Tributes to Antony Ruck as he steps down as chair

06 March 2020

Antony Ruck stepped down as Chair of BATA at our AGM. After an eventful five years in the hot seat, he will be succeeded by Vice Chair Rick Bell.

At the meeting Antony looked back over his time on the Council, which saw a rebrand of the organization, a new website and increasing opportunities to represent disabled AT users and influence policymakers.

He recalled some of BATA’s activities over the past five years including summits on Disabled Students Allowances and the workplace, the introduction of webinars and three fundraising walks that had involved 29 people covering 580 miles.

Special interest groups are another innovation introduced by Antony. Eight have so far been set up. He also played a major role in establishing relations with outside organizations, including the establishment of a pan-European organization called DAT Europe.

He gave special thanks to council members for donating their time to the organization. Sarah Jane Peak presented him with a gift in recognition of his service.

There were a number of tributes from colleagues. “The UK is a global innovative power house in assistive technology, said Jack Churchill of Scanning Pens.  “Antony’s chairmanship of BATA over the last five years has brought different companies & organisations together from across the AT spectrum into an even stronger collective. 

“The organisation now has excellent links with government departments, leading charities and international AT associations.  His deep knowledge of AT and friendly approachability has made it a very positive chapter for both the BATA board and its membership.”

Myles Pilling of AccessAbility Solutions said " Antony supported me on our various charity walks helping me to reach the goal. He is a guy who gets alongside you and helps you. I have found him always there when working on BATA business. A real professional and someone I am proud to be a colleague of."

Carolyne Smith of Sight and Sound, BATA Secretary said: “It has been an honour to work alongside such a dynamic and encouraging Chair. During a tumultuous few years for the sector, he has steered BATA on a steady course, gaining influence and respect along the way, which we will benefit from for years to come. Thanks are due for all he has done.”

“Antony’s chairmanship has ensured that BATA has continued to thrive,” said Executive Director John Lamb. “On his watch membership is up, we are much better known at home and abroad and he has delivered better value for us members. We have all benefitted from his calm determined approach to the association.”