PROGRAM this Wednesday, September 14th will be brought to us by Charis Acree and will feature Nancy Paris, CEO of the Georgia Center for Oncology Research and Education in Atlanta.
PROGRAM last week was introduced by President Jake Jones and featured our District 6900 Governor Raymond Ray.
Bill Price announced that there will be a LaGrange International Festival this Saturday, September 10, from 4 to 8 p.m. in downtown LaGrange. And, on Sunday, September 11, there will be a free concert of international music, called "Music for Peace," at Callaway Auditorium of LaGrange College from 7 to 8 p.m. sponsored by LaGrange International Friendship Exchange to mark the 15th Anniversary of September 11. The concert will feature instrumental and vocal music as well as dancers.
Bill Bowling announced for his Rotarianne, Libba, and the Symphony Guild, that they are having several fund raising auctions for trips to California, New York, Chicago, and New Orleans as well as other items, and that our Raylene Carter will have more info next week.
Drew Gay reminded us of the Walk to End Alzheimer's on Saturday September 17, at Vernon Woods at 9:30 a.m. Alzheimer's Research has been one of our club's special concerns, usually in February, but this walk will raise funds for research and a cure. Everyone is requested to participate. Our club has a Team for the walk and fundraising effort. There were forms on the tables last week for us to make our contributions with so that Rotary Club of LaGrange will get credit. If you did not get one, you can mail your contribution to Lindsey Richard, Alzheimer's Association; 5156 River Road, Suite M, Columbus, GA 31904 and INCLUDE a note stating it is for: "2016 Walk LaGrange, Ga, event ID 8923,Team ID 352991, Team: Rotary Club of LaGrange, participant ID 12212532, participant contact Drew Gay. Drew reminded us that Alzheimer's is now the 6th leading cause of death in the U. S. And it does not impact the victim as much as it does the victim's entire family and circle of friends.
Immediate Past President George Henry announced that they can use more readers for the Success By Six program. We have 11 members of our Rotary Family signed up to go read to children on a regular basis and can use more. They held a conflab afterwards but those interested can still contact George.
President Jake Jones reminded us that we have as a goal for this year to be a 100% participation club in support of the 100th Anniversary of the Rotary Foundation, which was created in 1917 in Atlanta. Every member is asked to give a one time donation of $26.50 which was the amount of the very first contribution made to start the foundation back in 1917.
Prez Jake also recalled that everyone is requested to turn in an index card with their name at the top and then a list of three prospective new members. He said everyone will be "badgered" until they comply. He did not say if they would go so far as to stake a goat out in your yard if you don't follow through, like they used to do in olden days, but he swears they will be relentless until everyone has turned in a card. As it turns out, our District Governor has a bet going with our own Bill Stump, our current Membership Director, that we will not make a our goal of getting 35 new members this year (or was it 37?) IF we do it, the Governor will bring champagne for us all!
Happy Dollars last week started with Patty Youngblood in appreciation of our great Rotary turn out to support the Untied Way Campaign Kickoff last week. Next, Sondra Bowie added $10 (saying she wished she had more) to celebrate her grandson having finished officer training in the Marine Corps and is now a Lieutenant, although she was horrified by what he had to go through to get to that point!
PAUL HARRIS recognitions: Foundation Director, Patty Youngblood, and District Governor Raymond Ray, awarded George Henry a Paul Harris Plus 4 last week. This represents a contribution of $5,000 to the rotary Foundation. Next, they awarded Paul Harris Fellowships to our two newest members, which Patty said, and we think she must be right, has to be a first. Karin and Rod Thompson joined our club only two short weeks ago and already have become Paul Harris Fellows. Each fellowship represents a contribution of $1,000 to the Foundation and is our organization's means by which we fund efforts to promote global peace, provide clean water, eradicate illiteracy, and end polio among other things. The good it does internationally is also brought home as we also get district grants out of every donation. A Paul Harris Fellowship is the highest honor that Rotary International bestows.
President Jake Jones allowed as how our Foundation Director, Patty Youngblood, does not get enough credit for the hard work she does with this position, which we know our Dalton Hammock and Shep Phillips can attest to from the years they did this job. He reminded us that it was a near Herculean task for Patty to lead us into being a 100 % Paul Harris Club last year.
