Introducing the new SI President and International Assistant Programme Director

At an inaugural dinner at Newnham College, Cambridge (UK) following the Soroptimist International Board meeting, Ann Garvie  succeeded Alice Wells as President of Soroptimist International for the 2013-2015 biennium. We thank Alice Wells for her tireless work as President for the 2011-2013 biennium and her outstanding leadership to improve issues for women and girls worldwide. 


Photo: Immediate Past-President Alice Wells and President Ann Garvie

Ann Garvie has been a Soroptimist since 1979 and is a member of SI Glasgow City in Scotland, UK. After serving as Club President and Regional President, she went on to hold many roles at Federation level, including Federation International Project Liaison for the Limbs for Life project (1999-2003) and SIGBI President  (2003-4).  From 2005-7 she was the Soroptimist International Chair of Finance. 

Ann describes her objective for 2013-14 as to “seize the day in order to secure the future”.

“My vision is to lead an effective, dynamic and globally recognised organisation which empowers every member, so that more people know and value our ability to influence the policies and plans of those in government who shape our lives.”

In her professional life, Ann is Director of a property management and building company. She is a committee member of the Women of Scotland Charity Luncheon and the Marie Curie Hospice Big Build Appeal and her interests include  gardening, curling, cooking and swimming.

Read Ann’s inaugural President’s Message.

The Soroptimist International Programme Team also welcomes a new member, as Anusha Santhirasthipam steps down as International Assistant Programme Director. We thank Anusha for all of her work to promote women and girls’ rights worldwide, particularly her highly effective lobbying. Succeeding Anusha, is Caroline Leach from SIA.


Professionally, Caroline Leach (pictured above) has worked in senior management and executive roles in Southern California for over 32 years, for the past 12 years in the male dominated petroleum industry. Her leadership and oversight specialties include accounting, finance and information technologies. Presently, she serves as the Managing Member of Desert Pacific Oil, LLC., a women-owned business.

However, Caroline’s real passions are public service, community engagement, at-risk youth intervention, and domestic violence awareness. She has served as a board member on two Chambers of Commerce; as a board member and fundraiser for the Riverside Area Rape Crisis Center; as a member of the YWCA Professional Women’s Council; on the marketing committee for the YWCA’s “Women of Achievement Award” and as an appointed board member on the Riverside County Commission for Women. She has volunteered as a lecturer in finance and business accounting  in the graduate school of two major universities; is a much sort after presenter in the  “Choices” program which offers alternatives and problem solving tools to teenage girls for at-risk situational avoidance and has been a member for the past 25 years of  Soroptimist International of Riverside, California,USA.

As a Soroptimist, Caroline has served in the capacities of club past president, vice president, treasurer, secretary, junior delegate, delegate, service award chair, Goldenwest Region Committee Coordinator Human Rights/Status of Women, and is currently the Goldenwest Region Soroptimist International Liaison. Additionally, Caroline is widely seen as the “go to “ person for mentoring young women, and recruiting women in to the rewarding worlds of business and volunteerism.  

Read Caroline’s blog post about attending the SI Board Meeting.





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