


  The first Probus club for seniors in North America was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Galt in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada Mar 17th in 1987 

The Birth of Probus


 Each Probus Club is autonomous. The club endeavours to be simple in structure, be free of the constraints and obligations of service clubs and involve members in a minimal cost. 

The club is directed primarily to providing fellowship between members who are compatible with each other, and the opportunity for development of acquaintance. 

Anniversary Celebration, top left and middle pictures.

Our 26th President Larry Gaillais and Probus Rep 

1st President Naif Shaheen mddle picture.

Our first President Of Men’s Probus (1990 - 1991) speaks at the 25th 

 Anniversary at Rosehill.  

Charter Members 1990-91 top right picture.

Charter members 1990 - 1991: (left to right)

Naif Shaheen ,Tom Sneyd , Ken Riehl, Art Robar, Bill Budd , ? & Ed Gloin


From Right to Left


 Dave King President, Robert Ball, Larry Asp, Rob Bryant, Peter Harrison, Bill Weir 2nd VP, John Richardson

Ian Clark

Richard Orton, Bill Meek, Jerry Klages 1st VP, Bob Axon, Ken Shrubsall, Phil Thorne, David Tabor
Meetings are the first Tuesday of every month (except January) at the Woodstock Curling Club.

Presidents 1990-20--

1990-91           Naif Shaheen                         1991-92            Ross Pirie      

1992-93           Norm Carter                           1993-94           Frank Smith

1994-95            Bob Smith                             1995-96           Fred Downing   

1995-96            Fred Freeman                       1996-97            Art Harrison

1997-98            Wyatt Gamble                     1998-99            Alex Chisholm

1999-00           Mason Brownscombe       2001-01            Hal Walls

2001-02           Angus Mowat                      2002-03           Michael deBeer 

2003-04          Keith Latter                          2004-05          Art Robar

2005-06          Suresh Dixit                         2006-07           Joe Fohkens

2007-08          Bob Douglas                        2008-09          Roy Vardy

2009-10           Jerry Sokalski                       2010-11              David Wright

2011-12              David Clowes                       2012-13             Bernard Calder

2013-14             Doug Puddicombe             2014-15             Larry LeGallais

2015-16             Art Jones                                2016-17             Bob Axon 

2017-18             Phil Thorne                           2018-19             Dave King              

Who Am I? Speakers

                                    Brian Armstrong                               Larry Asp                     

                                    Bob Axon                                           Robert Norman Ball

                                    Brian Banush                                     Bob Beattie

                                    Rick Bell                                             Graham Brown

                                    Rob Bryant                                        Dan Byers    

                                    Bernard Calder                                 Ross Campbell

                                    Dr Wayne Campbell                        John Carley

                                    Dr. Paul Carter                                  Earl Clayton

                                    David Clowes                                    Mike Connell

                                    John Cook                                          Morris Cosyn 

                                    Murray Coulter                                 Don Downing

                                    Al Driedger                                        Phil Dunbar

                                    John Eacott                                       Peter Ewing

                                    John Farley                                        Fred Freeman

                                    Wayne Geall                                     Les Goodall

                                    Doug Goodbun                                Peter Harrison

                                    Ian Hart                                              Bruce Hartley

                                    Dave Hay                                          Sid Hewitt

                                   Ash Holloway                                   Martin Jamieson

                                   Art Jones                                            Jim Jones

                                   David Lorne King                             Jerry Klages

                                   Bill Koleszar                                      Jim Lefler

                                   Larry LeGallais                                 Ed Majernik

                                   Glen McDonald                                John McDougall

                                   George McEwen                              Gerry McKay            

                                   Jim McNamara                                 Bob McTavish

                                   Bill Meek                                           Ken Minler 

                                   Everett Mossman                           Harry Mott

                                   Richard Orton                                  Jack Pasma

                                   Tony Paladino                                 Dave Palmer

                                   Don Post                                           John Richardson

                                   Ken Riehl                                           John Rowell 

                                   Norm Ryder                                     Larry Sales

                                   Jim Savage                                       Tony Sheldon

                                   Ken Shrubsall                                  Duncan Sinclair 

                                   David Smith                                    Gerry Sokalski

                                  Gary Stephens                                 Stuart Dean

                                  Lance Steel                                      David Stock

                                  David Tabor                                     Keith Thompson

                                  Ken Thompson                               Phil Thorne

                                  Bob Thornton                                 Roy Vardy

                                  Doug Vincent                                 Terry Wallace

                                  Hal Walls                                         Paul Ward

                                  Watson                                            Bill Weathersdton

                                 Bill  Weir                                           David Wright

                                 Deward Yates  

Who Am I? Speakers Downloads.

Downloadable 'Who Am I?' Speakers. Instructions. Click on the DOWNLOAD arrow associated with  the letter matching your last name. This will open the file in Word. Scroll to find yours or the person you are looking up. Once found you can highlight, copy. paste, save or print. To save pictures - right click on picture and click save picture as. It will now be saved on your computer.


Files coming soon.

January Guest Speaker

William E. (Bill) Mackesy

The FULL version is available on the Probus Website 

“I was born in 1949, the first child of seven, to James and Leota Mackesy in Sarnia General Hospital. My dad’s family were of Irish decent.” Bill’s younger years were spent on their family farm at RR# 3 Oil Springs Ontario where his dad farmed from dawn to dusk. Summers were spent working long hours at their harvest. The elementary years were rustic attending a one room school with 27 to 30 students every year.  In 1962 he started high school at Lambton Central Collegiate and Vocational Institute in Petrolia. High School was a huge change for him from a school of 30 kids to a school of 1,300. There were 10 grade 9 classes and Bill’s class had 40 kids.  After Grade 13 Bill went off to Western University, and had “the best, most educational years of his life”. Unfortunately, when final marks came out, he was not invited to come back for another year. So he began working at 3M in London.  Bill started in the mailroom but the money was not very good. So, he applied to Dow Chemical in Sarnia and soon money started rolling in due to lots of overtime. Bill really wanted to be a school teacher, and decided to apply at Western again. In the next 2 years he worked a lot harder and achieved 11 credits out of the 15 needed for a degree.  One of his roommates was applying to London Teachers College, so he did too. A year later he was an elementary school teacher. His sweetheart Mary, got a teaching job in Guelph, and he got one here in Woodstock with the separate board. They decided to get married, and finalized it on Dec 30, 1972. . For the next year and a half they lived in Guelph and commuted to Woodstock. In 1974 Mary applied for a job with the Oxford County Board of Ed, got interviewed, and accepted a position in Princeton.  Bill soon decided that a teaching career was not for him. After a few months, along came Gene Lawrence, a supervisor with Northern Life Insurance. He convinced Bill to try selling insurance and that led to being financial advisors.and a few years later they became equal partners in Oxford Annuity Services. After 40 years, they have both retired from Oxford Annuity Services which still lives on as Investment Planning Counsel on Light Street.  Mary left teaching in 1981 when their son was born, but ramped up her private piano teaching at that time. Their daughter came along in 1985. .  Bill’s retirement years have been filled with Grandchildren, travel, computes and reading. As well as travelling with Mary, he enjoys spending time at their cottage near Port Franks. Over the years he served on the United Way Board, the VON Board, the Woodstock East Oxford Optimists, The Woodstock General Hospital Board of Trust, the Woodstock Hospital Foundation, and now Probus. His latest involvement is with the Oxford Community Foundation, where he is soon to be the chair, and a passionate job for this future.