President Jake then made an award to the Hon. James Woodruff, High Sheriff of Troup County, to represent, symbolically, a vote of appreciation from our club to all First Responders, Fire and Police Forces, and our Military.
President Jake Jones introduced the speaker, our District Governor, Raymond Ray, from the Rotary Club of Griffin Daybreak. Governor Ray is a native of Griffin, graduate of North Georgia College and a retired veteran of the U. S. Army who also served in Operation Desert Storm. Currently, he serves on the County Commission of Spalding County and has served on the Board of Education there as well as being active in Chamber of Commerce and Boy Scouts. He told us that honoring those who serve in our military, fire and law enforcement, and First Responders is one of his main objectives this year. He said they truly embody our motto of Service Above Self because when they serve, they risk their very lives to do so. He said we should all shake the hands of any of these public servants when we encounter them on the streets. [When our children were growing up, we always had them shake hands with police and fire people we encountered so they would learn that the police are their friends, and to thank service people in uniform (which sometimes was a chore when we would go to the airport)] The Governor then made another symbolic, special presentation to Sheriff Woodruff of a District 6900 Honor Coin. He then asked all veterans to stand and then discovered who among them was the veteran who entered service the earliest. Our World War II veteran Ellis Smith and our Korean War veteran Shep Phillips not being present, the honor went to Bill Bowling who entered service in 1957. The Governor then gave him an Honor Coin "to represent all our club's veterans." The Governor told us that the International Rotary Convention in Atlanta, June 10-14, 2016 is the first International Convention held in the U. S. for 6 years, and we may never have a better opportunity to attend one than this. So far there are 32 from LaGrange Rotary family signed up to attend. There will be 45,000 Rotarians there from around the world and it will be like having that many friends sharing a common passion. He also reminded us that the Foundation that is celebrating its 100th year was started at the Convention in 1917 in Atlanta, and began with $26.50 and is now over 3 billion dollars. He told us that LaGrange Rotarians have made the LaGrange Club one of the best in District 6900, and that 6900 is one of the top ten districts in the world. He told us that Rotary membership is the best path to service as no other organization has the combined knowledge and resources, including people, we do to make the world a better place. He mentioned all the programs and projects we produce each year in LaGrange as proof. Polio efforts have had a minor setback with cases newly reported in Nigeria, but he said it is only a set back. We have gone from 355,000 cases per year in 1985 to 19 and that when we are done it will be the second disease ever eradicated in human history, the first being small pox. Next, the governor told us of the exciting plans for our District Conference Friday April 21 through Monday April 24, 2017. Instead of going to Jekyll Island or Destin, the Conference will be a cruise. It will leave from Port Canaveral and go to Nassau on Saturday, where everyone will have the opportunity to do as they please or to participate in a special project, and Sunday sail to Coco Cay, returning Monday morning to disembark. Registration is a mere $99 for the conference and $199 per person for the cruise. The conference will be booked through AAA. [More details will be coming on this we are sure] Governor Ray remarked that "We can't provide all the service the world needs, but the world needs all the service we CAN provide." He said he has not been as impressed with any club so far this year as he was with LaGrange and said we are all team members and everyone one of us an All Star, then he said since a team has a coach, the president is that coach and he presented our Jake Jones with a whistle as well as one of the District Select Coins.
Following the program, President Jake Jones and Director Bill Martin presented Governor Ray with a Walter Murphy Fellowship. This represents a $1,000 contribution to the Rotary Club of LaGrange / Walter Y. Murphy Scholarship Fund at LaGrange College and funds several servant leader scholarships at our college annually. It is the highest honor our local club bestows.
Guests and Visitors last week included: Assistant District Governor Pat Keating (a frequent visitor and always welcome here); Linsey Collier, guest of George Stefenelli; Josh Williams, guest of Trae Long; and a plethora of Club Guests: Jennifer Ward, Courtney Anderson, and Matthew Bearden, all from our Troup High School Interact Club; Payton Hanners, representing the Fourth Estate, from the Troup County News; and the Hon. James Woodruff, High Sheriff of Troup County.
"All the Rotary News that Fits, We Print”
Reported by your Bulletin Editor, Clark Johnson.