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Women in Rotary

Last Thursday’s meeting was a very impromptu, fun, but meaningful look at and discussion of “Women in Rotary”.  After a lively round of announcements and “Happy Dollars” we watched a short video clip from the Rotary Foundation, “History of Women in Rotary”” looking at the impact of the 1987 US Supreme Court Decision requiring Rotary (and all other Fraternal Clubs, ie: Lions) to include women in their membership.  The video showed how some clubs and some Rotarians were conflicted about including women in their membership.  While other clubs embraced it and already had women members. Amazingly, this Supreme Court decision was national news and was broadcast on all major networks. Of course, there were no women announcers and Tom Brokaw looked like he had just started shaving.  (Our own President, Tory Paxson, wasn’t even born then.)  This was a huge change for Rotary.  Many clubs lost members because of the ruling, but many eventually grew because of the addition of women to their clubs.

After watching the video there was a lively discussion about the effect of this decision on our Rotary Club.  We did lose a few members, but added some amazing members like Gloria Walters, who was our first woman President, 1998-1999. (Right after Bob Pike). Doug Harley, Mike Thompson and Robin Reed were members during this transition.  They added a lot to the discussion, making it alive and close to home.  The final opinion of everyone at the meeting is that the 1987 Supreme Court decision had a positive effect on Rotary and definitely on our club.

This week is our Spooky Halloween Party.  Beware, but be there.  The High School Interact Club will be out on the deck carving pumpkins, then join us for dinner and a costume parade.  Don’t forget your costume, after all it’s Halloween…..

The Veteran’s Dinner is November 9th.  The Interact Club mailed about 100 Invitations, but we probably missed some of the active service members and veterans in our community.  Please let them know they are invited too, along with a family member or friend.  Just call Irene at 207-315-5429 and leave a message, that way we can welcome you appropriately.  

We’re always looking for interesting speakers or programs.  Recently, Doug Harley recommended a talk by the director of the Horse Rescue Farm in Windham.  Even if you didn't know much about horses the speaker was so passionate and knowledgeable you couldn’t help but fall in love with them.  Subsequent to the presentation, the club has donated $2000 to the farm. This is the magic of Rotary sometimes.  We learn about things we wouldn’t reach out for, and we make our world richer.  So, if you have any ideas at all for speakers or programs share it with a Program Committee member or with Tory. 

The Rotary Barn is still open, hopefully until mid-December, 8:30 to 11:00 every Saturday.

If you’re interested in the fun and work of Rotary, join us any Thursday at 6:00 for fellowship, dinner and a fun and interesting meeting at our clubhouse, 66 Montgomery Rd, BBH.