President’s Letter – July 7, 2019

President’s Letter – July 7, 2019

One of the things I enjoy about being a Rotarian is being part of a global family. When Rotary clubs attract members who share their values — the values of Rotary — there is an easy familiarity that comes with meeting other Rotarians far from home. My family and I were on a cruise to Alaska during the past two weeks, and we stopped in Ketchikan on Independence Day. Ketchikan has a population of around 14,000. That number can double when the cruise ships are in port. On the day we were there, it seemed like the whole town had turned out for the Independence Day parade. There was a platform set up for a radio and local TV broadcast of the parade, and it was being run and announced by Rotarians, decked out in colorful Rotary t-shirts. One was dressed like a duck to promote their annual fundraiser! I stopped to chat and they posed for this picture, wishing our club well for the coming year.

A little later I came across a table where two more Rotarians were selling tickets for their duck race fundraiser. I stopped to talk with them, and another Rotarian (she was from England) who was visiting on one of the other cruise ships also stopped to talk. It was like seeing old friends even though we had all only just met. I learned that the Ketchikan club raises about $30,000 every year, and puts the money toward a major project for the town. This year, the money will go to build a kindergarten at the local senior living facility so that the residents can spend more time with their grandchildren. I thought it sounded like a good cause so I bought a ticket!

I’m looking forward to reconnecting with my Santa Barbara Rotary family on Friday. The club is the program this week. You will have a chance to get to know your board of directors better, ask questions, and be a part of setting the course for the coming year. Our club will be what each member contributes and I am excited to see what the club will become this year! 
With warmest regards,
Dean

 

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